Hailed as the African Sex and the City, a new web series follows the lives of 5 young women returning home to Africa. An African City takes place in Accra, the capital and largest city of Ghana. You can watch 15 minute episodes on Youtube, and suscribe to An African City.
I first learned of this show from my Media Theory professor. He knew I would be interested because I was African, and I had previously expressed my love for the show Sex and the City. I made note to watch this web series when I had time.
One episode in, and I love it! Episode 1, The Return, addressed every African-girl-in-America-to-long issue there could be. Nana Yaa arrived in Accra from New York, and could not rest her feet on Ghanaian soil long enough before she was confused for an American girl. After showing identification with her African name on it, she was told she does not look or sound Ghanaian. This is funny because I went through the same thing just last week when a Ghanaian man came into my job. Instead, I did not look or sound Nigerian. To my dismay, Africans are still shocked that their are other Africans that do not look or sound like them. Yes, there are vivacious, young, communities of Africans in almost every state of America now.
The episode followed Nana home where she was greeted by her parents. She is upset to find that the clothes she left behind were given away to relatives by her mother. Now I have not came accross this issue, being that I live in America with my mother, but I know how it feels. I remember having cousins visit from Africa, and they would come into my room,and ask for my things as if I suddenly had no use for them. Funny now, but at the moment I wanted to scream as my cousin 3 shades darker walked out with my makeup foundation.
Nana then meets with her old girlfriends for dinner, as we learn of other countries, Sierra Leone and Kenya, represented in the show. They talk about all the advantages of moving back home, as well as disadvantages. Such as booming business; big government contracts, and making $30,000 per sale for shea butter. Now, $30,000 (USD) is ideal for an U.S. college graduates salary, but making that much for selling shea butter has me thinking I went to school for the wrong reasons (LOL). They also talk about the consistent beautiful weather all year round, beaches, and natural foods. Even being able to pick up “designer” items for cheap, at the side of the road, without having to leave the car.
On the other hand, they discuss some trials they had to go through coming back home to Accra. One must always remember common mannerisms, like never do ANYTHING with your left hand. That rule is still very important for Africans in America, but it is mainly aimed at parents. In this case, Nana handed her menu to the waiter with her left hand and was looked down upon for it. Also, being a lover of all things meaty and spicy, as the vegetararian, Ngozi (representing Nigeria) orders her plain meal.
One of the biggest issues discussed was love! Makena (Kenya), the unemployed lawyer, explained her tribulations with being confused for a full time chef. She recently had a break up with a man that wanted 3 cooked meals per day. This is one of the biggest issues for any African girl, but not much of an issue if you can cook. I learned how to cook, for myself, in college when I realized I could not survive off fast food, and snacks. I still know how to cook, for myself, and I am glad I learned. Sadly, I just no how to cook 1 portion meals for myself(LOL). Nana’s group of friends all hinted towards her love life as they asked if she came back to see a certain somebody. She explained that she is back in Ghana for only work, but as she excuses herself for the bathroom she catches the eye of an assumed old flame and runs away. The last scene she is outside crying when her friend comes out to comfort her.
“Their are 7 billion people in the world. Every once in a while one of those people find his or her way back home for, or not for, LOVE.” -Nana Yaa
The episode left me wanting more, but luckily I have more episodes to watch next. The show is a big step up for African culture. It gives any American a glimpse into African city life. Other Afrikata’s, like me, will feel a little more receptive of the idea of moving back home (although I was never against it). This webseries serves as more reason to go back home to Lagos, Nigeria, and learn for myself what my culture is like.
Watch the episode online HERE!