What did you spend your Saturday doing? Did you read a book? If you did, which one? Did you go out? Where? I went out to Terra Kulture. I first saw the poster for the Tribute to Buchi Emecheta on Twitter.
Immediately I saw it, I thought yes! I must go for this! I tagged all of my friends in the picture and instead of the response I expected, I only got silence.
I’m not someone who likes to go out alone and so I thought should I go? Should I just stay at home and watch the countless movies I had downloaded?
A good friend made the decision for me by suggesting that I not go. I’m so weird, I know. I’m glad that he said so though, I would have missed quite a lot if I didn’t go.
I got there pretty early and for twenty minutes, we listened to interviews of Buchi Emecheta by BBC. I didn’t really listen. I was mainly watching out for all the guests whose attendance was promised. I saw Sefi Atta almost immediately after I stepped in and I have to say, she’s so beautiful. I got a picture because why not?
The reading started soon after with Sefi Atta, Chika Unigwe and Molara Wood reading from Buchi Emecheta’s books.
Sefi Atta wrote a tribute to Buchi Emecheta in which she mentioned that she met Buchi in 2005. She mentioned that Buchi Emecheta, even though she didn’t want to be identified as a feminist, inspired her journey to feminism. After she finished her amazing tribute, she read from Head under Water. Sefi Atta said, “Demanding equality is merely using your common sense.”
Chika Unigwe gave a brief talk about when and how she met Buchi Emecheta and read from her book Second Class Citizen.
Molara Wood, author of Indigo, read from Buchi Emecheta’s Joys of Motherhood.
This is where I think have to mention the food. I didn’t think that there was going to be food and so I was completely surprised when the anchor of the event announced that food was served. I’m a lover of food so forgive me but I was overjoyed when I saw that it was a buffet. Let’s just say I ate to my heart’s content. Very soon, the guests were done and the floor was open for people to pay tributes.
I recited a poem on behalf of a friend and some other people gave some helpful suggestions. There were suggestions to start a foundation on behalf of Buchi Emecheta, also to start an award in her name. Her books, which are not available for sale anymore are to be reprinted according to her son, Sylvester Onwordi, who was in attendance.
Toni Kan, author of Nights of a Creaking Bed was also in attendance.
After the event, I wandered over to the art section. There were so many amazing art pieces but we were not allow to take pictures. An attendee asked the writers a question: “Concerning privacy, if they were indeed to be celebrated, how would they want to be?”
Sefi Atta responded that she is a shy person and would like it if she were not there at all. Molara Wood would like to be celebrated for her ideas and Chika Unigwe just wants the money, money, money! Buy books, talk about books and distribute books everywhere.
PS: Lagos Book and Art Festival is scheduled to hold from the 9th to the 12th of November, 2017 and the Ken Saro Wiwa Best Book Review price will be awarded at the event.
I should mention that I met a friend at the Tribute and after, we proceeded to Freedom Park, where we walked around and enjoyed the scenery.
Overall, the event was amazing and I would pick the day I had over sitting at home watching movies ANY DAY!