The first thing people ask me when they learn that I’m from Togo, is whether or not I know Emmanuel Adebayor. This is usually always coming from guys. Some people then ask me whether or not I play soccer football. I tell them no. Here’s one of those experiences from childhood that affects you so much that the main elements of it never leave you, even if some of the details get fuzzy over time.
I remember that I was staying at the house of some family friends during the mid-day, because there was about an hour break between the first part of the school day and the second part. I must have been around 7 or 8. I left the house to go get some plantains for lunch. On my way back, I saw a group of boys playing soccer (or football) near the front of the house.Even though they took up the whole street, I was determined to get home. So, I walked besides them, careful not to run into them.
And that’s when it happened. Someone kicked the ball, and missed the net entirely…but not my head. Just imagine it! Ball meets head, hot plantains go flying and don’t miss my head either….A throbbing headache and a few tears later, I was fine. But I had a fear of flying balls ever since.
And that’s why I don’t play football…er…soccer. Or maybe it’s because I have terrible hand/eye coordination and I tend to over-think things…Either way, I appreciate but I don’t play.