I never knew my Grandfather while I was growing up, he died when my mother was still a teenager, but according to my mother he was a great father, he would come to see her in Lucea, Hanover where she lived with her mother, (he lived in Montego Bay). She said he came often and took her to the fair and spend time with her. She loved him. We did not have a picture of him, but he lived with us, oh yes he did. Because I was always afraid as a child many nights I slept between my parents, (how my mother ended up having another baby, to this day I am baffled, but that is beside the point). My mother would always say “my father said so and so”, speaking of him in present terms, which always made us wonder, if he was no more in the land of the living how could he tell her anything?..
But My mother continued to honor her father in this way. Now If you have read some of the previous blogs, you will remember that I told you to watch out for stories about our neighbor Miss Will, Hilda Willis (Should be BROOM HILDA WILLIS in my opinion). Let me tell you a little about this Jamaican witch. Miss Will was our neighbor and she was an Evangelist in a Revival Spiritual Church, Which meant, she jumped poco,sixty and sixty-one (this is invocation of spirits) 60 is for celestial angels and 61 is for the dead.
This woman use to create problems in the community, and when no one was looking she would steal meats from our pots when we were cooking, she had a condition where she urinated on herself often, so the smell she brought with her where ever she went was very unpleasant. At the risk of boring you I will stop here for now and give you glimpses of her in future posts, But it is important for you to know for the sake of this story, that Miss Will and my mother would physically fight all the time, or I should say my mother use to beat her up often, my mother was nice but rough!! Miss Will was no match for her. In future posts to come I will be explaining, Poco, Kumina, sixty and sixty-one , and more. Ruthibel, Cityra,Bongo man, which are all spirits and many more, some of them,will be referedto as something else, because to even write their names is to summon them, and we do not want that.
One morning My mother got up to go to work, before she left she gathered us all together and showed us her arm which had a huge black and blue mark on it, she said “look yah, mi father came to visit me last night, and him tell mi sey dat tonight around three o’clock, duppy a go come call mi name three times, him beg mi nuffi answer, and den him pinch mi fi mek mi know sey him really did come warn me, him sey do mi dawta nuh ansa, him sey ah Miss Will sen death-blow fi mi”…. Needless to say coward me knew for sure that the space in between my parents that night would be occupied by me. Night came and we all slept. My parents bed room was in the front of the house, and the door was a translucent glass door, there was a bright street light on the side-walk, and so any body that came onto our verandah we could see their shadow. BAM BAM BAM!!.. three loud knocks while a male voice called Elaine!Elaine!Elaine! (my mothers name) three times, jumped us all out of our sleep, I pushed my thumb in my mouth with my heart racing and sucked hard, being very frightened, and slid closer to my mother who was in the corner. We could see the shadow of the hand that knocked!, the second time the knock was harder!, which prompted my father to scream out “Ah who de rass dat!!”, which earned him a quick slap and a shush from my mother. Once more the same knocks, then we heard a kiss teeth loudly, and the person walked off. The blow did not come for my Dad, so when he answered it could not have affected him, it would have been different had my mother answered…. Mi nah try fi convince nuh body sey Obeah real mi jus a share wha mi know and dat a one a mi memories, aldo mi have nuff more fi tell. Living in dat tenement yard wid Hilda Willis was not easy, and mi wi gi oonu more. That could’nt have been a coincidence, mi madda tell we sup’m whey har father whey nuh live pon earth tell har and it manifest? what yuh tink? lol!