There is an elderly gentleman who lives in Bristol. His name is Kenneth. He is an excellent gardener, baker and most importantly story-teller. He can trace his family line back to the foundations of England – they haven’t moved far from the West Country and he has a memory that puts any genetic historian to shame. As English as April Showers in May is Kenneth. As white as the fabled snow that lined the postcards sent across Britannia’s former colonies is Kenneth. As remarkable as the adjective can be, is Kenneth. And today, this pure-blooded Bristolian’s only surviving family members are all black. Not even black. But as black as the image of deepest darkest Africa can be. As coloured as the shores of Western Africa, as slick as the oil that spills over Nigerian fields, as coconut brown as the fruits that sway in between mother’s baskets, as yellow as the gold that laced the necks of their ancient Obas are Kenneth’s relatives.
Sixty years ago Kenneth’s cousin Joan decided to get on a boat and take a bit of the West Country to Western Africa. That’s called globalisation.