This is the beginning of Ishmeals great and horrendous journey.
In January of 1993, Ishmael, Junior, and Talloi set off from their village of Mogbwemo on a trip to the town of Mattru Jong to participate in a friend's talent show. They visit the town of Kabati, Ishmael and Junior's grandmother's village, along the way. There, Mamie Kpana, as the grandmother is known, questions them about their schooling. When they reach Mattru Jong they meet up with their friends, Gibrilla, Kaloko, and Khalilou.