Source: The Sunshine Blogger Award
“The Lord is near to the broken-hearted and saves the crushed in spirit – Psalm 34: 18″
“The wages of sin is death but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus – Romans 6:23”
As a Lagosian, I know just how hard it is to survive here amidst all the series of hustlers and hungry-eyes. Everybody falls victim one way or the other, sometimes without realizing it and we pretend to be okay.
The unending trails of having to find a job without money in your pocket, if you are unemployed and never having to get any positive feedback even after you have proved just how good and capable you are but your family, spouse, friends and society don’t understand your struggles, rain abuses on you and leave you more depressed and you think everyday, why am I still here?.
The unending trails of waking up too early to go to work, amidst the long hours of traffic and go-slow inside a molue, bus, or private car, still having to get late to work and yet receive abuses from your boss and a possible decrease in your ‘salary’ that is merely a stipend, leaving you with nothing extra to fend on or hangout with friends and everybody looks at you as stingy and selfish making you sad and lonely.
The unending trails of monthly salaries that never cover half of your monthly expense but there is just nothing you can do about it because half bread is better than none and there are hardly other jobs out there OR you have just spent too much of your years at your current job, it’s hard to leave and start the search for a better one, so you nag inside and worry yourself to death.
The unending trails of having to start up your own business but you suddenly realize that the Lagos market does not welcome start-ups like you and your capital is not just enough to complete all funding for rent, salaries, tax levies, corporate fees and still help to hold body, so you worry a lot and wonder what next to do about your life.
The unending trails of nagging friends[especially those not in Lagos], who do not understand that in Lagos, time waits for no hustler; you have a demanding job that yet puts food on your table, a roof over your head, clothes on your body and money to share and the only time you have to yourself is half of Sunday and possible official leaves which is hardly enough to gain all the lost sleep and energy but they do not care to understand and so they stop calling or checking up on you and you still hold on to them since they are the only friends you have and can make, because there is no time to make other friends and you believe that years have bonded you guys but they still nag and call you all sorts and forget/neglect to inform you of important days in their lives such as a new partner, a new child, a new job, a relocation, a wedding, house warming and you only get to find out through mouths of others or blogs or papers or news media and you end up depressed and alone because you realize that they moved on without you.
The unending trails of having to get married because you suddenly realize that you are 30 or above and as a man, there has to be a lady just standing by so your old parents, friends, neighbors, family and society won’t think that you have just decided to be wayward and useless, as they say ‘oniranu’ OR as a lady, you suddenly realize that you are 26 or above with your biological clock still ticking endlessly but no ‘proper’ man is forthcoming and every eye brow is raised, curious about whether you want to end up being a single mum/whore whose life is not coherently arranged and because marriage is the definition of success for a woman, you just have to do something fast about it else you get worried, sad and distressed.
The unending trails of having to pay rents high above your two times annual salary but you have a family to cater for and you must provide shelter so that nobody sees you as a hopeless individual and you shrug on because the struggle is just starting and there are still school fees to tend to, an extended family to feed and a nagging wife to bear who does not care how you come up with the money as long as it pops up, so you leave home very early everyday to avoid the morning chaos and return too late just to afford you some time to sleep before the morning rise.
Then you suddenly realize that the world is better off without you and that nobody will care if you stay or go and in deciding what is best for you and everyone, you decide to leave and end the inner pain you feel. Your spirit is crushed, “no one will understand” you say, no one cares about how passionate you feel about your bothering issues, everyone has their issues to bear.
So you look at the mirror and decide that a spirit somewhere is calling you to a land of oblivion, a place of peace, a place where you will have no need to worry or get depressed or distressed or sad. You scroll through your phone and wonder if there might just be one person who will care, nobody! You ponder on it, for minutes, hours, days, weeks, months and finally the thought becomes too strong. There is no reason not to end it, no need to participate in this vain life, everything is now sour, you must go before you run mad and so, just like that, without warning, you end it and leave. You smile because you know that nobody will care not even you.
You forgot that people care about your life, you just have not met them. You forget that you can try again, to find new friends, to find peace within and be happy in just you. You forget that there is a God and He loves and cares about you. You forget that there are others out there, more depressed than you looking for solace and you might be the solace they need. You forget that committing suicide is a sin and God abhors it. You forget too much and hurt us all by just ending it.
May I ask, who gave you permission? Did I give you permission? Did you allow me to meet you? Did you look for me to ask? Did you talk with God? Did He give you permission to end it? Why did you end it? I want to know…why? You hurt me…a lot, you thought that nobody cared but I do…a lot, we could have been friends or even just hello buddies, but you never gave me a chance.
I have pondered and thought on what could have possibly informed Dr. Sunday Orji to commit such action on that third mainland bridge. He was just thirty-five  years old and still blooming with life. I mean, at 35, he was a doctor, had a good car with a driver and from all Nigerian standard, that seemed like a successful young person. There probably are a lot of people his age or even older than he was, who have not even attained the height he was or who were probably envying him. Then a day later, I heard another lady tried to commit suicide but fortunately, she was rescued unconscious. Jeez!
The truth remains, no one knew what pain they were passing through or what their everyday torment was. They could have both been very depressed fellows who were low in spirit. They may not have had so many friends, people to talk with and confide in.
This brings me back to this…every one in Lagos, Nigeria and the world especially is hustling one way or the other, to fit in, to make ends meet, to provide for their family, to build a family or to help loved ones who are sick or in need or to just be happy and not be judged for not attaining certain societal expected level.
So I ask; when last did we call up that old friend or visit someone we knew that was finding things difficult? When last did we pray for each other, our friends, neighbors, family and the people around us?
The economy is tough and people are finding it difficult every passing day to survive and scale to the next. Lagos especially is not helping matters, every thing is rocket high and you just have to keep hustling.
Each of us are not less guilty of this. We create certain standards for ourselves, our family, our kids, our friends and even the people we chose to stay around with without caring for the possible implications and when we don’t meet the standards that we have invisibly set, we cry foul and become unhappy, depressed, sad, distressed, alone. When the people around us don’t meet our required standards, we steer clear and make them feel unwanted.
I am not saying that should cause any one to commit the sin of suicide because it is selfish to do that but it also helps and motivate the individual to feeling that after all, he/she is not needed and because there is nothing he/she can do, the only way out is to end it.
“Sins that oppress and bury us cannot be termed trifles! What is more minute than drops of rain? Yet, they fill the rivers. What is more minute than grains of wheat? Yet, they fill the barns. You note the fact that these sins are rather small but you do not take note that there are many of them. In any case, God has given us a daily remedy for them.”
Share problems with your neighbors, neighbors please pay attention to the person beside you. That was why we were made, to help and comfort one another.
Do read and share your thoughts via thew comment box below. It will be amazing to know that this post has gone out to a number of people who actually listened. Thank you.
So tomorrow is your last day in camp and you obviously can’t wait for it to be here. Don’t worry, it already is. Most of you will wake up by 2am or 3am latest, don’t sweat it, the camp officials will be ready for you by 9:30am.
However, it’s also the day to find out where your PPA (Place of Primary Assignment) is and whether or not your prayers and/or sortings worked. Yeah, sortings…I mean in Nysc Nigeria, NEVER leave to fate that which you obviously have the opportunity to influence. That’s why you got the opportunity, don’t be like me, leaving it to fate instead. Trust me, it’s a story I’ll always tell.
So after the camp parade, you will be shared Platoon by platoon or State code numbers by state code numbers, as the case in your state may be and your posting letter will be shared individually.
Now I know there will be tension flying here and there, but take a chill pill, worse as e worse, it will end in a remote village and on the brighter side, you may end up winning a national award of some sort. *sigh*
Fortunately, if you were able to redeploy successfully…thank God. At least, you are in the safe zone.
Let’s go back to you guys who didn’t redeploy for fate’s sake or who couldn’t redeploy. Now after you get your posting letter, you would see some strange LGA that you may not be familiar with or you may see where you know. Either ways, it’ll be a morning of mixed emotions.
You may have arranged a bus to go with to your local government via church fellowships, or via friendly means but if you haven’t, the camps will provide transport for you.
When you get to your town of deployment, the first thing to do, if you have adequate time, is to find your place of primary assignment and get them to either accept or reject you.
If you don’t have sufficient time, you can relax and treat yourself to a nice meal, a warm bath and a lush bed. That is, if you have the means or are in the right town to achieve that. If not, just make yourself comfortable and healthy for the next day’s trouble.
Note, if you have later plans to redeploy, find a way to get a rejection letter because once you get accepted, you stay nigbayen. For those that get posted to schools and are seeking rejection, biko don’t approach the school oo. Those people hardly reject anybody at all.
After you get your acceptance, you should go to your Local government Inspector’s office or your Nysc Secretariat, if you still have ample time, open your file and do the necessary clearance. Remember to take along with you, your passport, your Nysc account details, your posting letter and acceptance/rejection letter.
If you got a rejection, approach your Zonal/local Inspector and let him know you have been rejected. He or she will then repost you to another place, where you have to go and get an acceptance maybe.
If you have to leave your state of deployment for any reason, apply at your LGI office for permission to leave. You will get the format on how to write the permission letter.
For those of you that will be ghosting your service, I mean working in a state other than that of your deployment and still coming to your service state to do your clearance, try to make an arrangement with your LI/ZI and see what good deal you can make yourself. Hopefully, you get to work things out well for your benefit.
On this note, I say cheers guys. Serve Nigeria in peace and love. Have a great night.
THE UNTOLD STORY OF NIGERIAN LAW SCHOOL POSTING
…as told by Walter Abah
If I can recall well, the first time I heard or uttered the word “Yola” was sometime during my primary school days, it was under the mango tree in our school compound. We were learning the 30 states and capital rhyme. It was a sweet rhyme. So sweet that some of my classmates were able to recite the 30 states that day, some 20 states or less. But I guess it was not all that sweet to me or I didn’t like the sound of all the states as I found myself stuck with only two states that day. Our teacher then, now late (God rest her beautiful soul) made me to stand in front of the class and recite the rhyme.
So I started; 30 states and capital: Abia – Umuaya, Adamawa – Yoya, Abia – Umuaya, Adamawa – Yoya, Adamawa – Yoya; Adamawa – Yoya; Yoya… Yoya…Adamawa… and so my voice was breaking into uncontrollable tears. In my head I could hear my classmates bullying me with uncontrollable laughter. I could hear their tiny voices whispering: “nwa headi, amag’ ag’ ya o”, “obodo ugwu awusa d’ya oyi’” (Headmaster’s child does not know how to recite it o. He likes the land of the Hausas’).
Our teacher – even though I could see the disappointment on her face- not minding my already soiled green and white school uniform, carried me up in her arms and wiped my tears with her palms. She urged me not to listen to my classmates and reassured me that with time, I will learn it and recite it better than them.
Two decades later, somewhere in the capital city of Enugu, I found myself stuck with the same four-letter word in a tiny bathroom of a one room en-suite apartment of a bosom friend. This time around ADAMAWA – YOLA was re-echoing in my head in the bathroom; with beads of sweat rushing out of my body on a cold Friday morning.
I had just graduated from the Faculty of Law, University of Nigeria, with good honours and was waiting to be posted to any of the six campuses of the Nigerian Law School, for the one year vocational training for Nigerian Law Students. Knowing somebody that knows somebody, I was certain that I will be posted to the Headquarters of Nigerian Law School, situated in Bwari, Abuja. In fact, after the online registration, I bragged loudly to all that cared to ask…
“Which law school are you going to?”
“Abuja campus of course! Where else?” I would scornfully say.
I think my bragging was so irritating, that one day an acquintance asked me solemnly, “Have you worked your posting to Abuja?”
Before he could finish, I zoomed off; “Yes, I have. One of the lecturers in Abuja campus is my very good friend. I know one of the Directors in Abuja campus and my Oga and the main Oga in Abuja Campus are very close. I have forwarded my details”.
The guy just said, “Hmmm…” followed by a long silence.
Another person who overheard us asked, “You don’t like Enugu campus?”
I frowned at him and asked; “How can I? I am from Enugu. I did my primary, secondary and university education in Enugu. I need a change of academic environment biko.”
The boasting and trust on my Abuja connect continued on the eve of the posting, as I lay on the six spring mattress lying on the floor of the one room self contain apartment with two of my close friends and classmates. We kept vigil for the posting; empty cans of Alomo Bitters, Orijin and Hero bottles littered the room. I could see the fears written on my friends faces and I could tell why. But as for me, I was overconfident that I would be posted to Abuja campus because of the “somebody” I know; the only fear I entertained that night as we kept vigil together was that, these my good friends might not be posted to Abuja, as we all desired to be in the same campus together, to achieve this we all chose Abuja campus as our first choice during the online registration.
Mid way into our self imposed vigil, I slept off and was woken up by one of my friends, terribly shaken; he had slept off too and dreamt that he was posted to Kano. I shouted, “God forbid!”
The whole sleep in my eyes cleared instantly. The other friend there with us was awoken up too by the word, Kano. He shouted, Jesus! when he heard the word and sat up immediately.
I asked, the friend that dreamt, “Do your dreams come through?” and he said yes.
I told him sorry and started consoling him on his loss. “Boko Haram crisis is not that serious in Kano. You should be grateful that you are not posted to Yola; the headquarters of Boko Haram.”
I then made a dry joke about Yola campus and students there not been able to read because of sporadic shootings all the time and the regular bomb blasts. As a result of which, the campus has been unable to produce a first class student since the campus was established or any of the students win any of the awards during the annual call to bar ceremony. I equally told them that I heard that, lecturers are transferred to Yola as punishment or for not been in the right clique and those transferred there, either repost back to another campus or they resign. We laughed and drank more till we slept off.
Around 4:00 am, we were awoken up by the shouts of; “Yea! yea! Lagos, here I come!”
The friend that was posted to Kano in his dream had been posted to Lagos campus. He was over-excited and I could see the tears of joy on his face. I quickly unplugged my INNJOO phone from the socket and checked my status but I was not posted yet. I congratulated my dear friend but with mixed feelings. “He dreamt of Kano and his dreams come through, and now he is posted to Lagos. Which of his friends is now going to Kano?” I thought.
“Definitely not me.” I told myself and kept a straight face.
“My Abuja friend will post me to Abuja; he promised to do so. I can’t go to the North with all the killing of students and “Kopas”, and the poor performance of Yola campus every year. Mbakwa o! God forbid. It’s either Abuja or Lagos.” I thought to myself again
At that point I became afraid, my friends could see my fear but I pretended not to be afraid. I called Madam Obere, to warm her goat meat pepper soup and serve us with more cold beer. That was around 6:00 am. As we ate, drank and chatted about hopes and law school expectations, we had our phones handy and regularly checked the social media for updates about #NLSposting that was threading on twitter and Facebook. Twitter handles and Facebook timelines, was awash with the joyous and sorrowful posts.
@amarajesus twitted, “God has remembered my family and me. I don’t know anybody but Jesus is my somebody and He has posted me to Abuja. #PraiseGod #JesusMySomebody #NLSposting.”
@sassylawyer twitted, “My Abuja connect is on point. #TeamAbuja #flexingthingsonmymind #NLSposting”.
@kingsbench posted, “This #NLSposting does not reflect my wish and desire. It is a caricature of a supposed transparent process engineered by my Classrep. Why #KanoCampus?”
@Ichie_common_law twitted, “My enemies have finally gotten me. They have sent me to Bokoharam. How many days from Enugu to Kano bikonu? #SoberMood #NLSposting.”
@corporatelawyer twitted, “That awesome moment you get posted to Lagos campus as a budding corporate lawyer with months of internship in corporate law practice. #iRepLagos #NLSPosting.”
We laughed over all these amidst mouthful of peppery goat meat and cold beer. Months of internship indeed; spent, snapping pictures from different corners of the law firm and posting on Facebook and Instagram. Also, how can one accuse his Classrep of manipulating Law School posting? Not even the Dean of a Faculty can take such credit. We shrugged at the thought of how influential the accused Classrep could be.
Then came the sorrowful scream of; “Kano! Kano!! but why me?”
Our dear friend had been posted to Kano campus. Thank God the Lagos guy’s Kano dream finally came through and I was not the one going to Kano; I said to myself. I stood up from the floor, patted the Kano guy at the back and told him it may not be as bad as he thinks, gave my phone to the Lagos guy to keep checking my status; took a chunk of meat, gulped my cold beer and headed to the bathroom, happy.
After removing my clothes and turning on the shower, the Lagos guy called from the room and said…”Guy, you have been posted to Yola.
I stood; frozen, sweating profusely in the shower. I wasn’t hearing anything except the sound of the primary school rhyme of Adamawa – Yola, re-echoing in my head. Men don’t cry but I cried.
Slowly, with shock and shame, I walked out of the bathroom. My friends rushed and tied a towel round my naked waist. Aside the re-echoing of: “Adamawa – Yola?, why me?, what have I done wrong?” in my head; I could hear my friends saying; “Guy, calm down before you hurt yourself o. It may not be as bad as you think. Things have changed about Boko Haram fight since APC changed Nigeria.”
I collected my phone and checked my posting and truly; “you have been posted to YOLA!” was staring at me boldly. My friends suggested that I should call my Abuja friend and my Oga that knows the main Oga in Abuja so that they will repost me to Abuja or Lagos.
I then dialled my Abuja friend; “Hello sir!”
“Yes, how are you?” He asked at the other end
“I am fine sir and you?” I responded even though I was visibly shaken.
“I am good; have you been posted?”
“Yola.” I held the phone tightly.
A brief silence followed that word from the other end. “Hello sir?” I said.
“Yes, I am here. When are you travelling to Yola?”
I can swear I did not hear the question he just asked me or the question was meant for somebody else. I was shocked by the question that I didn’t know when I told him; “But sir, you promised to post me to Abuja campus.”
He then replied saying that he was not in charge of posting and that the person he knew in the ICT department had been transferred before our posting.
“Sir, please can you repost me to Enugu, forget about the Abuja; I don’t even like Abuja or Lagos and its busy traffic. I am more used to Enugu.”
“No, you did not say that on time besides, it is not possible because your orientation and lectures will start on Monday and today is Friday already. When you reach Yola make sure you call me…” and then came the hang up tone.
I looked at the phone screen and my friends, and asked myself; did I just call a friend or a boss? I called my Oga but the conversation was not different. He urged me to accept the posting in good faith and go to Yola. According to him, maybe God is planning to make me Turaki Adamawa. What he meant by that I am yet to find out. I told him that I don’t know the road to Yola and he said, “That’s why you have Google Map in your phone”.
That was how I packed my belongings and left the coal city of Enugu on Saturday morning before sunrise with the aid of Google Map. It was a long journey to the North that humbled me and reminded me, the vanity of trusting in men. As I journeyed, I discovered from the notifications pouring into my phone each time 3G breezed in that news of my posting to Yola was threading on BBM and Facebook;
@kingsbench posted, “The influential Classrep that couldn’t influence his own posting to Abuja or even Enugu. Shame! I hope he stays safe in Yola bombings. #NLSposting.”
I shook my head and smiled as my phone tripped off. It shall end in praise I promised myself.
Sixteen hours later I found myself in a beautiful milk coloured gate manned by fierce looking military men and boldly inscribed: WABBAMA – WABBAMA (WELCOME – WELCOME). Beside the beautiful gate is a big banner of Abubakar Shekau’s head surrounded by his comrades in arms, boldly inscribed; MOST WANTED DEAD OR ALIVE. I closed my eyes and prayed.
Despite my twenty-nine years, I felt like a callow youth standing outside Efua’s open door in the apartment she stayed at 1004 estate. I could scarcely breathe, my heart was racing so fast and I wondered what would happen to me if I finally touched her. I would just burst into flames! She was even more pretty than I remembered, and smaller. Her slender body was visibly outlined in the strap back denim she wore, I tried not to look below her waist.
She stepped aside so I could enter her home. Her apartment was neat, arranged and well furnished, such a cute little place for a pretty girl…I thought.
I looked back at her, she smiled slightly as she closed the door behind her. She offered me a glass of water after I had refused to take any other thing from her kitchen. She smiled as she sat beside me, crossing her legs and looking intently into my eyes. “What do you want from me, mister? It’s a surprise to see you here today but then again you are very full of surprises.”
Her voice was low, soft and surprisingly cultured, I hadn’t noticed that before, but she was so direct, I was taken aback. She couldn’t have said anything to make me more acutely aware of her own powerful attraction to me; though she visibly tried to fight against it…I thought OR what I originally intended to do with her ass.
Funny enough, I didn’t know what to say. I had been thinking about seeing her all Saturday and now that I was here with her in her cozy apartment, I sat mute, my heart beating like an eighteen year old boy, all the way up to my throat. She was so pretty and she looked amused. “Oh my…what do I do now? I can’t even think past what I’m feeling.”
I dropped the tumbler on the stool beside me, stood up and walked towards one of the caricature paintings she had sitting on the dining wall. Efua chuckled as she walked towards where I was standing. I saw her get up and move towards me, every movement drawing my attention to her body.
Efua touched my chest smiling and heard me suck in my breath. She moved around me, stopped behind me and placed her hands on my shoulders as she whispered into my ears “No need to be shy with me, mister. Tell me what you want.”
I could not understand why she was leading me on, she had seemed so quiet and naïve during our first meeting that I had decided to take this one slow but with the way she was eating at me…I couldn’t wait any longer. I looked down at her and turned her to face me “YOU…I want you.”
She looked intently at me again “I’m all yours but then, it depends the part of me you want.”
I watched her cross the dining back to the living room as she flicked through the DSTV channels. Efua. The name fit the way she looked; a full ass, flawless, brown-eyed and slender looking beauty. Everything she did was graceful and provocative in a sexy kind of way. “I want every part of you.”
She giggled as she walked past me into the kitchen, took out some almond nuts from the fridge, stuffed some into her mouth and headed back to where I stood. “By that, do you mean sex?” she shrugged as she continued chewing
I could feel the heat rushing all through my body, most of it ending up in my face. I coughed and felt as if something was choking me. Even with my blue polo, it seemed I had a tie round my neck. I had never felt this way…she made sex look like heaven, something I couldn’t get even by her talking about it freely.
She laughed softly as she noticed my uneasiness “Don’t worry Sugar, I promise I don’t bite.”
“It’s not necessary to say that, I’m not here to have sex with you.” I said…well, not just yet, I thought.
“No? Oh I see, you are here for…?”
“I just came here to see you and talk with you.”
“Uh uh…is that true now?” She half-smiled as she sat on the couch “You don’t want sex?” Efua gritted her teeth. Hiding her irritation, she let her gaze drift boldly.
I moved uneasily beneath her look as I moved to sit in the opposite direction so as to avoid all form of sexual temptation. There was more to her than meet the eye, I couldn’t be more sure if she was actually a mami-water like Dayo had said. This one had passed be careful.
She smiled again “Are you sure you just want to talk?”
I looked dead certain and she was disappointed.
I had wanted to do something spontaneous, crazy and mischievous with him…I thought he said he wanted all of me just now? With a sigh, I continued picking at my nuts “Whatever you want, mister. I aim to please.” I crossed my legs as I turned to face him.
I knew just what she was doing. Turning herself to face me just like that…thumbs up! I fought the swift desire to take her up on the clear message she kept sending me. The longer I stayed silent, the more my mind drew up images, and she knew it by the look in her eyes. Was she mocking me? No doubt about that!
“So you live here all alone?” I started for want of something to say
“Yup!” she tilted her head “Does it look like I have a flat-mate or something?”
I smiled to take the bite from my words. I hated men who asked irrelevant questions and probed.
For the second time again, I studied her surroundings. No feminine clothing scattered around, center mat on the floor, wine shelf at the dining, few pictures of herself on the wall, no family picture hanging around, some books sitting neatly by the edge of the dining and several paintings and art couture on the wall and dining area. Everything was clean, neat and in order. It seemed like if anything was out of place, she’d know right away.
I looked at her again as she swung her foot idly, like a pendulum. Her eyes were cold and empty. I could read nothing in them. She was a wall, an endless ocean, a clouded night sky so dark I couldn’t see my hands before my very face! I saw only what she wanted me to see and I didn’t like that. I didn’t want that.
“It’soyha, you said you wanted to talk. Why aren’t you saying anything?” I quizzed
It’soyha was saddened. “I shouldn’t have come to you like this Efua. I should have found another way.”
“Really, what other way is there? If you didn’t come to my house uninvited, do you think I’ll have any other time to talk to you?”
I should have found another way, another place. She was too ready to push me off and not the least bit ready to listen. Plus I was finding myself too easily distracted by her any move.
“How old are you by the way?” I asked
“Well let’s say I’m old enough to get married…”
“Nah…do I look twenty-two to you?”
“Actually, yeah…you kinda look small. Twenty-three maybe?”
“Seriously I’m way up the ladder. I’m twenty-five.” I figured that was right. I sensed something odd about her. There was another layer beneath the one she was showing now.
“Wow…and here I was thinking you’re still a baby. You are a big girl oh…”
“How old are you?” I asked, turning his question back at him
He smiled “Old. Real old.”
“Just how old?”
“Can’t you guess?”
“Nah, I’m too old to start playing mind games with you. Just blurt it out, you definitely can’t be a thirty, so…”
She looked prepared for anything, I doubted much could surprise her. “That’s true though. I’m twenty-nine.”
“Old enough for me I guess. I haven’t seen many real men lately.” Her lack of subtlety put me on firmer grounds.
“Where are you from?”
“Here and there…” she lifted one shoulder indolently as she began to swing her foot back and forth again
I smiled slightly at her polite and sultry reticence. “Any here and there in particular?”
“Just here and there,” her foot stopped swinging as she leaned forward “What about you? You from any place in particular? Are you afraid to do what you really want?” She was levelling barrels against me but rather than be taken aback, I felt myself relaxing. This girl was more real to me than any other girl I had met in my entire life.
“I’m from Edo state, Etsako-East in particular and no, I’m not afraid to do what I really want. I just want to clear all doubts I have in my head about you before I reach for your fat ass.” I grinned widely.
I frowned uneasily. It was the way he said it and the way he was looking at me. The intensity unnerved me. Funny enough, we were from the same state…my fat ass? I smiled at the thought. Was he making a joke at my expense or was he serious? Either ways, I didn’t care.
“Funny enough, I happen to be from Edo state too.”
“Hmmm…for real? That’s amazing…I hardly find Edo girls that keep me up my toes. You are going to marry me and I’m going to make your ass and everything about you mine!” his smile became wry
I laughed hard “Well, ain’t I just a lucky bitch!? I’m so flattered.” Shaking my head, I leaned forward again, my smile cold and cynical. Did he think this was a new approach? Did he think it was necessary?
“When would you like me to start playing my part, mister?”
“After I have put the ring on your finger. Right now, I just want to get to know you a little better.”
I hated him for dragging the game on. The wasted time, the hypocrisy, the endless lies. It had been a long afternoon and I was in no mood to humor him
“What’s to tell It’soyha? Nothing really. You know I’m a lawyer and just a random ordinary girl with man issues. All it boils down to, is you being plain and getting the reason why we are now talking out of the way but you better be quick because your time in my life is almost up.”
I saw that somehow I had made a fine mess of our third meeting. What had I expected? To come to her house unexpected, talk plain and walk out with her on my arm? She looked like she wanted to hit me. I was angry at myself.
“You’re not talking love Efua, and I didn’t come here to use you.”
The steady deepness of his words and the way he called my name- Efua – roused my anger even more. “No?” I tilted my chin. “Well, I think I understand.” I stood up, dropped the empty wrapper of the almond nuts on the stool beside me and moved closer to him, my soft hands combing and digging into his tiny hair. I could feel his tension and relished it.
“Let me guess something straight. You want to get to know me, you want to find out how I think and what I feel. And most of all, you want to know how best to get this fat ass of mine without coming through like a player.”
It’soyha closed his eyes and clenched his teeth, trying to close out the effect my touch was having on him.
“Do what you’re thinking about doing already and stop being such a douche by lying to me. I already know what you want. Question is, can I give it to you just the way you’ll like it?”
It’soyha put me firmly away from him. “I came to talk with you Efua, nothing else.” He said roughly
I studied him through narrowed eyes and then gave a harsh laugh. “If you want a conversation, go to Shaunz bar…there are a lot of people to talk to.”
He stood, “Come away with me and be my wife. I hate the distance between us, you in Lagos and I in Asaba…it’s not fair to me.”
I smiled derisively, “For what? If you want a wife so bad, send for one by mail or better still, wait for the next lorry from your village and pick the prettiest girl you see in it.”
He came towards me, “I can give you a very good life, better than the one you are already living. I don’t care how you got here or where you’ve been before, just come with me?”
I stared at him ridiculously…is he okay?
“What’s the meaning of give me a good life, do I look like a beggar?” I asked him
I already live a simple perfect little life as it is already, who cares about some funny man who wants my ass just for what he can give me even if he’s handsome? Bringing up fake hopes that we might fall in love and marry.
I went to the window. Pretending to look out, I closed my eyes and fought for control. What was wrong with me this evening? What was it about this stupid man that got to me? I preferred the numbness to this stirring of emotion. Hoping for anything with It’soyha was torment. Hope was the enemy and this man was a thorn in my side.
I came up behind her and put my hands on her shoulders. I felt her tense at my touch. “Come with me,” I said softly, “Be my wife, my lady.”
Efua shrugged my hands off angrily and moved away from me “No, thanks!”
“Okay fine, if you won’t go with me, then at least, let me come a little closer. Stop pretending not to see my calls or my mails.”
Finally, here we go, I thought. “Now that you are here, few steps ought to bring you closer It’soyha. All you have to do is put one foot in front of the other and take me.”
“I’m not talking about feet and inches, Efua, I’m talking about having you entirely to myself!”
All the feelings slowed inside me as I looked away…who does this one think he is? I thought. All this time, wasting saliva when I know that he obviously wants sex. Ha, he’s in for a scare when he finds out I have not even done it yet!
“You know, all men like to think they are way different from the last man a girl had.” I smiled sardonically. “They always think they are better. Come for this ass and I’ll show you just how much alike you all are. Or are you afraid I might be right?”
He smiled gently “Will you be comfortable if I bedded you right now?”
“Why not first give it a try? At least, that’s what you all want and you are not different; so stop going through rigorous processes that will break our hearts and let’s just get this over and done with.”
He moved away from the window and sat down again looking at me not the least disconcerted. “I’m not saying I’m any better than any other man you may have met. And yes, I do so much want to have sex with you but I also want much more.”
I snorted…”Such as?”
“Everything. I want what you don’t even know that you have to give!”
Just then, someone knocked at the door. Relief swept through me and I didn’t bother to hide it. Smirking, I shrugged “Oh well, I guess you have to leave.” I said as I walked past him to open the door to see my friend, Louisa, beaming at me.
I walked towards the door looking disappointed but not defeated “I’m going to come back and I’ll bug you till we get married.”
“I hear you sir, whatever makes you happy.” She smiled
They chuckled as I gazed in amazement at the both of them. Did they even realize that I was standing between them?
It’soyha touched my face “Call me when you change your mind, I’ll be waiting.” He looked like he really meant it, I was confused.
“That will be a long wait oh, don’t bother.”
“I’m willing to wait that long. You have everything I’m looking for, if not, I wouldn’t have felt what I did the first time I saw you.” He put his lean hands on my face again and looked into my eyes “It’s you that I want Efua and I know you want me too.”
“I bet you do.” I smirked. He grabbed my face forcefully and kissed me fully on the lips leaving a bite mark just below my lower lip.
“I bet.” He smiled as he left me standing in awe and Louisa stared on at the just finished drama.
“Who was that sexy young man?” Louisa asked
“I don’t know yet.” I replied touching my lips with a smile.
I sat quietly in the rickety, jerky cab.
“Ugh!” My friend Denise said irritably to the driver. “This car is so slow-and dirty as well.”
She turned to me. “Efua, sit straight now, you’re looking dead.” Denise put away her shades into her bag as she strapped the seat belt across her chest.
I ignored her knowing it would irritate her further as I pouted my lips. I wasn’t exactly the happiest person at the moment so I might as well be dead. I stared out the window as the cab sped off.
My fear that I would still be girl-like even at 25 had finally happened. I was so sad earlier this morning that I made up my mind to go to the hospital first before heading back to Lagos. I didn’t like Denise seeing me in such a state. I was usually the stronger one of both of us; always the shoulder to cry on. I hated the idea of people seeing me in my weak state, I always denied any form of weakness. I needed to blow off steam and I didn’t want to do so in front of Denise.
I had initially wanted to go to the hospital myself but Denise wouldn’t hear of it. She didn’t want me to get missing again like I did the other night. I tried to convince her that it wouldn’t happen like that again but she just blatantly refused to let me go on my own. I was going to frustrate her till we get home and then imma be all nice and stuff.
At some point, my bag began to vibrate and I knew my phone was ringing. I was in no mood to pick any calls so I just ignored my phone. I noticed the way Denise kept looking at me troubled but only I understood just how I felt. At least, everyone is allowed to have their crazy moments so stop looking at me, I thought. I closed my eyes wishing I could be 18 again.
I scowl with frustration at myself in the mirror. Damn my breasts – it just won’t behave, and damn this fake push-up for not being my size and subjecting me to this ordeal. I should be studying for my final exams of my second year session, which are next week, yet here I am trying to push my breasts into submission all because of a foolish dinner.
It must not look so small. It must not look so small. Reciting this mantra several times, I attempt, once more, to bring it under control with my hands. I roll my eyes in exasperation and gaze at the pale, brown-haired girl with hazel brown eyes too big for her face staring back at me, and give up. My only option is to wear my wayward breasts without a bra and hope that I look semi presentable.
Gathering my clutch, I smile wryly at Denise and a couple of my other friends who had come to get me, then head out the tiny apartment I shared with Ehis to the car. I cannot believe I have let Denise & Ehis talk me into dressing this way. But then Denise can talk anyone into anything.
Date: 6th December, 2015
Location: creek waterhouse, Asaba
Mood: Tired much
So the boys and I just got back from the hospital after seeing Omomoh and he at least smiled at us, so we know all he is well and fine. The doctor says he’ll be in there for a couple of days…3 days maybe or 4? Can’t be so sure of his recovery status. Oh well, that’s by the way. So I have a gut feeling that the strange number that called earlier today was the ass lady.
I had thought that she’d call back by now but she hasn’t and I’m so anxious to have a meet-up with her. Damming all the consequences, I picked up my BB Passport and dialed the strange number, praying silently that whoever would pick at the other end would be the ass lady. I dialed the number twice but I got no response and I’m getting worried. Whoever that was must have been a freak-ass! I tossed aside my phone aside and clasped both my hands over my face.
I’m tired of this shithole mess, I definitely can’t be in love with that darn ass…this must be some ass-love!
Just then, I hear Denise tap me. “Efua…come down, we’re home.”
I look around and realize I had slept throughout the journey home. “What a relief to be back home”, I thought, “Where I can lie on the bed and forget that I ever even existed!”
I checked my phone and saw that I had missed calls from my brother, Francis and a strange number. I began to debate on whom to call first when I suddenly remembered I had called the strange number earlier, which belonged to the guy I had met the other night. Strangely enough, I had seen him today at St. Luke and it got me jerking off the bed. I mean…what’s up with me and guys? One moment, I’m void of men in my life, the next I’m having lots of them zooming in all at once!
Don’t get me wrong, I think I like the guy but somehow I feel this guy is trouble. I mean when guys give you their cards just so you could get their number, I feel they are also selling off themselves as the kind of guy you need. I mean, what stopped him from just calling out his number to my hearing so that I could just dial it up on my phone? But no…he had to give me his business card, so now I know his full name, I know where he works and his position and I got his cell phone number, his office line and his fax…I didn’t ask for all those information sha.
Thing is, I wouldn’t have even remembered to call him up if I hadn’t set eyes on him today. Oh yeah, I know right…girls can like to misbehave but I really did want to call him when I got home that night to say thank you. However, when I got home that night, Denise practically had her eyeballs all set on me when I told her I had missed my way and I had to do lots of explaining that finally got me mad, and I ended up sleeping like that, not wanting to talk to anyone. I didn’t think I would ever set foot in any hospital in a long while but my situation had gotten worse Denise advised I go.
I had initially wanted to go to Nordica Fertility Centre, but I was told the specialist that would have attended to me had moved to St. Luke’s Hospital. You see, I have a rare condition which makes me think sometimes I might be masculine. Thing is, I hardly see my period…I’d be lucky if I even saw it once in 3 months. I could stay all year and see my period just twice, sometimes once. At first, I thought it was cool like I don’t need to bother about them blood and pads but as I got older, I began to have this nudge feeling that I was maybe infertile. There was this time I even thought I should have been a male…I had beards sprouting out of my chin and I had this deep masculine voice. Worse thing was I even had little or no breasts!!! What other thing to tell how manly I had become?
Another convincing factor was I loved been in control and somehow I thought I hated the idea of having sex because somehow, I just couldn’t get through with it. I started going for therapy and all, not because I wasn’t having sex but because I just loved to be in control and I had full trust issues-I needed to work on that. Been a virgin was never a problem for me, in fact anyone who saw that as a problem was either the devil incarnate or the devil himself! I had always been taught from childhood that pre-marital sex was wrong and that keeping myself celibate till I was married was the right thing.
However, depression set in when I realized I wasn’t even seeing my period, I wanted to be in control, I had serious trust issues and I didn’t know shit about how to turn a guy on. So it got me thinking, if ever I got married today, just how would I cope? I may end up not even having kids, my husband may cheat on me, I may be a boring wife and because I couldn’t let that shit happen to me, I decided it was high time I visited a doctor. I needed to know what the hell was going on inside my body and after today’s hospital visit, I felt more depressed than ever. I was to wait 3 more days for the report and I felt so sad because I hated the thought of having to hear that after all this while, I was barren. I waited all my 25 years for the perfect man and the perfect time and finding out that I may be barren was about to ruin my perfect little plan.
I stared at my Infinix zero after calling my brother and Francis, and wondered if calling It’soyha; that was him name right, I searched for his card in my purse and looked at his name one more time, yeah, I was correct; was the right thing to do at the moment. I was in no mood to sound cheerful neither was I in any mood to laugh with or appreciate anyone but then I started wondering just why he had been at the hospital this afternoon. “Was he sick? He didn’t look sick to me…” I thought
I punched on my phone and waited for the guy at the other end to pick up. Somehow, I was anxious and I didn’t know why.
As I sit at the dining with my cousins, I hear my phone ring in the background. I’m less concerned at the moment about whoever may be at the other end but as I keep hearing my ringtone…“you say keep on business on the low low, I’m just tryna get you out of friend zone, ‘cuz you look even better than the photos…” I remember the ass-lady. “Oh my word…” I say as I run out of the dining to get my phone to the amazement of my cousins
“Hello?” I whisper into the phone praying silently that it’d be the ass-lady
“Hey, hello…” I hear her say “Sorry, Am I on to Utibe It’soya?” she sounded not so sure. This was def the ass-lady, my name is written exactly like this on my card…I smile
“Yes, this is It’soyha. Who am I speaking with” I smile half hazardly as if I already didn’t know
“Erm…well, I don’t know if you can remember me. You took me to the garage about some days back. The girl who was heading to Free Town? At the ATM? Remember?”
“Erm…” I say trying to sound like I was thinking “I really don’t remember you”
“Oh! Well, I wanted to say thank you although it’s belated now but it’s a pity you don’t remember me.”
“Oh…Not a problem” I shrug my shoulders trying to behave like it didn’t matter that she was just calling after a period of six days…of course, it mattered!
“Alright then, I’ll let you be…Thanks again” she said sounding distant. This can’t be happening, soon she’ll drop the call and then it hit me…her name!
“Sorry, what’s the name again?”
“Oh…that’s true. I never did tell you my name, I’m Efua.”
“Efua…” I repeat, so that’s the ass-lady’s name “A great name you have there, what does it mean?
“Erm…I really don’t know” I hear her smiling
“Now, that’s a shame…for a pretty lady like you, I’m disappointed” I chuckled. I hear her chuckling with me
“Oh well, I never bothered to ask.” She chuckled again “Sorry for asking this but I saw you at the hospital this afternoon, are you okay?”
“Me?” I asked and then I remembered the ass I saw today…so that was truly her, I see
“Yeah, I think I saw you and some people at St. Luke’s today”
“Oh right…my cousin had a small convulsion so we took him there.”
“Okay, I hope he’s fine now?”
“Yeah, he is. Thanks.”
“You’re welcome… Okay then, have an awesome night.” She said
And just like a fool, I blurt out…”Can we get to meet?”
“Oh…well, I don’t think that can be possible, I’m sorry”
“Well that’s because I’ll be going back home in 3 days’ time.”
“Where’s home?” I asked as I moved aside from Oshole who was looking intently at me wanting to know who I was talking to
“Er…home is where it is…why are you asking?”
I roll my eyes at her question. Is it not obvious that it’s because I want to see her that got me asking in the first place. Why are girls just so complicated? “Never mind my asking…What about tomorrow?”
“Yikes, my tomorrow is full…I can’t!”
“And the day after?” Now I was sounding desperate “You know so I could even see who it is I’m speaking with.”
“Oh…okay, I could do that.”
“So where do I meet you at?
“You tell me…you asked for a meet-up”
I smile at her sarcasm “Alright that’s how you wanna play, huh?” I hear her soft chuckle at the background “Okay…cool, I’ll text you soon”
“Alright then, till then” she mumbles as I hear her say something to someone else at the background.
“See you soon Stranger” I smile remembering she had told me her name. Fortunately, unlike other girls, she didn’t take offence instead she laughed
“Oh well stranger, see you soon too! Cheers” I hear a click at the other end and just like that she was gone.
I grin at my phone as I save her number and then it hit me…I had me the ass lady and I was meeting her up next tomorrow, I couldn’t wait.
I was as excited as a child who had gotten a new toy! Of course, I had just acquired a new toy…I chuckle hard.
I look down at my phone and smiled. “Stranger huh? So after I had told him my name, he still thought of me as strange…” I thought.
I would have thought that he’d remember me after describing to him where we met but oh well…he didn’t seem like someone who cared. “So why did he give me his card if he didn’t even remember that he gave it out? Men though, they like to make a woman look like she’s begging for attention!” I sigh remembering I had agreed to a meet-up with him. That was definitely not the plan.
I gaze up at Denise who was looking at me like I was crazy.
“What is it again Denise?” I questioned
“Are you okay?” she queried “Why did you lie about being busy tomorrow?”
“I didn’t lie now, I’m busy”
“Busy doing nothing. Tell me, what are you busy doing tomorrow? You keep giving nonsense excuses just to avoid going out and then you complain of not having a man. Do you think a man will just magically appear from heaven? Remember, Heaven help those who help themselves.”
“Yeah right…I hear you!” I smirk my lips to one side as I move to the living room. I continue to play candy crush on my phone as Denise sit close to me curling up her legs on the sofa. “So you really are going back to Lagos?” She questioned
“Yes!” I reply non-chalantly
“Can’t you just stay and leave after the holidays?”
“No Denise, I have other things to tidy up before I get back to work.”
“But work is till January, why the rush?”
“Denise, leave me alone jhoor…I’m playing candy crush!”
“How is that the answer to my question, foolish girl? You want to leave me here all by myself and run to Lagos because of what? It’s not as if you will even attend all the big parties they’ll be throwing or anything. You’ll still be stuck home all day…when you ought to stay here and build a strong connection with whomever it is you just called.” She hissed as she pushed my head
“Denise, I’m warning you oh, leave me.”
“So candy crush is more important than me bah?” She said as she playfully pulled away my phone from me and ran.
Truth is, I love candy crush and Denise knows better than to take away my candy crush but she obviously was looking for my trouble.
“Denise!!!” I screamed as I ran after her “You better give me my phone back!”
“No!” She retorted and flashed a tongue at me.
I shook my head in dismay. My friend just wanted to play and I obliged her as I ran to her, tickling her till she was erupting with laughter.
Date: 30th November, 2015
Location: Creek Waterhouse, Asaba
Mood: Feeling fly!
So I just saw this very sexy lady across the road on my way back from work and I can’t help but think… “Darn! What large ass she has.” Well, you know me now; I park my car just right in front of where she stood beside the ATM tapping the buttons in an attempt to withdraw and like I should do if I want me that ass, I climb down and head to the ATM pretending to care less about whatever she might be doing. As I withdraw some money just in pretence, I see her move aside to flag down a cab. My goodness, she looks so pretty from behind I can’t stop staring.
My imagination is going crazy and I’m like “Why are ladies like this even allowed to roam the streets?”
I mean, for a man like me, it could be a catastrophe if I was driving. I would have hit some passerby and I would probably have been jailed just because of a woman’s ass!
As about now, I’m not certain the right action to take, any wrong move and I lose that ass forever. So carefully, I make my way back to my car, completely ignoring the sexy goddess I just saw and closing the car door behind me. Now the truth was; I knew that the roads weren’t free, so no cab was going to come by where she stood anytime soon. Either she was new in town or she just got stuck at that particular point because everybody who uses their “Leggedes-benz” knew not to even stop there in an attempt to look for a bus, cab or bike, except you had someone who was coming to pick you up that is.
She obviously didn’t have anyone to come pick her up because she kept flagging down cabs and buses even though they were moving on a high speed.
Just as I revved my car to life, my phone miraculously rings. I mean what other better thing to afford me more time than my cell phone? I peer down at my BB Passport and see Dayo’s face grinning at me. I smile knowing for sure what he’s going to ask me as I press the Bluetooth button behind my ears…
“Hey Boss man, what’s up now?”
“My guy, I dey oh…have you left the office?” he questioned
“Yes, I just left mehn…I’m on my way home”
“On your way home for what, don’t you know it’s’ a Wednesday Night? There’ll be so many girls out there for grabs. Come over jhoor let’s all meet at our usual spot and have fun.”
“Haaba! Oga Dayo, Chill now. I have to go freshen up and dump this suit at home; you know I’m the ladies’ man.” I said smiling haphazardly
“Ladies man your foot! Well, at least you are coming out, that sounds better. I’ll meet you up at the spot, don’t keep us waiting, you like doing that.”
“You see, that might be a bit of a problem. I just saw this ass and I can’t let it pass me by…heaven knows that lady needs me now more than I need her!”
“Big time player, please just don’t keep us waiting for too long. After all, you don’t need to fight for their attention; you always get it even If you don’t want it. I blame you? No, it’s the thought that all fingers are not equal that I blame. Rubbish boy, Get out of my phone.”
I laugh hard as he drops the call and just as I make to move, I hear a tiny knock on my car window. I look across the passenger seat and who do I see, “the ass lady”!
Small smiles creep up the corner of my chin as I wind down the window. I hold a grim face as I look at her pretending to check my time
“Excuse me…” She started “Please, do you have an idea how I can get a cab or even a bus going to Free Town from here? She smiled like there was no cause to worry.
“Well, truth be told, I have hardly seen anyone get a cab or even a bus from here to free Town. The garage where the bus loads is at the other side which means that first, you are on the wrong side of the road and secondly, you may not be able to trek the distance if you don’t know the place.”
“Oh, I see. Thank you. So I can’t even get a bike from here to the garage or Free Town itself?” she seemed determined to go on her own and I played along with her.
“Well, I don’t think so.” I replied as I pulled on my brake pads in an attempt to leave hoping she’d ask for a ride.
“Thank you very much” she ended as she moved away from my car
I rolled up the window pane and moved a bit while looking at my rear-view mirror to see if she was looking at my car. To my utter dismay, she wasn’t even looking at my car but was walking away towards the other end.
“Wow! Is she attempting to trek to the garage by herself or what?” I asked no one in particular. I steered back my car till I got to where she was. “My goodness, she walks fast, or did I drive for such a distance just now?”
I stop my car as I rolled down the windows, “hey…” I beckoned.
She stopped to look at me with uncertainty in her eyes, “Anything the matter?” she quizzed
“Are you new in town?”
“Oh no, I’m not. I must have missed my way.”
“Do you care for a ride?” I asked almost frowning
“Oh, I’ll be just fine, thank you. No need to bother.” She smiled again. My gracious me, coupled with her ass was her pretty smile and I couldn’t help but notice.
“Are you sure you don’t need me to take you to the garage? It’s quite a distance”. I half-smiled at her
I saw the uncertainty in her eyes as she mismatched her foot… “Oh well”, I said “Take care then…”
Just as I make to move away, I heard her whisper “Alright, just to the garage”.
I smiled at my new victory, she just made my Wednesday. I was so taken away by thoughts of her ass I didn’t even remember to ask her name or take her number but guess what? She collected my business card in a bid to appreciate me later. I couldn’t say no to her offer now, could I?