So latest news is that Nigerians are being killed by South Africans.
I do not know how to say this. It is embarrassing.
My stats say that after Nigeria and the United States, South Africa accounts for a lot of views on this blog so guys, I just want to ask one question.
What exactly is the problem?
Why are we killing Nigerians? Let us talk now ooh! It can’t be because they are taking up space. I refuse to believe this rumour going round about how they are taking up the jobs and women meant for South Africans. Or is it the booze? They are drinking too much beer? Or no, wait, it’s the air! I should have known! Our noses are so big, we must be sucking up more than our fair share of air.
If it is the air, we are sorry. We apologize.
But if it is not the air, then are we serious??? All this talk of being one, su casa mi casa and Ubuntu, does it not apply to black people? Abi South Africans and Nigerians are not in this same Africa again?
I have to ask because I’m confused. I’m sad to say the least that this is happening. And it is not the first time.
If it was white versus black which we are always crying about, I would say ok. I would shudder and think to myself, well there is a physical difference between us even if it is only skin colour and hair texture. But black south African and Black Nigerian, Kílódé gan-an? Ó yà mí lẹ́nu seriously. I’m still shuddering ooh but this time, I can’t even talk. This is black on black crime!
Xenophobia is the strong fear of or aversion to strangers or foreigners. Ahhh, so we are now foreigners and strangers to ndi South Africa kwa? I am speechless. This isn’t even xenophobia. There are too many other nationalities in SA, not just Nigerians. So what is going on?
Trevor Noah (a fav, by the way) has spoken out about this ‘xenophobic’ nonsense, saying that we are not even responsible for 1%of the wealth in SA. 1%!
We are not taking over anybody’s economy.
Of course, what are we saying? Our own country values cows more than humans so the South Africans should go on. Kill some more of us. Don’t stop till you have found every last Nigerian and used them to make bobotie and boerewors. After all, we are not even talking about our Oga that can not fit us into his September itinerary. As a busy somebody, Oga will see what he can do about us next month, when his calendar will be a bit freer.
The fact that there is something to write about this whole situation? Shame on all of us. Shame.
As for the Nigerians who are paying back by looting shoprite and closing down MTN offices, I really wish we would find some way to not hurt our own people in the process. I have not lost anybody in this madness so God forbid I sit on my bed with all my family members intact or lost to old age and talk about the right way to lash out.
I don’t want to be the kind of person nobody likes.
The one everyone calls a Nagger. Is that even a word? I don’t want to find myself always nagging or have people telling me that I nag. Or I complain too much about things that do not require so much talk.
I don’t want to be the kind of person that insults children. My children. You behave like someone who is stupid. Why do you act like someone without sense? It’s like you do not have common sense. Why would you say such a thing to your child? No matter what they did. I don’t want to be that person.
I don’t want to be the kind of person that guilt trips other people. Makes them bitter and angry. I don’t want to be a sad person. I don’t want to be bitter and when I am sad, I don’t want to spread it.
I don’t want to be judgemental. It is not my place. I want to be able to have my peeps come around and tell me stuff without being scared that I would just go all up on them. Judging them.
I don’t want to be a Nagger. Did I say that before? I mean it.
I don’t want people to look at me and say, Dear Lord, please I don’t want to be like this woman! I want to be a good example.
I don’t want to be any of these things.
I want to be the kind of person who is not any of these things.
Bad sign. That’s the name I get when I have disappointed you. People would usually choose this time to call one’s full name but not you. I get pet names especially ‘Nneoma’.
‘What have I done baby?” I ask quietly.
“You know you have done something?”
‘Pet names baby,” It is simply that easy. “Pet names. It’s quite easy to tell with you.”
“OK. Dorothy called. That mean anything to you?” Should it?
“It doesn’t! Should Dorothy calling mean anything? What is it?”
OK. It does and I know. She had called me first. She needed help with a friend who was coming to our side of town and needed a place to stay for a day or two. But you see, that’s the problem. I’ve had a night turn to two months. I’d be damned if I let that happen again.
“It’s just for a day or two.” I don’t get how you don’t have any issues with this.
“What exactly does that mean? Is it a day or is it two days?” I ask because I really want to know. “A day or two is not definite enough.”
“Not the time, Ray. I don’t want to help.”
“Why? Because of what happened all those years ago? Not everybody is going to take advantage of your kindness.”
“Well, can we not find out?”
As I feel you hug me from behind, I know we are letting that young man crash at our place for a night or two. Or ten.
“I love you too babe.” I can hear the smile in your voice even as you hug me tighter.
“I don’t like you very much right now” I say, turning around to kiss you on your nose.
“That’s fine. You love me and that’s all we need.”
I laugh at that. “Can you start caliing my full name when I’m in trouble. Nneoma scares me now.” I’m serious about this.
You respond, very serious too. “I call you that so that even before the scolding you know what I think of you. Regardless of what you may have done. It’s a reminder to you and me that I chose to love you everyday. Regardless. Even when you feel like being mean.”
We laugh at that. After God, you are my standard. In love. In kindness. Now I know why, Nneoma isn’t so bad after all.
I come to you guys today with so much joy in my heart! So much excitement! I have to admit that I come with a bit of fear too. On Thursday, I passed out of the NYSC scheme and only my Call to Bar beats the excitement I feel coming to the end of this journey.
What can I say? I’m happy to be done and I know that only God could have kept me through this one year. When I was regretting my decision to stay in Bauchi. When I was broke. Oh God! The times I was broke!😂😂😂 When I almost killed two girls 😔(more gist on that later).
God has always been faithful. The end of NYSC signifies the beginning of life as an adult for me. Time to get a job. Get a house. Get a boo😉. Life is literally starting.
So far, the hustle has been real. Especially, the last one month. Job hunting is not fun. Neither is looking for a school to get your Master’s degree, especially when you want a scholarship.
But today is for praise, my people! Today is for Thanksgiving! Today is for relaxing and knowing that my room was terribly messy the past few days because I was on packing mode. I couldn’t wait to leave the State of Bauchi and just go home.
As I write this I’m on my way out of Bauchi. My last time as a Corp member. Hopefully I get to visit the state again but if not, I will miss Bauchi just a teeny weeny little bit.
I’m gonna miss my girls, as shown above. I am so grateful I had them. Apart from my sisters I’ve never had a girl gang. I might have a friend who is really close but then it’s just us two and then she would probably have another friend that is even closer to her but who barely rolls with me.
With Debby and Ruth, I was riding the girl gang in bauchi. It feels so good to have girls to talk to as a group. We did it all, talked about everything and I felt so good knowing that there were people who had my back. My jogging team, food, hair and make up team.
I’ll miss CDS. I’ll miss Games Village where I stayed throughout my service year. I’ll miss my friends. So much. So very much.
But we move, my people! We jump. We leap to the next hill and slay it. Then we’ll move on to the next thing with one more star in our crown.
I’m working on a new project. A book about my NYSC experience. I hope to be done soon. I’m telling you guys so that I’m accountable and I don’t fall into the temptation to take my time or be lazy.
Now that we’ve gotten that out of the way, we may now proceed.
My dad is the beginning of this little problem. He has been complaining that I never call to check up on him. He feels I only call my mother. Local man has no idea that I don’t call my mum either. She calls me.
But then, what you don’t know can hurt you and considering the fact that my mum calls all the time, Pops is of the opinion that we are always talking.
I’ve said it here before that my dad is a typical Igbo father. He does not say I love you. The closest he comes to that is You have made us proud. Note the use of us and not me. Anything that is going to make it personal, my dad doesn’t use.
Growing up, we constantly joked about how my dad literally sucked at keeping in touch. We all knew how he had few friends and those were his friends because they insisted on keeping in touch and being his friends. With time, he would warm up to you but he wasn’t calling nobody to do regular check ups and stuff.
It was the same with us. I left home at age 13. It’s been about 11 years and local man and I do not call to check up on each other. He wasn’t doing it when I was way younger and he doesn’t do it now. I, on the other hand, only called when I needed something, it was his birthday or Fathers’ Day.
We’ve done this for more than 10 years and suddenly, Pops is complaining about the fact that I don’t keep in touch. Like seriously man?
I’m about to be done with NYSC in Bauchi and my mum called to say hi. She gave the phone to my dad and I told him what was up, like I’ll be home in a few weeks ooh. He asked me, which home? I was not shocked my people, I was shook.
He was like, I thought you are now a Bauchi girl. Do you even remember my name? And he went on to introduce himself,full name and all.
A part of me felt bad but in my head I was thinking, we’ve been rolling like this all my life. How did you expect me to up and just change like that. If I call you, what am I even going to say?
A lot of my friends complain about how I can be so great when I’m close but I can literally forget you the moment I leave. I don’t do calls. I’d rather text you and that, once in a really long while. I rarely miss people because I’ve taught myself to adapt to their absence real fast. When I see you, we roll. When I don’t, life moves on my G.
So dear parents out there, especially those of you that have young children, they copy you. They copy you. They copy you!!! It might not look like it but they do.
I have a friend who is so expressive. Whenever we speak on the phone, she always hangs up with I love you. First time she said it, I almost threw my phone away. I had to reply through clenched teeth. I still reply through clenched teeth because she hasn’t stopped doing it. I have been to their house for holidays twice. It’s what they do at home.
I have another friend that comes from a very expressive family. Sometimes she does videos with her dad. Looking from the outside at first, you will think her dad is a really grumpy man but then you go on and you have to rethink. What grumpy man will let his kids rub his head, feature in their silly videos and when they say, daddy smile joor, you know I love you, he replies, I love you too? Think about it.
You want your kids to be expressive, be expressive. You want them to regularly call and check up on you, do the same to them. I can’t even say I love you. Not to my parents or my siblings. I struggled with sweat and blood before I could say it to my first boyfriend and after him, I haven’t done it again. Oh, I could throw it around with my casual friends but when it’s really serious, I’m not saying that shit. And you will agree with me that that is pathetic.
We pick up things from our parents subconsciously and what you do not want to see in your child, you really shouldn’t do.
I’ve learnt though. My kids are going to complain that their mummy is the world’s most embarrassing and mushy mom ever. I’ll be throwing out the I love you like it’s what they need to survive. Because, they do need it. It will be hard because it’s not me but I will learn. So that one day, I won’t call my son and introduce myself.
Thanks for coming to my BlogTalk on Parenting. I hope my tips help!
I love books. I’m guessing you already know that. What you might not know is that I love magical books more than most and that any book that is set in a world with magic or some sort of special skill makes me fall in love. That said, I’m sure you won’t find it strange that I’m doing a Harry Potter tag post.
Some months back, I finished reading all seven books again. J.K. Rowlings sha….🤗🤗🤗. That woman is a gift.
Nah, I wasn’t tagged, I’ve been tagged before but I’m doing it anyway. Like I always do for back link purposes, I got this tag idea from Jen (she blogs at Thrive in Chaos) who got it from Writing The Blues Away. Enjoy!
1.What house are you in?
According to every sorting test/quiz/whatever I have ever taken, I am a Gryffindor. And a Ravenclaw. No shock there at all. In fact the first time I took the quiz, I was a bit shocked and annoyed that I was put in Gryffindor. By the time I had done different quizes with different questions and all that, I was evenly divided between Gryffindor and Ravenclaw. But Pottermore gave me Ravenclaw and I think that’s more like me.
I would have begged the sorting hat to put me in Gryffindor though. But only because Ravenclaw tower has a riddle to be answered instead of a normal password. Won’t always be in the mood for that.
2.What is your patronus?
I tried to check with Pottermore but I couldn’t just get signed in no matter how hard I tried. I did one of this Patronus quizes all over the place and according to it, my patronus would have been a Polecat.
I refuse it.
3.What would your boggart be?
My boggart would probably be a snake coming at me. I hate snakes. Either that or a group of cockroaches flying all over me. For you non fans, a boggart is this thing that takes on your worst fears and the only way to contain it is to face it and not be afraid and think of ridiculing it. I know, creepy.
4.What position would you play in Quidditch?
Like Jen said, I wouldn’t make the team! I’m terrible at sports and my hand-eye coordination is famous for being so terrible. However, if by some great twist of fate I do make the team, I would be a seeker. I’m usually able to notice some small things that other people over look. It’s that or being a beater. How hard can it be to wack someone with a ball?
5.What job would you want to have after leaving Hogwarts?
I won’t leave, lol. I’ll stay back as a teacher or librarian.
6.Which of the Deathly Hallows would you choose?
The Cloak of Invisibility. I’m a recluse. That plus the fact that I really want to hear some things I wouldn’t be allowed to hear. I would love to be able to sneak into places I shouldn’t be. Like planes going to luxury places like Hawaii and Seychelles.
Not a hard question at all! Prisoner of Azkaban, Book 3 was my best. I loved Sirius and I loved finding out that he was innocent and that Harry could finally have someone as close as family other than the Dursleys
8.Least favourite book?
Book 5! No contest. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix. I loved the book but it was the presence of Delores Umbridge that I hated so much. The book was kinda dark.
I think my favourite movie would be sorcerer’s stone. The first movie because I loved seeing Radcliff so young, I was excited to see Harry finding escape from the Dursleys. I picture so many things when I read a book and when I watched the movie, of all the others, it was the one that most fit the pictures, expressions and every other thing I had imagined while reading the book.
10.Least favourite film?
Deathly Hallows. It was so sad though good won at the end but did it have to be at the cost of so many lives? I had read the book and knew all the people that would die but to see Snape go, knowing him really, I cried. The movie does not expressly show it but at the end I knew all the people that lay dead. Lupin, Tonks, Colin. It made me remember all the earlier deaths, Cedric, Sirius, Mad-eye, Dumbledore…
Aye, my least favorite film.
Professor Snape! At first, I didn’t like him and then I understood him. Just because of that revelation, I went back and reread all the books. I loved that man.
OK if you don’t want the drama, my favorite was Dumbledore. I mean who else?
12.Least favourite/most hated character?
Hermione. She is not most hated, she is least favourite. I don’t like people that are too smart.
Most hated would be the dreadful Delores Umbridge. I hated her hair, her voice, her look and her stupid hem hem. The kitty obsession. Such an annoying human being. So dreadful. So evil!
13.Favourite teacher at Hogwarts?
McGonagall and Snape. You already know why I love Snape but that’s not all. I love mixing things so I would have loved Potions. McGonagall was like that motherly teacher we all would love.
14.Least favourite teacher at Hogwarts?
Without a doubt, it would be the very annoying Delores Umbridge. I know, I really hated that character.
And that’s all for this tag. I had so much fun reading the books again. If I see the whole movie set, I’ll probably watch them again too.
Are you a Harry Potter fan? Let me know if you do this tag too and I’ll take a look!
Happy Sunday! I didn’t go to church today. I don’t know why, just one of those days I guess…
I seem to be on a roll… I had another unexpected visitor today. Someone I met while I was in NYSC camp. He was in charge of POS transactions and we kinda got friendly. By the time I went to camp again as a band instructor, I saw him. We’ve never seen outside camp and today, I’m outside my room washing some plates and I see him walking towards me.
I screamed a little. It was a pleasant surprise but that’s not the gist. As we greeted, he asked which was my room and then he followed me into the room.
The gist, my people is that I did not panic.
When I was in the university, I lived alone for most of my time there. I was very scattered. I rarely ever cooked and I ate a lot of junk food. I saved for events or travelling but I never tried to be more deliberate with my money.
Not panicking today made me realize how much I have actually gone from being a girl to becoming a woman (woman sounds so deep!😱).
For one, I’m not so scattered. I still don’t like folding clothes but now not liking it doesn’t mean I ignore the chore. You can’t really catch me unawares with my room scattered. When I was in school though… Let me just say unexpected visits was a bloody taboo.
I actually cook now. Almost everyday. And not noodles or just macaroni. I love pasta but now I also eat better. It’s like I’m finally realizing how important it is to eat properly. I still drink a lot of tea and coffee, sometimes in place of food. But junk food is now a treat and not the real deal. Still a lit bit lazy about exercising but I still force myself.
As for my money, hmmmm! Let’s just say I can account for every kobo. It’s not new for me, a good habit I picked up in secondary school. But now, in my accounting, rubbish does not take up half the page. Reasonable things do and I still somehow save money every month.
So you see, sometimes things just change suddenly. Other times, they take time. People will always say give it time but we need to realize that time takes time.
The realest sign of growth is change. Not just in small things like finally learning to pick up after yourself but also in the big things. Like being financially smart. Like making conscious effort to be healthy and respect your body. Like taking a step in the right direction.
I was so proud today as I realized that I had come to the point where not liking a chore didn’t stop me from doing what I had to do. I wasn’t always like that.
Change in small things kinda reflect in bigger things. How have you changed in the last few years? How subtle have those changes been? Are you growing up?
How do you like your surprises? Subtle and sweet or fierce and semi-deadly?
I got one of the semi-deadly ones today. Today was my clearance day for the month and I had band practice after. By the time I was done and was ready to go see a few friends, all of them were forming busy. As I had no strength to start begging anybody, I decided to behave myself and stay at home. Made plans to go out later in the evening.
A few minutes and pages (of my current read, PS: I still love you by Jenny Han and sequel to To all the boys I’ve loved) later, there was a knock at the door. Wasn’t expecting anybody so I didn’t even try to get up at first. I just called out asking who was there. Voice wasn’t so familiar so I had to get up and see. Behold Agwu!
He says he doesn’t read my blog so I’ll feel free to talk freely.
Agwu is a guy I met when I was in my 4th year. One of those persistent people who have made me wish I could just commit murder across phone lines. The last time I saw him was in 2015 and each time he calls me, he usually succeeds in pissing me off somehow. And now he was at my door.
He lives in Lagos. He was in Abuja last weekend for a wedding and Oga travelled the long miles to Bauchi (a 7-hour drive) to come and see me. I’m crying.😭😭😭
I almost had a heart attack. I literally stopped breathing for a few moments and then when I could breathe again, my heart was racing and I could barely calm down.
I came out of the room for a few minutes. Looking at him, barely believing he was there and trying to calm down. My temporary roommate was in the room and I was hoping she would just get out and give us some privacy but nah. I was so glad when someone came to call her out (Thanks Sugar!).
I felt like annoying me on phone wasn’t good enough for him and he had to come do it in person but to stay on the road for 7 hours to see me for a few hours ( he stayed for just 2 hours) and then go back to Abuja! I said I’m crying!
For somebody I’m always fighting with, it was a pleasant surprise and I would never say this to his face but it was fun talking with him.
Speaking of surprises, again, how do you like yours?
PS: I know he said he does not read my blog, but just in case. Thank you Agwu.
Oh, and congratulations on your First Class. How does it feel to be on a 6.3?😉
Hey guys, how was your night? Great I hope. Mine was cool. When you sleep with the knowledge that the next day (and the day after) is a public holiday, you tend to have a more restful night. Happy Sallah guys!
Yesterday I was talking about giving and how sometimes, we just don’t do it right. I promised a second story in my next post and this is it.
So this second event happened a few days ago. Early last month, my neighbour here at Games Village wanted to travel. She asked me to warm her room. In other words, sleep in it, give it that lived-in air till she got back. It was a sweet deal for me. She had some facilities I didn’t have and I had two people sleeping in my room. I needed to get away. Gist for another day.
She came back a few days ago. It was nice to have her back. I noticed she came back with these large tubers of yam. Not surprising at all considering where she came from. After I told her welcome and gave her back her keys, I headed out with a friend (same friend I gave the frozen rice from yesterday’s story).
When we got back, the temporary roommate informed me that Neighbour had brought some things for me. I went to her first, said thank you and then went back to my room to inspect the goodies. Two mangoes (1 big Benue¹ mango and 1 small normal mango) and a small tuber of yam.
Now this is where the problem started. First of all, this tuber of yam was small. I had seen the yams she brought back and none of them were small. As a matter of fact, when I saw them, I had joked about Benue people and their yams. Where did this small tuber come from?
Secondly, this small tuber of yam looked too familiar. Like I had seen it before. I know right, how can a tuber of yam look familiar? This one did.
I looked at it each time I crossed it and then I realized that it was familiar. I had been looking at this particular tuber of yam, with another one for the past one month I had been sleeping in neighbour’s room.
Maybe she forgot that I had been sleeping in her room for the past one month and so I must have seen the yam. Maybe she just didn’t care. But Neighbour came back and gave me the small sickly tuber of yam she had left in her room all this time she was away.
This would not have been an issue but you see, the yam was spoilt. Well, a very good chunk of it was spoilt. And you could tell even before you cut it. She must have known.
And so I ask, did I tell this lady I was hungry for yams? She just wanted to give. Give spoilt tiny yams when you just came back from Benue with good healthy tubers? Let it not be like she came back empty handed. Is it by force? Do you have to?
See, this is exactly what Cain did. I was so tempted to return the yam to her and tell her that I wouldn’t be eating this, thank you very much but I decided against it and when I discussed it with my friend, he agreed that I was right not to have confronted her.
We need to understand that giving is not by force. If you have to do it, then your gift should be good and true and should come from a cheerful heart.
The sad thing is I wish I can say that Neighbour just made a one time mistake. Two days after she came back, my friend (whom she had seen a couple of times since she got back) was walking past her room (which he had done a couple of times since she got back) and she called out to him. Hey, I wanted to give you this since I got back. I kept forgetting.
She gave him a Benue mango. You guessed it. It was madly overripe and this close to spoiling. Simply not good for consumption and definitely not what you give to someone else. He took it from her and continued on his way to his room. Immediately he got close to a trash can, Oga threw it away. This is someone who loves mangoes, even when they are really soft. He couldn’t take this one.
Our guess was that she kept it and when she saw that it was spoiling, she gave it to the first person who happened to be walking by. My friend whose room was just a few doors down, on the same block and on the same floor happened to be that person.
In conclusion, people don’t just love gifts. People love good gifts. Not spoilt mangoes and rotten yams. Not frozen food given out of pity or torn useless clothes. Things you can’t even use. Again, you might say I’m proud and that we shouldn’t look a gift horse in the mouth but like I said earlier, who is forcing you to give me stuff? Certainly not me.
If you are going to give at all, give well. Or it doesn’t count. Always remember Cain and Abel.²
Barkar da Sallah! May God bless you and your loved ones with Peace! Happy celebrations guys!
¹Benue mangoes are really big species of mangoes. I can’t finish one. That’s how big they are.
I’m a firm believer in the Bible. Right now emphasis is on the scripture that says God loves a cheerful giver. I’m here to tell you that it’s not just God. Me too. I love cheerful givers. I’m sure you do too. It can’t be just me and God.
I believe that giving is even a form of self gratification, considering how it actually has the power to make you feel good about yourself. But therein lies the problem. Sometimes, we give, not because we ought to but because we want to feel good about ourselves. Not always a bad thing, but sometimes…
And there are sometimes when seriously, it’s just better to keep your gift to yourself. Because seriously, it does no good. See Cain for example. Nobody forced him to give ooh, he just went by himself and caused trouble for himself.
Two recent events brought this up for me and somewhere along the line, you will probably say to yourself argh Chioma! You this girl! Your own is too much! You are too proud! But then, I hope you get my point.
About two weeks ago, I was supremely broke. I mean, crippling, I-cant-even-leave-the-house-‘cos-I-don’t-have-transport-fare kinda broke. I had used up my remaining cash to help a friend and I hadn’t gotten it back. One of those times when you think giving is a bad idea. However, as broke as I was, I had some foodstuff in the house. Just the basics. Rice, beans, spaghetti, macaroni and ingredients to prepare them. I also had a carton of Cornflakes. Tea. Milk. Sugar. If I was alone, I wouldn’t even bother. That’s food for a long time. I would just lock myself in my room till month end, drinking tea everyday and waiting for money to show up. And I had gas to cook.
But I was not alone. I’m currently squatting* this other lady who doesn’t have a place to stay yet and I have been cooking to keep up appearances. If you know me, you know I don’t like cooking and you know I can go a month on tea and cornflakes and beans. Not very healthy but you get the picture.
I don’t know what was going on in her head but one day she came in and handed me a plate of something cold. Her friend had asked her to give it to me. She thought it was ice cream. I will not lie. I was excited. I mean, ice cream in Bauchi, not very common. In fact I have not had ice cream since I started serving here and that was August last year.
I was so happy I decided this friend of hers decided a personal thank you from me. He was waiting to take her out so he was still outside. When she was done dressing, I followed her out to say thank you. I didn’t even look inside the bag.
“Good evening.” I said. “I just wanted to say thank you.”
“Oh it’s all right.” Said he. “She told me you people don’t have food.”
My dear people, I literally stopped breathing for a moment. She told you we don’t have food? First thought that came to mind was, how embarrassing! Then I started wondering why he had brought ice cream and then it clicked. I didn’t know whether to cry or laugh. I was so embarrassed. And so angry.
I ran back inside and looked inside the bag. Ice cream my foot! It was a plate of frozen rice and chicken. The saddest looking fried rice I had ever seen. The chicken was big though but I was mad. This man had turned me into a charity case.
I was so angry. I gave the food away. Not just because of pride (though I could have been starving and I would not have touched that food) but because I had food. I had cooked that evening. I had food to eat. I wasn’t hungry. I was broke.
Later I explained to my friend why I was mad at this man. It looked like he had opened his freezer and said what can I even spare for this girl, oh! This frozen plate of rice has been here. I’m not eating it anyway. She can have it. Later, my temporary roommate confirmed my suspicions. That’s exactly what he had done. And note, he didn’t bring the frozen food for us. He brought it for me and took her out. Thank you very much sir, but no thank you.
My point? If you want to give, for the love of God, do it well. Don’t just bring out some old nonsense you would never use and give it to somebody. Like clothes, fine you are giving the less privileged (I wasn’t even less privileged and you can imagine) but give them clothes they can actually wear not old, torn clothes.
Or in my case, horrible-tasting frozen rice you could not eat. I know it was horrible. My friend told me so.
As for the person I was squatting, I never told her I was angry. Here I am, trying to manage myself and against everything I know and like, accommodate you and you go telling your boyfriend that we don’t have food. Seriously?😏😏😏
I said two events. Check out my next post for the second event. This is not for suspense, this post is already too long.🤓
*Squatting – I don’t know what the correct word for this is. It’s slang for when someone is staying with you for a while pending when they get their own place.
Hello everyone. I can’t believe it’s Monday. You know what they say about Mondays. I’m still in bed. I should be at work by 8am. It’s 6:55 as I write.
Just a short and quick one because I’m writing in the moment and I have to hurry up for work.
I’m serving in Bauchi State. Northeast Nigeria. I’m from Imo state, Southeast Nigeria. I’m Igbo. Bauchi people, predominantly Hausa.
That’s all fine.
People wonder why I ditch my PPA*. Apart from the fact that I really do not like law, my office is a really uncomfortable place. They constantly speak Hausa. To me. Sometimes, I know enough to know when the conversation is about me but I don’t know what it’s about.
Work needs to be done, they say it in Hausa and then as an afterthought, translate for me in English. When they do speak in English to me, it’s with this almost condescending tone, as if they pity me and can’t believe they have to stop speaking their precious Hausa for a few seconds to talk to me. Other times, it’s as if they feel sorry for Poor Chioma who can’t speak their language.
I spend 4 hours in the office with people talking all around me and I understand 10 words.
And they wonder why I hate being there…
They are nice enough people but I can’t help getting the feeling that tribe might be the ticket.
I might be wrong.
I hope I’m wrong.
I still hate it here though. But I’m passing out by the first week in August.
Now I have to get up and go get ready. Have a nice day. I hope y’all understand what’s going on at your respective places of work.
PPA – Place of Primary Assignment. Where I have to work for my compulsory service year. It’s the Ministry of Justice in Bauchi state.
When I started this blog, I wanted to tell stories. Stories of love, happiness, fear, anger and sadness. But I wanted them to be my stories. It was my blog, my space. My place. Most of the stories were supposed to be stuff that I couldn’t just up and discuss with someone else but I could write about.
When I went to Law school, so much was going on. There was a lot of drama and energy all over the place and I wanted to write about that too but I didn’t know how to so I decided to write fiction. Well flash fiction. I took what I could see and embellished it so much that it became fiction. From embellishing stories, I started making them up. Aha! Fiction here we come!
The fictional stories turned out OK. Some of them turned out better than OK and I kinda got carried away. You know how it gets. Oh Chioma, I read your story and it was so nice. Oh Chioma, that story was good. Oh Chioma, I hope it’s not ending there, I hope there’s more. And so on.
I got so carried away I forgot why I started a blog in the first place. That is, until I started getting stuck.
You see, the issue was this writer’s block issue. I mean, I would go months thinking of a story I liked and nothing would come up. Meanwhile , hilarious things were happening to me everyday but no, I wanted a fictional story. With writer’s block, well you can’t do jack but wait and my blog was just growing weeds.
Sometimes I would get a storyline and I would get so excited. I would write a few lines and then I would forget the story line. Or I wouldn’t know how to continue. Or worse, I would start to wonder why I found the idea appealing in the first place.
Only two weeks ago did it occur to me that if I was telling my own stories there was no way on earth I would be having writer’s block. Interesting and funny things happen to me almost everyday. If not interesting and funny, then weird and annoying. The point is that almost everyday gives me a story and I had been pushing those away in favour of fiction. Which is good but then, you can get stuck.
That said, I’m here to tell you guys that my stories will be making a come back. The funny thing is that now that I’m determined to write more of my stories, my life would probably become an incredible bore as if the fates just want to prove me wrong but who cares?
That said, how many of us have deviated from our original plan, the one that made us giddy and got us all excited for something that looked more interesting (albeit temporarily) and also seemed to get more attention?
Are you stuck yet?
If yes, then my dear, this is the sign you have been waiting for. Go back to the original plan baby.
If no, then aren’t you some incredible lucky bunny? Depending on how long ago you deviated, well I might be able to say congratulations. I’m happy that you are not yet stuck and I pray you don’t get there (unless of course, you have to get there for you to realize you’re making a mistake). I pray things continue to work out great for you.
Bye for now and expect more real life stories. And stick to your original plan. Somehow, passion has a way of making everything easier.
Of course, if a great fictional story comes along, why not if not?😉
That awkward moment when you only realize how long it’s been because you don’t even remember how you sign out… Bleh!
I don’t think I would ever get used to the idea of men being able to just “whip out their fleshy appendages” and urinate by the side of the road.
Trust me, I don’t say this as a begrudged member of the female species who has to be extra careful when urinating. I just say this as a highly disgusted human being.
Every once in a while you find yourself so pressed to use the powder room, only, there is no powder room nearby. If you can hold it, you do. If you can’t, you find a bush or some sort of enclosed space. Here in Nigeria, it is very common for buses travelling long distances to stop every once in a while so that their passengers can relieve themselves. It’s not always at a gas station with toilets. Most times it’s just on the road. As a certified Ajala*, it goes without saying that I have been in such buses more times than I care to account for and I have had to find myself some corner, as hidden as it can be or risk destroying my bladder. This is why I always wear a long free gown to travel. So you see, I’m not completely ignorant.
No problem there.
The problem is when a full grown man, who may or may not have the brain of a goat, comes by your window and goes ahead to do his business there! Why? Just tell me, why?!
I live in a sort of hostel here in Bauchi, where I am currently serving my fatherland. Also my motherland. It was provided by my PPA* and as I didn’t want to spend money on accommodation, I took it. I’ve been there since September and so far, so good. My room is one of the first ones so my window is right out front.
The first man came sometime in December. I had just returned after my call to bar and I was cleaning my room. Next thing I heard was the sound of dripping liquid outside my window. Or so I thought. I actually thought someone was pouring water out their window from one of the rooms upstairs. I look out to confirm and I see this guy, happily uriniating in front of my window. What the hell!
I quickly looked away because guys, I don’t want to see what I don’t want to see, especially when it belongs to a really dirty, probably uncircumcised person. Nobody should even come at me with any judgemental look. I’ve lived with these guys, I know what I’m saying.
Anyway, that was the first. I told myself it was a one time thing, probably won’t happen again, bla bla bla and I moved on with my work.
Guess what? I was very wrong. It continued to happen. Different guys. One of them very consistent, and it was someone I knew. I thought about going to tell him off, I’m still thinking of it.
Then the boss happened. As you can see from the picture above, there is a small ledge before the window and the men just stand in front of that and proceed… But our Oga from few days back, he didn’t stand in front of the ledge ooh. Oga climbed the ledge, squatted directly beneath my window, like he squeezed himself into that space and started urinating.
Let me explain. I’m lying on my bed, playing my Word Cookies. I hear footsteps and I look up. Nobody. I stand up to get a proper look. Nobody. Then I see liquid trickling down the ledge directly in front of me. People of God, how does one deal with this kind of thing eh? I just waited for the man to stand up and then I banged on the window really hard, screaming,”Get out. This is somebody’s freaking window! “. I was so mad!
Dear men, I know the idiots I’m dealing with will probably never read my blog but please, can you guys try to desist from this habit? I know, nature has made it easier for you and all that but don’t go and do it in front of somebody’s freaking window.
The next guy that comes, I think I’ll just wait for him to pull it out and then I will scream really hard. Some people don’t think.
Phew! Just got me worked up unnecessarily.
Have a nice day lovely people.
Ajala- Let’s just say this is a Yoruba slang for someone who travels a lot. Like me.
PPA – Place of Primary Assignment. Place where I have to work for my compulsory service year.
Here in Bauchi as a corp member, I’m what some people would extravagantly call a recluse. In real life, I’m what you would call an introvert extrovert. You know, those crazy people that look so reserved until you get to know them and then they are just all over the place and won’t stop talking. Yea, I’m kinda like that. In fact, my extrovert side is still a bit introvert.
Only twice in my life have I tried or made an effort to make friends and not just keep to myself. The first place was Law School but that was easy. I had lovely people all around me. I still never went as far as regularly visiting anybody but I told people that they could always stop by my room. I went out and I mixed. I tried sha. Some people still said I was too reserved. They don’t even know how much of an effort I was putting in. Anyway.
The second place was NYSC camp. I had ulterior motives though but in camp, I was everywhere. I made an effort to ensure that everybody knew me. If not everybody, at least majority. I wanted something and popularity was the only way to get it. It paid off in the long run but came with its disadvantages. I would cringe inwardly each time someone called my name. I felt like I had to suffer through all the greet-greet I had to do. But it paid off. I made some friends and I had fun.
Someone just told me that by keeping to myself so much, I tend to have a myopic view of life. Really? Is that true? Even with all the books I devour, is that even possible?
I once wrote about being purposely anti social (you can read about it here) and this was in Law School where I was making an effort to be a people person. I’ve seen very reserved people whose minds will blow you away because when they lock themselves away from people, they commune with books. They commune with angels. They commune with God.
So if you want to be all out there, that’s fine but don’t you think you should be a recluse or act like one sometimes? That’s what we call retreat these days. I don’t do retreats per se because already, I’m locked in my room half of the time. I’ve lived at this place in Bauchi for a few months and I’m generally known as The Girl who doesn’t leave her room. I’m very fine with that reputation.
As long as it’s not going against yourself, feel free to be locked away. Or not. The most important thing is to do you. I find this difficult to understand but the truth is that there are people who draw strength from human interactions. I’m the exact opposite. I find it draining.
And when you find someone who really wants to be left alone, leave the person alone. Forcing that person to go out would only cause more trouble for you because that person would be like a wet blanket on all your fun.
In the past few months, two of my classmates have lost parents. I woke up yesterday morning to see that my class WhatsApp group was mourning. My secondary school class. There was a name there. Uchechi. We had so many Uchechis in our set. I started thinking of all the ones I knew. Hoping, praying that it wasn’t anyone I knew personally.
It was. She had not just been in my set at Federal girls, we ended up at the same University. I got in before her so I was like a year ahead. I kinda remember the first time I saw her at Ibadan. I knew the face, didn’t know the name. She walked up to me and said, “Feddy babe abi?” She went on to introduce herself like we usually do. Name, Dorm, class arm. I had been in blue, she in yellow.
Now she’s dead.
I’m not even about to lie. I don’t know what to feel. I started losing people in 2016. Oh, people I knew had died before then. But the hits close to home started in 2016.
Last year started with the news of Esther. She was like a small mama. And then, she was a FECAite and a Lawyer.
Then Dami. My classmate in Law School.
Then it was my Grandma.
And then a month after my Grandma, while I was writing my Bar Finals, my dad’s younger sister. I remember thinking how my grandma would scream at her if she saw her and order her to come back to earth immediately.
She didn’t come back.
These where people I knew. Spoke to. I had touched them. I didn’t know how to feel. I still don’t.
I remember finding out about Esther. I was still on the phone when I started crying. I walked through Mammy Market in Law school crying my eyes out. Found a spot to hide and cry. And then I went back to my room and slept.
So what do you say to someone who is mourning? When it was me, I just wanted everyone to shut up. Sorry. May their soul rest in peace. Some would even say Perfect Peace. Then there was the I know how you must be feeling. No you don’t. I don’t even know.
So I’ve learned to shut up. I’ll usually say that I pray God comforts them because I sincerely believe that it’s a job only God can undertake.
Loss is a terrible thing to deal with. Especially, when it’s a person you are losing. I can’t imagine losing a parent. Now two of my classmates are living with that.
I’ve always loved queer names. Kenya. China. Wiggle. 😂 I guess it comes from having the most basic of all basic names. Officially my name is Chioma Deborah Ladi Njoku. All very common names. Chioma, common. Deborah, commoner. Njoku, commonest. Ladi is the only different name I have, not because it’s not common but because I’m an Igbo girl with Igbo parents and I have an Hausa name. Among the Hausa people, it’s pretty common. It’s a name given to a female child born on a Sunday. Now how common is that? Your guess is as good as mine.
I finished reading Trevor Noah’s Born A Crime and he talks about his name for a little bit. His mother named him Trevor because it was so out there. It had no meaning to South Africans and that was exactly what she wanted. Not a child with no meaning but a child not limited by the meaning of a then apartheid south Africa. A child not held back by his name so that he was free to explore. To do whatever. Be whatever.
Well Africans generally, we name our kids with an event or hope in mind. Black people don’t give names just for naming sake. It either tells how you were born, what you would be or some other thing. Think Jabez in the bible. Think of the Biblical Isaiah’s son. Hosea’s children. Too far away for you? Think Seven, Starr and Sekani in THUG LIFE. Seen the movie? Just in case you haven’t, this is what I’m getting at:
Seven named that for perfection. His first child. And that boy was fine.
Starr named that for light. Baby girl was meant to blaze up and shine. She did that in the movie.
Sekani means Joy and boy was that child a joyful child!
By now you get my point. We don’t just call for calling sake. I’m trying really hard not to give you actual Igbo names and their meanings because then I could go on and on.
So back to me and my name. Chioma. Good God. I hear my dad wanted Chidinma. God is good. Same thing but there was a Chidinma across the street from us and my Mom won with Chioma.
Deborah. I was meant to be a bold child. I was that. A bold child. I’m not so bold as an adult. Probably because I do not like the name so much now. I don’t know why.
Ladi. You know what that means.
Then again, my name is Simi. When I was about 7 or so, another Anglican priest came to our house, got to know us and discovered that we were practically Plateau* people. If you know me, you know how I feel about Jos. When I’m going there, even from my father’s house, I say I’m going home.
Anyway, this priest sees all that and hears that we all have Hausa names. My dad says it’s ’cause we were born in Jos. Even my younger sister who was born in London, they carried her Hausa name to London for her. Jummai. The priest felt that Hausa was not indigenous to Plateau. When we say Plateau, we know how deep you are by the language that comes to you first. If you say Hausa, you flunked. I expect you to say Birom. Or Angas. OK, this test is only in my head but you see how I feel.
I’m sorry, I keep digressing.
This priest was Birom and he says we are to have Birom names. Not Hausa names and of course, we agree. So he gives each of us a Birom name.
I get Simi. Shim in local dialect. It means love. You could tell my closest confidants by checking those that knew about Simi. People didn’t even know about Ladi. Well, with this article, It’s no longer a national secret.
But then, growing up Ladi and Simi got lost. Simi was never official to begin with but Ladi? That name is on my freaking birth certificate! You try to register your child in school. Just give us two names. A first and middle name. We don’t need any other one. You try to open a bank account. Just give us two names. You try to do anything at all. Just give us two names.
So I became Chioma Deborah Njoku. Chioma because well, I was an Igbo girl. You can’t throw that name away. Deborah because well, it’s English. Yea and biblical too. Yea and we are still colonized to our teeth. Typical Igbo girl with all the typical names. But I was growing up in the North and I was the only Chioma around at any given time so I was cool with it. Then I didn’t feel like my name was too common.
Until I had to go to boarding school in the East and then there are Chiomas all over the place. What! I would hear someone call the name out and I would turn but so would 15 other girls and I am not exaggerating! It was so bad, I had another Chioma Njoku in my class! Can you imagine that? First term came and all our scores got mixed up. It wasn’t funny. I was already telling people that my name was Deborah. I still wrote Chioma as my first name when I had to spell it out but officially, I was now Deborah Njoku. Of course, there were a billion other Njokus in that school too but we are not here to talk about that.
Immediately I left secondary school, I got admission to University of Ibadan. In the West. I was like yay! Yoruba people. I was in bliss. In my class, I was the only Chioma. A class of about 135 and I knew that if I heard Chioma, there was only one person they could be referring to. Me.
But that was short lived. In my second year, Direct Entry students came in. I heard there was only one girl. I didn’t care. I heard she was Yoruba. What the hell was my business? I heard she was mixed, Yoruba and Igbo. I still didn’t care. Until I heard her name was Chioma.
Dear Iyanu, if you ever read this, just know that I laugh so hard as I write this. No grudges here but at first, I was mad! I flipped! As a child, I always wished my parents were from different tribes. That should have been a sign that I was going to get into the whole intertribal thing but that’s story for another day. Now here comes this girl who is living the life (the mixed life) and not just that, now I have to ask myself was that me or did they mean her?
It took me years to get over that. I couldn’t get why people couldn’t just call her Iyanu. Why the hell do you have to go and call her Chioma? I never did. To this day, I never do. You say anything about her near me and you say Chioma, I would just look at you and go, oh, you mean Iyanu? This time, I was not changing names for nobody and she was definitely more popular so you can imagine. At some point in class, when someone said Chioma, I didn’t even look up.
See for me, Chioma became me. It was my identity. Many times I would fall sick or get into some deep mess and I would chant that name over and over again. Good God. Good God. Good God. There are three popular Chioma songs, I have them all (AND NO! ASSURANCE DOES NOT COUNT!!!😏). I would be afraid or be needing courage and I would be Deborah. I would start to feel left out or ugly, and Ladi comes up ( you know what they say about girls born on Sunday…😎). And then each time I felt like I hated somebody and I wanted to do something bad to someone, I was Simi. Love. God is love. Each name is a security blanket to hold on to.
My children are going to have queer names. But names that have a story behind them. I hope my husband lets me. I’m not white. I’m not calling a child of mine Stone. But I can name Coffee. Be the wakening force that has a lovely aroma. Don’t even get me started on the Igbo names running in my head. Chimdeziri. Chimsimchia. Amara.😇
My kids are getting names from other cultures. I hope their daddy is not Igbo. Even if he is.
You would say, argh, don’t go getting all worked up for nothing. It’s just a name.
It’s an identity.
It’s where you are coming from. Or where you are going. Or both.
It’s never just a name.
Somebody: Yeah right! So you are just going to go on and on about how important names are and then sign off as Clandie? What does that even mean?
Me: Chioma Ladi Njoku Deborah. As for the I, I like to think it can represent the Is in Simi. All my names in one name and it’s cute too, what more can I ask for? Thank you very much.
*Plateau – A state in the North East part of Nigeria. Jos is the capital and Birom and Angas are indigenous tribes. Some would say the Hausa too, but I already told you, I’m biased.
I’ve said this before, I celebrate all my wins. Every single one. There is nothing like a small win for me and if I didn’t currently live in a place where I don’t know where to find ice cream, I would definitely be getting ice cream today!
I have 100 followers! 100! Actually, as I write this, it’s a 101 but you get my point. I feel like punctuating every sentence with a big large exclamation point. I’m so excited.
So since I don’t know where to get ice cream, I’m buying myself a tall nice bottle of coca cola to celebrate. I know, just coke? It’s where I am right now.
I would have loved to do a giveaway or something but what would I give? How would I even send it. I’m so broke right now, you know. Damned corper wee nonsense. I’m so sorry, my dear Motherland.
Anyway to you all, my followers, all 101 of you at last count, I love you. I truly love you. Thank you for this gift. Thank you for following my blog. I remember thinking, what if nobody wants to read what you are writing? What if nobody follows you? What if you suck and your writing is wack? It was wack at a time but each post made me better and it’s not so wack now. If nobody was reading, who would I be writing for ehn? God bless every single one of you and bless all your blogs.
Why is she so excited about 100 followers? Some people have thousands. Like 32,829. I know. I’ll get there someday.
Till then, thanks for following me. Especially those first 10 followers from 5 years ago. You probably see my posts and go, oh she got 10 likes on this one. Wow! I remember when if I didn’t Like her post, there was going to be no likes on it. Look where we at now?😭😭😭 Because of y’all I follow blogs with 2 followers. I’ll happily be the 3rd because I know they would soon get to 32, 829. And I want to be there through it all.
Porpo. I will thank Porpo every time I talk about this blog. I don’t know how he found out I had a blog. He doesn’t even own one. But he followed right away. Was right there every time, liking, commenting, giving me ginger. Thanks so much.😙
Thanks to those that follow by email. They are not in the 101. But thanks for allowing me to bug your email each time I post. I’m so very grateful. 🤗🤗🤗
Aunty KaweBooks, I have to say thank you. You know why. Without you, there would be no blog. I might have gotten to it later but well, not like this.
I can’t control my face when I think of you. I sit there like a fool, looking like someone with indigestion. A happy person with indigestion. Squeezing my face, trying hard not to smile.
I think of all the little things. Like that time I made you walk to my school. You said you could, but alas, Master, the axe was borrowed. Lol, why did you even keep walking? We could have stopped a cab.
Remember that ice cream you bought for me to celebrate my 3rd year of going natural? I couldn’t eat it. The pain in my teeth was so bad, I shared it all. But my smile still comes when I think of it.
I get that goofy smile when I eat cashews dipped in ketchup. Who does that? You have the weirdest taste and now I do too. Maybe, even more than you.
When I heard you speak Spanish, goofy smile. I remember you dancing, goofy smile. I remember you serious, goofy smile. You eating cashews in ketchup, goofy smile. You eating, goofy smile. You, goofy smile.
Pinky says she has never seen me this happy. I don’t know what she is talking about. But I know you make me smile and true smiles cannot be contained.
I still remember how angry I was when I discovered Tunde was leaving me. The jerk. No I’m not gay or anything but Tunde was one of my best friends and I would never have hidden any good opportunity from him.
We were three very good friends. From childhood. It had always been Tunde, Tola and I. I remember calling Tola to tell her that Tunde was leaving. He hadn’t told her either.
I still remember that night like yesterday. We hadn’t spoken in a while, serving in different states can do that to people but that night I called to check up on my guy.
“Guy! How far na!”
“Bros I dey ooh.”
“This one wey you dey sound like this, e be like say this service dey sweet your body on another level. How Edo?”
“Which kind sweet my body? That one self dey. How your side na?”
“As usual na. You know as this place dey everly dry. I just dey find some small small things to help maintain, you understand na.”
That was the first sign of trouble. True true. Whenever he said that, he was thinking of how to say something. Something heavier than pidgin English could convey.
“So wetin dey sup na?”
“I’m travelling tomorrow.”
“Haaa! Bros na you ooh! Where you wan go chook head? Show me the way!”
Lol, Germany. Just like that. He said it as if people woke up every morning and decided to go Germany. Like Germany was just there, two hours away. Like it was just Germany, that didn’t even speak a completely different language. I was silent. I wanted to ask for an explanation but nothing came out.
“I got a scholarship. I leave tomorrow.”
I remember wanting to hang up but I also remember thinking that would seem so immature. I noticed we had switched to proper English. Shit just got real. I still couldn’t say anything.
“How did you get a scholarship? For what? Would you leave service, we still have like 5 months to go.”
“These things can be arranged. I’ll still get my certificate. One Masters programme like that popped up and I wrote the exam.”
“Hmmm.” And you didn’t tell me? What if I hadn’t called?
“OK na, safe trip.”
I felt awkward and tense. I don’t like awkward or tense.
“No go knack German babes for there ooh, those people still get Nazi spirit inside them. You fit jam the one way get black heart”
I’m sure Tunde knew I was hurt. I never make racist jokes. In any way. The fact that I was making one now probably sent a message. He laughed dryly.
“Na so bros. E go be na.” He sounded like he was glad for something to ease the tension.
“Yea. Try dey halla your guy every once in a while.”
We were back to pidgin English.
It would take years before I forgave Tunde. I finally realized that even if he had shared the opportunity with me, I wouldn’t have gone. The schorlaship wasn’t open for people in my course of study. But that was not the issue and we both knew it.
We kept in touch. We still keep in touch. It’s been 5 years. He is currently working on his PhD in Australia. I just finished my Masters program in Nigeria.
I keep thinking about my reaction. Why was so I so angry and mad at Tunde? I never told him but deep down I knew I was disappointed. He was one of my best friends and I would never have kept something like that to myself.
Simi slowly shook herself awake. She had been dreaming. She looked at her left hand. No ring. She wasn’t married. Thank God. At least not to Chukwudi. OK she didn’t mean that. His mother was an angel.
Her brother Pam was on her bed. When will this boy start to hear word?
“What is it? Why did you wake me up?”
“You promised to take me to Chukwudi’s house today.”
First in her dreams, now this. Maybe that was why she dreamt she was married to him. The goat.
“Simi stand up naaaa!”
Haaa! This boy was like a pain. He was like the g-string stuck between her butt. Like mascara on her eyelashes. Like a tight pushup bra. All things she loved quite alright but which were also quite uncomfortable.
“Toor. Let me wash my face.”
Pam was 17 years old. Her only brother. As she washed her face, she remembered her dream and burst out laughing. Married indeed! So this cooking thing followed her to her dreams? All well and good. She still didn’t like cooking. She had her doubts about if she would ever like it.
27. She needed a man. Why was she still single at this age? All her friends were married, some with children. Her unhealthy fear of commitment was eating away at her. Time to find a man.
“Hmmmm, make up just to drop me off at Chukwudi’s house, ghen ghen! “
Simi came back to earth and saw the tube of mascara in her hand. She hadn’t planned to make up. She had drifted. She closed it. “I’m not making up. I just wanted to check if it’s still remaining.”
“Whatever. Let’s go.”
She called out to her mum to let her know where she was headed and went outside. Typical Jos evening. Cold and dry. Just like Chukwudi.
Simi looked at her mother in-law and smiled. A smile of anger, frustration. A smile of tolerance, irritation. But a smile nonetheless.
“Mama, I’m not lazy. I just do not like to cook.”
What kind of woman does not like to cook? She had heard the question so many times. First from her mother, then her sisters, then her friends and now, her husband’s mother.
“Let me just tell you. This Mafeng girl that you brought from your village will steal your husband. She might be small but look at her bumbum. I know Chukwudi loves you but I know my son. He was raised with good food. And you know men, their stomach is very important and they are not to be trusted.”
Typical ‘men are scum’ story but how many times does a mother tell you that her son cannot be trusted to be faithful?
“Mama, it’s not as if I cannot cook but you know that…”
“I know what? Eh Simi, what do I know? I don’t know anything ooh! You will soon say you are working. And so? Are you the first woman to work? Lekwanum eshishi ooh!*”
Simi sighed. She wanted her mummy. Her mother would understand. She didn’t at first but now that she did, she was a great person to talk to.
Simi thought of Chukwudi. Her husband. The love of her life. While they were courting, she had cooked for him only 5 times. Each time with a warning.
This is just a treat. Don’t expect me to keep it up. I don’t have that time.
Each time he had assured her he understood. Fine Igbo man. Her poor heart didn’t stand a chance when he smiled at her. Would he cheat on her just because of food?
His mother’s voice dragged her back to reality. “…will people say, eh? Gwakenem!*”
“Ma? I didn’t get you.”
“What will our people think if they know that their son not only married a Jos girl but one that cannot cook? Better get pregnant fast. I’m telling you because I like you. If not one day, you will come home with your suit and high heels to meet a pregnant girl tying wrapper.”
Could that happen? Could it? Simi shuddered. Her mother in-law was great when she wasn’t ranting about her cooking. Or lack of it. Was she serious? Could they really bring another wife for Chukwudi?
*Lekwanum eshishi – loosely translates to See me. Used to express surprise. Kinda.
Dearest Chommy Cho^,
How do you feel at 9?
I know you can’t wait to finish primary school
Don’t be in a hurry for secondary school
You will go to 3, excel at all but like none.
#No breasts, hmmm, don’t worry!
They will come out in due time
But you will always have the smallest chest
Even that one in the womb*
Yes, hers will be bigger than yours
Chommy Cho, stop being afraid.
Your own periods won’t start till some time in three years
It will be painless at first
But when the pains start in another two years
Don’t worry, you won’t die.
You will fall in love in SS3
You will leave him in pain but you will both be fine
It will help you to be strong
When two other men break your heart before 25
No, you still can’t dance if your life depended on it
Yes, you are still obsessed with hair
No, you still don’t have straight teeth
Yes, you are still a picky eater
And no, you still can’t pronounce the ‘r’ sound
About the pimples, don’t worry about them ooh
All these chemicals you are eager to try out
They won’t do anything to clear them out
They will still be there at 24
Arrogantly coming and going as they please
Chommy Cho, dearest Chayoma°
Take it easy, at 23 you will be advised to get braces
And you will be failing as a member of the fitfam
But don’t worry, other than these minor glitches
You will grow up very well.
Chioma at 24.
*My youngest sister was born 3 days after my 9th birthday.
^Cho as in sore. That same ‘o’ sound for Chommy
°Chayoma as in chai-yo-mah
# I have absolutely no idea why I was worried about breasts at age nine. Just one of the very weird things about me.😂😂😂
I’m not one who would describe herself as selfish or self-centered. I mean, nobody would do that. I used to think I was quite the opposite and I do put others into consideration a lot of times. Even to my own detriment.
Untill I started to notice the little things.
Little things like not wanting a roommate. Nah, that’s not totally selfish.
Little things like really getting irritated by this custom of buying something when travelling for the people at your destination, but only when I’m doing the buying. I absolutely love it when people travel and get me presents. Like my former boss. She spoilt me. She would always get me something, no matter how small. Designer purses, shoes, shawls, jackets.😍
Also connected to the above fact is this little story that made me rethink my view of how selfish I could be. I was travelling back to work after the holidays and my hosts practically packed me with food items, to help me survive😆. The day before, their dad had come in from the East, so we had so much. You know how we buy when we are coming back from the village. Pawpaw, soursops and bananas. Anyway, I was asked to take some and I said no. I don’t like pawpaw and soursop and I was scared the bananas would upset my stomach. I only took items I liked and could eat and trust me, I had no intention whatsoever of sharing the cashew nuts and groundnuts that I had taken.
Meanwhile my friend had called me just before with the “what are you bringing for us?” question and my answer was a firm and not-even-bothered NOTHING! It didn’t even occur to me to maybe, take some of the fruits back with me, just to give my friends.
When I got back, said friend asked again, I said nothing. Then I asked him, “Do you like soursop?” Yes. “Do you like pawpaw?” Yes. “Do bananas upset your stomach when you eat them?” No.🤔🙁😞😟😖
I don’t know what the dictionary definition of selfish is but I know that it involves thinking only of yourself. And not just in the big things but also in the little things.
Think about someone other than yourself. Even in the very little things.
For Uloma Uwadoka and Gloria Lancelot. We are not settling at all, inugo?
Uloma looked at the boy on her friend’s status. Such an ugly child. He was a man but he was somebody’s child abi? So yea, that qualified. Such an ugly man. My baby boo, the caption read. This man was neither baby (she knew that he was definitely in his late 30s) nor boo, look at his face!
He was far from handsome and even with the photo filter, his skin looken ashen. The hair on his head was cropped close and his eyebrows were bushy. His eyes were dull and unexcited as if he would rather be anywhere else in the world than when he was right now. There was no excitement. She couldn’t imagine these eyes lighting up with love or darkening with passion. They were just there. His nose was ok. At least that one worked out in his favour. His lips were dark as if he smoked 2 packs a day. Did he smoke? She had to find out. He smiled with his lips together, no teeth. That’s if you could call what he had on his face a smile. It was more like he had been caught on a wince. He had a scraggly goatee and moustache. Typical Igbo business man. His stomach bulged in front of him, as if leading the way like a forerunner. He must be the type that drank beer with the guys everyday. Uncle had a double chin, no strenght there.
Why were his eyes so dull?
“Uloma stop it!”
“You have that look on your face that says you are either criticizing someone or their boyfriend. Plus you are staring at your phone so the odds are in my favour, yes?”
Uloma smiled, Gloria knew her so well. She had known Gloria forever (ignoring her majorly even though she liked her some) but of recent, they had become best friends. With her natural hair and acne prone face, most people would say they looked alike. They had gone to the same schools, studied the same course and attended the same church. She remembered the specific day and moment she has realized that Gloria was actually the only friend that had stuck around. That day she had determined in her heart that she would treat her better.
“Gloria, come and see his face. Why do girls do this to themselves?”
“He has money?”
“And so? I’m not saying physical features are everything but haba!”
“And you wonder why you are still single.” Gloria shook her head with a sigh. “This is why you are still single, you this judgemental human being. Your standards are too high. You too, haba! One of these days, you would have to settle for…”
“Se what? I’m not settling ooh. Why should I? Am I dust? It’s OK to want a reasonably good looking person I can be attracted to. Contrary to what you or any other other person may think, my standards are not high. And so what if they are? I am not offering a less than stellar package in return.”
Gloria laughed. “You do know that we were made from dust abi? Dust to dust, bla bla bla. Are you sure you are not dust?”
“You know what I mean joor!”
“Picky human being.”
“Careful. I just don’t think she should have settled. And I know her, this is settling. The guy is ugly and he has loads of money. I’ve heard him speak. Gloria, she settled.”
“OK. But you need to loosen up. Or you will end up still single at 42 and then you will be looking for anybody.”
“I won’t. I’m just 25. Look at Adesua. Look at Simi. I’ll be fine.”
Even as she said this, she knew she was a little scared. She wasn’t going to deceive herself any more than absolutely necessary but she really deserved a love that would sweep her off her feet and take her breath away. What if she had to settle? What if he never came? What if he didn’t exist?
But what if he did? What if he was on his way? No, settling was not in the picture. She was not dust. Made from it maybe, but not it.
To all the boys I’ve loved, Kekwanu?* How market?
I know some of you are still there
Searching for the one thing I could have given you
Chigozie, how big is your shop today?
Who do you love now?
How many do you love now?
You once told me you couldn’t settle
Is that still true?
Gozie, tell me please
Do you have enough money now
To do multiple girls at a time?
Olumide, how is your mother?
She was mighty back then
Does she still cook for you
And tell you when to get back home?
You once told me she would never take second place
Is this still true?
Or did one stronger than me come?
Usman, dearest Usman
I was so sure it was you
How is your new bride?
I hope she is from Zamfara
She must be from Zamfara!
I hope she is from your Local Government?
In fact, I hope she is from your very own village?
I hope she is your cousin’s aunt’s husband’s niece?
Orobosa, decieving Orobosa
You should have made me a Benin woman
How is work in that your big town?
Your own excuse was distance
How is that your girlfriend?
The oyibo one that now lives in Melbourne.
How many times a year does she come to Nigeria?
I hope it is 52.
*Kekwanu – How are you? (Igbo)
Can you figure out why any of these men are in the past? What were their reasons?
If I could mess with Time and Chance, I would do it without blinking. First, my mother would still be alive. If she hadn’t died, I would not have been crowned Queen. I would have a better relationship with my dad. So many things would not be the way they are now.
I miss my dad. I saw his picture on my phone yesterday and I realized that even he had started to give in to Time’s advances.
I think it’s normal and quite expected that we see our fathers as heroes in shining armour that can never be tarnished. We never expect them to be weak or frail. I found it strange each time my father was sick. I still find it very strange each time I hear he hasn’t been so well. It goes against every thing I know or expect of fatherhood. Of course, he never tells me. My step mother does all the calling.
Back to where I started, I saw my dad’s picture yesterday. It was one I had taken with my iPhone but for some reason, it was not so clear. I was the only one using an iPhone at home so of course, I was the official photographer and video woman whenever we were together.
That night I remember the horror on my dad’s face when he saw my hands. “YOU ARE SUPPOSED TO BE A QUEEN!” He roared from across the room.
It was our little secret. After my mum died, my dad said I was the new queen. He bought a tiara and a flowing white dress and crowned me with words from the Book of Common Prayer we always kept on my mother’s oak bookshelf. He read me the rules I would have to adhere to, stuff like doing my chores, telling no lies and never hurting my subjects. Then he walked me around the house, showing me my new kingdom, he said and bringing me up to speed. I asked if he was going to get married again and he said probably. He was only 30 after all but his new wife was not going to be any trouble. He married my step mother and she was the coolest. I was 6.
That night, looking at his shocked and very angry face, I remember thinking my kingdom just crumbled. Saying I was supposed to be queen meant I had done something queens never do. My father stood over me long after the crowd was gone. He didn’t touch me. He held my step mother.
I lost my castle that night. I still blame KC. His family hushed everything and after he recovered, we never spoke again. But my kingdom was already in shambles.
But somewhere deep inside I blamed my dad too. It was not his fault but I heard her for the first time after my coronation. That first time, all she said was Hi. She started off being very soft and by the time I was 10, she was very strong
She was the real Queen and when she said stab, I, nothing more than a slave, stabbed.
I was about 10 years old or so when I discovered that I didn’t like smart people. Well, people that were smarter than I was. I didn’t know why. I just knew that each time I saw someone really smart, especially if they were in my age group, it would really piss me off.
It didn’t stop. I thought it would when I grew older but it didn’t. When I got into university in Melbourne, it only got worse. I was there on a scholarship but I was the least smart kid around (or maybe it was just a feeling) and it didn’t sit right with me.
I had no issues when someone excelled at something I didn’t want to do but if it was something I was even slightly interested in, I would get really jealous and angry. I didn’t understand what was going on. Anyway I was just 15 and I was supposedly dealing with puberty. Yes, just in case you wanted to know, my first menstrual cycle started while I was in the university. So yes, I meant puberty.
It wasn’t just academics. It was also extra curricular activities. I didn’t like girls who could sing. I disliked all the girls that got into the drama society and even though I was president, Miss Derrick insisted on choosing all roles. Of course, that meant that I didn’t always get to play lead female. So I disliked all the girls that ever got a lead role instead of me.
My heart ache or anger doesn’t work like it does for other people. I would be trying to sleep at night and I would wake up in tears, my pillow soaked. Other times I would have a very terrible heart burn. I would break out in a sweat and my hands won’t stop shaking. I even disliked girls I thought to be prettier than me.
On my 19th birthday, I graduated from university, top of my class and pride of my faculty. I had already booked my flight back to Nigeria and I really couldn’t wait one more day to see my dad. I thought I was going to explode too, if I had to wait any longer to kiss my boyfriend. It had been almost 4 years and I missed him like crazy. We talked almost everyday and he sent pictures a lot but it wasn’t enough. Could I get home already?
I knew my father was going to throw a party. My step mother was not any better. She only needed a reason to cook and my coming home was too much of a reason already. Everybody was going to be there but I knew myself. First chance I got, I was sneaking KC into my room for a hot make out session.
Looking back at all this, I hope people finally get to understand why I stabbed KC that night. There he was at my party wearing a wedding ring. Just the court wedding had been done and he needed to talk to me and settle things first before doing the real deal. My heart was burning and my dress soaked in seconds. I didn’t cry but my chest was on fire and my hand were beginning to shake. I heard her tell me to take the knife on the table and I did.
He was stabbed before I could stop myself.
I don’t like smarter people. I don’t like more beautiful people. The voice inside my head likes to be at the top of the food chain and if anybody tries to replace me or bring me down, even just a tiny little notch, I do whatever she tells me to do.
I woke up to the most amazing Christmas gift this year! It’s also my first, but that not the point.
So my girl(writer and all round pen-on-paper person), Pelumi asked for some ‘volunteers’ and she gifted us with stories. Written for us this Christmas. Amazing yeah? I know!
So I woke up this morning and there it was, the link to my story staring me in the face.
What’s the Point? is Pelumi’s Christmas gift to me this year and I just wanted to share it with all of you. Go to her blog and read it. I could have shared it here but you need to actually visit that blog. My story is not the only goody there. Visit and be wowed! Thank me later. After you have followed her. Thank you🤗🤗🤗
I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.
How are the Christmas plans going?
PS: The ending is not for the hopeless romantics amongst us. But then, it’s exactly what i asked for. Ask your questions here or there. Gracias!
I was born into a christian home, an Anglican one at that. My dad is an Anglican cleric and I grew up in church and all that. I’m sure you can imagine. I had the best time ever as a child.
I went with what I was taught in church but at some point growing up, I rebelled. As a good girl, my rebellion was so subtle, some never even noticed it. Mostly in my head, I started to question almost everything I was taught and ask myself why I had to follow the rules set out by the church.
After the rebellion phase, came the finding phase where I discovered for myself that religion wasn’t supposed to be a bondage, the way it mostly is now.
I came to the conclusion that the only thing that really mattered was my relationship with God. In trying to have a good relationship with him, I automatically kept some rules of the church and I broke some others. Others I neither broke nor kept because I didn’t even see them as rules. Others still, I openly fought and spoke against.
So what’s my view on religion? If it’s not pulling you to God and the things that make him happy, you are just in a ritual exercise. There has to be a relationship with Him for it to be true religion. I have issues with what I hear in so many churches these days. Religion is a market square and God has been turned into the ultimate item. Everything revolves around money. Secure your miracle with a seed offering!
I hope I don’t come across as some self-righteous, holier-than-thou sister. I have made my own share of mistakes. I have done some really stupid things which I regret but I’m not letting those things define my walk with God and I’m making an effort to live how He want me to live.
Also, I’m a Christian and when I talk about Faith, I’m talking about Jesus Christ and the Bible and other related things. I’m not referring to some higher power or super being or the universe or Mother Nature. No. I mean Jesus. For me, that’s the real deal.
For starters, in 10 years I would definitely like to be in a family of my own. You know, husband, kids and the whole works. . I would love to be in the wife-and-mommy zone.
In 10 years I would love to have finished my book and be working on more great deals that would have arisen from it. I would love to own my own natural hair salon.
I would also like to have at least 5 countries down in 10 years. In 10 years I would like to have this blog in a comfortable money earning position. I’m still playing around with it but I don’t intend to keep blogging like that. I hope to make something out of it if I can.
In 10 years I would love to be able to look back and have nostalgic feelings on all the volunteer opportunities I’m trying so hard to get right now. In other words, I pray I get them so that 10 years from now I will be able to talk about them.
Well for anyone who has been with me on this blog, I’m sure you are not too surprised that there is no law-related long term goal. That one is a step by step something. But all the same, if I am doing nothing that has to do with law, I want to be able to say that I have been there and given my share.
By 2028, I want to be making more impact on young women and their life choices. I want to have learned so much that I basically spill over if I’m squeezed. Kinda like the way I am with hair care right now. All you need to do is ask and I will talk a book out. I want to be like that with more important issues.
In 10 years I want to be living my best life yet and loving God like never before.
In 10 years, I DON’T WANT TO STILL BE TAKING SO MANY CARBONATED DRINKS!!! Lol, I want to have healthier eating habits and be a faithful member of my church and the Fit Fam.😆😆😆
Discuss your current relationship; if single, discuss beingsingle.
I am single to stupor and I am in a love-hate relationship with it right now.
Being single for the major part is fun. I know, so is being in love. But I am enjoying my single hood. It’s the time I have to mould a ‘Chioma’ that exists independent of a man. Oh, my boo would be a wonderful addition but he would not be a defining addition.
Being single has sides that I love and sides that I don’t love at all. I love it because I’m having a really great me-time. It’s so good to be discovering myself and growing daily the way I am right now.
I like how I can be friends with anybody and I can hug any of my male friends without worrying about anything. I still need to learn to call more often. I still have allot of things to learn.
However,the hating it part is because I am one of those gushy people that love people who are in love. I like the idea of being in love and all that. So whenever I see couples, I remember my single state and sometimes it’s hard.
But when it gets hard, I buy small gifts for myself and say, Chioma, you’re your own boyfriend. Act like it! That helps me snap out of any lonely blues that might want to arise.
Am I currently ready to change status if the right person cruises by? Yes! But in the meantime, I’ll be enjoying my life and building a Proverbs 31 woman who would be a help meet in any relationship.
What was your biggest dream in life (you wanted to do as a kid but no longer can) ?
This one is really easy. I wanted to be a really great dancer.
I don’t think I can do that anymore because the bones be set and all that. I don’t know if I will ever be able to dance the way I saw myself dancing as a child.
I also wanted to be a mom by the time I was 22. I definitely can’t do that anymore. I will be 24 this year. Lol, it’s funny the way I had some things planned out in my head and today’s question just reminds me that it is never too late. Yes, I can’t be a mom at 22 but there are other things I keep thinking I’m too old to do.
If you are out there and you are thinking it’s too late, it’s not. Get up and go! Everyday is a good day to take action. You are enough. Good, young, old, smart enough. Don’t let nobody bring you down!
I just want to take this opportunity to apologize humbly to all who have been following this challenge. I missed out on the last two days because of some personal stuff. It all good now and I’m back.
Something that is part of your routine that you enjoy.
First of, I do not really have a routine at the moment because I haven’t settle down at work and things are still shaky in Bauchi, where I am for service. Also I am not a routine person.
I usually have a plan for the day in my head but I go with the flow when it comes to execution. So routines are not really my thing. But something I do a lot which I enjoy doing is sleeping. Hehehe, just kidding.
Something I do a lot which I enjoy doing is my blogging. I don’t publish all I write but I like the feeling when I get an idea and I just write away and that happens almost everyday.
So almost every night, I get my phone and write something about the day. Events, feelings, whatever… It helps me calm down.
Something at which you’ve been a champion or the best.
I don’t know. I can’t think of a time when I’ve been a real champion. I did win a lot of academic prizes in primary and junior secondary school I have also won my fair share of bible quizzes. I used to be really good with those.
But something at which I’m usually one of the best around is giving hair advice and that one I got by hardwork and reading hair books like I had an exam to write on it.
I’m not trying to belittle myself, I know I’m amaziiiiiiiing! But, at the moment, writing this? I really can’t come up with something.
Hello lovely people! This is coming kinda late and I apologize. Today I have to talk about 👇👇👇
Something about which people seem to compliment you.
Well, the first thing would be my eyes. Trust me, I really do not see what it is but I supposedly have good or beautiful eyes. Or so they say.
That was just me joking. 🤗 Well not really.
There are two things which people seem to compliment most about me.
First is my teaching. A lot of people say I’m a good teacher, that I’m very dramatic and I come up very good stories and analogies to pass the point across. I’ve gotten that compliment so many times, from teaching bible study and children’s classes in church to my very regular free hair sessions that I give to anyone who mentions the word ‘hair’ to me. But then I love talking about things I know about.
The second thing is how easily I let material stuff go. This one is a bit funny because I am not so good at letting emotional stuff slide. But you see material stuff? People around me are sometimes impressed with how I never cry over spilled milk. From losing phones to money or some other material stuff, I’ve been given the thumbs up regularly for letting bygones and lost items be.
There. Those are the things which people seem to compliment most about me.
What’s your most complimented feature or attributes?
Errrrm yeah, feature image is totally unrelated to the post but Psalm 1 has been on my mind all day and then I saw that picture and I’m like, ‘Dear God, you trying to say something? Come right out and hit me’.
So I just want to share that psalm with someone who needs it right now. If you are in the Lord, He is faithful and his faithfulness fails never. His Word says that whatever we do shall prosper because we shall be like trees planted by the riverside, yielding fruit in season.
You shall yield your fruit in season! Step out in faith today!
I want to scream right now and I can’t do it in civil society. But I think I can do it here.
I don’t feel my best. The above is what I’ve been reciting to myself for the past 3 hours and I’m failing miserably.
I’m not very happy but I’m learning now more than ever how I don’t need happiness to be grateful. I don’t feel much joy in my spirit right now but I’m trying to feel gratitude in the hope that I’ll be grateful for the little things, see how God has blessed me and be joyful from that.
But it’s hard. I want to scream at God. I want to shout at him and ask him why he let this happen to me. But I’m learning to be grateful. I’m am awfully slow learner though.
I’m still crying. Knowing I should stop but I can’t. With each tear that drops, I’m saying Thank you Jesus because you never stop being faithful and you are faithful even now. I praise you because you are faithful forever. You are good forever. I can’t see or feel it but you never stop working. You are working even now. Thank you Jesus. For this lesson. Thank you Father. Thank you. Thank you. I trust you completely because I know there is a plan and the plan is good. It is perfect. Thank you because you are not a wicked God. I thank you because you never failed me yet. I trusted you before, I will yet trust you.
I will still praise you. I’m tempted to cry with my mouth closed but no. I will give you praise in my tears and I will not be silent.
Praising still. Pained but praising still.
I saw my bar result today and yay! I passed. Call to bar is set for 28th November 2018. Baby girl is going to be a lawyer very soon!
There was a time I could say I was addicted to carbonated drinks but I don’t think I’m still addicted.
I use my phone a lot but I’m not addicted to it. I’ve never been addicted to social media.
I don’t drink basically and even though I like wine, I don’t take it often. I don’t smoke or do drugs of any sort.
I’m sorry, today I have nothing to write about.
Instead, I would just use this opportunity to say that Jesus is my ultimate cure for every illness and anything that even tries to become an addiction. He has the power to save and save absolutely. Completely.
Are you struggling with any addiction? Jesus is just a prayer away. Even if it’s in your thoughts. I could also be a confidential accountability partner if you want. You can shoot me a mail at email@example.com and I’ll be happy to pray and trust God with you.
Hello, I’m back again with NYSC stuff. I’m so sorry for the break, it wasn’t intentional. I just had to deal with some things first.
Also I would like to apologize for some misinformation. I thought the next batch was going to start camp on the 20th of November 2018 and I said as much here. It turns out I was wrong and camp actually starts this month. Some time next week. So I’m so sorry, it’s kind of why I was so relaxed because I thought we had time to go through all this and get our shopping lists ready and stuff.
So today, I’m just going to be giving a basic list of things you will need to buy or get for orientation camp. It’s a very basic list and needs would differ depending on some other factors but it’s my hope that the average person would be good to go with this list.
Here we go
Original and copies of your call up letter
Original and photocopies of your green slip
Original and photocopies of your school ID card
Original and photocopies of your Statement of Result or Certificate
Medical clearance certificate with NMA seal
Licensing certificate for doctors and pharmacists.
3/4 white shirts
3/4 white shorts
2-4 extra pairs of white socks
White sweater or jacket for colder regions. For this October batch, remember, Winter Harmattan is coming. Cold for night in the North no dey joke ooh!
Wrapper and towels
Lots of handkerchiefs, depending on where and when you are going.
1 pair of white tennis shoes. Buy the rubber ones, they are super easy to clean and they are cheap.
2/3 Church clothes
Beauty pageant clothes if you intend to participate.
Local attires for carnival.
Crazy shoes (sneakers) for carnival🙈
For the food people like me, this is just in case you can’t do camp food and you are not so cashed up.
Tea things and beverages – milk, sugar, Milo etc
Any other one that you might like. Remember to pack light.
Dettol or any other disinfectant.
Another bottle of dettol 😂
Soap for bathing and washing
Sun block creams.
Tootbrush and toothpaste
Sponges and soap case or a bathing bowl
Hair brushes and combs. Ladies, especially the naturalistas, get your hair in a protective style before going to camp. Make sure it can last for three weeks. You can use diluted spirit (rubbing alcohol) to clean your scalp and then moisturize like mad because it can dry up your hair
Oils and creams. For body and hair.
Spray bottle and night scarf for the naturalistas🙋
Laundry bleach e.g. Jik
Basic pain killers e g panadol
Mentholated creams like Robb or Aboniki
Methylated spirit/ rubbing alcohol. To clean small wounds and your scalp if need be.
Ladies, PMS and menstrual pain drugs
Inhalers and routine drugs for those that need them.
Basic First Aid kit with cotton wool, band aids etc
Anti-malaria drugs and laxatives.
Hopefully, you won’t need all this but better safe than sorry.
Bible and other books to read.
Writing materials for SAED and lectures.
Plenty pens or pencils just in case they keep getting lost
Small food flask and cutlery
Torch or rechargeable lamp
A clear bag or two for all your documents
Dark permanent marker for marking all your things
Treated mosquito net
Padlocks for locking everything lockable
Beddings – bed sheet, pillowcase, pillow, blanket and stuff like that
Chargers for phone and lamps
Hangers and cloth pegs
Makeup kit for those that will have time or compete in pageants.
Sunglasses, depending on where you are going
earphones. Try not to use this when a soldier is close by. For some very weird reason, they don’t like it. But you will need it at night if your room is very noisy.
Well that’s about it. That was my list anyway. You might need to take more things or less but this list covers the basics.
Camp is starting Next Week Tuesday and I wish all prospective Corp members the very best.
Congratulations to all Corp members passing out today. Wishing you guys the very best out there!
Something you’re looking forward to this year and something you regret not having done last year.
All I can say I look forward to this year is my call to the Nigerian Bar. Not because I can’t wait to practice law but because it is conclusive evidence that I am done with this law thing. I am tired and I look forward to the rest after bar finals and the call to bar itself.
What I regret not doing last year is going out more. I was working and I used to sleep every free time I had. I was always so tired. Then I went to law school and well….
My dream wedding is large! All my friends are there. Every single one of them! The colours of the day are teal green and wine red and purple finds its way in there. I don’t know how that will work out but there.
That day is organized to a T. Nobody so much as looks in my direction to ask a question because everything goes on smoothly.
My dream wedding starts with a church service, then a reception and an after party. Onyeuwaoma and Obimmo are playing all over the place and hubby and I are dancing like nobody’s watching.
I want this weird menu that shows all my travel history. Especially the major points. I have unripe plantain porridge on the menu. I want Amala and Ewedu on the menu. I want Kunu on the menu.
I want us to write our vows. In addition to whatever the church feels we must say. I want my dad in traditional wear with not so much as a priestly collar on him.
Daddy get yourself some traditional clothes…
I don’t know who my husband is yet but if he has brothers like I have sisters, I have this matching outfits planned in my head. No family member is on the bridal train, that thing is for friends. Except the chief bridesmaid maybe.
My sisters should look something like this…
Awon Ore Iyawo sturvs
My wedding gown doesn’t have to be a designer gown as long as I kill in it 😂 and Le Beau can’t get his eyes off me.
My village people will probably not allow me to wear this gown…
I want him to be looking at me like, ‘I didn’t even know she was this fine! Oh my God, I can’t believe she’s going to be mine’. 😌 I know, my vain side surprises even me sometimes.
Maybe this one?
My dream wedding doesn’t have to be a location wedding because like I said, I want all my friends there.
At my dream wedding, nobody is allowed to take pictures with their phones. There are photographers for that and pictures are going to be given to guests that request for them.
There are these funny cards for each guest that would be fun to go over later.
Stolen from the great Poetolu whom I absolutely love…
I want a large bridal train. like, a really large one.
There are so many things to write about and these are just a few of them. My dream wedding is beautiful.
This is a herculean task. I love music too much to have one best musician or one best song. I can’t! 😭😭😭
Anthem Lights or Jennifer Hudson?
If I was forced to pick on pain of death, I would likely go with Anthem Lights at the moment. They are a Christian band made up of Chad Graham, Caleb Grimm, Joseph “Joey” Stamper and Spencer Kane. Past members included Kyle Kupecky and Alan Powell. I already said I couldn’t pick a ‘musician’.
Why? They have some original songs and they do these wonderful covers of other artists. They also make some great medleys and mash-ups.
I’m picking them because they do my kind of songs, both Christian and secular and they have a great sound. Let’s stop there for now.
OK. They are also so cute. 3 of them are married and they have such beautiful love stories. Everything about them is just so nice. I love them!
You can easily download some of their great songs from Godtube or check out Genius.com which also gives a little bio of the group.
Jennifer is one of my forever best voices though. I never evuh get tired of her. But let me just go with Anthem Lights… 🤗
What is something you hope to change about yourself and why?
Hmmm, you guys want me to use my hand and cast myself right here. It’s alright.
Well first, if we were talking of something physical, I would be slimmer and taller. No, I wouldn’t change my pimply face. However, I’m sure that is not what y’all want to hear.
I hope to change my tendency to procrastinate. I really do not know when I became like that but I have discovered that I do this a lot. If you are my friend, how often I call you is proof of this flaw. It’s not because I do not remember but because I keep pushing it off. I am working to change this aspect of who I am at the moment before I lose something really important all because I was too lazy to act in the moment.
And that’s the why right there. I have lost a lot of things, or should I say opportunities just because I was too lazy to stand up and move. I kept on saying ‘later’ or ‘not today’ and I missed the goody train.
I was gonna add how I hope to change it and stuff but I saw this picture that kinda sums up all I’ve learnt about not moving stuff over when I don’t have to. See below 👇
So there, that’s one thing I hope to change about myself and why I want to change it. If you are my friend and you know me in some way, please you are given full permission to bug my life when you know I need to get to something. I would hate you and then love you…. 😆
The meaning of your blog name.
My blog is called The Clandie Place.
My blog has been baptised a couple of times since I started it almost 5 years ago. I can’t remember the first name it had. Then it became The Hideout. Now it’s The Clandie Place.
So why did I come to The Clandie Place? Well I love privacy and this blog has always been my ranting spot. That plus the fact that it is totally mine. I don’t have to share it with anybody or worry that someone will break something or tear one of my books.
It’s called The Clandie Place because it’s where Clandie comes to chill and have some alone time. It’s where she can talk about stuff that’s on her mind or just stuff that she likes.
Everything here is everything me, like I’ll always say. So there, now you know why I call this blog The Clandie Place.
Do you have a blog? What’s it called? Why is it called that? Would you like to share?
PS: Today is supposedly No Bra Day, hence the featured image. I know, such a weird thing to have a day for 😌 but then….
…It is also Breast Cancer Awareness Month so maybe this ‘day’ makes sense after all. Get checked ladies. It just might save your life.
Hello… Before I get to what’s in for today, I just want to say congrats to my grandparents… They have been married for 60 years!
So back to business….
15 facts about you.
You would be making my world right now if you gifted me with a personal trainer. I’m a lifelong member of the fitfam but I can be so lazy sometimes.
I am one of those people who are totally and thoroughly in love with the idea of being in love.
I love cake and ice-cream. If you are in Abuja, you want to visit Ice cream Lab. They are expensive but worth it.
I sometimes think that my left side and right side are seperate individuals that I should treat fairly and equally. So don’t freak out if you see me chew 15 times on the right side and then 15 times on the left, just to balance things out.
I really do not like cockroaches. I hate them infact. They disgust me. I loathe them, abhor and detest them.
As I write this, I have only been officially rejected once in my entire life. By a law firm during my externship period.
I can be very secretive and very elusive. I can tell all the stories while leaving out the gist. And I cry a lot.
I am a natural hair enthusiast. I love everything hair. Especially DIYs.
I like to keep to myself most times.
My best colour is green. Purple comes next. But when it comes to clothes, just colour me black.
I love books.
I eat in a weird way. And my best food is beans. Almighty beans. The absolute food love of my life.
I started this blog out of completely maddening boredom.
I low-key want to be a celebrity. I know, it’s one of my vainer thoughts.
I love gifts. Good ones. Especially when they are small, randomly given and seemingly meaningless.
So there 15 random facts about me… Any one shock you? 😊
Hello friends… I’m sorry this is just coming in but I’ve had the longest and roughest day. But let’s get to business…
Discuss some of the things on your bucket list.
I’ll just list 5 things. By the way, I have like 3 bucket lists. The short, midterm and lifelong. Depends on timeframe and all that.
Travel the world! I wasn’t born to be in one place. I’m am Ajala pikin and I’ve been using Nigeria as training ground. I love travelling so much and I plan to literally go around the world, visiting old chapels and drinking ridiculous coffee. Taking wonderful pictures and collecting postcards.
Have a celebrity friend. Seriously, I can’t wait for one of my friends to just blow and explode all over the place. I want to know what it’s like. Or maybe I should just wait and get an already-made celebrity to be my friend…. 🤔
Like my roomie in this picture…. Aunty hurry up and become popular…
Finish my book and get a good deal for it. I can’t say what the book is about yet but it’s one of the major things on my bucket list. The midterm bucket list.
Have a great photoshoot with my siblings. This one is funny but I love pictures and my siblings and I just need to have a photoshoot. We are too many not to have one (I have four siblings)!
Dye my hair some outrageous colour. I don’t think there’s much to discuss here. I like hair, I like colour. Why not bring the two together? 😊
What do y’all think about Sayrah’s funky hair? Enjoy the video while you are checking it out…
So that’s that. Five things from my bucket list. What’s yours?
Today we start the 40-Day Challenge and I hope it goes well. Most of the posts will be very short. I’ll just answer the questions and try to keep it brief.
Day 1 – Discuss a dark/turbulent moment in your life.
I have had many trying times in my life and I really had a hard time picking one to discuss. But I think I would go with when I lost my grandmother. No, her death wasn’t what made that period dark but I was in such a bad place when it happened and it was dark because I couldn’t talk to anyone about it. My peeps were struggling with so much, I was supposed to be prepping for my bar finals and with everyday that passed, things seemed to be getting worse.
This year wasn’t the smoothest. I lost 6 people this year, friends and family. At a point I was weeping with each death but by the 6th time, I couldn’t cry. I was sad for days and withdrawn but the tears wouldn’t fall.
Anyway, that’s passed now. Things aren’t so much better now but I know that I am getting out of that place in the nearest future and I completely trust God’s promise that his plans for me are perfect.
In all that time, Isaiah 35 was a great source of encouragement. I just knew I would get out of the hard times. You will too. Just trust the process.
An award for amazing bloggers with ingenious posts. Their blog not only captivates; it inspires and motivates. They are one of the best out there, and they deserve every recognition they get. This award is also for bloggers who find fun and inspiration in blogging; and they do it with so much love and passion.
I don’t know if I’m all that yet but I got the above quote from Thony’s post and I just wanted to share. Now let me say this, these blogger awards are not physical. They are like tag posts given to bloggers to encourage them and it’s just us helping ourselves with publicity and all that stuff. And there are rules that come with each award. Below are the rules for this one;
•Thank whoever nominated you and include a link to their blog.
•Tell your readers 3 things about yourself.
•Answer the questions from the person who nominated you.
•Nominate 10-20 bloggers you feel deserve the award.
•Ask your nominees 5 questions of your choice with one weird or funny one.
•Notify your nominees by commenting on their blog.
Here we go!
Three Things/ facts ’bout me:
I don’t like onions. At all. I don’t even cook with it if I have my way.
I love hair and all things hair and hair-related, especially DIYs.
I don’t like milk. The smell really sets me off.
Thony’s Questions and my answers:
•Describe yourself in 3 words.
-Conservative (I’m not talking about politics here).
•What alternate universe would you want to live in?
-None. The only place I want to be in that’s not Earth, is Heaven.
•What is your phobia?
– Not a phobia but I don’t like being alone in the dark. I spook easily.
•What do you do when you can’t sleep?
– I read a book. Or watch a movie.
•What is the worst movie you’ve ever seen?
_ Erm, I can’t remember any of the really bad movies I’ve seen. But I’m sure if I could remember the worst movie I’ve seen, it would be Nigerian or Ghanaian
There! that’s all. I like how it’s so short. I’m going to nominate only one person. I’m scared that the other bloggers I know are quite serious and may not like tag posts. That said, Oman Rahdi I nominate you. You are the newest blogger I know so you are still truly mysterious. I hope you could do this too. Don’t worry, you don’t have to tag anybody when you are done. These are your questions:
why did you start a blog?
what do you feel about pets?
what is the one thing people always think about you that is wrong?
books or movies?
Give us three words that are not you at all.
Oman is a real newbie and Thony is an old newbie who started a new blog after his old one kinda crashed. Please visit his blog by clicking Thony and visit Oman’s blog by clicking Oman. Thank you, thank you, thank you!
Back in 2015, a friend and fellow blogger Olo, did a 40-day challenge. I wanted so bad to do one but I think I had a few issues back then. I didn’t have a good phone, I was too lazy to stay in a cyber cafe and schedule 41 posts and I wanted it to end on my birthday. Plus the fact that I was a little bit lazy.
But next week, we start! Another reason why I didn’t write it then was because, I truly didn’t know the answer to some of the questions. It took me about 3 months to go through the questions, think about them and actually discover myself. I was shocked at some things I found out.
What is this about? So I’m going to publish a post everyday for 40 days. It’s a megalomaniac challenge in a way because all I would be writing is stuff about me. Those of you that want to find out/know more of me, this is a good place to start. 40 days and 40 new things to find out about me. Not just for you but for me too and here is why:
Some of the posts required me to dig deep, play the devil’s advocate on some of my thoughts and beliefs. They forced me to actually find out what Chioma really is like.
So for 40 days (from October 10 – November 20), I will be answering some questions about me and sharing my thoughts. It might look like a little bit too-much-me but I hope the questions provoke your thoughts and push you to some self-discovery of your own.
Here are the topics for the next 40 days!
Discuss a dark/turbulent moment in your life.
Discuss some of the things on your bucket list.
15 facts about you.
The meaning of your blog name.
Something you hope to change about yourself and why.
Your favorite musician and why.
Your dream wedding.
Something you’re looking forward to this year and something you regret not having done last year.
Something about which people seemed to compliment you.
Something at which you’ve been a champion or the best.
Something that is part of your routine that you enjoy.
What was your biggest dream in life (you wanted to do as a kid but no longer can).
You current relationship; if single discuss being single.
Where you’d like to be in 10 years.
Top 5 pet peeves.
Your views on religion.
Your favorite comfort food and why.
Your zodiac sign and if you think if it fits your personality.
A moment you felt the most satisfied with your life.
If you could have any job in the world what would it be?
Your guilty pleasure (or pleasures!).
Put your iPod on shuffle and write the first ten songs that pop up.
Bullet your whole day.
Discuss something you planned that ended up not being what you expected.
How do you handle/ deal with success and failure.
Your favorite movie.
What is your biggest dream in life? What one great thing do you wish to accomplish.
Something you could never get tired of doing.
If you had $1,000,000 to spend, how would you spend it?
Something you miss.
Somewhere you’d love to move to or visit.
Your highs and lows of this past year.
A book you read over and over again and never got sick of.
How important do you think education is?
One of your favorite TV shows.
How have you changed in the past two years.
A problem you have had in the past.
Your earliest memory.
A photograph of yourself today + three good things that have happened to you in the past 40 days.
Epilogue: write a letter to yourself.
Phew! that’s a lot! But by God’s grace, we will get it done.
Thanks y’all for following me so far. I’m humbled and grateful. Thank you.
Hello! I promise, I’m rounding up. Thanks to everyone that has followed so far and commented and liked and shared, both openly and in secret. I’m so glad this series wasn’t totally useless and that it was of help to some people.
That said, this post covers some of the more popular activities in camp. I will try to be brief as possible.
Well, this is done on the 3rd day usually. All the NYSC officials are there including the State Coordinator, there would be a judge, might be the Chief Judge of the state or a representative who would do the swearing in. It’s done in the morning.
Truth be told, I can’t really remember my swearing in. It was done in the rain. Literally. I was so excited that morning and the rain just spoilt everything. I didn’t take a single picture.
Just so you know, they take the phrase ‘under the sun or in the rain’ literally. Buy a shower cap if it’s rainy season. Be prepared.
Uniform is 7/7.
Lectures go on during the day before SAED training and it would be on different topics such as relocation, PPAs, entrepreneurship, elections (well, this was because of the timing of our batch), safety and many other things.
There is a language class, where you will be taught a few phrases of the more dominant language in the state, Hausa in my case. There is also a cultural lecture, how to dress in that area, other things you need to know about the people in that area and how best to conduct yourself while you are there. Ours was given by the traditional ruler of Wailo.
This is Skill Acquisition and Entrepreneurship Development.
Different skills are taught and there would be an exhibition at the end of camp. There would also be a competition for some of the skills.
I was in the hair and beauty care SAED class and had my nails fixed for the competition. We came second. 🤗😊😆
The carnival is done on the morning of the last Saturday in camp. Go prepared with at least a wrapper and here’s why. Platoons will be given a tribe to represent and they would have to dress like that tribe and dance and stuff. Your wrapper would help you or your platoon to prepare.
For the carnival, NYSC officials would be present and the platoons and other special groups such as OBS, the Band and the medical team would all dance and well, present for the carnival. A platoon would be picked as the winner at the end of the day.
Uniform is white customized shirt and jeans or anything you like from the waist down. Please be decent. Or you can wear the traditional outfit of your platoon.
In Wailo, there was no bonfire on our bonfire night. I know, very weird. Instead, they drew a large circle on the ground and made us dance around it 😏. Even weirder.
Anyway, the bonfire night is the night of the carnival. So it’s carnival by day and bonfire by night. It should be the noisiest, most fun night. I imagine it is in other states. Bauchi was just 😌😰.
Note that platoons will be fending for themselves on this night. No food from kitchen. Each platoon cooks and feeds their members. This night is also when the cooking competition is held and the result of every competition held before is announced. The best platoon is also announced during this event.
Uniform is white everything.
Variety night is the night where the beauty pageant is done. Basically, that’s the biggest event if the night. There’s Miss Wailo (or whatever your Miss NYSC is called), Mr Macho, Miss Lepa and Miss Orobo.
There might be *ojoro in selecting the winners so just steel your mind for whatever happens.
Uniform is white everything. Well, except for the contestants.
This is passing out for camp, and it’s done on the very last day of camp. This is how it goes;
The passing out starts by about 9am. There will be breakfast by 7:30am and that’s all the food they will be giving you in that day. Until that 9am, you are free to go to Mammy and eat and get ready.
You want to be completely packed by this morning because once they chase you from the hostel you are going with your box and all you have and want to leave that camp with.
The idea is that you take your box out and keep it somewhere safe (Chapel for chapel people, mosque for Muslims, Studio for OBS crew or restaurants for those that have ‘customers’) and then head to the parade ground.
All the marching that you would have been practicing is for this day. Uniform is 7/7.
MAN O’WAR DRILLS
In Wailo, this was done platoon by platoon on different days. It’s a scary something. But it’s a fun something. It’s not something I can tell you guys about, you just have to experience it for yourself.
Go have fun!
Uniform is 7/7 but not with your crested vest. Wear your normal white shirt and the rest of the kit.
PS – There will be a lot of ripping at Man O’War drills, lol. I tried not to laugh that day but mehn, I couldn’t help it. My very good friend, Roland (that’s his real name😂😆) got so embarrassed when his trousers tore so badly and someone shouted Gucci! Apparently, he had on Gucci boxers. But that’s not the gist. Some girls had to deal with worse when their trousers tore and all they had on inside were panties. You do not want to be in that situation.
So here’s my advice and I mean that in its plural sense…
Wear boxers (for the guys) or long tights (for the ladies).
Before your drill day, go to the tailor and make sure that your trousers are in good shape. They should not be too tight or rrrrrrip!
If you can, go with a needle and thread. For the smaller tears. You might not need it. A friend might.
That’s Roland by the way… 😂👀😜😈😇
I thinks those are the major activities I can think of at the moment. Camp is fun if you decide to get involved so please do. Make friends. Don’t be a wet blanket or a shell man. Get out of your comfort zone and mix.
This is 5/7. It’s a play on the NYSC kit. Two more posts and we are done. All good and ready to go for November 20 this year or anytime in the future!
Yesterday, October 1, was Nigeria’s Independence Day. Nigeria turned 58.
I’m a Nigerian and Independence Day is usually a public holiday, there are parades in every state and everywhere is in a celebration mode.
Yesterday was different. I kept waiting for the ‘feeling’ to write about Nigeria but it never came. And that’s when it occurred to me that as much as I say I believe in a better Nigeria and that things will get better, yada yada yada, deep down inside, I was secretly planning how to escape the mess that had become my country and just run away to any country that would take me.
My point is, I stopped believing at some point and no, this is not going to have a fairy tale ending where I come to sudden realization at the end and fall in love with Nigeria again. I still don’t like her very much as I write this.
But in the Spirit of Independence, I have decided to be little more optimistic. I won’t stop doing my best to make my space better, to bring the change I want to see in Nigeria, in my own little way. I won’t give up on her. I will collect my PVC* and I will vote at the next elections. I will never stop planning to get my masters abroad but I will stop planning how to never come from a never-ending academic spree.
Nigeria might be in a mess but it’s our mess. Either to enjoy or to clean up. I’m not even going to start thinking about how Hollywood finds it very convenient to use Nigeria when they have need of a country in Africa to throw in their storyline. And it’s always for something bad. But we are not talking about that.
My original plan for an independence day post had been to post screenshots of what some of my friends had to say about Nigeria and just leave it at that. Here are some of those pictures…
You see how we feel? But then, it wasn’t all bad…
As we are sad, we are praying hard. There has to come a change, or else, we will end up with a mess we really can’t manage.
One of my friends took it really personal, now is not the time for badmouthing…
I had so many bad things to say but thank God I saw that status. It shut me up. So I didn’t write a hate speech yesterday.
Happy independence Nigeria. It’s a day late because I am mad about where we are now. God knows I love you but I don’t really like you at the moment. I won’t ever stop praying for your healing, our healing.
Have a great day ahead people…
*PVC – Permanent Voter’s Card
All pictures used in this post are from my friends’ posts on Whatsapp. I left in the names as a way of acknowledging those whose status update I stole. Thanks y’all.
On this NYSC matter, where did we stop? A typical day in camp yeah? Today, let’s talk about groups.
This is the basic Corp group. The family unit. The cell.
All Corp member are divided into platoons. You know your platoon by checking the last number in your state code, I spoke about it in my first NYSC post. So once you get your ID tag, you know your platoon. Almost every thing you will do as a group would be with your platoon.
As a platoon, you have kitchen duty, which is basically helping out at the kitchen. Don’t worry, you won’t be doing any cooking. You will just be helping out with the process of preparing the food.
Your platoon will compete in dance, drama and comedy competitions, sports competitions and cooking competitions. On the carnival day, you will be give a tribe to represent, you are to dress like them and well, represent them. It’s a competition too. Because there will be a winner.
On the bonfire night, your platoon is responsible for your feeding. Well, the way it was in Wailo, platoons cooked for the cooking competition and just cooked enough for everybody. So no dinner from NYSC that night.
ORIENTATION BROADCASTING SERVICE
Also known as OBS, this group works at the broadcasting studio. They are the publicity guys, the usher girls, the technical and sound guys, the DJs, the fun people. In other words, these guys are the face of camp. NYSC wants to interview Corp members for radio or TV stations, they pick from OBS. They need people to welcome officials or visitors, they pick from OBS. OBS Crew members have front seat privilege at camp activities and they are basically treated like a platoon. On the carnival day, they don’t dance or move with their individual platoons, they move together. It’s like Platoon OBS. Like us in the picture below…
As OBS members, we get some privileges. We have special tags that let us move when others can’t, if you get my drift. We get posted to town. We are in the spotlight. Also, no CDS troubles as you are automatically part of the Publicity team. Unless you’re a lawyer or doctor, then they’ll send you to professional groups to suit your course of study.
MEDICAL TEAM/RED CROSS
Well, these are your doctors, nurses, and lab guys while on camp. They are Corp members who studied in the medical field. Anybody can join Red Cross though.
The medical team kinda enjoys exemption from ALL camp activities. Well, except eating. This is because, they will be in the Clinic attending to patients. There’s a shift plan though so they take turns.
On the carnival day, they move as a group, no platoon ish either. They also have special tags identifying them as either medical personnel or Red Cross.
Please ooh, Red Cross members don’t have these exemptions ooh. They move around with the ambulance and stuff but they still mix.
I know. The exclamation mark is my way of doing small ojoro*. This is my CDS group after all.
The Band is well, the Band. Ever watched Drumline? Yes, remove the cheerleaders, the uniforms and every other thing. Just leave the drums and that’s the Band. They play for all occasions.
They are exempted from all platoon activities because they rehearse when most platoons are meeting to plan or do anything. They stand apart on the parade ground and it’s automatic posting to town. They don’t have tags though.
Also, no CDS troubles because band is a CDS group. There will be auditions though and if you make it, you get to join the Band for CDS. If not, you have to join another CDS group.
I’m sorry but what can I say about the special Man O’War group? Absolutely nothing. I was not a part of them and I really have no idea what they did during their meetings. The group exists though and they also get some privileges like automatic cool posting to town. I think they are closest to the soldiers so that should count for something.
COLOUR PARTY/POINT GUARDS/ALL THOSE PEOPLE
No, it’s not beef. I really don’t know what to call them. They are like the special marching squad. The best of the best. I have to say I admire their marching skills, it’s like art. Automatic posting to cool places (infact wherever you want, so I heard), popularity with officials, which is a privilege whether you believe it or not, amongst other things.
I can’t think of any other special group at the moment.
COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT SERVICE
CDS is compulsory. I haven’t really experienced it yet because I haven’t really started NYSC in full. It takes up one day per week, you join your CDS group and do whatever you do to help the community…
You can’t pick a CDS group. You are assigned one. However the following people automatically get the attached CDS group;
Band members – Band CDS
OBS Crew members – Publicity CDS
lawyers or law students – Legal Advocacy or Legal Aid cds
Doctors, nurses – one medical-related CDS group like that. 😄
Other than the above, no other person is assured of the CDS group they will be assigned. At least, from what I have observed.
I am a lawyer (to be) and I knew as surely as I know my name, that I didn’t want to be in the legal advocacy group. So I joined the Band. Just in case, as a plan B, I joined OBS. There was no way I was going to legal CDS. I made sure I worked hard in both groups, hard enough that if need be, there would be a struggle over who would get me 🤓. At the end of the day, I was asked to pick and I chose Band 😉. Legal advocacy CDS, goodbye honey. I’ll miss you. Not.
They say I’ll be forced to go back but they don’t know me. 🙅I’ll just go Wakanda on them.
All CDS groups have a president. And then some other officials. I don’t know how they are selected.
That said, I’ll just like to add as a final touch for today that it pays, like truly pays to get involved. With your platoon especially. Befriend all your platoon officers, both NYSC and Army. There is a score sheet and if you have your eyes on state awards, take it serious.
Be nice, make friends.
Feel free to ask questions or email at firstname.lastname@example.org
First off, I could not do that long title again and I apologize. 😁
Secondly, I am having serious issues with being consistent at the moment. It’s not writer’s block. I’m just lacking the motivation to pick up my pen and write phone and type. Once again, I apologize. I’m sorry😥
Back to NYSC gist, last time, I talked about the food and some health tips. Today I just want to give a little hint on camp activities. Like an idea of a typical day. For you upcoming otondos Corp members, it will really help to prepare yourself mentally for the stress that is orientation camp. I’m not joking. I am not exaggerating either. That said, here goes something…
Officially, you will be woken up by 4:30am. By woken up, I mean that it is by this time that the soldiers will come to your hostel, bang the doors and order you to get out.
That said, you have to wake yourself up by 3:30am. That was me because I wasn’t going to do any makeup of any sort that early in the morning and honestly, sometimes, I didn’t even have my bath. Don’t judge me, weather was just too cold. I didn’t look too bad. See details below. 😂
If however, you have makeup plans, then you have to be up way earlier so that you can have time. You know that stuff takes time, yeah? Yes. At Wailo Camp in Bauchi where I was, the boys were woken up way earlier than the girls. I have no idea why. It might be different in other camps but like I said earlier, it’s good to prepare your mind.
By the time you are chased out of the hostel, it would be about 4:30. Morning meditation actually starts by 5:30 so you have two options. Go and pray or stand in the field in the cold. Seriously.
There are prayers held in the morning. Usually 4:30 to 5:30. Muslims are also in the mosque at this time. So by the time the morning meditation is about to start, prayers are just finishing.
Morning meditation start with the soldiers and Man O’War officers trying to ginger the cold out of your body. Trust me, it usually doesn’t work. Once they think they have done a nice enough job, morning meditation starts.
An official, usually the PRO, takes over. He gives a few words of greeting, encouragement or motivation. Our PRO was the funniest, the greatest at yabbing, so he was kinda fun. But we were usually too cold to respond. A Corp member from a platoon reads the meditation for that morning. Notices and important announcements come after that.
While all this is going on, by 6am Nigeria wakes up! This means that the Nigerian flag is going up. Now here’s a hint. Wherever you are, whatever you are doing, once Nigeria is about to wake up or sleep, just freeze. I won’t say no more.
After morning meditation, platoons split. Now I’m not sure if this is done everywhere but it was the Wailo way. A platoon goes for Man O’ War drills, another goes for sanitation, another goes for kitchen duty and all the rest head to the hall for morning lectures.
Breakfast comes next by 7:30 to 8:30 and there is a small break till about 9pm. It is during this time that you can have your bath if you didn’t do it by 3:30am when it was freezing cold. Don’t judge me. 🙈
Me after breakfast…. 😂
After the break, everybody heads back to the hall for another lecture and SAED training. For SAED, you learn a skill. I joined the hair making class. It was hair skills and nail fixing, manicures and pedicures and scrubs and stuff like that. Don’t worry, not all the classes teach vain things… 😂
All this ends by 1pm ish. Lunch is 1:30 to 2:30pm. You will be free till 4pm. During this time, I was usually at the studio or in bed. Mostly in the studio though.
By 4pm, you report to the parade ground again. Groups will be practicing their marching, the Band will be rehearsing and learning new songs, inter-platoon sport activities (football for the guys and volleyball for the girls) take place at this time. By 6pm, Nigeria sleeps. Remember, freeze. Even those playing football on the field, leave the game to stand still at this time. So just freeze.
Dinner is 6:30 to 7:30pm and you are free again till about 8:30pm. By this time, the night activities start.
Night activities are basically 3 activities. Dance, drama and comedy. Platoon by platoon. It’s a competition actually so platoons takes all the activities in turns. It would be fun or it could be really boring. Have good and lively friends in camp. They can turn every situation around. 😂
By 9:40pm or so, night activities are done. Lights-out is by 10pm. Lights-out doesn’t really mean you go to sleep but I would advice you to because you know you have to be up early.
Circle starts over again the next day and there, you have your typical day at Orientation camp!
Next post, I’ll talk about special activities and groups, if they can fit into one post.
Till then, all my love…
I hope to be done before November 20th, which is not just the day for the next batch to report to camp, but also my birthday and it might be my Call to Bar day. I will have a lot on my plate that day.
Anyway, I hope to share everything I can before the next batch of otondos Corp members get to camp. 😄
Hello again. Last post was basically introduction and we talked about registration and related stuff.
This time, it’s a bit longer and I’ll start with food.
Honestly, I can’t write about camp food. I didn’t eat it. I tried to take my bread each time they gave it but even that I didn’t keep up with. Here’s why. My first experience with camp food was Eba and egusi soup which on a normal day should be fine. But what I saw was a woman in my room who put both the eba and the soup in one plate and was eating it in the messiest way possible. That was it for me.
However, breakfast is usually bread and egg or butter with tea. I don’t think I need to explain the ‘tea’. 😂 Some mornings, they serve akara (bean cake) and pap. There was even a time they served beans and pap in the morning. And beans is my best food but I wasn’t going near that thing.
Lunch and dinner is served by 1:30 to 2:30pm and 6:30 to 7:30pm respectively. Ranging from rice to yams and all the other common food. Breakfast is by 7:30am.
Go with a good flask. I didn’t go with one, I really don’t know what I was thinking. Buying one on camp was going to cost me #500 and I wasn’t going to spend that money. So go with your own. Saves a lot of stress and it’s the only way to collect your food from the kitchen.
That’s for the kitchen business. Some of us will not eat kitchen food. We are not trying to form butty or anything like that. So for this category, your stomach and sanity is dependent on Mammy.
Mammy would have different food stalls. Find one and stick to it. Seriously. A lot of benefits come from being a known ‘customer’. For example, I picked this restaurant simply because they answered me on time. I ate everything there. I drink tea a lot and at some point I could just enter and start making my tea myself. Because I was a customer, I could go away with their cup, get free hot water, extra plantain and discounts on everything. Be a nice customer. It pays well.
Again, go with your food flask. Even if you want to buy food in Mammy, you would need a flask if you want to take the food back to your room. Unless of course you are a customer. 😂 Before I got customer status, I had to eat at Mammy all the time. There are disposable plates but they cost #50 per plate and Yours Truly wasn’t going to be spending money on anything not absolutely necessary.
Do not be deceived by anybody that tells you that you have to be boxed up to survive camp or that you have to find a mugu. Especially for you girls. I won’t tell you not to have a camp boyfriend (which is a very very silly thing to do) but give yourself some prestige. OK this is not a sermon. Let’s just say I didn’t spend so much money on food and I ate well. Again I was in Bauchi. Which is very cheap.
Apart from regular food, there are suya sellers and people doing fries. In Nigeria, fries do not mean Irish potato chips. Fries is a general name for akara, fried sweet potatoes and fried yam.
Because I was in Bauchi, I had access to Kunu (local drink made from millet basically. Contact me for a recipe 🤗). There was masa (another local dish which I really have no idea how it’s made), zobo (another local drink I love) and fura de nono, which is basically unprocessed raw milk mixed with millet. I don’t like it but I can swear by it. Nutritious to the last spoon. I just don’t like it. Those in other parts of Nigeria would get some other culture specific delicacies like Ukpa (bambara nut cake) for those in the East.
So whether you decide to eat from the kitchen or be a mammy regular, your stomach is covered.
Fruit sellers were all over the place so we could get our fruits. Drinks are more expensive in camp than they are in the real world. For example, in Wailo, a bottle of coke was #170 and a bottle of malt was #200. Enough said.
MEDICALS AND HEALTH
Once you get to camp, medical clearance comes first before other parts of registration. Once this is done, you can receive treatment at the clinic. Most of the medical personnel would be Corp members like you so be nice.
Drugs are not always available and they are given on a daily basis. So if you have to take vitamin c twice daily for 3 days, you would only be given the dose for a day. You have to come back the next day for the dose of that day. If you have to take a cough or any other syrup, you have to come 3 times a day because ain’t nobody gonna give you the whole bottle. 😂
I had a bad cold throughout my stay in camp. I was treated twice and nothing happened. I am still coughing as I write this. Also, in the final week of camp, I fell really sick. Injections and drugs by drip had me in the Clinic all day. At some point, I had to spend the night in the Clinic. But everybody was nice so it was bearable. Thanks to my constantly blocked nose, I couldn’t smell any of the normal hospital smells.
That said, if you can, go to a good pharmacy and get good drugs before you come to camp. They won’t be seized. I’m not for self medication so go to the clinic if you feel ill and when you are diagnosed, let them instruct you on how to take your drugs. You are not a doctor if you are not a doctor. Period.
Other than serious drugs, go with the normal pain killers and laxatives. If you are expecting your period and you get all the pains, please go with your usual drugs. Remember that all you wear is white on white on white. If the Crimson Tide is gonna come while you are in camp, pack good old we-cover-every-damn-thing pants. You do not want to be stuck with a thong when the tide flows. I’m so sorry but we just gotta tell it as it is.
Dettol should be the love of your life for those three weeks. Buy a big bottle. Use it all the time. Keep it safe because it can be stolen. My small bottle was. I almost cried. Few days after that, I got urinary tract infection. That thing is not funny. Put dettol in your water right after you plead the Blood of Jesus. Very necessary and important.
If things get to bad, you might have to spend a night in the Clinic. Ours had mosquito nets and pillows but I had to come with my blanket.
I think I should just end by saying Cleanliness is next to Godliness. Try to be as neat as possible. Which leads us to Laundry.
LAUNDRY AND STICHES
In light of the fact that you would be wearing a lot of white, I don’t need to say how often you would be needing to wash.
I did all my washing myself and I went with my clothes line and pegs so life was chilled.
However, there are laundry guys who would do your laundry for a fee. If you decide to do your laundry yourself, I’ll advice you go with your own line. Just to avoid stories that touch.
These laundry guys can also do ironing for you. Lemme just add here that I never ironed my clothes in camp and I didn’t do so badly. Let’s just say it does not affect your popularity. 🤓
Everything you are given in terms of clothes would have need of some adjustment unless you are very lucky. There are tailors who would do a very poor and sloppy job of adjusting your khaki. The khaki material given at camp is not so good. First of all, get ready to spend money adjusting because it would probably be to big for you. The price is about 1500 but I paid 800. 😇
Go to camp with your needle and thread. You will probably need it. I did. My trousers kept having small tears that I needed to stitch together.
If your cap doesn’t fit, these tailors can make a new one from the old one. Nothing is fixed, learn to negotiate unless of course, you have money to spend.
I think that’s that on food, health and laundry. Of course, there’s more to share and I would do just that in future posts.
Till then, all my love,
I owe y’all a very big apology. I got to camp and I just couldn’t take enough pictures. I am so sorry for depriving you guys of some wonderful scenes. 😖🙏
Helloooo! I just got back from orientation camp in Wailo, Bauchi State where I was basically phoneless. Network was so bad, I couldn’t even check my mails for 3 weeks! But I’m out now 💃💃💃Who missed me? I missed you too.
I went for NYSC immediately because I felt that if I allowed myself to rest too much after my bar finals, I would be too soft to survive camp. I was right.
I’m sharing these tips from my experience in Bauchi, some stuff might differ in other camps but it is basically the same thing. It’s a long one, hang in there because the information could be useful 🤗. I’m breaking all my gist into posts so fear not!
Let’s start with you just arriving camp. You will be searched by some soldiers. There is nothing like male or female. Anybody can search anybody. The searching is not that deep though but contraband will be siezed.
Contraband includes knives, any fire starter, lighters amongst other things. Some other things won’t be seized but you can’t wear them out. For example, mufty and coloured wear. This almost got me decamped but that’s talk for another day.
Once you have been searched, you will enter the gate and start registration. The officials at the gate might not remember so ask for your undertaking form. Be prepared to photocopy if they have run out of forms. They will.
You will then be given your hostel. Please if comfort means anything whatsoever to you, then report to camp on the first day and report early. I got to camp on the second day and I got one of the dormitory-like hostels which was like a tin of sardines. But I really don’t care for comfort when I know it’s just for 3 weeks.
Once you are done with hostel registration, drop your stuff ( please lock everything lockable) and start the main process of registration. You would need the following;
Passport photographs. Most people will say you need hundreds. Not true. I went with 24 copies and let’s just say I didn’t use up to 1/3 of that. But please the motto is be prepared. So go with plenty passport photographs. White background preferably, but red is also accepted.
Your certificate or statement of result. Original and copies. Again, from all I got, I made about 10 copies I didn’t use up to 5.
Your call up letter and green slip. Very important documents. Call-up letter is the one with your posting while the green slip is the one with your details and measurements.
Your school ID card. Original and photocopies. For law school graduates they may ask to see your NLS card. Just be nice and show them. 😂
For medical and pharmacy students, you would need to show that you have been properly inducted. I don’t know what they give you guys but bring it to camp. They want to make sure you are certified.
Before all this, you would have gone to the clinic to do some sort of medical clearance. You must present the original copy of your certificate of good health from a government hospital. This includes the clinic in any government institution. I used a certificate from the Law School clinic in Abuja.
Once you are done with registration, you would be given a state code. The last number of your state code determines your platoon. I was BA/18B/3353 so I was in platoon 3. The code will be on a tag of some sort which you must always wear. It’s like your ID card for the duration of camp.
Next stop is the almighty meal ticket. It is a powerful card, this meal ticket. Not because I love food but because it is also the allawee ticket. You need it to collect all your small change on camp. Don’t lose it!
By your state code and platoon, you would have to open an account with a bank for your allowances aka allawee. I was lucky to get Access Bank where I already have an account so no stress there. It pays to know your BVN people, you will need it.
Once you are done with the bank, basically, you are done with registration. At this point you should not have spent a dime. Unless your bank requires an opening fee of #1000 which will be paid into your account. If however you didn’t come prepared to camp, you would have spent a lot on photocopy and passports and stuff.
After registration, head to your platoon spot where you would get your 7/7 after filling up a biodata form and submitting a copy of all your documents. So these are the things you are entitled to get;
7/7 which includes your khaki jacket and trousers, NYSC cap, crested vests, jungle boots, belt and two pairs of white socks with two green lines at the top
Two white shirts. Which are of poor quality. Mine expanded each time I washed them.
Two white shorts. If you are anything like me, the shorts fit well.
A pair of white shoes which will probably not be your size. I went with one pair and then I did like 3 swaps before I got one my size.
When you register online, you will provide details of your measurements and stuff like that. Do not be deceived. None of that will be used. For all the clothing you would receive, go with extras, at least to use until you find someone to swap with. I did and it saved my life. Go with extra pairs of socks too. Doesn’t have to be the one with green lines. When you want to buy your white shoe, buy the rubber ones. They are real easy to clean and they are pretty. Plus they are practical. They cost just about #500. Unless you have you too much money… 😂
Your uniform for everything is white on white on white. Enough said.
But just in case that really wasn’t enough, go with extras. This is all you would wear morning and night.
You would be able to buy all these things on camp but you don’t want to. Which brings us to Mammy. There is a camp market on every camp and it’s usually called Mammy. They have everything. Literally. Things are expensive there so get what you can before coming to camp. I’ll say more on Mammy later.
So now, you have registered and you have gotten your kit. You are basically good to go.
Next posts will talk about camp activities and clubs. And food 😆!
Hello everyone. It’s night here in Nigeria and as I write this, I’m in a night bus on my way to Jos, in Plateau state. From there, I will move to Bauchi where I have been posted for my compulsory year of serving my country.
This service thing. It’s called NYSC for National Youth Service Corps. It’s compulsory if you are below the age of 30 and you have plans to work in Nigeria at any time.
So this is how it works. You pick 4 states from a couple of states made available to you. You get sent to one, to serve your country in some capacity. I read law so I will probably be sent to a law firm or a charity organization where I can use my legal and advocacy skills. Some get sent to schools or hospitals. It all depends.
Anyway, what this means for me basically is that I am all grown. It’s not like I didn’t know I was all grown but you see, I might go for service and never return to my father’s house. I might get a job from there or get married. Basically, it’s time to start fending for myself.
Also, I’m not serving in a near-by state. Bauchi is like a 10-hour journey from where I live in Abia state. It’s in the north and I don’t speak a word of Hausa which is the major language there. In this shaky times, a young Christian Igbo woman in Bauchi…. Let’s just say that most of my peeps are uncomfortable with it.
My parents are the best and they brought me to the park by 6pm. They hung around till about 9:20pm when the bus arrived and we moved. My father seems not to like people leaving his house. He tries to hide it but you can just feel him going all emotional. Especially when it’s a big move. Like this one. To Bauchi.
Adulthood is scary. Why was I so eager to grow up? It’s time to start being me and being really responsible for all my actions. Like all by myself. Not like my parents are going to just abandon me ooh. They are nice.
Life happens people. Children grow up and leave the house. That’s why my aim in life is not to be mother to my 4 boys and 1 daughter (maybe? 😂). There is so much more out there.
Well, Hello Service! I look forward to having a great time in camp (there is an orientation camp for 3 weeks) and meeting great people. I have never been to Bauchi, so it’s one more state down. About 12 more to go.
Hello Adulthood. I can’t believe I was hungry for you! 😂 Anyway, it’s good to meet you. I hope I get to be a really great adult.
Sleep tight ( If it’s dark in your part of the world too) or have a great day!
We have not even left Abia state and the man sitting next to me is already falling asleep on me. Like, what does one do in this situation please? 🙄
I am usually your typical fraidy cat. I am spooked easily and I am scared of so many things. It’s all very strange because I was one of the boldest and most outspoken children ever. Like, UNAFRAID!
I would say and do whatever without fear but I entered adulthood without that boldness. I was never afraid of the dark and I was always willing to be the first to try. Again, UNAFRAID!
Then I grew up.
I became scared of almost everything. I jump if a spider stares hard at me and I would rather fall sick and be put on drip than have to face a dog. Or a cow. I thought being an adult was supposed to make things better and easier.
But not necessarily.
And I worry about so many things. I pray about them but I worry still.
When we grow up, things may get even worse. Children are usually so fearless because they are so trusting. You see, they don’t want to hurt you so they don’t see any reason why you would want to hurt them. They trust you.
But we can’t do that. As an adult, I’ve been hurt quite a number of times so I trust nobody. I might even be in love with you and I will still be a bit suspicious of you.
Then I have more responsibilities and duties and more fears and worries seem to reveal themselves with each birthday. And of course, right now I’m talking about fears more serious than the fear of spiders. Will I be successful in this life? Would I pass my exams? Would I marry the right person? Would I be a blessing to my family?
But perfect love casts out fear and I am learning everyday to trust someone who will never ever hurt me. So you see, even when I don’t trust what I see in front of me, I am learning not to be afraid of it because The One I trust won’t let me be harmed.
Moreover He has not given me the Spirit of fear, but of love and of a sound mind. So every morning, I wake up and face my fears and I say
I am loved of The Lord.
I have a sound mind.
I am not a slave to my fears.
I am bold because my Father has made me so.
Fear has no hold on me.
I am unafraid because The Lord protects me.
The Lord is my keeper.
My father has given me everything that pertains to life and godliness.
God is perfecting everything that concerns me.
And seriously, by the time I’m done I feel a bit relieved. Cast your cares upon Jesus people, and then even if you walk through the valley of the shadow of death, you will fear no evil. Because you will know, His rod and staff will be there to comfort you. When you place it in God’s hands, leave it there! Stop fretting.
I’m so sorry I didn’t start by introducing myself last time. My name is Eniola, Kachiside Jegede. No, I’m not Igbo, both of my parents are Yorubas from Oyo and Osun state. I am from Osun state.
However, I was born in Enugu state. My parents lived there at the time and I was supposed to be a baby boy. But nah, I came out a girl. I don’t know if my parents were distraught or sad but apparently, my neighbour in consoling my mother had told her not to worry because that was the way God had written out her life. So there, she called me Kachiside. Not Kachi side ooh. It’s pronounced ka-chi-si-day. I’m sorry I kinda suck at the whole transcription thing. So yeah, that’s why I have an Igbo name. It means The Way God Wrote It. Or something like that.
I went to school majorly in the East and West but when it was University time, I headed North. And my father warned me to go and face my books alone. I didn’t know it at the time, but that was his way of saying ‘do not come home with a Northern boyfriend’. He became more vocal about it but at the time also, he didn’t need to. I was determined to not have anything to do with them Hausa boys. Until Dauda.
I didn’t want to like Dauda but seriously, if you meet this guy, you will know how hard that is. He was funny. He was fine. He was intelligent. He read books. In this age of mobile brats, a boy who reads books is a major attraction. So yeah, that’s how a Yoruba girl with another Igbo name fell for one Hausa boy. If I had known, I would have stayed away.
Back to my gist.
So after leaving the party, I went straight to bed. Like I said, I am not a morning person and I like to sleep in perfect sleep circles. I’m weird like that. But guess who I saw first thing the next morning? Apart from my girls of course. Exactly. Dauda. I was half dressed and I was half way through what I would call a terrible makeup session when there was a knock at the door. It was our Dauda.
And then he comes into the room with water for us, looks at me and says, ‘you are beautiful’. I HATE GUYS WHO DO THAT! What are you trying to accomplish? I didn’t blush. This monkey was obviously a player monkey and I wasn’t even going to fall for trash like that.
I remember the first time I saw Dauda. It was at a friend’s traditional wedding. I was a bridesmaid and he was a groomsman. We didn’t know each other but at some point when we were all out dancing with the couple, our eyes met. I was not there to look for boyfriend. Let’s forget the fact that all the grooms men were either doctors, pharmacists or in some medical related field and that, my dear people is my forte. But no, I was here to rejoice with Zainab, do my bridesmaid duties and go back to my house. Plus, there was no way my father would let me marry a guy from Plateau state. Our family line was supposed to remain pure Yoruba. In fact, if he could be from either Osun or Oyo state, better. My mom is from Oyo and my dad is from Osun.
However, it looks like Dauda had something else in mind. He told me later that he had been watching me from the first time he saw me and had been thinking to himself why I was frowning. But honestly, I didn’t notice him. He was just one of the groomsmen and I didn’t think we would have to be in close quarters at any time.
After the traditional wedding, the wedding party was to go to a hotel. We were to be lodged there for the night, have some kind of mixed bachelor’s night. And yeah, Dauda was in charge of it. Along with two other Hausa girls. One, Aisha, I knew and the other, Zahra, I didn’t. In fact I thought she was Dauda’s girlfriend. They seemed all chummy chummy that night.
I know, you thought I said I wasn’t interested? I wasn’t. But I hate people confusing me and that is what this uncle Dauda was doing. You see, us girls, we can latch onto anything if we want to.
So you see, when during the general introductions, Dauda came to me and said, ‘Yowa! I’ve been wanting to know your name all night’ you can’t blame me if my mind went a little astray. But seeing him with Zahra put it back in perspective for me.
How did that night even end? It turned out that most of us were not even party types. Before we could blink, we were breaking off in groups and gisting and we were just dulling the DJ. It was at this point that I, Eniola Kachiside Jegede, decided that I had had enough. I had to wake up early and I am not a morning person.
Next time, I will explain my weird name and all this back story.