Thursday, 22 November 2018

Healthy Tips on how to take care of the body

After my ND programme in mapoly, I have
always wished not to go back to lagos
because of the house chores and everything
#lol . Yes, I mean house chores. I am the last
born of the family. And you know what it
means to be the last born of the family. I’m
from a family of four. My dad, my mum, my
sister and I. My sister is schooling at (TASUED)
and she is already in her final year. And I in
the other hand had just finished my ND in
I have tried everything in my best to convince
my mum on not coming to lagos for my IT,
though she declined initially but later agreed
after the intervention of my dad.
I.T job hunting outside lagos started
immediately after I’ve submitted my project.
I started trying banks in abeokuta but they
were all asking for original I.T letters
containing G.P which was not ready as at that
time, the only available I.T letter was “to
whom it may concern”. My rent has expired
and I don’t want to pay another one without
getting a good job. No friends around to chill
with as they have all traveled to hunt for job.
I started looking like an irresponsible guy to
myself. I was encountering a lot of hardship
in abeokuta as there was no more foodstuffs
at home, equal to no money in the bank, all I
do is to play NAIRABET. sometimes I’d win
and sometimes I would shor.
One day, I called one of my uncles (uncle
richard) who works in Nestle at agbara to
know if there is vacancy for S.L.T students for
Me: hello sir
Uncle richard: hello aburo, longest time. How
is studies
Me: fine sir. I actually call you to tell you that
I’ve just finished my ND programme
Uncle richard: that’s good, so you should be
planning on how to go for your HND.
Me: yes sir. What I actually called you for is to
ask you if there would be a chance for me at
nestle to do my I.T.
Uncle richard: oh! Which course did you
Me: S.L.T sir
Uncle richard: good! Your mates have been
submitting their letters for the past one
month and it would close on wednesday.
Me: tomorrow is wednesday sir
Uncle richard: oh! That means it’d close
Me: ah! How am I going to do it now?
Uncle richard: let’s do it this way, if you can
make it down to agbara before 11:00pm
tomorrow it’d really be good.
Me: I’d try my best sir
Uncle richard: that would be better, and
prepare to sleep over at agbara because the
exam would hold on thursday or before
weekend sha.
Me: okay sir.
We discussed other issues before he hanged
Immediately after the call, I checked my time
and it was 4pm in the evening. I started making
plans on how to travel to agbara very early the
following morning. I boarded a bike from oluwo
(my house) down to panseke to make
photocopies of my credentials and to withdraw
the last 1thousand naira in my account for
transport via a.t.m. I got back home around
6:00pm and thank God there was light. I quickly
ironed a blue shirt that I have starched in the
weekend but nowhere to wear it to with a
versace black trouser. I polished my shoes and I
kept my credentials in a separate file that I’m
carrying. Before I could finish the preparation,
it was already late and was so tired to cook. I
bought bread and ate it with tea for the night
so that I could sleep early and wake early the
following morning to embark on the journey. I
prayed after the food and laid to sleep at
around 10:00pm. As I was just about to enter
(gear1) of my sleep, my phone rang. I initially
wanted to ignore but later decided to respond
to it. it was uncle richard again. I was surprised
and started wondering why he could be calling.
#Abi the work no go fit possible again?
Uncle richard: hello aburo
Me: hello sir
Uncle richard: hope you have prepared for
Me: yes sir.
Uncle Richard: Good, I wanted to tell you that
you should try and come with two passports
Me: (chai), okay sir.
Uncle richard: Don’t forget o, It is very
Me: okay sir
Uncle richard: alright, till tomorrow
Me: bye sir
Chai! How I go take see passport now? Me wey
no con get passport for house. Wetyn dem
want take my passport do sef?. I was so
stranded and restless in the room Thinking of
what I could do. I thought of what to do for a
while before I remembered I’m having 4 exams
passes in the house which has one passport
photographs each. I quickly rushed to my main
file and removed pin from all the exams passes
and I kept them in the file that I’m taking to
I laid back to sleep immediately after the call
and started wishing I wake up early….
I woke up at around 5:00am the following
morning, I prayed for 10minutes before I
started preparations proper. I packed few
clothes inside my (Hp) bag, with my
credentials and passports all in a file before
putting it in the bag. I quickly cleaned up the
room, took water to the bathroom for a
shower and in no time, I was set to dress up.
I was dressed in a blue (EGE DUN) shirt and a
versarce black trouser on a paul smith shoe
(black). I was looking very handsome that I
could not but admire myself at intervals. I got
to oluwo police post at around 5:40am and it
took me an additional 10mins before I could
get a bike to brewery. I got to brewery at
6:00am on the dot and thanks to God, I met a
car going to sango that it’s passenger remains
just one person at the front seat.
I am not a fan of front seat, as in, I hate it
with passion because of the inconveniences
from the driver’s side as he would be using
the gear and also of sharing a single seat
meant for just one person with someone
As I got to the front seat where I should be
sitting, though, it was still dark but with the
help of the inner light of the car, I could still
managed to see a beautiful diva in a we’ll
slimfitted gown revealing her fresh cleavages.
I became so excited to seat at the front seat
as if it was my hobby. I obeyed every
instructions she gives as I was sitting down
even when I was not pleased with them and
could go to any length to rant on anybody
who tries it with me on a good day.
Instructions like ” don’t inconvenient me here
o” , “shift a little” e.t.c. I was just responding
positively with smiles on my face.
The driver entered and the journey began. As
we were going, my brain started calculating
how I would make the approach very polite
to the girl. The car was almost at itori and I
have not gathered enough liver to speak with
the girl but was just stealing glances of her.
The first method that came to my head was
method C25003 but because I don’t want
other passengers to interfere which they may
eventually turns into an interactive talk and
the girl might not even contribute sef, I just
changed my plan to method B25004. All these
were going in me as I was just stealing
glances on the girl
Me: you have made this car a wonderful place
to be (with enthusiasm)
She: how?
Me: your perfume is the only air freshener that
is keeping us alive in this car and you have also
coupled it with a nice look
She: (smile), you are funny. Thank you tho
Me: seriously, as I was just about entering the
car, I thought I have finally met rihanna in a
public car because you looks more of her. Or
are you related with her?
She: related with who?
Me: rihanna of course
She: (laughs out loud) why are you flattering
Me: flatter you ke, it’s a fact, even fathimoh
knows it’s a fact. Well, I am ayoola by name but
my very good friends call me Saint_haywhy. I
would prefer calling you angel till I know your
SHE: angel? Well, my name is not angel, I’m
Me: wao! What a lovely name. Mo for o (laughs)
She: thank you, you’ve got a lovely name too
just that all the ayo that I have met are always
Me: which means I’m stubborn too?
She: I don’t know sha but I guess you would be
Me: (smiles) so where are you going this time?
Is it not too early for a pretty damsel like you to
go out?
She: my sister would be wedding this weekend
and I’m going to be besting her so we’re going
to the market today to buy some stuffs so I just
have to get there early
Me: wao! Your sister have gotten a wonderful
best lady for her day. My warmth wishes to her.
She: thanks
Me: oh! You are most welcome, I would still love
to meet this beautiful face once again.
She: really?. Well, if God says so
Me: sure, but may I have your telephone
She: no, give me yours let me flash you
Me: but why?
She: nothing, I don’t know it offhand. It’s a new
Me: okay my number is 08145180829
She: (Dialling) is it ringing?
Me: sure it is
I started asking her about her studies and that
was how I knew she was in ND2 accountancy in
MAPOLY. We discussed about other few things
like relationship, family e.t.c before we got to
The car got to sango at around 7:15am. I
dropped at under bridge with two other
passengers but she didn’t drop as she was still
going to ijaiye.
I was just imagining how beautiful tunmise is as
the car zoomed off to continue it’s journey to
lagos. I was very happy that atleast I was still
able to get her digits and I’ve created a very
good first impression. I trekked down to atan
bus stop and I was so lucky that it only remains
a passenger for the bus to start it’s journey. I
entered and sat down at the back seat next to
front seat without even asking of how much the
fare was. I was sitting next to a woman carrying
a medium basket on her laps. I checked her out
and I could figured out that she was probably
going to atan market. I didn’t have anything to
discuss with an old market woman so I just
plugged in my headset and started listening to
musics till we got to atan. It took the bus more
than 30mins to get to atan because it’s a very
old bus. It was just going slowly as if it was
being paid to do so. Well, we got to atan and
the driver started collecting money from the
front. I paid #100 to atan from sango.
it was already 8:00am before we got to atan. I
went straight to agbara motor park and I found
out that the bus on turn was still empty. “Chai!,
che na here devil want take catch me?” I
entered the bus and started praying that
passengers should come on time. I sat down for
10mins and there was no passenger yet. I
began to feel hungry and I started looking
around like “someone wey miss road” if I could
get something to eat. I observed for 5mins
before I saw a gala seller and a soft drink seller
through the side mirror coming from behind
the bus that I was sitting. I stopped them and I
bought 2galas with 1lacasera. I was munching
my gala and was sending the signal into the
tommy with my chilled lacassera. Still the only
person in the bus and it was becoming boring
already. I thought of what to do for a while
because I was tired of listening to music. then it
came to my mind that I should check tunmise’s
number if it’s on whatsapp.
I quickly saved the number and went straight to
whatsapp to check her under contact. Wao!
Tunmise was online on whatsapp. I went
straight to check her display picture. She was
looking so beautiful in a blue alarchi trousers
on a yellow slimfitted polo ralph. Chai! Dis geh
fine o. I went straight to check out her status
and it was encouraging “I would soon get over
you #sad ”. I was like what could be the meaning
of the status, “abi she just experienced an
heartbreak just like me?” # lol . I decided to
appear as a comforter.
I quickly went straight to change my picture to
where I was looking very handsome than the
present one before I messaged her. She replied
my message almost immediately I messaged
her which could mean two things. Either she is a
boring type or I’m just the only friend online for
her as at the moment. We started chatting
while i introduced myself as the stubborn
ayoola that kept her company in the car from
abeokuta about an hour ago. I also asked if she
has gotten to lagos e.t.c.
I was so carried away by the chat that I didn’t
know when the bus was full. I just heard the
driver kicking while we got going. From the back
where I was seated, I sighted a cool pretty girl
right beside the driver which was even prettier
than tunmise. “Chai, na so fine girls they travel
for morning?”. I wished to speak with her but
there was no way to do that due to distance
factor so I just locked up, plugged in my
headset, listening to music and chatting with
tunmise at the same time.
We got to agbara in 30mins after. Though
agbara is not far from atan but the bad road
could make an amateur driver spend 2hours on
the road. As we got to agbara, the driver
announced that he would be taking the
industrial estate to Garage. I started shouting
from the back that I would be dropping at
NESTLE. When the driver got to my bus-stop he
stopped and asked me to come down. As I
dropped and was still trying to pay for the
transport, I noticed that someone was also
dropping from the front but I was like “kilo kan
mi”. I paid the driver and noticed my pretty girl
has come down, I quickly paid so that I could
walk faster to meet her but before I could
package myself she has stopped a bike and off
she zoomed. Yeepa! “Moti gor rami”. #lol. Don’t
call me ashewo o… Blame it on OYIN…

My aunt and my mother are still in the euphoria of the
great thing God did for us, even three days after the
dream I had. Now I have begun to see that some
advantages can be in being disabled. Well, I still don’t
fully agree to it anyway. But that woman I see in the
dream calling my name, I have never seen her in real
life before. Who can she be? I wonder.
Rachael soon began to pester my mother to return to
my father. She says that divorce is not a good Christian
practice. It seems as if she wants me to ‘hear’ what
they are saying so she talks to my mother in sign
“Hannah, Hannah, Hannah, how many times did I call
“Twice Rachael,” my mummy answers.
“Not twice, three times,” she signals.
“Yes, three times,” my mummy answers.
“You have to return to your husband right now, please.”
“I can’t!” she replies. “John is selfish! All he wants is
other people’s inconveniences to please himself. He
keeps beating me and my daughter up. Before he kills
us we have to stay away from him. Sister, tell us if you
are tired of accomodating us and we will just leave
here for another place.”
“Ahn! Ahn! Why are you talking like this, Hannah? Did I
complain that I am tired? Infact my sister, you have
disappointed me for saying such a thing,” she frowns.
“I am very sorry my sister, it is just that I am confused
about the whole thing,” my mother sobs. A tear rolled
down my left cheek. The worry was too much
conspicuous on her face.
I wish never to return to my father. I don’t know why
Rachael is raising that forgone issue now. Why can’t
she just let us be? At least it is not every woman that
must stay in her husband’s wife. She is an example,
since she has been living alone since her husband’s
I come into thw issue:
“Aunty Rachael, daddy doesn’t want us anymore, don’t
you understand? He used his own hands to throw our
loads out of the house. Even if we beg him, he won’t
agree for us to return,” I say. I wait for her to say
something. Her throat is dancing to the gulp of the
water passing through it. She is drinking water in a
glass cup. Aunty bangs the tumbler against the table
and says, “Rose, it’s not true, your daddy will accept
you, at least you know that it is not possible to chase a
bad child away for a tiger to tear apart. Just humbly go
to him and kneel down before him, then he will take
you back.”
“Okay, okay, we will do that if you will go with us
Rachael,” my mother says.
“That’s not a big deal, Hannah, I will come with you
anytime you are ready. Can we go now?” she says.
I squeeze up my face. The thought of returning to my
father is like returning to earth after making it to
heaven. My world has changed so much within the few
days I am with my aunt. She is the kindest person in the
“Okay, we shall go tomorrow,” my mother promised.
“Accepted by me,” Rachael says.
“Not accepted by me,” I barge in stubbornly. Rachael
smiles and says, “Majority carries the vote. We are
going right there tomorrow.” She comes around me and
kisses my forehead. Then she lowers her right ear to
my chest to feel the thumps of my heart.
“Never worry Rose, all is well. Your father will treat
you well henceforth,” she says, then she folds me up in
her hands.
My mother’s left hand clutched into a fist which she had
rested her chin upon. Her face looked more depressed
than mine. When I look into her face she seems
ageing. I rush to her.
“Mother, don’t think too much, you are ageing rapidly,” I
“Ageing?” she manages to ask in smiles. “I am not
ageing my daughter.”
“Well…if you say so…anyway, I am here to tell you that
all is well, a message from Aunty Rachael.”
“Okay o, jolly little daughter, I have heard you,” says
mother. A knock rocked the door.
“Yes, come in, who is there?” my aunty must have
shouted, going by the movement of her mouth. The
door got opened gently and someone ambled in.
Toyosi!!! It is my stepmother stepping in as if to murder
us. My heart jumped off my body!
My body shakes as I set my eyes on her. What can she
be here for? Even my mother isn’t asking her anything.
Suddenly, her stern face drops and she seems sober.
“G–good day,” she greets us. I have read her lips to
get what she says.
“What do you want?” my aunt challenges her. She didn’t
invite her in.
“I–I come to apologize,” she must have said, going by
the gesture she makes.
My aunty didn’t take her serious at first, but eventually,
she did.
Toyosi tells us that she has regretted her actions. She
says that she wants us back in the house. When my
mummy tells her that it won’t be possible, she began to
beg her.
My mummy tells me the whole story in detail;
according to her, John is getting worried over not
having anybody to take care of Bode and himself. He
visits Toyosi in her matrimonial home often until she
advised him to take back his wife and children.
“Don’t worry, John will take a very good care of you and
your daughter,” mummy says, mimicking in sign
language how Toyosi has said it.
“So, after throwing our loads out that man still have the
gut to beg us to return, huh!” I say angrily.
“Hey, Rose, he’s your daddy, so you have no right to call
him that man!” Rachael says. “By the way, this is just a
kind of an answer to our prayers. Didn’t I tell you
yesterday that if you go there tomorrow to beg him, he
will listen to you?”
“Heard,” I gesticulate. “What about that wicked wh’ore,
did she apologize to you before she leaves? Remember
she was bragging few days back that she will do
something terrible to us.”
“She did apologize,” my mother says.
“Remember I say she will come and do that in one of
our prayers,” Rachael says. She always love bringing
God, church, bible and prayers into every little matter. I
love her for that anyway.
“Younger sister, you are a prophetess,” my mummy
makes fun of her and pushes her head slightly.
“That’s a gift from above sister,” Rachael says. “Even
before my husband died, I foretold his death; it came as
a vision, but my husband didn’t pay attention.” Rachael’s
face develops into a grotesque. Remembering her
husband has remained her ugliest moments; a cross to
My mother turns to me and says, “Rose, infact Toyosi
promised to come and spend this weekend with us so
that she can have time to have fun with you.”
“With me? Why?” I say in an unforgiven manner.
“Rose, let her come, there is no big deal about that.
Afterall we have prayed to have peace with everyone
and our prayer is being answered right now,” mother
says. “Rose, she even said that you will teach her the
sign language when she comes.”
My aunt makes her mouth into something for a while.
She must have coughed, going by the way the lips are
set. Seems she doesn’t approve of the idea that I teach
her sign language.
My mother looks at her face for a while. A sparkle of
shock is on her face. It is as if the cough is a
significance of something I don’t know.
“First thing tomorrow morning, Rachael, I’m off to my
husband’s house,” mummy says eventually, shutting her
eyes, sobbing.
I can’t sleep at night. I just keep rolling around on my
fat bed. My eyes are clear. My mind flashes back to past
events; those harassments from my father. I weep. I
hope it won’t continue.
My dream is the sweetest ever; I ride on a horse with
my father. I speak with him verbally, Bode sitting with
my mummy on the other white horse. A long horsetail
is in my grip. I feel like a queen.
I come off the horse’s back and fall to the ground.
“What the hell!” I have just rolled off my fat bed to the
ground. Dream is silly indeed.
Contrary to my thought, father welcomes us heartily.
He embraces and kisses my mummy in the presence of
Toyosi who is smiling.
“Husband and wife, open the door and kiss,” Toyosi
says and laughs.
“Go and meet your husband too, Toyosi,” my father
When my mummy tells me all these, I doubt it.
“Are you sure Toyosi is happy with us now?” I ask her.
“Didn’t you see it with your eyes yesterday?” mummy
replies me.
“But this is strange and so sudden, how come?”
“That’s the miracle of God,” says mummy. “Don’t you
know that when the way of a person pleases God he
will make his enemies to be at peace with him?”
But Toyosi didn’t tell us the reason why she had to
change her mind towards us suddenly like that. Bode
hasn’t changed a bit, yet his mother did warn him not to
continue misbehaving towards us.
It is holiday period, so I spend all my time at home
enjoying myself. Daddy isn’t bothering me anymore.
Infact he is a changed man too. I think he is behaving
according to Toyosi’s dictate. She has told him to be
kind to us because we are his legitimate family and not
Mummy shares the testimony in her church of what God
has done to her; how God has changed her husband’s
heart. My church is a large one. I didn’t even know my
mum is up there on the podium sharing her testimony
until I begin to see the interpretation of her testimony
in sign language; how would I have known she is up
there when the church has relegated we, the special
ones so called, to the back of the Church? I have asked
our ‘deaf and dumb’ interpreter a question once, during
question and answer session after our Sunday school.
“The topic today is Show Love Without Discrimination,
ma, but why don’t I see the love in our church here?” I
“What do you mean?” she asks me.
“According to the Bible Reading, it is stated that it is
wrong to tell one person sit here while you tell another
person come over to this high seat. But why is it that
we deaf and dumb in this church have to sit far away
from the stage like this?”
The interpreter smiles. She must have been thinking of
what to reply.
“Hmm…” she smiles. “Rose, it is to avoid distraction,
that’s why? If we do our service close to them, they
will be distracted with the movements of our hands.”
“I disagree!” I barge in. “Why are we not also
distracted with the movement of their mouths? We
don’t hear the sound of their mouths, our hand
movements don’t produce any sound too, we only get
to see each other, that’s all. It’s fifty-fifty!”
She becomes mute. But that was not all. I still have
more to say in rage:
“Why can’t the preacher even be preaching in sign
language and someone should be interpreting to them
in voice language? This is also discrimination!”
Everyone laughed that day in the deaf and dumb class
and I was rechristened ‘Miss Discrimination’.
Toyosi came one weekend. She wanted me to begin
teaching her sign language. I became glad and began to
teach her with immediate effect. She would write
whatever she needed to know on paper and I would
make effort to demonstrate it to her in sign language.
My father John hadn’t changed for good. I keep
wondering why one’s biological father could deny one
in such manner. If he didn’t want me why then did he
get my mother impregnated and then made me come
to existence? He should have aborted my pregnancy
while I was in the womb, I thought.
“Mother, why is this man still like before?” I asked my
“He will change,” mother replied. “Let’s just keep
trusting God and praying to him to touch the heart of
your father. The Lord who touched the heart of Bode’s
mother will surely touch his heart too,” she said.
“Amen,” I replied.
Toyosi came around at another weekend. She was
furious when she saw Bode in the act of bully. If not for
the fact that I have permanently jettisoned the act of
revenge, I would have torn him apart. Toyosi came in
time, just when Bode gave my nape a hard slap, having
a leaf between his lips to mock me. I had turned my
neck upon my knee, gnashing my teeth. The way Bode
behaved really depicted the fact that he wasn’t a
b-----d—I mean to say that he was my father’s child
indeed, because that way exactly must have been my
father’s way of life at his childhood too—wicked ways.
I could read Toyosi’s lips. She was screaming at her
son. She rushed towards him and caught him by the left
arm. The rest was a story—she beat him black and blue.
“Sorry young girl,” she said to me in sign language.
“Thank you,” I replied her, raising my face again.
Toyosi wrote a note. She wanted me to teach her how
to spell her name ‘Toyosi’ in sign language. If she had
learnt the alphabets very well, she would have been
able to do that easily.
I demonstrated the spelling of her name in sign
language. She was glad. She opened her bag and gave
me some confectioneries she had bought. She had also
bought some fried rice in an eatery. She gave me a
bottle of orange juice. I gulped it down without care. It
wasn’t the first time I would be collecting gifts from
Toyosi watched as I gulped the juice. She began to
caress my hair. She spoke to me in the little sign
language she had read. Then, she wrote another note,
asking me to spell my own name for her in sign
language too.
“My name is very simple…,” I said. There was a knock
at the door.
Toyosi hasted to open the door for the knocker.
Rachael my aunty came in. The look on her face was
rather outlandish. I wonder what had happened to her.
“Welcome ma,” I said.
“Thank you Rose,” she replied faintly. She saw the juice
half-drunken on the table and frowned.
Toyosi went before her and genuflected for her to pay
her some respect.
“Stand up my wife,” she helped to raise her up. “Where
is my sister?” Rachael asked me in sign language.
“My mummy has gone to the market,” I replied.
“Your father, what about him?”
“He’s gone to work,” I replied.
“Does he work every day?”
“Yes, except on Sundays,” I replied.
“Okay, I’ll wait for your mummy anyway,” she said.
“She’ll soon be back,” I said.
Toyosi was just beaming at us. She didn’t understand
much of what we were communicating since she
wasn’t vast in sign language yet. She seemed to be
uncomfortable with my aunt’s presence, perhaps
because of the halt to the sign language I was teaching
her. I could see her speaking to my aunt. She must be
bidding her goodbye, going by the way she was rising
up, her shiny cerise bag hung to her left shoulder. She
had a vignette on her neck which was the spot on her
body that had become a cynosure of my aunt’s eyes
since she came in.
Just when she was up, Bode rushed in again and gave
me a bite on my right shoulder. Toyosi swiftly grabbed
him before he could escape and beat him silly. Bode
wept bitterly. The noise of his cry was surely ear-
splitting, going by the manner some grotesque had
formed around the faces of the two women—Toyosi
and my aunt. Toyosi twisted his arm and pinched him.
The story of his face was all about tears for the space
of ten minutes after, even when her mother had left. He
was insulting me, but since I couldn’t hear him, I wasn’t
affected a bit. To make me affected, Bode poked the
leaf into her mouth again. I wasn’t bothered this time
As soon as Toyosi left the house, Rachael swiftly drew
close to me.
“Rose, who drank that juice halfway?” she asked in a
critical manner.
“Me,” I said.
“You?” she frowned. “Have I not told you that you
shouldn’t collect anything from her anymore?”
“Ahn ahn, aunty, why? Why don’t you want me…?”
“Hey! Rose! You are very stubborn. The last time you
came to my house, remember I told you that you
shouldn’t trust someone so much. Why are you so much
trusting that Toyosi can’t harm you? I’m saying it again,
don’t take anything from Toyosi. I mean that woman
should not be trusted too soon!”
I bowed my head in cogitation. Whom do I follow, my
mother or my aunt. My mother was the one who asked
me to be free with Toyosi because it is only through
her that we can actually get the favour of my dad. If not
for Toyosi who came to fetch us from our refuge the
other time, perhaps my mother would still be staying
out of wedlock till now.
“But…but mother asked me to be free with her!” I
replied. My hands shook as I spoke.
“Hannah asked you to be free with her?” Rachael said as
if it was a serious issue. “Let her come and I’ll
challenge her about that.” The door began to open. It
was my mother.
“You are truly the daughter of our father,” my aunty said
as my mother got in.
“Why d’you say so?”
“We’re just talking about you Hannah,” Rachael smiled.
She was beautiful in her own way. Her mouth was
shaped in that oval Terminalia catappalike fruit shape. A
black little round spot stood out beside her nose. That
was what some of my mates called ‘Sign of God’.
“Gossipers,” my mother said jokingly in smiles.
“Why don’t you hear us before judging us?” she said.
“Em…by the way, did you meet Toyosi on your way
“I didn’t meet her, was she here?”
“Yes…she just left,” we said.
“Oh, Toyosi, I wished to see her,” my mother was sad.
She had so much loved her now. Since our
reconciliation with my dad, Toyosi had been helpful in
the area of helping us get things done. She was the one
who involved my daddy in registering me for Secondary
Education I would be commencing next month. If not
for her support in convincing my dad to do that, John
wouldn’t have bothered paying.
“Was she the one who brought you these things?” my
mother asked and I replied, “Yes.”
“God will bless her mightily. Whatever she lays her
hands upon shall prosper,” my mother prayed for her in
her amateur sign language. I had to correct some of
her misspoken words. At that juncture, she noticed the
look on Rachael’s face. “Rachael what’s the matter?
Why is your face like this?”
Rachael spoke. She said she was suspicious of Toyosi’s
sudden moves.
“Prophetess you have come again,” my mummy was
laughing. “It is you who said that my husband will
receive me back; it happened through Toyosi, now you
are doubting the motive of the person God used to
bring the reconciliation.”
“Just be careful of her, that’s all I have to say,” Rachael
said soberly.
“Okay o, we have heard you,” my mother replied and
made up a stiff neck. She moved her nose in a mocking
“Well, Hannah, just be careful.”
Rachael saw the notes Toyosi had written. She read
them out. Thereafter, she asked, “Did she ask you to
gesture her name in the sign language?” she asked.
“Yes, I replied!”
Rachael spotted the note in which she was asking me
to demonstrate my own name too.
“Did she also ask you to demonstrate your own name?”
Rachael asked fast. Her face was folded up in fright.
“Yes she did and…”
“What? Did you do it?” Rachael grabbed my arms in
“I—I haven’t,” I said
. “I was about to say it when you came in.”
“Huugh,” she sighed in relief and sank to her chair.
“Don’t you dare tell her your name, Rose!” she said.
“Why?” my mother and I asked. She couldn’t say a word.
A horrible look was glommed to her gloomy face.
Mother and I laughed at her.
The following day, Sunday, Toyosi was back in our
house. She was still as keen on knowing my name as
the day before yesterday. My aunt’s instruction didn’t
strike my opaque head. I was going to demonstrate it
to her once and for all.
An inner voice came. At first I was shocked when I
heard it and thought I could now hear with my ears, but
when Toyosi turned around to answer her son, I knew I
was still deaf because I didn’t still hear her voice. The
inner voice had just asked me not to do it.
“Please demonstrate your name,” she asked again. As
though she had enchanted me, I rose up and made
some gestures with my hands. She was glad. She
signaled that I should do it over and over again and I
concurred. She also began to do it until I told her she
had done a perfect job.
Toyosi left the home after presenting some goodies to
me. It was soon dark. The day had gone to bed but my
eyes were just clear. I wasn’t feeling sleepy at all.
Mother came to my room and saw me turning around
under the quilt after switching on the light of my room.
My pillow was clutched to my chest.
“Rose, aren’t you sleeping?” she asked.
“I don’t feel like…sleeping,” I yawned. She came to sit
beside me on the bed.
“What’s the matter Rose?”
“I don’t just know,” I said.
“Maybe you want me to rock you to sleep, Rose,” she
said. “And I wouldn’t mind doing that.”
“I’m no more a small girl mum,” I replied. “By
September I would be getting to JSS 1.”
“And then?” she said. She looked into my gray eyes and
frowned. I didn’t know what she spotted in them.
“Rose, are you nervous?”
“A bit,” I said. I was feeling nervous indeed. My heart
was tapping faster than normal. My blood was burning
within me. It was as though
something bad would happen.
“Don’t be nervous Rose,” she said. “Or would you come
and sleep in my room?”
“I wouldn’t mind doing that,” I said. Mother bundled me
up the way I saw father bundle Toyosi up those few
times she was playing love with my father in our
presence. She dumped me playfully on her bed. I
ricocheted like that round thing my brother called ‘high
land’. Mother’s bed was as fat as a thousand sliced
bread packed together. Sure no one would have a bad
dream on such, I thought.
As soon as my back made intimate contact with the
mattress, my eyes began to close. My breath poured
easily. I fell into unconsciousness. A dream began to
form on my face.
Vividly in my dream I saw a woman sitting on a mat
beside an old man whose teeth was like a rotten
banana. The ambiance of the room was familiar to me.
The woman was the one I saw calling some
statements into a basin of water having my image
some weeks back. This time around, she wasn’t
speaking with her mouth, instead, she was
“Bode, the son of John, I am calling your name right
now. Answer me to death right now, Bode!” she said in
sign language. “Answer me to death right now!”
It was like a film show to me. An image had formed
inside the water. She was shocked when she saw the
image in it. It wasn’t mine, but that of Bode. I could read
disappointment and shock on her face when she saw
the image.
I thumped up. So it was a dream, I thought. I tapped my
mother to life.
“Mother, I have a dream.”
“A dream?”
“Yes mother, a bad dream,” I said, breathing like a cow.
“About what?” my mother yawned and beamed at the
wall clock. It was just 2 am.
“Something like that one I had in Aunty Rachael’s house
three weeks back,” I said.
“Do you mean the dream about someone gawking at
your image in a basin of water?” my mother asked in a
fearful manner.
“Yes mother,” I said. In fact, this time around the
woman was speaking in sign language.
“Ah! Calling your name in sign language?” Mother said
and deflated my two cheeks in between her palms.
“Not my name this time around,” I said. “She was
calling Bode’s name.”
“In sign language?”
“Exactly, yes,” I said, sweating.
Mother was glad I didn’t respond to the call since it
wasn’t my name that was called by the strange woman
in the dream. However, she felt concerned for Bode.
“Who’s this strange woman of darkness calling us at
night? Why can’t she present herself in the day? She
must be a coward.” Her heart thumped. She was scared.
“Now that you said that the woman is communicating in
sign language, are you safe at all? What is the
probability that she won’t pounce on you in the next
dream?” My mother faced the ceiling and began to
“Mum,” I said and tapped her. She looked at me. “I think
I know who she is.”
“Who?” she asked in an intriguing manner and I
answered pointblank, “Toyosi!”
“How do you know?”
“She asked for my name yesterday, but I demonstrated
her son’s name, Bode to her.”
“Ah!” my mother held me tight. “A witch cried
yesterday, a child died today, who don’t know that it is
the witch who killed the child?” she spoke in proverbs.
“Mother, let’s go and check Bode in his room first,” I
said out of concern. Mother and I began to head for his
room. He wasn’t in.
“What?” we both screamed in sign language.

I had to delete his number else I would be compelled to call and apologize, I said explaining to myself the reason why I had sent such a message to my ex-boyfriend. If I didn’t include harsh words he wouldn’t have told me that “he regretted ever knowing me”. Whatever, I said aloud as I switched off my phone and walked into the gallant law firm that I had just joined. Everything about Paul had to be erased from my heart, memory and head. I am moving into a new world, a new life.
Paul and I had dated for two years exactly. I have to refer to those years as the worst of his life. I made his life a living hell. Seriously, I am not to blame, I never loved him and I always made that straight. He hoped that one day I might love him, but that day was never going to come or should I say that I was too impatient to wait for infinity. It was taking forever! Paul is sweet, kind, affectionate and loving, and I; I am just some girl that really doesn’t understand the real essence of love. Honestly, I doubt its existence. Can you blame me? No, I have never fallen in love; the society didn’t give this pretty girl the opportunity to love. There are so many phonies out there calling themselves men! Not interested.
Please wait here for Mr Ade-Cole, a lady in a deep brown suit said as she showed me to a seat. Who wore deep brown coloured suits these days anyways? I asked myself as I smiled faintly at the lady. Did I call her a lady? She must be in her Fifties, I meant Woman! I had to wait for forty-five minutes to meet my new boss. That made no sense to me at all. What was he doing inside that I had to wait for forty-five minutes?
I had to finish my breakfast, he said as he ushered me into his office. I scoffed silently. Please sit Miss…, he said. Miss Williams, I said sharply. Yes, Miss Williams, he affirmed. My name is Dare Ade-Cole, I am going to be your new boss here, he said. Why did he have to go over boring details, obviously I knew that he was my new boss. I listened to him talk about the history of the Ade-Cole Law Firm and the values it stood for.
After thirty minutes of the introduction, I was led to my office. Don’t get too comfortable, you won’t have your privacy yet, Mr Ade-Cole said. What does that mean? I asked. You are going to be sharing this place with a colleague until I think that you deserve to have a personal office, he replied smiling. I smiled meanly. He left closing the door gently after him.
Why should I have to share my office? I asked myself. I really couldn’t understand why my father did not want me at his own firm. I am world class material and I am determined to show Sir Williams that. I started arranging my desk as I prepared for the beginning of a new life at Ade-Cole law firm.
My new office mate is a real pain! I murmured underneath my breath as Mrs Small ate her burger lousily. Do you care for some honey? She asked. No, thanks, I replied staring at my plate. We had to go to the firm’s cafeteria to grab our lunch. Mrs Toni (aka Mrs Small) had offered to take me. There is nothing small about Mrs Toni, she is extremely large, and she would rather be called the opposite of her name, so Mrs Small. I gulped my Red Bull drink and had to wait for Mrs Small.
It is an honour to work for Dare, she said as we took the stairs. This is the hundredth time you are mentioning that Toni, I said, obviously bored. I am so sorry girl, but Dare is the cutest boss ever. I sighed. How long have you been working for him? I asked, trying to get into the discussion. I have been at Ade Cole Firm for about three years, she replied. A mean smile lurked round my lips. Seriously, why don’t you have an office of yours? Or have you been incompetent for three years? I asked. No dear, she replied smiling. You are the incompetent one, she added. What do you mean? I asked. I have had about thirty people share that office with me until Dare felt that they deserved a place of their own, I own that office, others come and go, I stay, she replied and walked into the office leaving my speechless.
You are going with me to attend a case at the city mall by four pm tomorrow, Mrs Small said as she cleared her desk for the day. Is that my first assignment? I asked. No dear, more like a tutorial, you are going to watch me work tomorrow, she replied. Do I have to go? I asked. It is not like you have a choice, it is part of what you are here for, she replied. I sank into my seat. I watched her drag her briefcase as she reached for the door. Make sure to be on time tomorrow Ms Williams, she added and left.
The traffic in the city is usually crazy at this time, I protested as Mr Ade-Cole arranged his desk. That is why you work here, you are not to protest about the traffic or anything else, he replied. I have to get home early so as to able to accompany Mrs Small to the City Mall tomorrow, I replied. He let out a mean laughter. It is not like you have a choice Ms Williams, whether you like it or not, you are going to the City Mall, that is, if you want to continue working here, he replied. I yanked the documents from his hands and hurried out of the building.
Dare Ade-Cole ordered me to run some errands before I left the office. Taxi! I yelled as I emerged from the front door. No one was ready to take me to Broad Way; the traffic on the way is always alarming at this time. I returned into the office and straight to my boss’s office. There is no taxi going to Broad Way now Sir, I said. That is none of my business, you have a duty to fulfil and you have got to do that. He replied angrily. You will have to provide me a means to get there or better still, you drive me there, I replied. He leaned back in his chair and smiled.
I was taken to Broad Way by Dare’s driver. He didn’t say a word as he called his driver to take me there.
You must have really got on Dare’s nerves yesterday, Mrs Small said as I walked in. What did he say? I asked. She shrugged. Anyways, good morning, I said. I don’t think the morning will be so good after you get to your desk, she replied. I hurried to my desk and found a large note tagged “QUERY”. No way! I said and reached for the door with the note in my hand. I won’t confront him if I were you, Mrs Small advised. He is going to hear me, I replied and walked out.
What does this mean? I asked as I walked into Dare’s office. The last time I checked, you have a first class degree, and a first class product will know the meaning of a query, he replied. What did I do to deserve the query? I asked. Unprofessional conduct and disrespect to your boss is an offence in this firm, he replied. I have only spent one day in this firm and I am already receiving a query, I guess I will be fired at the end of the week, I said, aggressively. I doubt if you would last a week with this attitude of yours, he replied. I am not scared, I said. I know, he replied, opening the door. I walked out angrily.
Not a word, I said as I walked into my office. Mrs Small smiled. I think you should just chill young lady, Dare could get very offended, she advised. He already nauseates me, I replied. She sighed and leaned over my shoulders. This attitude will take you nowhere in this firm, Ade-Cole Firm is built on a lot of reputation and integrity and Dare would not let you jeopardize his family’s long standing empire. I get it, I replied with a grin.
I waited anxiously for four pm. At last, it came! Mrs Small and I left in her car to the City Mall. The case was a divorce case. The husband isn’t willing to give his wife what she demands. I watched Mrs Small argue that Mrs Ex’s demands were outrageous and shouldn’t be granted. After sessions of debates and arguments, the judge ruled in favour of Mr Ex and his wife didn’t get all what she wanted, but she did get a decent share from the divorce. Mrs Small had won a case.
Congratulations! I said as we headed for the car. Thanks dear, you know these cases could be really unrealistic, she replied. Why? I asked. I see no reason why a woman should be interested in breaking a marriage when she should actually think of making it, she replied. And, not forgetting that today is Val’s day, she added quickly. Who gets divorced on Valentine’s Day? I murmured. I had totally forgotten about Val’s day, I said to Mrs Small. Why is that honey? She asked. Don’t you have a boyfriend? She added as she opened the doors to the car. Mrs Small’s questions reminded me of Paul. Val’s day was always enterprising with Paul. We would take a walk into the night and stare at the stars. He loved doing that and I thought that it was girly, but Paul was a devote romantic. Do you have any boyfriends? Mrs Small asked as she sat in the car. I smiled, but didn’t respond. I won’t push it, she replied. I would like us to drive to the central market; I need to get some groceries for the house, she said. It is fine by me, I replied.
Mrs Small headed for the grocery section as I took a look round the boutiques. We agreed to meet at the car in thirty minutes. Nice Heels here, the sellers called out to me. I smiled as I headed for one of the stores. I love heels! After bargaining, I ended up getting a LV heel for around ten thousand naira. I had to hurry to the car; I had three minutes to go.
Darlene! Someone called out. I turned round to face my past.
NOT AGAIN!’’, I thought as I approached Paul. Paul was the last person that I expected to see, at least not in the market. Hi, happy Val’s day, he said; As if I cared , those words almost escaped from my lips as I nodded back. How have you been? He asked. ‘Never been better’ I replied with a sarcastic smile lurked round my face; we were together for almost two years and it never worked, I replied. ‘That’s not true, Darlene, you never put in any effort to love me’, he said.’ You can’t force love’, I replied smiling. ‘You were in a haste to get rid of me’, he said. ‘You told me that you regret ever knowing me, why then are you stalking me?’ I asked. ‘I can’t just let go of you yet, I want to try, I want to fight for your love’, he replied. ‘That is if I have any to offer’, I replied bluntly. I could hear the disappointment in his voice as he said, ‘You will find the man you will love someday, how will you feel if he treated you this way?’ He asked. I grinned. Love is cliché; I replied and turned to meet Mrs Small staring at us, YES, I know that stare. ‘The overprotective Dad look’
‘You were very harsh on Paul’, Mrs Small said as she drove. ‘He was becoming a pain and he really needed to hear the truth from me’, I replied. ‘Don’t you believe in love at all?’ She asked. I scoffed. Is it a religion? I asked smiling but Mrs Small didn’t seem to find it funny, Listen Toni, Love is not what it used to be, maybe if I was born in the Romeo and Juliet days or maybe if I was loved by Shakespeare, I wouldn’t mind falling in love, but not in this generation, I replied, trying to sound convincing, even to myself. Why did you agree to date Paul in the first place? She asked with curiosity in her voice. To prove a point to my father, he but called me an ‘Amazon’ and said that it would be impossible for any man to want to date me, but on the day he said this, Paul took me out and asked me out, I really wanted my father to know that I could have any man at my beck and call and so I agreed, I replied.
Congratulations Toni, Dare said as he walked into our office. Thank you Dare, she replied. How is your intern doing? He asked staring at me. She is doing just fine, she replied taking a quick glance at me. I looked disgusted. Did he call me an intern? I said to myself silently. Good night ladies, and enjoy the lovers frenzy he said and walked out. ‘‘I couldn’t help but wish my boss could just fall and break a leg’’. ‘Let me give you a ride?’ Mrs Small offered. Sorry, I will be working a little late, I replied. Later honey, she replied with a smile and left. Unfortunately, that happened to be a lie, one of the ‘’skills’’ I had to pick up from dating Paul, so it comes naturally. I picked up my phone and called Jake.
‘’911’’What is the emergency please? Jake asked with a very familiar smile as he ‘’rolled up’’ in his car. Why did you choose to humiliate me in this ‘’Jalopy’’ especially on Val’s day, I asked sarcastically. Jalopy, he replied. This is a limited edition ‘’1992 Audi 80 avante’’ , only a hundred of this was manufactured and I happen to have the only one in this town, he bragged. And you should be ‘’honoured’’ to ride in one, he added sarcastically ‘’especially on Val’s day’’, he said with so much pride lurking around his face, as if he bought the car with his own money, the previous owner of the car, his dad probably got so sick of the car and passed it to him, and I am yet to find out what is so special about the car. ‘Whatever’, I replied. I ran into Paul today at the Central Market. He laughed. It is not funny, I think he is going to be stalking me all my life, I replied. Hey Miss
Cinderella, the world doesn’t revolve around you, he said sarcastically. I clenched my fists and punched him hard. Is that the best you can do? He asked laughing, but seriously, is that what you are worried about? He asked. Of course, I replied. What else can I be worried about? I asked. I thought you would feel remorse about the message sent to him, it was a really irritating message, if you sent that to me, I would have driven you off a cliff, he replied with a smile. I could never send such to you, you are my best friend, I said.
Hi Darlene, Dad said as I walked in. Hello, I replied coldly. When are you going to stop resenting me for not putting you in the family’s firm? He asked. When I survive my first week at Ade-Cole, I replied, pouring myself lemonade. It is for your own good, he replied. Yeah yeah yeah here we go again, I replied angrily. I am a first class material from Harvard Dad! What else do you want from me? I deserve to be in your chambers not working for some ‘’slave driver’’ and you know it. Everyone knows that Williams Firm is the best in the continent; I yelled angrily and left for my room. I know you would get in on merits, but it is for your good, he called out as I slammed my door angrily.

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