Another one of those boring evenings, when my hands lacked nothing good to do, and I roamed around the four walls of my small room, pacing around in irregular movement like a kid left alone in a candy shop, for my eyes kept wandering around, as if there’s something interesting on the wall. Boredom had such a great power on me, and this was one of those days that it spells was in its full moon, and only a Superman touch could set me free.
I would have sought solace in my cell phone, but it was as useless as Ikenna my next door friend, for my monthly subscription was already expired, and I was already tired of playing the only game on it, my dream league soccer, my ears are already etching me as a result of listening to songs. What else can I do?
I kept staring through my window planes, painting a mental picture in my head of the times I spent in the University with my Mumu squad friends, back then we were never short of ideas, we will never allow boredom sing the victory song over us, either which way we will always find something to do, and when it comes to worse, we would always resort to abusing and making mockery of each other, taking turns stabbing each other with back breaking and life wreaking taunts until we get tired.
Just when I was about picking up my phone, to continue playing my dream league soccer, I heard the thunderous laughter of Saheed, the only mad man in our neighborhood, such a relief seeing him for it only implies one thing, Fun.
I found a spot where I could peep through my dust stained window planes,where I could get a 3D view, and I found the right spot. Saheed was already doing his trademark dance, or should I say, ritual dance which he was always found of doing anytime he’s up for his trouble making series. I was quite delighted seeing him do this, for I had something to feed my eyes on, I did my dance of the dark in my head to celebrate this.
I watched with amazement Saheed climbing Baba Mukaila old danfo bus, the bus has been there blessed with dust courtesy of the last fuel scarcity, The yellow painted old bus had fainted on that spot due to insufficient fuel in the fuel tank, with the old man running off to get fuel only to get back to see that his old bus would fail to wake up from its slumber, it took him no fewer seconds to realize that his danfo has been visited by men from the underworld, the car battery was already stolen.
He searched frantically everywhere, asking people around if they had seen anyone come close his danfo, well no body saw a thing, not even Iya Tiri who sells “bole” roasted plantain, her small stall was just opposite the danfo. All my life I have never seen a life charm, save for the pseudo charm I see in movies, but that day, thanks to Baba Mukaila, I saw one, for he would later come few hours later with his Babalawo who came in his semi full regalia, making incantations on the danfo, a hen was killed right on the spot and was sprinkled on the danfo, I thought the battery would instantly reappear tied with the person who stole it, was left disappointed when the Babalawo with his kola stained teeth announced that after 3 days, failure to return the battery, the culprit will be visited. It’s over 3 weeks now, the danfo is now Saheed new headquarters in our area.
While Saheed was dancing on the danfo, a kid had run off to call Baba Mukaila to come see what’s happening, for he had paid the kid to alert him whenever Saheed comes to visit his newly commissioned headquarters, his danfo.
He came panting heavily in his old oil stained conductor wear, shouting at Saheed to get down from his vehicle, Saheed thinking he’s another mad fellow began dancing on top of the danfo, thumping his feet hard on the old thing, Baba Mukaila who wouldn’t allow Saheed destroy his only means of livelihood, resorted to throwing of stones in his attempt to bring down the dancing fellow on his danfo.
Just when I was beginning to enjoying the drama, my door came back to life with the annoying noises of someone banging at the door. Took me no magician to know that Ikenna was the one by the door, no one has the audacity to knock at my door that furiously like a person been chased by a rabies infested dog.
Still engrossed in Saheed and Baba Mukaila’s drama, I ignored the noises coming from Ikenna incessant strikes on my door, he later resorted to screams, “Guy! How far now, Abeg open!” After his continual working on my door, I feared for my door, the landlord will not take it nicely with us if we destroyed the piece of wood he installed as door for us, besides I couldn’t concentrate on the drama I was watching anymore, his shorts were piercing into my eardrums, each slam on the door sending a hot shrill down my body as if I was been electrocuted, I rose up to open the door, expecting to see him with a serious expression, I found the fool, staring back at me in the most childish way I could ever imagine.
Ikenna! What is all these do you want to destroy my door?
He chuckled, Guy na, you no wan open the door for your padi abi, he replied with his typical pidgin English which he was so found of.
Before I could reply him he continued, “see guy, no siddon here watching those mad fellow, e don dey shappen for O.X Base, dem Boys don arrive with money”
So what has that got to do with me, na my money? I shot back annoyingly
You just don’t understand guy, free booze everywhere guy, dem dey share gala like say na rain water.
On hearing the word, “gala” my ears itched me, for I knew he wasn’t just referring to “gala” which is a household snack literally, but he meant there’s free food for everyone.
Immediately I google searched my only pair of sandals, dashed for the door with Ikenna tagging behind, I had quickly forgotten about my Saheed and Baba Mukaila drama, Ikenna began shouting, “correct guy, your head dey there”
Few seconds away from getting to OX base, a popular club house in our area, we stopped to catch our breath, relaxed a little, adjusting our clothes to look a bit nice, Ikenna quickly dashed into a nearby shop to buy us two sachets of pure water, we washed our faces, and cleaned our dust covered feels, then in the most comported way we could ever think of, we made our way into the club house, gliding through the various fleets of exotic cars which were packed outside, I overheard Ikenna, muttering under his breath, “money good o, when I go hammer too?’
We found ourselves a cool spot to sit, few chairs away from where the happening Boys were seated.
Ike! I shouted, He feigned deaf ears.
Ikenna looked at me with his ever foolish expression
What’s going on, I never see any booze been shared now?, I asked him
Guy, Guy calm down now, see those guys wey dey over there, dem wallet gallant big time, see as champagne dey flow, just calm down, dem go soon declare free booze.
Growing totally impatient, I realized what a fool I was for listening to this scumbag, the sight of watching the happening Boys pop champagne one after the other, ordering for various foods, with the ladies hovering around them, twisting their snake like bodies vexed me.
You think this is funny abi, Ikenna!
Ikenna, in his bid to redeem himself stood up, adjusting his clothe, made his way to the happening Boys table, I remained seated, watching Ikenna about to make a fool of himself.
I couldn’t hear the conversation from my seat, but I saw Ikenna extending his hands to one of the happening guys in his bid to get them on talking terms, and when he was ignored, as if he was an invisible entity, he took another bold step, to me, I would say, foolish step, he reached over to the table picking a drink, smiling, hailing the happening guys.
Just then a hand reached out to stop him, another landed him a hot slap on his face, as interesting as it seems, I didn’t wait to see the end, I picked up myself, made a quick fast run towards the exit.
Once outside, I dashed straight for the shop where we had earlier bought two sachets of pure water, standing there, I began to replay the whole incident in my head, and before I knew it, I was already in a fit of laughter, tears rolled down on my cheek, I couldn’t control myself again, still laughing like an overfed hyena, I looked up only to see Ikenna standing few meters away from me, looking like a kid who has just been spanked for stealing candy.
He removed one of his sandals and within a flash, he hurled it a me, which I successfully dodged, I made a silly face at him, just then, we both heard a sound, the sandal he threw had successfully bowled two crates of eggs, instantly we froze Ikenna has done it again, Mama Chemistry, the owner of the stall came rushing outside with a broom in his hands, he looked at us, without saying a word, all he said was “Two thousand, five hundred naira or else I will disgrace you”
As if we had rehearsed our after trouble moves, we both fell on our feets, “Iya Chemistry, we are sorry, please before night fall tomorrow, we go hustle for your money” Ikenna begged
I looked at Ikenna on our way back, Ike! The String around your neck.
Wetin! He shot back
Trouble! I replied,
How much you get for account?, I asked.
No even go there, nothing, not even a coin dey inside that account, he Replied.
Same here I told him, how do you expect us to get Iya chemistry her money?
Chillax now, Ikenna shouted, we go work one day for Obi’s construction site tomorrow.
Manual workers! I screamed
Yes he said, or do you have a better idea?