“Henry, this is another step in the journey of your life, you’re getting more matured and exposed, remember the child of whom you are, don’t associate yourself with bad groups, don’t be too playful, remember they don’t give positions in Senior Secondary School (SSS) so, that should not make you relax neither am I expecting you to come home with lower percentage in your exams, most importantly and the main reason I’m telling you all this now, DON’T HAVE A GIRLFRIEND;” I raised my eyebrows and bugged-out my eyes in surprise then continued to listen.
“Opeyemi, look here, let me tell you the pure truth in case you don’t know, girlfriends have nothing to offer you at this level but distractions at its peak, am not saying you should not have female friends, of course you’re going to have that but never let anything like dating or Sekxual act in any form knock the door of your mind for now, why? Simply because, you’re still small for that, I’m not saying having a girlfriend is bad thing but the right thing at the right time is always the best, happiness is when you realize that what you’re doing and what you’re supposed to do are the same. I repeat, DON’T HAVE A GIRLFRIEND! taken?” My elder sister ended her advice in expectation of a confirmation from me;
“Yes ma, I promise to make use of your advice so that I’ll come out in flying colour as you did”. I responded dutifully contrary to how I felt. I respect my sister for the fact that she’s almost seven years older than I’m, the difference is really clear.
“That’s my man! The Henry!!!!” She hailed me, I feigned a smile, stood up and left her there as if I wanted to attend to something else, the girlfriend part of the discussion was somehow strange to me as no one had ever sat me down and discussed that kind of thing with me before, I was shy.
That was on Sunday, the 6th day of September, 2009, when I was to resume into SS1 class in my secondary school the next day.
Around 7:45pm: “Up NEPA!!!” my typical Nigerian neighbours screamed as if they won sport-bet, the PHCN just restored the electricity, hearing the noise and seeing shying bulbs everywhere, I didn’t need any seer to tell me the next thing to do, I was watching one Yoruba movie (Ogbologbo) when I came back from church around 2:30pm, I knew I had to continue my movie, I jumped up from where I was sketching the picture of Ronaldinho at the back of one of my old notes on an A4 paper, I carried the electric lamp and wanted to switch it off when I heard my mom’s voice;
“Ope ooooo! Dont come and iron your school uniform now that there is light, you’ll do that when they take it again” My mom shouted from the kitchen ironically, a typical Yoruba mother.
“Ma! Let me quickly finish this part 2, it’s the part where Ogbologbo wants to escape from the pri….” I had not pronounced the “prison” before my mom raised her voice;
“Ehnn? ‘Ibi ti Ogbologbo ti fe sa kuro lewon ni mo bere lowo e abi? Mo ro wipe nkan nse e, mo ni ko wa lo aso school e, o ni Ogbologbo fe sa kuro lewon, afara! O ti kuro ni idi TV yen nisin abi ki n kan disk yen loju e. Omo oro, enu o ki kuro lara yin bi owo’ (Really? Where Ogbologbo wants to escape from the prison is what I asked you right? I think something is wrong with you, I said you should go and iron your school uniform, you’re telling me that Ogbologbo wants to escape from prison, Have you left that TV now or I break the disc in your presence. Son of words, someone can’t do without talking about you just like money.)” I sluggishly switched the TV off, dropped the remote control with frowned face and walked indolently into my sister’s room, crawling would be faster than my speed if compared, my sister was busy laughing and singing from the kitchen to show that she was happy with my mom’s decision, she had never loved seeing me watching movies whenever she’s cooking, I just ignored her because I know her for such character. I picked up the iron, arranged a table and was ready to iron, as I switched the iron on, the current dropped totally, even some appliances stopped working;
“Off that iron!” My mom screamed from the kitchen and rushed to the sitting room to switch off the main socket;
“You’ll iron when we finish cooking, I forgot that we can’t use the hot plate and the iron at the same time” My mom said and was going back to the kitchen, I was fully happy, I was swaggering back to continue my film when I heard my sister’s voice from the kitchen;
“Mummy, I’m through with the hot-plate, Ope can go back to iron his school uniform” she said with ecstasy.
“Which kind person be this now? Enemy of progress” I muttered as I returned to iron my uniform, praying that something should spark again, but nothing bad happened. I finished ironing my uniform, they were through with cooking, we ate, I could not watch my movie because my sister insisted she wanted to watch Pastor Samson Ayorinde’s sermon on OGTV, later we prayed and went to bed.
I was on my fat neat bed reminiscing at random, I thought about how I’d see my friends the next day especially David, how I’d meet new friends and cope with the seniors, later my mind shifted to what my sister discussed with me in the evening, I was just asking myself questions that even I could not provide answers to;
What has my sister heard about me?
Did she see or listen to my mind?
Why should she tell me not to have a girlfriend when am actually fantasizing and planning to have the first one?
No! She must be joking, wait, she said that Sekxual acts should not knock the door of my heart, how does dating relate to Sekxual act or what does she really mean by Sekxual act?
Why didn’t I even ask her if she had a boyfriend during her secondary school days? “She might even lie.
Come to think of it, she’s my sister, she can’t lead me to the wrong path of course. It’s like I will follow what she said, but…… anyway, let the session begin
That was all I could think before I went into the land of dream amidst my thoughts. I slept off.