STORY SERIES: IBADAN CHANGED MY LIFE

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Okay. This is the twelfth time this sickening alarm will ring. If I don't hold my head, someone would end up in the trash can in the twinkle of an eye. How did I get to this state though? I'm one hell of a happy and cheerful person. You can never stay depressed when you are around me. I'm the light of the moment and the life of every party in Lagos. I believe this life gives us just once chance and we are expected to utilize it well. So, no matter what one goes through, somehow, anyhow, one just gotta find the light in the situation.


Right now, that tale is in no way useful to my life. Sigh.

              'Harriet! Get off the bed. You would miss the next bus going to Ibadan o', mercy, one of my flatmates shouted from the kitchen.

               'Blah, blah, blah...bullshit', I mimicked with my tongue out.

Right now, Mercy had little to zero worries. We work in the same organization on the Island. Last week, we both received out transfer letter. With Joy and optimism in my heart, I quickly tore mine while Mercy was the shaky one, speaking in tongues under her breath.  Before then, we junior staffs had a presentation before the Managing Director. The aim of the presentation was to test how well pruned we were having spent four years in the company and one year training in Ghana. When the results of the presentation came out, just as I expected, I came first with 74.3%. That night, I took all my flatmates out to the club and like I love it, the bill was on me.

The month before, our IT manager had instructed us to put our life in this presentation because the best would be sent to manage one of the organization's branch that was opened weeks ago in the UK. UK???? It was like my entire dreams cat walked before my face and gave me a breathtaking kiss. On that note, I stayed awake all night, researching, reading and practicing for the D - day. Well, it paid off.

But when I anxiously tore the envelope containing my transfer letter and I saw the dead words

                'Congratulations, Miss Harriet Ugochukwu. You have been transferred to the organization's branch at Ibadan. We are sure you will exhibit....and manage....for the betterment of the....'

I thought the entire world came crumbling before me in bits. When I confronted the IT manager, all he could say was the entire plan changed. The Ibadan branch was almost as good as dead and needed more attention than the branch in the UK. Anyone as good could go set up the UK branch but the Ibadan branch needed someone smart, brainy, one who had good managerial skills, could function well in any situation by adapting properly, could work as a good team leader. I didn't know when I blurted out,

            'Oga, I'm not as good as you people think! I'm not as smart or intelligent. My entire presentation was a joke. Please, I can't do well in Ibadan'

Mr Segun, the IT manager sighed. I thought he was about to change his mind. All he could say was

             'I know how you feel. Ibadan isn't a bad place after all. Too many misconceptions about that city. I lived there for 16years and I can say they are a bunch of good and interesting people. Your hotel has been paid for, your official car has been taken care of and you have a fat salary to yourself. You need to rest now, Harriet'

Yea, right. No one could understand. How could anyone understand anyway? I'm probably overreacting. 27, Single and all my hopes of getting hooked in Lagos just got shattered. My plan to attend every big event in Lagos in my quest of finding one minister's son or a rich businessman just came crumbling before me. I was lost between smiling and crying.

I think I spent too much time in the bathroom. Not crying. Just starring. God alone knows when next I would feel the cozy tiles again. Spent far more time dragging my things to the sitting room. Barely ate as the echoes of my four flatmates urging me to smile more and eat more because the next one hour to Ibadan might be quite hectic filled my head. The Uber Driver arrived in no time. Seun, one of my flatmates helped in packing my bag into the boot of the Toyota Hyundai. Tony, our dog barked from it's corner. Normally, it would come splurging all over. I think it realized that its favorite aunt was leaving. I glanced back at our flat before entering the car.

It was 10:43am. Seun was the only one who followed me to the garage at Berger. The Uber charged us over N4000. Seun paid. We hadn't stepped our leg fully into the garage when some garage boys rushed to meet us.

        'Aunty, make I carry am for you', they struggled.

         'Please!', Seun shouted. 'Do you even know where we are going?'

        'Aunty, Ibadan na this bus', one elderly man who looked more like a tout pointed to us as if he guessed I was going to Ibadan.

We headed straight to the bus without allowing any room for the other garage boys. Seun helped secure my bags at the back of the bus and told me it would be better to sit behind so that I could keep full watch over my bags.

          'Aunty, you go pay extra N200 o for your load.', another man, who seemed like the driver, said.

          'Which kind N200? Shey we no...'

          'Seun, please pay this people and let me have my peace', I blurted out. Seun was one person that could price and argue about everything. My head was too full to contain any of her excesses already.

She gave me the side eye and squeezed extra N200 to the man. I found a comfortable place at the back to sit. I'm not a window person so I didn't sit close to it. In a few minutes, the entire bus was filled up. Seun had already helped me fill my name in a booklet that was passed around. The driver came and closed the boot even as another man held his shirt urging him to drop small change for him. People in the bus screamed at the man to let go of the driver because time was going. Insults in Yoruba flew left and right before another man intervened and the driver struggled into the bus. Seun rushed to my side and blew kisses. I reciprocated with a smile as I plugged in my headphone.

The bus started moving as the driver drove as if he was going to jam another bus.

           'Baba, se fe pa yan ni????(Baba, do you want to kill someone?)', one elderly woman that sat in front of me shouted

          'Iya yin lo ma pa yan!!!!(It's your mother that will kill someone)', the driver replied as curses flew in the air.

In no time, we hit Lagos/Ibadan expressway and a young man beside me started a prayer. Some echoed Amen while others like me concentrated on the other things they were doing. From praying, he started preaching, quoting the scripture. I increased the volume of my song. I opened my whatsapp and updated my status to BUSY. There was a little hold - up and hawkers rushed to our bus urging us to buy drinks and snacks. I got a plastic coke and chin-chin. I was feeling famished and sleepy already.

After eating, I relaxed my body and closed my eyes to take a quick nap.

The shouts of people in the bus woke me up. I cleaned my eyes and sat up as I scratched my neck. The man beside me was thanking God for a safe journey. It was then I realized we had gotten to Ibadan.

(TO BE CONTINUED)

[This story is a pure fiction written by Emete. Hope you enjoyed it????😊😊😊😊]

To read the next episode, click HERE

Photo Creditwww.thetrenteonline.com

EMETE

8 comments:

  1. Wow. Baby, your write so well. It was really engaging. More of it please

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    1. @Kunle, thanks dear. More of it will come. Enjoy!

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  2. I think I would love !more of this story series ooo.
    Thumbs up.

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    Replies
    1. @seyi, that would be great. More of it would come up. I'm glad you enjoyed it

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  3. Fiction??? Haha, thought it was a real life experience. I enjoyed it though. Ibadan is a nice city.

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    1. @marian, lol. I'm glad you enjoyed it. Ibadan is truly a nice city. Make sure you check out the other episodes of the story. Stay blessed!

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  4. Unique, Captivating, detailed.. This is one rare masterpiece. Keep it up!!

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    Replies
    1. @captain teezy, bless up, bro! Well appreciated! Stay tuned for more episodes.

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