Dear diary, this restlessness, and tensed muscles need an outlet. Write I must even if it is a few hours away from sunrise. A frightening day it was. The day started out with a few of us standing outside the lecture hall because we were late for Dr. Okoro’s class. I didn’t it find it funny at all! This was a 4 point course. If I hadn’t been tempted to take that breakfast Lizzy offered me when I stopped by her room to see if she was ready. “Longer throat”, was my undoing. My quick morning breakfast was “Ogi” with nothing but sugar to make it go down my stomach easily… It was all I could manage. But when I got to Lizzy’s room, she was sited at her mini dining table…a school chair and desk eating a nicely made egg sauce laced with carrot, sausage, and so on that, I can’t even remember anymore but it was a mouth-watering meal.
Lizzy loved cooking and experimenting with food. I wonder where she gets the time. Anyway, she was eating it with boiled yam and tea rich with beverage and milk. I didn’t even wait for her to invite me to join her. And that was what landed us in this trouble.
We both stood outside the lecture hall clinging to our bags with heavy laptops inside listening to a few of Dr. Okoro’s intellectual jargons filter unclearly our way. When one of our colleagues, Mark asked me why in the world I was late, because everyone knows that I am an early bird I gave Lizzy “the bad eye look”. “Don’t blame me o”, she responded.
As we all stood there I could only pray that an Angel will make sure that Dr. Okoro cancels any thought of giving an unplanned test. I was afraid and mentally I chided myself for not resisting Lizzy’s sumptuous breakfast. Finally, Dr. Okoro finished his lecture and we all took cover at the back side. No one wanted him to mark our faces; he had a way of not forgetting.
As soon as he was out of sight we rushed to catch up with a few classmates to collect notes and any latest information. Then we found out that the next day was going to be the almighty pre-exam test. I jumped in celebration that an angel must have worked on my prayers. I was ready to read all the 20 handouts Dr. Okoro had given us, with him there is no area of concentration.
Lizzy and some friends from class agreed that we were going to meet for a group discussion that night. First, we will spend some hours reading each before gathering to discuss. So off we went to one of the lecture halls all dressed in slacks, cardigans, and even wrapper to ward off mosquitoes. This was around 10 pm. At midnight we all gathered to help each other understand better the so much jargons our dear Dr. Okoro had put together in the name of lecture notes.
Things took a frightening turn when we began to hear gunshots. People scrambled for their notes, handouts and whatever and began to run. There was confusion, some people were saying we should wait and be sure we were not running into an ambush. My heart was in my mouth.
The gun shots could be heard getting louder…everyone knew it had to be “cult guys” attacking a rival group. Why would students who are supposed to be mapping out a great future be involved in maiming and killing one another? This campus is becoming seriously unsafe for everyone. I prayed again that my guardian angel will get us safely to our hostels.
The guys amongst us escorted us as far as they could and asked us to run when we were within sights of the entrance of the female hostel. They bravely ran in the opposite direction. Dr. Okoro’s test is the last thing on my mind right now.
Dear diary I will have to remember to do a thanksgiving at the school chapel on Sunday. It’s been a while since I last went there…
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Credits: Yam and egg sauce – Oya Come Chop