Nigeria Story: Deep Sea Episode 3
Deep Sea Episode 3
of the week. She needed time to sort out the students’ notes, mark their assignments and prepare questions for the mid-term test. Why they asked her to take the students English and Literature was beyond her. Was it because she graduated with a second class upper in Mass Communication? The staff room was almost empty. She greeted the few teachers around and walked over to her corner. She cleaned her dusty wooden table and chair. She wondered why the capital city was so dusty. She had been told that it was worse during the harmattan season . .
“Miss. Daodu, you are looking good this morning.” Promise looked up at the person addressing her . .
It was one of the male teachers. On her first day, he had assumed that she was a muslim because of her surname. She had to explain to him that her grandfather was a muslim, but her father had converted to Christianity . .
“Good morning Mr. Usman,” she tried to smile, but it barely reached her dark eyes . .
He leaned over her table, “You are looking smart and beautiful,” his eyes seemed to glitter. She wondered what was beautiful about her khaki trousers and white tee shirt. Was it the khaki face cap that was deceiving him or the khaki jacket? If he was trying to warm up to her, he came at the wrongest time . .
“Thank you,” she forced the words out and concentrated on the books she had placed on the table . .
“Do you know that I am also an English and Literature teacher in this school?”She placed a hand on her forehead. She realized that he was bent on conversing with her, regardless of her disinterest . .
“Really?” “Yes, if you have any problems with the students or your lesson notes, I will help you out,” he beat his hand on his chest . .
“Oh okay, thank you.” He smiled at her, revealing a set of teeth that had gone brown. She blinked in surprise and adjusted her face cap . .
“I have to go, I have a class to teach,” he waved and walked away. She made a sigh of relief . .
‘Finally, peace at last!’ She said to herself . .
******** Promise returned home that day at about three in the afternoon. She felt as if she had been toasted like bread in the hot afternoon sun. She needed a cold shower and would probably warm the remaining vegetable soup she had kept in the fridge and eat it with pondo yam. Maybe making garri will be faster. She was very hungry . .
Sweat broke out all over her when she realized that she had forgotten to take her house key to work that day. She had changed bags and didn’t remember to take the key out of the other bag . .
‘What kind of nonsense is this?’ She mused and leaned on the wooden front door. She began to dial her room-mates’ numbers one after the other . .
One of them told her that she wasn’t coming home straight from work. She had a few places to go to. Another told her that she wasn’t returning home that day and the third girl told her that she was on her way home but was stuck in traffic . .
Promise pulled off her khaki jacket and removed her face cap. Why did she forget to take her key to work? ‘What were you thinking about you small girl?’ She questioned herself and debated whether to check if any of her neighbours were around . .
There were six self contained apartments in the compound, the other five were occupied by a couple with their children, two sets of live-in- lovers, a bachelor, and four male youth corpers . .
She decided to sit at the door and prayed that the traffic subsided. She wasn’t in the habit of badging in on her neighbours. She would rather remain pleasant from afar than become over- familiar with them. Familiarity always brought contempt. Thirty minutes later, Kabira Danyaro walked up to dozing Promise . .
“Sleeping beauty.” She opened her eyes . .
“Why did you forget your key?” Promise got up, yawned and stretched. Kabira unlocked the door and they went in . .
“I changed bags and forgot to take the house key.” Kabira shook her head and went straight to the kitchen. Promise sat on the bed and untied the ropes of her boots. She wondered if she should eat first and take her bath later . .
“Are you the one who kept this vegetable here?” Her voice flowed into the room . .
“Don’t touch that soup! That is my lunch,” she joined her room-mate in the kitchen . .
“We will share it.” “Ah!” Kabira eyed her, “You made me come home, I was planning to buy some things in the market.” Promise groaned and opened the plate, “Look, see, the soup is small.” Kabira collected the frozen plate from her, “We will add water.” Her room-mate hissed . .
“Please make garri, be a nice girl.” Promised eyed her. This was one of the challenges of living with someone . .
“We will share the chilled can malt in my bag.” She brightened and plugged water, while her room-mate started to warm the soup. Sharing her lunch didn’t seem like a bad idea anymore. A can of chilled malt in the afternoon heat would soothe her nerves. At least, her day seemed to be winding up well, regardless of the torturous start . .
‘Lord, I thank you. Today is really a day you have made. I sincerely rejoice,’To Be Continued…