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In the year 2006………………………

We were at work arranging scrap metals, when
we noticed a car drove in.
Chidi: twelve years work for here no fit buy that
Me: Trust me bro, I ain’t spending twelve
months here. I hope you do the same
Chidi: Abegi! no be everybody dem do school
for. Na by force I take finish JS 3 sef
Me: Na you talk so
Chidi: Me wan gather money go open my shop.
Me: Na now you dey talk. Ibo boy.
A woman stepped out of the car, walking
towards the admin office
Chidi: Na oga wife be that o.
Me: which of the ogas?
Chidi: Chief Rotimi, na him get this factory.
Me: The same Chief Rotimi the polit…
‘’Tattoo and Chidi, e be like say this work don
tire una abi?’’
Our supervisor snorted from behind.‘’If I catch
una dey talk instead of working, I go show una’’
We continued arranging the scrap metals.
I clocked out at five as usual. I was walking
home when I saw an elderly woman, which I
guessed would be in her sixties looking lost.
The woman was in iro and buba, so I guessed
she should be from the west. I approached her.
”Good evening ma.” I greeted her in Yoruba
with a little bow.
Woman: Good evening, my son. Do you live
around here?
Me: yes, ma.
Woman: I’m going to my daughter’s house, but
this area is confusing. The street was supposed
to be behind this bank, but I don’t seem to
understand it anymore.
Me: The bank here is new. There’s another one
over there.
Woman: Please take me there. God bless you,
my son.
Me: Amen ma.
She easily recognized the street just the behind
the other bank. She knocked when we got to
the front gate. The gate-man opened. Just
before she entered a car horned behind. A
woman alighted and i could swear I have seen
that face before.
The younger woman: Mummy welcome. I have
been worried.
The older woman: My phone battery went flat,
I’m sorry.
The younger woman: It’s okay ma. Bless God
you’re here. But, you didn’t tell me you would
be coming with somebody?
The older woman: I almost got lost, but thanks
to this my son.
The younger woman: oh! What’s your name,
young man?
Me: Galacious, ma
The younger woman: Thank you so much
Me: You’re welcome, ma
The younger woman: Alright let’s all go inside.
Galacious please come in.
Me: hmm, I’m sorry ma I have to head back
The younger woman: oh! Not even a drink?
Me: It’s getting late ma, thanks.
The younger woman:: ok. I understand.
She reached into her purse and brought out
some notes.

The younger woman: please buy recharge card
with this
She stretched her right hand towards me.
Me: don’t bother ma
The younger woman:: oh! I insist
Me: I’m sorry ma
The younger woman: Really?
She withdrew her hand.
The older woman: He is well brought up. You
shall not die young.
Me: Amen ma. Good night.
‘’ Good night, my son,’’ ‘’Alright. Take care dear’’
They said in unison.
The next day was a Sunday—–our match day.
The evening football match came up every
Sunday evening. The street had a mini stadium
where kids played every day, but Sunday
evening was reserved for the older ones.
The game started as usual. Everything seemed
normal till a shot was deflected and the ball
bounced into the street to hit one of the young
ladies walking along. One was Chinenye who
lived on the street, but the other lady, whom the
ball hit, doesn’t look familiar.
Other lady: Jeez!
Chinenye: sorry dear
Other lady: look at my gown!
I ran towards the ball, picked it up and tossed it
to the field before turning to the ladies.
Me: sorry about that ma’am
Chinenye: Thanks jawe, Galacious.
Other lady: thanks? Seriously, Chinenye? So
you’re sorry comment is going to remove this
stain, right?
She snorted, starring at me.
Chinenye: C’mon Princess let’s get back Inside.
Chinenye placed her arm around her shoulder
and they headed home.
I couldn’t utter a word after the apology. Not
that I didn’t know what to say, but I was
dumbfounded by her beauty. Ne-yo’s ‘When
You’re Mad’ was playing in my head. I could
swear I had never seen such beauty in my life. I
stood there like a statute and watched them
walk back to Chinenye ‘s house. I was brought
back to reality when I heard a voice coming
from the pitch ‘’Galacious, our set!’’.
Throughout the game there was only one name
ringing in my head——-Princess.
Heading back home after the game I met Tunji
who was coming out of my building.
‘’Galacious, how far?’’
‘’ i dey . This one way I see you for our house.
Abeg o, my sister still young o.’’ I accused him.
‘’Kai! I no be Pedophile na.’’ He protested and
continued, ‘’na the new girl I come shadow.’’
‘’Which new girl be that?’’ i asked.
‘’Oh! You don’t know? Good. Her name na
Udenme and an me dey do her parole.’’ He
‘’Udenme? For this house?’’
‘’Yes na. Na Grace’s cousin. But guy, like i said
earlier na me dey do her parole. No go use
home advantage for me.’’
‘’TJ, you? Where you keep Kemi, Angela,
Chinelo. Rita…..’’
‘’Guy bone dat thing. I don’t tell you be that. I
dey go my house.’’
‘’Alright bro, later.’’

To Be Continued…


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