Life’s Symphony – Episode 1

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This Story will be posted evenings every weekday

By Idris Adesina Yettocome

The ringing phone brought him back to reality. He looked at the time on the wall and it told him that he had gone for twenty five minutes! He got up and ambled his way to his bed to pick the phone which was ringing for the second time. He looked at the screen, it was Funmi, his fiance. But can he call her his fiance? With all this hullaballoo that is greeting their relationship. ”Whatever it takes,” he thought, ”Funmi will be mine.”

He picked the call.

”Salam Alaykum dear,” Funmi said

”Are you still sleeping?”

”Wa alaykum Salam, I have been awake a long while ago jare. I was just not near the phone, that was why it rang out the first time you called.” He answered.

”Okay then. I called to inform you that I will be going out today and won’t be able to come to your place as said.” Funmi dropped.

His expression changed from that of a smile and took on a grimmer form.

”Kilode?” he queried

”Ibo lo n lo? Why today Funmi? All through the week we had been busy at the office and never had time for each other. Eni ti a tun raaye, you are going out again. Tomorrow is the first Sunday of the month, we shall be at a programme, so when do I get to see my fiance and have a heart to heart tete a tete with her? Oga o” he poured out sadly.

”Ma binu sweetheart mi. It was not my fault now. I didn’t want to go but I had to for both of us.” She pleaded.

”What do you mean by ‘for both of us’?” he asked again smelling rat.

”It’s our M. D.” She said her tone changing drastically from pleading to that of anguish. ”He said I have to accompany him to a luncheon at Eko Hotels”.

”When I said I am busy at home today, he just told me that I should tell you that we can both expect our jobs to be terminated on Monday morning.” She let out almost crying.

He sighed. He didn’t know what else to say. But he said:

”Okay love, just be careful as usual. We will weather this storm through. So ti gbo? I trust you sha. Try to have fun and don’t forget that I love you.”

”I love you too Ola. In Shaa Allaah, we will have a way soonest.” She said before ending the call.

Ola sat on the floor of his room after the call and went back to where he came from before the call- oblivion. He was lost in thought. He thought of a lot of things. Why he? He queried. What did he do to deserve this from the God he had and is conscientously serving? Why is his company’s M. D his foe? How will he get out of this unscathed without losing his first and only love?

”God, why now? Wa ko mi moose o,” he said aloud coming back to the present…

Ola’s journey in life had been everything but smooth. He had grown up in a family of six, two parents and four siblings. He is the first child and son of Mr and Mrs Adeona. His father had been a civil servant before he was laid off by one of the numerous military government in Nigeria. Since the lay off, things moved from good to bad and then worse for the family. His father had resorted to business which went awry. His mother sold little things with which they kept body and soul together. So, when they moved from a four bedroom flat to a room and parlour in a face me I face you building in one of the town’s suburbs, his life was to change from the little butter boy to a rural rugged boy.

If God makes you bald, He will surely compensate you with a beard. Such was Ola’s case. What his parents lacked in wealth, their children had in brilliance and obedience. They were contented with whatever their parents, especially their mother could offer them. Their father on his part, is mostly AWOL from home. So, all or most of what Ola had in his brain were updated by his mum.

At school, he mind his business and was even made the head boy in his primary school. He was the cynosure of his teachers’ eyes. He won many laurels for his school but he had a flaw, even till date, he hates Mathematics. Give him figures, and he will be there till eternity! He is just too weak in it.

The trend followed him to his secondary school, Remo Secondary School, Sagamu. He was a day student because his mother could not afford the high hostel fee. Hence, he would trek the long distance to school and when the purse allows, he had the luxury of taking public transport.

Such was Ola’s background and growing up. It was ingrained in his brain that he can not have anything except education. His mother helped him by buying his textbooks, Maths and English. Nothing other than his books was his priority.

But his life was to change one day…

”Life changing events never alert you before they carry out their activities,” a colleague once said. This was the case with Ola.

All along, he had always been around girls but had not for once given a thought to them until that day. Why? His mother’s words.

They kept ringing in his ears, brain and mind. She had said to him almost on a daily basis that ”you should face your studies o. You know that we are struggling to make ends meet. Don’t go near any girl for she will get pregnant o and if that happens, your education and hers will stop and you will suffer the child o. So ti gbo? (have you heard?)”

Hence he lived in dread of the opposite sex until he was in J. S. S three when he learnt about reproduction in school. All day long he thought about what the teacher had said in class, linking it to things he could notice in himself and even his mum! To back it up, the Social Studies teacher came in the second day to teach a topic Ola knew well, The Family, but that day, the teacher made it so practical that he went into the science part of it. Ola left the school that day a changed man. Then he understood what the bad boys in his class, Tunde and Biola, had always been doing with those girls who are willing. There and then, his dread for girls evaporated!

Ola then made up his mind to have his own girlfriend but that which he would not touch down below. Only just to call her mine, he thought to himself.

He began to attract the girls who had always been there just that he didn’t notice them. He was always around them now. If he wasn’t in his class, he will be in another class in the midst of girls. So that started the journey for him but there was no confidence to take it further than the platonic levels he found himself with them.

Ola couldn’t talk to them, and he had no male friends to help him. The ones he had only were there because he taught them and they copied him in assignments. They were bullies who bullied him into submission because his bane was that he was the shortest boy in the class, even in his whole set. He was so short that even juniors mistake him for a junior. It was bad for him. But fate always has a way of changing things for him….

…to be continued

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