UJU – Episode 3
Written by Amah
It was truly a long journey, I was already wondering if the Lagos is another world, we have being on the road for too long that i started worrying, I was feeling sick, hungry and couldn’t eat anything, the whole journey was making me nauseous, I was tired and weak, I threw up ones anything enters my mouth, Ada told me not to worry we will soon get there, that is just because I have not being on a long journey before, well, she is probably right, have not been on this kind of journey before,
As i look out of the window is as if the leaves were waving at me, I sat close to the window so I clearly saw how all the leaves and trees were waving at me, I placed my hand to the glass window just to wave back, I did it in a way that i won’t be noticed, before i will be termed crazy, probably I’m out of my mind, this journey is so frustrating, Ada was busy eating everything that interest her, I wish i can eat like her too but nothing interest me
I try to focus on something to distract me,
Ada later slept off, there was nothing for me to do as sleep wasn’t coming, I started listening to a conversation between a lady and a guy she just met inside the bus, the lady was very beautiful and dressed so well , they sat close to each other right in front of my own seat, two strangers that just met inside the bus according to their conversation.
the guy was busy buying anything he can see for the lady who kept on collecting and still wasn’t giving him enough attention, probably because people were awake and looks at them sometimes,
After some time almost everyone inside the bus were asleep now except me that was leaning my ear to their low voice conversation, after the lady noticed everybody was asleep she started responding to the young guy well, she looked back and saw that I was bending my head towards their seat she thought I was probably sleeping,
I press my ear very close to there seat so that i can hear them very well, their voices were too low, they talk about their selves, and exchange number and address but the only thing that was useful to me was the lady’s name, she told the guy that her name is Tracy , the young man replied ” beautiful name for a beautiful damsel….” and she blushed.
Me i like the name and that will be my name when i gets to Lagos. Nobody have to know my real name, I will tell Ada my new name if she wakes up
I later slept off and dreamt, were mama was chasing me with a stick calling me “Obianaujunwa, and i was shouting and telling her my name was now Tracy, I was still fighting with mama when Ada tapped me awake, i started thanking God that it was just a bad dream, Ada told me we have gotten to Lagos, and will be coming down in the next bustop, I quickly told her about my new name before i forget, she just laughed and said she was okay calling me Uju, that Uju was also a fine name, but I insisted, she saw how serious i was and said she will try and if she’s not comfortable with it she will return to my normal name,
We finally got down from the bus and entered a taxi, it was another long drive before we finally got to Ada’s place, she has already told me about her room mate, who was standing outside as we got to their place, she welcomed us, it was just a room, three of us one room, kitchen and toilets was shared among the tenants, I expected more from Ada who paraded Herself in the village as if she owns an estate, her roommate introduce herself after we got inside
“I’m Bibi, my full name is Abimbola, but no one knows me with that here, I’m more comfortable with bibi though,
“nice to meet you Tracy, what is your Igbo name, or you don’t have one…?
“you won’t be able to pronounce it, so let’s leave it at Tracy, I like being called Tracy
“okay, no problem Tracy,
Ada was just looking at us and smiling, I already know they were both living a fake lives, and i was so willing to beat them in their fakeness, I never knew that the room mate Ada told me about was even Yoruba girl, she’s was just older than me and Ada who were age mate with 3years, she was 24years, but we all look like age mates,
Ada called me after two days and said
“Uju, let me tell you something very important, this is Lagos and you must shine your eyes very very wel…
“Ada, stop calling me Uju na, I already told you to be calling me Tracy,
“ndoh, (sorry) I forgot, I’m use to Uju, but i will get use to your new identity with time, like i was saying, you have to shine your eyes very well o, because you will meet different kinds of people here, both good and bad, you see Bibi and me, we are hustler, you must hustle to survive, and try and sell yourself well to the public, must people don’t really care about your background, they only buy what you sell to them that is what they hear you say, me, I’m master craft in that, at the end of the day I send something home to my people, they don’t really care what you do for a living but takes in anything you tells them, must responsibility falls down to you ones your people notice you are doing well, you see me back home, all was packaging, nobody knows I’m squatting with Abimbola in face me i face you and you wouldn’t have believed it if i told you because i looked posh, all is packaging, you have alot of responsibility being the first child and you have Opportunity now that you are here to make your family proud of you, if you make enough money if you want to go back to school or start business is all your choice, I’m talking to you as a sister now not as a friend, grab every opportunity you see don’t let it pass you by, me and bibi shares rent and you will join us in the rent ones you start work, and another important thing is try not to shine pass us o… Because i can see that you are desperate for anything, you have not even gotten to Lagos you have already started changing your name to Tracy…hmm…jiriya nwayo” (take it easy o)
As Ada talked she didn’t know i was fully prepared to face whatever i meet, whatever comes my way , I was fully ready, but her last word got me, she’s probably jealous with my new name… And i don’t care, I will just allow her show me the way i can start making money, because it seems I’m at her mercy which won’t be for long.