The NYSC Diaries (Entry 2)

The NYSC Diaries (Entry 2)

4:45 am.

Beagle sounds! Loud. Fucking loud. Like, screaming-right-in-my-ears loud. Thankfully, I’d taken my bath around 3:30 am and was already dressed. I just wanted to get some more rest and had unknowingly dozed off again. I awoke with a start and hurriedly put on my shoes. Opened my box and brought out my waist bag where my phone was and secured it around my waist. As I walked out of the hostel, I took my phone out of the bag and was surprised to see a text message from an unsaved number.

It read: It was nice spending time with you again. When would you be free so we can hang out again?

I immediately knew it was him. However, I had no intention of being sucked back into the vortex of that weird-ass relationship we had. So, I ignored the text.

During devotion and announcements, I had to stay with my platoon. And the Orishas decided to widen my social circle a little more. I stood next to two really irritatingly loud and mushy people. Toyin and James. Toyin was all over James, and when she saw me, she was like, “Finally, another fine boy in my platoon.”

Leaving James, she sidled up to me and began talking to me. In my head, I laughed. Like, babe missed road. By far! I sha was courteous and before long, James had joined in the conversation. Within minutes, I found that I had an even deeper connection to both of them than I did with Praise, Elizabeth and Victor. We liked the same kinds of music (read: we’re fucking music connoisseurs), watched the same shows (including Sense8, Game of Thrones and How To Get Away With Murder), were wide readers and most of all, shared a quirky sense of humour.

Everyone in my platoon called Toyin and James a couple and they acted like one. In the few minutes we spent together, we suddenly became a throuple. And, surprisingly to me, I was kinda cool with it. No romantic interests, of course. Still, it was fun chattering away with them in whispers till it was time for me to go for the band rehearsal in preparation of our Swearing In Ceremony. I was about to leave when James blocked me. Wondering why he was standing in my way, I made to move aside to continue on my way when I noticed that he had his phone in his hand, stretched out towards me with the dialer on. I chuckled as I keyed in my number and ran off to join the band.

The Swearing In Ceremony was hectic. I mean, we stood under the sun from 8.30 am till past 1 pm. The flag party, the parade and the band party suffered the most. For the first time since I came to the camp, I began to regret joining the band. The corpers who were not on parade were free to misbehave, to sit, to even go to Mami market and get stuff for themselves. We, on the other hand, suffered the full glare of the scorching sun. It got to a point where several people started having heat strokes. First, it was a girl in the flag party. Then it was a boy in the front row of the parade. Then it was a girl at the second row of the parade. Several others followed suit. Then, a few minutes to the end of the event, it was me.

First thing I felt was like my stomach had sunk to my knees. Next thing, my head began to spin. I immediately took off the drum as my stomach began to heave. Thankfully, our band commander was quite the understanding fellow. He gave me permission to leave and supported me to the Red Cross Stand. There, I had my reality check.

One of the Red Cross officials had rushed to help me into their tent. As he laid me on one of the stretcher beds they had there, I caught a glimpse of two people cozied up together just under a tree close to the tent. And as the man attended to me, I answered him while surreptitiously glancing at the couple. When the man was done with me and I was left alone on the stretcher, I turned my full attention to them. The girl was well endowed. Full chest, full hips, full everything. Sitting next to a bearded guy wearing sunglasses, her head on his shoulders, both of them made a striking picture of coziness and romance. When he pecked her forehead, I felt my heart fall along with the rest of me that had fallen earlier.

Because it was Pedro.

The girl seemed to have made a request from him because he took his glasses off and got up. And just then, our eyes met. And held.

I could already see the wheels spinning in his head, spinning the “It’s not what you think” line. He bent down toward the girl, apparently to take permission from her, and then made his way over to me. By this time, the Red Cross official was done with me and I was alone in the tent while he went to stand outside the tent. Pedro walked in and began to tell me, essentially, the same lines I saw running through his head.

It’s not what you think… We just met here and she –

In that moment, I’d had enough. I wasn’t ready to have any more of those games he’d played with me. Not now. Not again.

Cue bitch face!

I smiled and told him I had no problem with him being with his friends, adding at the end, “After all, we’re here to meet with new people and make new friends. I definitely don’t want to monopolize your time and I wouldn’t want you to monopolize mine either.”

With that, I bade him farewell and returned to my much-needed rest from the sun.

Maybe I was a bit harsh, but frankly, I didn’t care. I was not going to be sucked back into the vortex of foolish feelings, especially when they’re not returned.

Written by Mitch

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9 Comments

  1. Fool
    April 05, 07:59 Reply

    The bugle annoyed my soul too. Every morning was like ‘make it stop, Lord!’

    • No
      April 05, 12:20 Reply

      I honestly wanted to ram that bugle up the bugler’s a**

  2. Bloomfield
    April 05, 09:17 Reply

    Beautiful piece. Can I write for you sometime?

  3. Mariposa
    April 05, 16:50 Reply

    Mitch… Hope this is not the end Biko…

  4. Leon
    April 05, 18:46 Reply

    I want something more Mitch, hope this isn’t the final end??

  5. Scarlet_witch
    April 05, 23:52 Reply

    …..and just like that, our little love story got nipped at the bud. Can’t believe I was itching for a ‘love at last part 2’ only to get this.
    Mtcheew
    *Resumes my amebo business*

  6. Omiete
    April 06, 00:51 Reply

    harsh ke!!! when i saw cue bitch face i was expecting some Electra Abundance shade. That drama ehn is what nobody needs in life

  7. Sleek Creamy
    April 06, 16:32 Reply

    Please there has to be a continuation of this story..
    And please make the next one lengthy…

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