The NYSC Diaries (Entry 4)

The NYSC Diaries (Entry 4)

What will the son of man not see in this camp? From both the sly, irritating, funny and not-so-funny comments that I have been managing to take in my stride, to the nonsense food and heat and parades and annoying environment.

And now, this!

Ha!

Okay, so I take my bath twice daily. I don’t care whether I’m at home or elsewhere; it’s a habit and I’ve been sticking to it, even here in camp. In keeping with my very properly conservative nature, I don’t bathe outside like the other animals that call themselves boys in this camp. Yes, we only have two bathrooms, one attached to Hostel A and the other, a separate building of its own. That’s where those of us in Hostel B take our baths, that is, those who don’t take their bath outside.

So, on this fateful day, after evening parade, I went to bathe. I always fetch water immediately after taking my bath in the morning so I don’t have to queue with others. That way, I usually get to use the 3-man stall that serves as a bathroom all alone. Unfortunately for me, while I was taking my clothes off in the bathroom, I heard someone making his way towards the bathroom. I sincerely prayed to the Orishas that he was only coming to use the toilet not to take his bath. But, very clearly, the Orishas have sworn that they’d do the exact opposite of everything I ask them here.

Mister Man walked into the bathroom section with his bucket of water. Now, the bathroom, like I previously said, is just one room with three non-functional shower heads that serve as where people hang their clothes to take their bath. I was at the extreme right end. Uncle that came in walked to shower head number 2 – right next to me, right in my fucking personal space – and began to put up his things. I heaved a heavy sigh internally and focused on my bath. I didn’t say anything to him. Not even hi. I didn’t even bother to take a look at his face. I mean, everything about me was screaming hostility, so I didn’t expect what happened next.

“Don’t you know how to greet your elders?” he asked.

Ah, mogbe!

I ignored the comment and continued with my bath. Next thing I felt was a hand tapping me on the small of my back, precariously close to my buttocks. I jerked away from the touch just as my head whipped around to see who dared overstep his boundaries by touching my body.

I gasped in shock. The man was old enough to be my father. Pot-bellied, short, insidiously ugly, he was the picture of what happens when a massively, untalented six-year-old is forced to mould something with clay and the effigy is brought to life. His insidious ugliness wasn’t even my problem at that moment. It was the fact that he was wearing the white shorts that showed he was a corps member.

This my papa mate follow be corps member, I thought in my head just as he repeated his question.

I gave him a withering look, which he couldn’t possibly miss or misinterpret, and brusquely retorted that I don’t have conversations in the bathroom. And especially not with strangers. With that, I turned back to my bath.

Uncle seemed to get the message as he turned to his own bath. Barely a minute later, he asked me which platoons were playing against each other at the time. I didn’t reply. Again, Uncle tapped me on the small of my back, his hand even closer to the swell of my buttocks than the first time, and repeated his question.

I retorted in a hiss that I had no idea.

Then he said, “Face me when you’re talking to me.”

Inside me, I was like: Ah, Orunmilla ati oya, ba mi soro! Epp me not to break this man’s head for inside here.

Before I could react, he grabbed my waist and spun me around to face him.

Egba mi! This man clearly dinnor know who he’s touching laidis, fa.

As I turned around, I told him, very politely, not to touch me again. He seemed to sense the rage simmering beneath my cool exterior and he quickly turned to face his bath.

That has to be the end of it, right?

Wrong.

I was just about to rinse my body of the soap suds I’d lathered on it when he spoke again. “See as your body soft like woman own. You sure say you no be homo? You even dey speak supri-supri like say you no be man. Come, you be homo?”

I took my time and rinsed off my face. Then, fury pouring out of my every pore, I turned on him. “You know, I would have thought that at your age, you’d know what is appropriate and what isn’t. But clearly, seeing as you are in NYSC camp with people old enough to be your grandchildren, I was expecting way too much from you. You come at me, looking like the castaway offspring of a chimpanzee and an orangutan, with no respect for personal boundaries or even for my person, and you presume to question me? You must be mad! You think it’s everybody you can bring your madness around?”

He cut in, angrily, “Na me you dey insult like this? You know say I dey old enough to –”

“To be my father?” I cut him off scathingly. “Well, thank god you’re not. Because I would be ashamed of calling such an ugly, unmannered asshole like you my father. You’re asking if I’m gay? Wetin your hand dey find go my nyash for you to know say e soft? Why you go dey touch my body? Abi you don chop craze? Dem dey turn your pot for coven?”

He recoiled from the heat in my words, clearly shocked beyond belief.

But, Lord, I wasn’t done. Not even close!

“See eh, if bomb dey your head, just near me again this night. If them no carry your dead body comot for here, know say no be me dey talk. Ozu udele nwuru anwu!”

With that, I turned back to my water and continued with my bath. From the silence on his end, the Uncle was clearly thinking about his life. A few minutes later, as I walked out of the bathroom, he said to me, “My pikin, no too vex about –”

I didn’t even let him finish. With a marvelous hiss that covered his guttural voice, I sauntered out of the building.

These people think I came to this camp to play with them. Na better gbese they don jam. Nonsense and elemental magic!

Written by Mitch

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28 Comments

  1. Sim
    April 23, 07:10 Reply

    Nne, Adanna.. Biko sofiri sofiri, I’m getting scared this ur sharp mouth go put u for trouble. I was getting scared of what the man may do.. a relieve he did nothing beyond being stupid.

  2. Miles
    April 23, 07:17 Reply

    😂😂😂😂 the guts… I hope to start my own camp series when I enter in June. Again, Mitch, na the old man you settle down the speak better English for?…. I bet he didn’t even understand all that grammar. Next time start and finish him with pidgin!

  3. Mandy
    April 23, 07:38 Reply

    Mitch, you’re such an angry world person. Hay God. 😂😂😂

  4. Peace
    April 23, 07:39 Reply

    “he was the picture of what happens when a massively, untalented six-year-old is forced to mould something with clay and the effigy is brought to life.”

    Hei! Mitch see how you described somebody’s child bikonu. Oya sorry! Ndo! He won’t try it again. ~Iwe gị da jụọ~

  5. Fred
    April 23, 08:56 Reply

    What is “supri supri” oooo? 😂😂

    • trystham
      April 23, 19:03 Reply

      It’s supposed to be derogatory description of good quality English

  6. Higwe
    April 23, 09:15 Reply

    Men shower outside in camp 😋😋😁

    Why the fuck did I skip camp ? !

    Imagine a three weeks free subscription to live porn 🤣🤣🤣

    • BRYAN PETERS
      April 23, 09:29 Reply

      Trust me, it’s not what you think. The entire messiness and level of frustration in the environment makes it impossible to admire even the most marvellosly sculpted bodies. You really just want to get the whole experience over and done with. At least that’s how it was for me

      • Higwe
        April 23, 12:24 Reply

        You don’t say !

        Must be one hella bad situation …that will make me not to ogle a well sculpted body 😎

  7. Gozie
    April 23, 09:38 Reply

    Lol. Mitch u mad o….. I swear I died. I wish I fit get mouth like you but whenever I vex na then all d gods of stammering go carry dem kaya dey do meeting for my mouth.

    • Pink Panther
      April 23, 15:42 Reply

      You stammer when you’re angry? Lol. That thing used to happen to me. Worse sef, I’ll not only be stammering, I’ll have tears in my eyes too. Had to work on it, Or maybe I just matured out of that. I’m not sure what happened but I one day realized I’m not a stammerer when I’m angry.

    • Mark
      April 25, 09:00 Reply

      Me too oo! It’s really frustrating.

  8. bamidele
    April 23, 12:04 Reply

    Honestly speaking, I don’t know why everything about Nigeria has to be an extreme struggle. Wh y don’t they stop the NYSC if they know they could not provide enough facilities. In my opinion, there should be some different career orientation that would be earlier than this old fashioned one. But then, Nigeria is generally lagging behind in so many thing, so NYSC is not a surprise at all.
    Also, the old man’s character shows how gullible many of our adults are in Nigeria. Not only gullible but social problem, and inability to mind their own business. At his age he was doing NYSC, and yet, not concentrating on his life. Shame!

  9. No
    April 23, 13:11 Reply

    I’m a very chilled out and laid back person but Lord knows that “can’t you greet?” statement brings out unknowable demons from the depths of my soul.. I would’ve used a bucket to reset his brains.

  10. Delle
    April 23, 13:27 Reply

    🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣 my goodness me 🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣

  11. Horace
    April 23, 14:46 Reply

    Why would you even want to have a conversation with a stranger in the bathroom…

    Honestly Mitch is such a mood.😂😂

    • trystham
      April 23, 19:06 Reply

      Beats me. Conversations in privies are a no-no. I’m too busy trying not to inhale the stench from my own shit, or too busy scrubbing my body hard

  12. Patrick
    April 23, 15:00 Reply

    Speaking of baths in NYSC camps:
    The very first night I arrived in the Abuja camp, there was a queue in the bathroom.
    And then to my utter disbelief, a guy suggested that two people should go into one bathroom to save time.
    Incredulously, most of the guys agreed to this.
    That was five years ago and I was much too self-conscious to partake in the bathroom pairing up.
    And I kinda regret I didn’t.

    • Pink Panther
      April 23, 17:06 Reply

      I don’t think I ever would’ve. And I attended a boarding school. Heck, in my university days, when I was staying off-campus, I was part of this clique of (straight) boys who liked to bathe together when they were at mine. I was adamant that I’d only ever bathe alone, and they used to find that puzzling

      • Higwe
        April 23, 17:55 Reply

        Were you scared you were gonna pop a boner or you were just being self conscious ?

        Personally I love to be naked ….I don’t see the big deal in being naked.
        It’s even more exciting when you have an audience .
        Whether they’re appraising you amorously or curiously … it’s kinda of a real kick !

        I take it you don’t make nude video calls either ?😎 ….sighs deeply …

        • Pink Panther
          April 24, 05:33 Reply

          Grow a boner? Na. These boys were like brothers to me. No. I was being self conscious. I am comfortable with my nakedness. I get naked all the time, as long as I don’t have an audience. That’s the part that makes me uncomfortable.
          Of course you love being naked. lol. I never met a body builder/model who doesn’t like stripping off to his birthday suit.

          And what’s it to you if I do nude video calls? Planning on calling sometime? 😀

  13. BRYAN PETERS
    April 23, 15:27 Reply

    But we really have a problem with boundaries in this country sha. This very afternoon, I was at the state secretariat and this man was telling a story about corpers and went “when I see these young ones…” and he hit my back and was rubbing it and I was like wtf!!!?? I don’t even know you.

  14. Az
    April 23, 15:57 Reply

    You seem angry

    • Delle
      April 23, 22:36 Reply

      Because he told an intrusive, no-regard-for-privacy-even-in-private-places guy off?

  15. Blue
    April 25, 15:05 Reply

    Mitch you’re a handful of craze 😂😂😂😂

  16. […] So, I got up from my bed and took the bucket of water I’d fetched for my morning bath and made my way to the bath house. (You know, the one I talked about in my last entry.) […]

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