The NYSC Diaries (Entry 6)

The NYSC Diaries (Entry 6)

So, after a long period of observation, I’ve come to make the most surprising discovery.

The corps members in my orientation camp are unusually tolerant of homosexuality.

Yes, there’s one or two rabid homophobes, but still, on a general ground, homosexuality is just a passing thing for most people here.

One Sunday morning, some of my roommates were discussing and one of them mentioned a dream he had in the night where a guy was giving him head. And, in the dream, he was trying to get him to stop because they were in camp but he couldn’t because he was enjoying it so much. Me that never gets involved in any of the room discussions had to jejely sit my ass down on my bed to listen to this juicy gossip. My roommates were all laughing and commiserating with him on missing out in good head, even if it was in a dream. Then the topic switched to how horny they all were and how much sex they’d have if they’d get the opportunity or when they leave camp. One of them said something about a mutual wanking session and the idea was put to a vote, with most of them clamouring for it. Needless to say, the idea was accepted. However, I never got to know if they did it and how they did it and who’d be doing it with whom.

A few minutes later, one of them finished getting ready for church. In the usual khaki rubbish, of course. As he turned to get his Bible, his butt stuck out in the air. And one of the others rubbed his hand over his derriere and said, “Guy, see all the space wey dey your khaki. You no even get better nyash sef.”

The owner of the nyash retorted that he liked his small ass well enough and that it had many admirers. The others were just busy laughing.

Then one of them said, “But, if we dey talk about nyash, na Mitch get nyash pass for this our room. Person wey lekpa like this still get very noticeable bum-bum.”

And the others all agreed with his statement.

Me, I was beyond shook!

I don’t even talk to these people. I don’t know how they know my name. Yet, they had apparently been sizing up my bum-bum behind my back. Wassaldis?!

***

One fateful evening, I went to have my bath. Due to the many stories I’d heard before I came to camp about the abundant spate of thievery in camps, I always went to bathe with my waist bag. I’d hang the waist bag on the shower and have my bath, after which I’d don it back on and return to my room. However, this particular evening, I was rushing for our band rehearsal and I completely forgot the bag hanging on the shower as I rushed back to my room to get dressed. It was when I’d finished dressing up that I realized I’d forgotten my waist bag in the bathroom. I hastened back to the bathroom and, to my utmost dismay, my waist bag wasn’t there.

Ah! Aíye mì, témi bá mi! All I owned – except my phone sha, which for some reason, I’d left with a friend – was inside that bag. I began to pray to the Orishas to have mercy on me and restore my bag, cash and ATM card. I wasn’t about to go through the rest of camp broke as fuck.

I managed to make it through that evening’s rehearsal, and when it was time for dinner, James took me out to Mami market where he got dinner for us both. Yes, he’d become my camp boyfriend like that. Lol. He also kept telling me that the bag would turn up, that I should just keep my ears sharp during devotion the next morning when missing stuff were announced.

During the morning devotion the next morning, it was all I could do to not become a quivering mess on the parade ground. James seemed to sense how distraught I was at the chance that some unscrupulous person had found the bag, taken its contents and tossed it away. (I’d insinuated as much the previous night during our conversation. It comes with the territory of being me: I always expect the worst.) He did the unexpected. He hugged me from behind and told me to just breathe. We stood that way in the darkness of those very early hours till the camp PRO started to announce stuff that were missing. Immediately, I perked up and began to listen in earnest. Throughout the time he was mentioning lost and found items, James and I still held hands. However, the PRO didn’t mention a missing waist bag and soon moved on to other announcements.

When that happened, I tugged my hand away from James’s to allow myself wallow in my misery. But he didn’t let me. Wrapping his arms around me again, he reassured me that he was going to be there for me, that we were in this together and other heart-melting stuff like that. (They obviously dinnor tell him that I’m a stone-hearted bitch.) After he let go of me, I walked away to another side of our platoon. I just wanted to be alone.

Then our camp commandant arrived. This was a bit of a surprise as he rarely ever came for our morning parades. He made a few announcements and warned our resident drunkards against getting drunk in Mami market. Then he said, “Yesterday, someone forgot their waist bag somewhere. If you know you’re looking for your waist bag, come out.”

I wasn’t listening to what he was saying, lost as I was in my thoughts. Next thing I felt was James at my side, telling me to go out. That was when I heard the commandant making the announcement again. I quickly scurried out of the line to the front.

When the man saw me, he asked me if I could identify the items in the bag. I said I could, unknowingly wringing my hands. He noticed and said, “This one we you dey do like woman, abeg no faint here oh. Oya, go and meet your RSM and explain the items in the bag to him.”

As I was about to leave, another of the soldiers, Officer Yusuf, stopped me.

Now, for some background. I’m a pretty decent catwalk coach and because of that, my platoon commander had asked me to train Nabila and Toyin for the Miss NYSC competition. We’d been having our catwalk sessions behind the soldiers’ hostel in the few minutes between morning parade and breakfast. During one of our sessions, all the soldiers in the hostel, save the RSM and Officer J (the band director), came out to watch me walk. They were all really fun to have around and kept complimenting my catwalk skills. Some of them even asked whether catwalking was what I studied in school. (In a really cool way, of course.) Officer Yusuf was one of those who openly praised my skills and kept saying more people in the camp should be like me. I just chucked it all down to normal extolment and carried on with what I was doing.

Little did I know…

Officer Yusuf walked up to the camp commandant and began to sing my praises to the man, telling him how I was the best catwalk-er in the camp. And, to prove it, he told me to catwalk from the commandant to the RSM. Commandant na turned to me in anticipation of the kain catwalk.

Ah! Who did I offend in this life?

I tried to talk my way out of it, but they weren’t having it. Officer Yusuf kept saying, “Show them the style,” like that was supposed to be a trigger for me to start catwalking. I wanted to refuse when I heard my inner bitch’s voice singing to me in Beyoncé’s voice, “If you’ve got it, flaunt it. Make them see and want it.” That was all the cue I needed.

Taking a deep breath, I went on my toes and fucking Naomi Campbell-walked my way up to the RSM. The whole camp began to whoop, with some silly people catcalling at me. Some unfortunate idiots were snapping their fingers in disgust and booing at me, but they were quickly shut down by the others who were enjoying my runway diva act. When I got to the RSM, I turned around and took a bow, and the commandant, RSM and other officers began clapping for me, with some of the other officers shouting at the entire camp to clap for me.

After the applause, I turned back to the RSM and described the contents of my bag to him. And, praise black Gay Jesus, the bag was mine. He handed it over to me, cash intact and everything else in order. And I took James out to Mami market for a thank-you breakfast, if that’s a thing. 😂😂

You’d think that no more drama could possibly come my way in this camp, and that the whole camp would have been sensitized to the reality of my being gay by my action that morning.

But, boy, are you in for a surprise!

Written by Mitch

Print Friendly, PDF & Email
Previous K'osidim n'obi (Entry 11)
Next THE THING ABOUT LOVE

About author

You might also like

Series (Non-Fiction) 35 Comments

RANTINGS OF A RANDOM (Gay) NIGERIAN (Entry 54)

The other day, I attended a meeting with my boss. It was a business meeting of bigwigs and I was essentially just a bag man there, mainly observing and not

Print Friendly, PDF & Email
Series (Non-Fiction) 7 Comments

Unknown to ME: Sorry, Not Sorry

Previously on Unknown to ME: After a period of hunting, I finally got a job. But it came with an added bonus – a reservation for one in Heartbreak Hotel.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email
Series (Non-Fiction) 69 Comments

KIZITO SPEAKS V

Ever gotten to a point where the phrase “You are cute” has no effect whatsoever on you, where if feels like just any other phrase. In my case, it annoys

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

11 Comments

  1. Q
    May 06, 07:19 Reply

    This suspense though

  2. Black Dynasty
    May 06, 08:14 Reply

    Eagerly looking forward to the next part!!

    It’s pretty cool that a good chunk of people in the camp are quite accepting.

  3. Tasty
    May 06, 10:38 Reply

    Mitch mitch… Chai… hahahahahah… bring it on bitch… show em what you got…

  4. Someone's Someone
    May 06, 12:36 Reply

    Such a refreshing read. Thanks darling Mitch. I think I’m falling in love with your virtual personality.

  5. Malik
    May 06, 16:11 Reply

    Keep the stories coming Mitch, you made a boy having a bad day smile. 😘

  6. Omiete
    May 06, 18:03 Reply

    There’s no way this is real. Anyways biko to say what everyone is thinking, did you have sex in this camp? Especially with a soldier

  7. demi
    May 06, 23:42 Reply

    Such an enjoyable read.. Wish I had much gut as I can catwalk for days…

  8. Temi
    May 13, 19:48 Reply

    A beautiful piece…
    I could relate to what you were saying Mitch in every entry published though I’m currently in my third year in the University.
    I’ve enjoyed every entry 👌🏾

  9. Starr Ed
    June 27, 20:56 Reply

    In my NYSC days too, I just do things hoping that someone would notice me and tell me something naughty, I was hoping I would meet a cool Hausa dude, yeah Hausa because I like them like that. Till now, I’m yet to meet one.

Leave a Reply