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Naijamedialog Pointing Hand





by Daniel known as Senator Daniel

Where do I start? Maybe right at the beginning back in April 2002, seventeen years ago, when I finally got into the university of Lagos. A lanky kid that dressed as good as any kid on campus but had no confidence in self. Honestly, even though I wished to have a very interesting life, I never knew it would turn out much more fun than I had expected.
I had been preparing for this for years, so once I saw my name on that admission list
at the top floor of Art Block building, I activated my plan right away. What was my plan? Well, as I said before, I was a very reserved individual, but I wanted to have fun and be among the cool kids on campus, so I needed to do something outstanding to stand out. What I did was to use all my savings to buy the latest clothes. I also was lucky to have cousins in America who sent me clothes regularly, so I was more than ready when school resumed. I remember having at least thirty new shirts; which meant I could go a month and the half of lectures without repeating a shirt.
The first weeks I stole my dad’s Gold Rolex watch and wore it everyday. The watch was given to him as a gift for twenty-five years of service at a popular Nigerian bank. I didn’t care how much my dad worked to get that gold watch; I just wanted to be popular. When I started attracting the wrong crowd, I returned the watch and toned things down a notch. Then I met my posse.
There was Sope, the opposite of me when it comes to personality. I still don’t know how we clicked. I guess we connected because I needed someone in my corner that could amplify what I had inside and bring out the party animal in me. A few inches less and Sope would have been considered a short guy, but he had the heart of a giant. He had the kind of dark complexion that would make you automatically think he was a bad guy without even knowing him personally. He was also down for anything I was down for, and I liked that.
A few days of being friends with Sope, and we met Kunle and Babatope. It was cool having a namesake, and I liked that when girls wanted to different us, they called me Tall K, and called the other Kunle, Fair K. Fair K was a cool, quiet guy like me, and ladies loved him because he was quite good looking. Babatope had same urge I had to be a popular kid on campus, but his own determination was ten times mine, and he went too far some times. He was almost as tall as me, wore glasses, and looked like a nerd. This made it worse for him to achieve his dreams.
We met the last guy in our team a little later. His name was Dare, a loner. Dare was in between being chubby and buff. He was a reserved kid, but loved music. This fact connected us, as I had just found someone that loved the rapper Nas, just as much as I did; little did I know that we would also end up liking the same girl in the near future.
Me, Sope, Kunle, Babatope, and Dare were the five man pack; a mix of different characters. I would say this was what made my university days interesting; I had a hard guy, a chick magnet, an adventurous guy, and a music lover as my friends.
We were all in the same department; there were about seventy of us in our class, so it took me a little while to know everyone. But I would never forget the first time I saw her. Who am I talking about? Deborah; the girl that I had in the grasp of my hands, but messed things up and ended up chasing d--n near half of my school life.
We were having a class and the lecturer had asked her a question; she got up and spoke in the sweetest voice I had heard. Debby had a British accent, and the way she smiled while answering that question melted my heart. She was about 5ft6, slender, but busty. She had on a black Nike knapsack, and had her hair knotted into two ponytails. I can even remember the sky blue short sleeve shirt she had on that day.
I knew I had to get Debby, but how? I was a shy guy, and never had experience with girls, thanks to my six years in a boys’ secondary school.
Sope and I lived in the same area and used to go home together. During one of our long rides home, I told him how much I liked debby. I don’t know how the conversation ended up being about shapes of boobs. Sope had gone to a higher institution before coming over to Unilag, so he was a lot more experienced than I was, even though we were about the same age. He had told me about things that made my heart beat fast from excitement. I was in my late teens, a virgin, but with raging hormones. I wanted to experience it all…I wanted to go all the way.
The first few weeks of school were filled with registration activities, orientation, seminars, and a couple of lectures here and there. At free periods, I would go to the back of the class with Sope to buy Gala and La Casera, and marvel at how boys would smoke so freely. Although I was never really a fan of cigarettes, I loved the idea of freedom. Freedom to do anything you wanted, as long as you were not hurting anyone. This was like the preliminary to adulthood and I loved it.
On one of my visits to the back of the class, I met with a few of our other classmates, and while talking about music Debby came by to buy La Casera. One of my course mates, omari walked up to flirt with her for a bit before she walked off. I felt sad immediately. Why wasn’t I like that? I thought to myself. Why couldn’t I just walk up to Debby and talk to her like Omari just did. I was same height with Omari, and just as good looking as, but I was too shy; a handsome guy with a low self esteem.
As I walked back to class that day feeling miserable, I overhead my other classmates arguing about who was going to get Debby first. I sure don’t stand a chance with these guys, I remember thinking to myself. She probably doesn’t even know I exist. I concluded that day I was going to kill my dreams of getting Debby and put my focus on something else.
Sope’s had a couple of friends from the polytechnic he had attended before getting into Unilag, so he sometimes wondered off with them. Fair K, Babatope, and Dare were trying to transfer to another department in our second year, and they needed at least a 4.0 GPA to do that by the end of 100 level, so they were always studying together after classes. So, there were days I would be all by myself, hanging around the corridors before the next class.
One of those lonely days, I was leaning on the concrete balcony of my department’s corridor, reading an old Sidney Sheldon book I had stolen from my dad’s room the day before. I wasn’t really a book lover, but I had watched the movie adaption of the book as a kid, and just wanted to enjoy some nostalgic moments. I hadn’t even made it through the first chapter when I noticed someone walk past me, stop, and walk back. When I looked up, I saw Debby standing right there in front of me. My heart skipped a bit.
“Hi…Can I see the book you are reading?” She asked in her high-pitched voice. After clearing my throat and greeting her, I handed the book over to her. I watched her closely and could tell from the look on her face that she felt like she had just found a rare gem. If Tomorrow Comes was released in 1985 and had immediately become one of the most successful books in Mr. Sheldon’s career. The book was published when we were both babies, but here it was, connecting us.
She asked if she could read it after I was done, I said no problem. She walked off, but came back and asked for my name. I told her, and she begged me to please look for her when I was done reading the book. I said I would. She walked off, only to stop and walk back to me again, with a big smile on her face asking if she could get the book from me that day. She said she was a fast reader, and would have it back for me in a few days. Who was I to say no to the girl of my dreams. I gave her the book, and just like that, we became an item. Without doing any work, I got Debby.

To be continued

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