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Daniel known as Senator Daniel

The Red Sand Incidence
Second semester started off slow. Some days, we would have just one lecturer come in, and the rest of the day would be spent talking to friends. A few people had gotten phones over the short holiday, but at least ninety percent of us were still phoneless. Not like now when you could play candy crush on your phone, chat on whatsapp, or read stories on Nairaland; back then, you were forced to actually interacted with people around you.
I was quite a reserved individual, but I turned to an extrovert whenever I met someone that shared the same taste in music as me. It was 2002, the height of the Nas and Jay Z beef. Most days, it would be Dare and I, arguing with Jay Z fans on why Nas was a better rapper. We would argue till we got all sweaty. Girls no longer existed to me; I just listened to Nas’s Stillmatic album all day on my Discman, and looked for someone new I could turn to Nas fan like me.
After classes, Sope, Dare, Babatope and I would go to over to fair Kunle’s room in Sodeinde Hall as it was the closest to class, and we would listen to Nas’s One Mic on repeat, getting hyped at the part in the second verse were he raps, ‘There’s nothing in our way; they bust, we bust, they rush, we rush.” Or we would listen to Nas’s Smokin song, reciting the part of the song where he says, “Do it like this niggas, right hand in the air. Ball it to a fist and put it over your heart. Now let’s say it all together, let the ceremony start. I shall- stay real stay true stay holding figures. Never put a b---h over my niggas. I shall never, cooperate with the law. Never snake me, I always hold you down in war.”
Saying those words out now, sounds more like a cult initiation, but truth be told asides Sope, we were all mommy’s boys at the time. That part of the song just gave us a sense of brotherhood, and it lasted all through our years in Unilag. Really, at the time, I just wanted a strong distraction from girls, and the whole Hip Hop disciple thing was working like magic for me. My confidence level also went up because, one, I never had to worry about girls again, and two, people respected my deep knowledge of Hip Hop music. I was making new friends daily.
Georgie was one of my new friends; a rap music enthusiast like me and yet the smartest kid in class. He drove a white Benz 200, and he stayed in the same Sodeinde Hall with fair Kunle. I was now on campus, in a hall called Newest Hall, and Georgie would come over to see Sope and I at night some times. One evening, he came over to play a new Hip Hop tape he had just gotten. It was a rapper named Canibus, and the guy was rapping two verses at the same time. It was nothing like what I had ever heard. It was me, Sope, Georgie and two of his friends in the Benz listening to the song, and passing around a pack of Don Simon Vino Tinto red wine.
One of Georgie’s friends suggested we go to Red Sand, and after a few minutes of deliberations amongst ourselves, a unanimous decision was reached. Georgie fired up the engine of his classic Benz, and we headed out to red sand. Where was red sand? It was an abandoned football field on campus where boys go to smoke weed. The clay soil present in the place gave it the name red sand. Although I wasn’t a smoker, I was not a mood killer either. So, I just held on to the pack of Don Simon in my hand, knowing that was what I would be nursing while everyone was passing the weed around.
The place was close to Georgie’s hall, and after dropping everyone off, he drove to his hall, parked the Benz, and came back on foot to join us.
I enjoyed the beautiful twilight view in front of me- watching the sun go down from where I sat by goal post, sipping my drink and talking Hip Hop with my friends. The field was very large, and it had swamp bushes to the right, with the school’s sports center walls behind us.
After a while, I started feeling uncomfortable, because I felt like we were like sitting ducks. If the school security came around, there would be very little hiding spots. My paranoia was getting the best of me, and I started looking around for an escape route. Just then, I spotted the security van, driving through the road along the open field. Guys quickly threw away the weed and stayed still. It was dark now, and we were hoping they wouldn’t notice us. They were almost out of sight, when the van suddenly stopped, and started reversing.
By the time they were driving into the field, everyone had scatted. My heart was beating so fast and I thought I was going to have a heart attack. We couldn’t run into swamps, and we couldn’t run onto the road either, as they would spot us easily. Someone suggested we scale the fence into the Sports Centre. That wall must have been like ten feet high, but the adrenaline in our system had us jumping over it like it was nothing.
We were very lucky as there was a show going on in the Sports Centre, so we blended with the crowd. Even if the security were to jump over in pursuit, they would never identify us.
As I pushed through the crowd, heart still beating, I saw Tony Tetuila on stage with two hype men, performing his hit song, ‘You Don Hit My Car.’ It made me wonder; what would have been our fate if Georgie hadn’t decided to park the Benz in his hall.

To be continued

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