When we are children we seldom think of the future. This innocence leaves us free to enjoy ourselves as few adults can. The day we fret about the future is the day we leave our childhood behind – Patrick Rothfuss
My name is Ajao Jacob. This was the account of how I spent my formative years while in primary school. I was 7-year at the time.
It was sometime around August, 1992 when a school term was rounding up, and pupils were about to be given their report cards, concluding how they had fair by their respective teachers, for the whole academic calendar.
While hopes were high for smart kids, who had done diligently all through the term, on the other hands, the average and the poor kids were jittery regarding their results outcome, especially the third term report.
Meanwhile, the would-be-smart chaps couldn’t hold their breaths as they would be moved up the ladder to be ranked among the best in their respective classes.
The rivalry were as old as the age among soon-to-be crown smart chaps.
Last term, I occupied 7th position, in the the class of 24 pupils. Meanwhile, my intimate friend, Nurudeen, was a step ahead of me, him being in 6th position.
Having worked tirelessly to overturn the status quo through out the year, I was overwhelmed after my report sheet was handed-over to me.
I hurriedly ran to a nearby corridor, away from prying eyes of everyone, to crosscheck it. However, only to discover that I had beaten my rival, Nurudeen, to the top spot of 5th position, which he, however, maintained up until last term.
I was excited!
However, I shared it to everyone, who cared to ask and listened.
Then, my parents were separated, due to marital disharmony. Thus, my late dad, my siblings, and I were living far apart from my mum.
My mom, however, was in another village to fend ends meet for us. So, every holiday we always spent our break with her.
Comparatively, mom is a friendly woman while my late dad was a puritan, of sort, who demanded obedience at all time from his children. Therefore, his children feared him, and tried as much possible to avoid his fury.
Besides, my dad had a horse whip that he used to straighten up erring lad, at slight disobedience. Thus, no one dare look him in the eye or flout his orders.
The next market day was fixed for our departure. My brother, Sam, and I were the first to wake up, and off we went to the waiting truck, at the Owode market. A popular market square, where trading took place every 5-day.
While on transit, I did dozed off, occasionally, because my eyes were heavy.
Before I could blink my eyes, we had arrived at Mure, a village, in Kwara State, located in Northern Central geopolitical of Nigeria.
We were welcomed by our mom, who had been waiting anxiously for us.
Afterward, we settled down to a new life of freedom, where our dad couldn’t restrain us a bit.
Holiday activities began in earnest!
At dusk, we did set off to a nearby lake, where we swam, alongside other village chaps. It was fun all the way!
Incidentally,Some new-bees were nearly drunk but often time rescued by experienced swimmers.
Early the following day, we went hunting for birds that just laid eggs or hatched, on their nests.
However, my team-my brother and I, picked the unlucky young birds, and returned home.
Afterward, the team built a cage using wood found in the bush.
Thereafter, we put the hunted birds in the just built cage. We fed them with maize and water, each morning.
No sooner than these happened that our resumption drew near, and we traveled home to begin another term.