WHY DO PEOPLE STEAL!
I can’t believe I’m writing this. It’s funny how everything that happens to a writer/blogger becomes a story, poem or blog post. When Adichie wrote Americanah, she did not just write a love story. She spilled out the contents of her heart. She just opened her pot of memories and turned her history into story. She gave us all a cup to drink from her life. And we drank…to our satisfaction. Through Americanah, we know that Adichie probably had a rough time settling down in the United States when she first got there. We also know that she had a rough time dealing and coping with racism. How else could one write such a huge book with traces of racism on every single page?
Last week Thursday, something terrible happened to me. I went to my school library to read and dropped my bag in the pigeonholes and went into the reading section to read. Before I even settled down, after walking through some shelves, I went back to my bag to pick up my phone charger so I could charge my phone in the library and also do some research. On getting to the pigeonhole where my bag was, I searched and realized that my wallet was gone. Strange right? I’d call it crazy!
At first, I thought I was joking with myself. I brought out all the contents of my bag and searched again. Nothing! Fear began to slip into my heart. This was trouble. My wallet was like my safe, my vault. It contained thousands of Naira, four ID cards, my ATM card, Library borrower’s tickets, receipts of many payments and other valuables. Losing my wallet was like losing it all. I did not want to believe it.
So I searched again. I searched the bag again and checked the pigeonholes. I went back into the library and checked through all the shelves and tables where I had stopped. I found nothing. I was losing control of myself gradually. This is the first major thing I will lose on Awolowo’s Campus. I could not bear it.
Have you ever misplaced anything very vital to you? Have you ever been robbed of something that made you feel you would never be the same again? Like your laptop, ipad, tablet or something? If you have, then you know how you will act. You will walk out of the library with your bag and you will not even know where to go.
As I got out of the library, I saw one of my church members who asked how I was. And given the fact that I am one of those people who don’t have a default answer for the question: How are you? I told him I wasn’t fine and explained my predicament to him. He was the first person I would tell and I just poured out everything to him. Now, I wish I had not. I just made him feel as destabilized as I was. He looked as though he had never been in this type of situation before. And so I smiled and said I would be fine. He smiled and advised that I called my sister.
As I was still roaming about library trying to find my bearing, I met one of my course mates.
‘Michael, you didn’t come for SEL 001.’
It was not a question, but I said YES. Then I explained to her that my wallet just disappeared. She was shocked and felt sorry. Again, I smiled and told her I would be fine even though I knew I would not.
With dejection written all over my face, I walked to the Students Union Building and went to rest my head in the Viewing Room. There, I saw another friend who started telling me stories. These are times that annoy one. I need someone to talk to and here you are, turning me to a listener of all your cares and burdens.
During hard times, you fine it hard to be yourself. You find it hard to write, to sing, to even read. And so some people see you and expect to laugh as you always do because you are a joker. But they don’t know you are now part of the joke. So you manage to crack a joke and they all laugh. Then you are angry! You are angry that you can make others laugh while you languish in grief and sadness. You are annoyed that you need he!p. You need a listening ear. You need a shoulder to cry upon. You need someone. But all those you see don’t seem to see that you have changed your garment. They still see the old, jovial and funny Michael. It sucks!
So you pick up your phone and call some people you expect to make your heart feel light. But they only make you feel worse. They tell you you must have been very careless and foolish to have ever thought of putting your wallet in the pigeonhole. What were you thinking, they ask. You are annoyed now! Fine, I’m wrong! I know I was stupid. I have learnt my lesson. Must you make me feel worse! Why is it that people don’t know how to respond to situations?
I was discussing this with someone and he said, Michael, you are angry.’
Of course, I am angry! It’s just like telling a mother who just lost her son to Asthma that she should have been taking precautions for the son. How does that make sense anymore? This is someone who is grieving and here you are, telling stories, dying to be the Superman who makes no mistake! Throughout last week,, I have heard so many ludicrous statements that has vexed me seriously. After a while, I just decided not to tell anyone again.
Now, you are telling me to calm down. Sorry.
When you are passing through a difficult time, you wish for strange things. I slept that night and wished that the night would never end. You know that type of wish that is not a death wish but is still not a good wish? Like you just want to keep sleeping and sleeping. You want to keep the world out. You want to shut reality out and dive into your own world of dream and fantasy. You want to talk to people that don’t exist because those that exist no longer do. Does that make any sense?
Anyway, I’m trying to come alive. I’m trying to be myself. To spend time with people that will make me happy. To trust God to fix things and make me happy. Its not easy walking alone on a dry alley in the dark. It’s not easy. But it’s possible. So for now, I’ll just chill and watch things unfold.
Thank you for the calls, and messages. I really appreciate.
PS. I should have posted this earlier but I’ve been down for a while now. Sorry for she delay.