i wasn't a lover of school, although i cried and bugged before mum let her baby start,i learnt to dread it after the initial trip cleared,but learnt to make the most of it after being dragged there. i guess this is the point where i'm supposed to say i always came first...well, i no lie o, i never came first, but i always stuck with the top ten(true!). English/verbal attitude and literature were my faves, i was always the first to finish books at reading classes, the likes of 'eze goes to school'(saw 'no supper for eze' 2 weeks ago at numetro and i went all jolly, bought a copy for keepsake..lol), the girl who laughed etc. i remember mom would come home with a carton of story books just for me, i'd be in 9th heaven and float away instantly forgetting about sands/tenten/suwe etc and bury my nose in all those enid blytons and grimms fairy tales books(uh, no Wonder i love fantasy so, mom...i'm reporting u to oprah, and she'll feature us in a 'my mom turned me into a fantasy queen' show, i'll say how i missed out on my childhood, thats why like Michael, i hope to build my own Netherlands and bring all the lil' girls to play... and we'd cry and she'll apologise for buying me all those books)...ok, this is serious digression
i was never made a class prefect in primary school, i was too shy and sweet to control a crowd and write 'names of noise makers', those bullies would have finished me after school
ok, what got me gisting about primary school...yeah, i remember. Mr. Dele. He was my classs teacher in primary 3/4(i forget). He always smelt of cigarettes, and he was so uglyyyyyy, we even gave him a nickname(as teeny tiny as we were), we called him 'caricature' behind his back, not like we knew the meaning but it sounded like a name for an ugly person and we would crack up whenever we called him that.
as i said i wasn't a class monitor, but i was put in charge of the books cos of my love for books.i loved the job cos we had all this story books i could sneak home to read and return without the long signing process. it was my job to go to the store room at the start of each day to get books out and take em' back when we were through, the room was large but a little bit dark.
i'm in there one day and mr. Dele walks in, smelling of cigarettes as usual, and his 'caricature' face smiling, then he said
"FQ, when would i enjoy you?"....
my poor innocent mind(mtv had not corrupted me then like these days when even babies are bringing sexy back)
"on my birthday" i replied in a tiny voice(i was thinking sweets, cakes and ice cream)
"when is your birthday" he asked inching closer
"july 6th" i said
"that's too far now" he grumbled still inching closer, just then some other students walked in and i picked my books up and walked out, not knowing what it was about, but i remember that i felt relieved to be out of there.
somehow that scene never left my head, in uni i gisted a couple of friends, we had a good laugh and i even had to live with the mocking of 'FQ when would i enjoy u' in their own version of mr dele's voice...the mocking and laughter came after i analysed the situation...
what if people didnt walk in when they did?
what if he touched me or tried something more?
how many others did he corner and try to 'enjoy'?(i definitely wasn't the cutest lil' thing in my school)
did he actually molest anyone?
i'm thankful today that the story is different, but are there other lil' girls out there in our naija schools being molested and feeling too scared to talk?...i know i wouldn't have said anything if he actually tried something, i have a habit of keeping things inside me till they eat me up...
that's the story of Mr. Dele...wonder if he's still alive...fool like him. that event has somehow managed to keep replaying in my head all this years.