Boarding House Memoirs…Episode 7
They practically commanded us to give them part of our provisions while they kept theirs. They asked for butter to eat family biscuits. This was done by speading butter on each side of the biscuit and sticking it together in twos. After placing that aside, you made a very rich, strong smelling bournvita laced with full cream milk and sugar for them. That was refreshment.
Anyway, nobody complained but the juniors also devised a means of covering up with time. You simply refused to open your things till the tail end of the term. Then, you kept telling them you hadn’t opened it. Better still, you opened it discreetly and transfered to cups which you put in your bag and took to class to enjoy with satisfaction. Then, life moved on.
Monday mornings were always a sad one because beans was breakfast. The beans would have been cooked since sunday evening and warmed on monday morning and of course with stones and weevils inside. Some collected it and made themselves happy by adding sugar and garri while eating it with relish. But most of us never stayed to eat the evil beans. We discovered “iya kafaya’s” place through some of the seniors.
Iya kafaya was a rice seller on our way to school. Several kids lined up at her house every morning to eat her special rice with stew, macaroni, egg, dodo, meat/fish. By the time we all started patronising iya kafaya, our monday woes reduced. Iya ope was also discovered later. Well, I never knew iya ope’s shop but she sold a special kind of jollof rice close to the school. Only the adventurous ones patronised her and went to her shop after school to buy jollof rice before coming to the hostel.
So, Ronke Adesina was a particular senior who loved iya kafaya’s rice with plenty of meat. She wasn’t really a senior per se. She was in jss2 or 3 while I was in 1 but she commanded a lot of respect because of her height and brilliance. Very tall, leggy and graceful. She even ran for the school during inter-house sports competition. So on this day, she bought rice as usual with plenty meat. Instead of eating there, she took the food to school because she was almost late, placed it in her locker and went to the assembly ground.
Some students always lurked around in classrooms when assembly was going on. They hid in nearby bushes and ran to class after everyone had gone to the assembly. They did this either because of dirty uniforms, school fees deficit or probably just to steal from other people’s lockers.
By the time Ronke Adesina came back from the assembly ground probably ecstatic about the mouthwatering meal waiting in her locker, you can imagine her shock when she couldn’t find her food. They carried it away with the plate and nylon. Hahaha! Her eyes became red and it was this red eyes she brought to the jss1 block asking us(boarding house peeps who also patronised iya kafaya) to open our lockers for her to search for her missing rice. You can imagine the shock and bewilderment. I didn’t even know where she sat in her class not to imagine stealing rice from her locker. So with her red eyes, she scanned our lockers one after the other, moving from class to class. But she never found it. She came back to the hostel after school still with the red eyes. We all felt pity for her because I was imagining the number of meat the lucky thief would have ended up eating alone. Ronke loved meat like anything. She could exchange a whole meal for a piece of meat. So when buying food outside, she always bought more meat than food. …
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