The walls of the classroom glitters against my eyes as I step in.
Paintings of the sky and rainbows hang just beside the whiteboard.
Everything is well placed, mixing colours against each other.
The grade 4 pupils are playing round till they sight me and scramble for their seats.
I observe some of my notable pupils. Bumi, Ada and Hepzibah. Bumi has her hair in a bun today with her curls dangling as she moves to her seat. Ada’s tender brown skin is glowing as ever while Hepzibah’s bright eyes is scanning through his book. He is the most inquisitive one among all the grade 4 pupils.
“Good morning Aunty Nengi!” They greet me standing.
“Good morning everyone.” I reply with a smile and they sit down again.
“Aunty I’ve finished reading the book you gave us , Who Moved my cheese” Bumi announces.
“Very good! Now, everyone would share the lessons they gained from the book before we introduce another one. ”
“Yes!” She nods happily.
I settle down and cover up the circle of chairs and we begin the session after a brief prayer.
I tutor them on other social and life skills not regularly taught in school in the course our book talk.
“I wonder why Hem is being resistant to change in the book!” Hepzibah complains.
“Most persons are like that in life and that’s why this book is urging us to learn from his mistakes. We should be ready to learn new skills and forge ahead instead of sticking with our old ways of doing things. Do we understand?” I question
“Yes!” Comes their chorus response.
Nana comes in and joins us. She’s admiring us sitting from behind. She wears her natural hair packed and tied into an afro puff with the aid of a tight black band. I can’t wait to be done with the pupils to tell her about what happened to me yesterday.
“Babe, I admire what you’re doing for these kids. Despite your work at the media, transcribing this and that, striving to meet countless deadlines, you still spend your weekends coaching these kids. Your kind is rare!” Nana commends advancing towards me after we dismiss.
Her toffee brown skin glows and smells of nice scented coconut oil. Some of the oil from styling her natural hair I suppose.
“My dear. I’m just happy I’m privileged to help these kids while I can. Who taught us all these ones while we were in school ehn. But when we come out of school, we face life unprepared”
I glance idly at the colourful scribbling of rhymes and study quotes. I observe again as the cardboard papers line on a large white board before I recall the previous day’s happenings.
“That reminds me!” I exclaim tapping her.
“If you know what Grace did to me on Friday!”
“Grace, slim shady? What?”
“Let’s sit and gist small!”
We wipe a desk clean and sit facing one another.
Nana’s eyes widen with expectations.
“What did she do? Tell me let me know how I’ll fire her at the salon when I sight her!”
“Please don’t. Don’t go embarrassing her at your Hair_by_zil beauty salon.”
“Ok. Spit it out!”
“Grace pushed me into the pool!”
Nana’s mouth flings open.
“All my fault though. She thinks I slept with Chibueze!”
“But did you?”
“Of course I didn’t! Some one must have sneaked in, photographed us or something and then forwarded it to her. I have never been humiliated like that in my entire life. I was practically dripping wet from top to bottom!”
“So obviously you guys were in a compromising position!”
“I guess so. I woke up with his arms crossing over me but I had my clothes intact only my skirt was slightly up!”
Nana has a loud laugh.
“You’re not serious. How are you going to convince her that nothing happened between you two while she was away!”
“My dear, why would I tell her I was going to interview him if I knew I would end up warming his bed!”
Nana sighs again.
“Sad! Anyway you can still try talking it over with her. I noticed she was cranky when she visited the salon for her hair do. Meanwhile, her latest weave style looked really cute on her. You needed to have seen her!”
“She has blocked me oh! She has blocked me from seeing her Status updates, even on Facebook.”
“It’s that serious!”
“Dear, let’s start going. I have lot’s of things to do!”
I scramble to my feet and she follows suit.
“Just cheer up!” Nana advices patting my back while we exit the classroom.
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