Training was over by 6:47pm. Ugo and I rushed down to the mamee market to get a bag of sachet water to resume ‘the battle of the tasteless beans’ we had began some few hour ago. A concretion rice was served as supper in the kitchen and I couldn’t eat up to 4 spoons before dumping the rest under Ugo’s bed.
It had been a really long day, one I’d never experienced before. New faces, new environment, strange weather; In fact, everything was just new. I had to set my alarm to 4:00am because captain Aminu said we would have to report to the parade ground by 5am the next day. Ooops! 8:40pm, the lights were turned off. Time to sleep. Hoping for an adventurous day by sunrise.
2ND DAY IN CAMP – THE DRILLS
[26th of November, 2016]
I woke up shortly after 3am and I saw Ugo having a discussion with beautiful Onyinye over phone at that time of the hour. I’m pretty much sure the preparation for their wedding had switched to top gear. I got up and took a bucket to fetch water from the only well available in our block. It was extremely cold but I could see some guys bathing outside. Wetin my eyes no go see? Guys don’t have issues, na the girls fit dey waste time dey queue for bathroom.
The queue at the bathroom was so long; those who couldn’t withstand the wait took their baths outside. I queued for 30 minutes before it finally got to my turn. It took me less than five minutes to finish bathing (you won’t dare to waste time) before heading back to the well to fetch a bucket of water for Ugo so we won’t waste much time because in a matter of time, the soldiers would be around to send us out.
By 4.00am, we were almost set to leave. Ugo and I prepared two cups of tea. Ugo and bread – you can’t separate them! He still ate the bread he bought at Plateau. The bugle was blown before we knew it and we could hear a soldier shouting on top of his voice, “Lazy corpers, get out now! To the parade ground, 1...2...1...2...1...2!”
We took to our heels to the field, and we got there around 5:05am. The weather was so cold. I could see some corpers like myself gnashing their teeth. I’m pretty much sure most of them hadn’t experienced such weather conditions before. The ‘man o war’ guys took charge of the early morning exercise before we were handed over the the platoon commander.
The ‘man o war’ personnel who took charge of platoon 6 was a Hausa girl (so I thought); slim, not too fair, and I must confess, she looked like Tiwa Savage. She was so fit and athletic, probably more than C. Ronaldo. Best part of all, she is the most beautiful female ‘man o war’ official in our camp. We were taught all sorts of songs, including;
Chop Akara dey go
Moin moin no dey
Chop Akara dey go, Moin moin no dey
Dem go born mumu, dem go born mumu,
If Corper marry corper, dem go born mumu
And all sorts of songs in Hausa language, which I really can’t put down. Trust Nigerian corpers; we were able to compose a new song;
“Eyin omo yobe,
and we all screamed, “Yobe!
Continued on next page...
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