I grew up in a family of soldiers, and also joined this trade although for a short stint. This business of the army at that time was not lucrative and I ended up cursing my dad, who without any consultations inspired the entire family to join his career.
As a small boy who was always fascinated by the endless moving as a result of the different deployments around the world that my father received, I supported him for choosing the right career.
But as I grew to become an active (sexually) teenager, who needed financial independence for my nocturnal activities, I realized that it was a wrong career for any one, but I joined it for different reasons which I shared with you some time back.
It was during the Biafra war that threatened the union of the republic of Nigeria in the 1960s when I suffered the greatest humiliation of my life.
My father was appointed as somebody in charge of logistics supply and stores, under the OAU peace keeping mission. So this allowed him to move with his family unlike his comrades and this saw me in Lagos at 18 years.
I joined a middle class school in the suburbs of Lagos where I met Rosaline Akwa, with a dark complexion and a massive weight typical of West Africans.
“Hullo broda (brother) welcome to Lagos high school,” Mr. Atiku our history teacher welcomed me in a heavy West African accent, with a warm smile that made me feel at home.
“Am shooter from a country I don’t want to mention because am living there in exile but it is in East Africa,” I introduced my self. The entire class was both sympathetic and curious to know me better.
“Hi am Rose, how is East Africa and Jomo Kenyatta?” she was brave enough to initiate a conversation at break time.
I told her a lot about our region and she was interested in politics and how I ended up in Nigeria. And in return, she explained about her country and the chaotic province that wanted to secede.
On my way to school one morning, her dad who drove her to school every day stopped to give me a lift after she insisted that we were class mates
“Dad, he is shooter from East Africa,” she introduced me to her father. “Hullo young man,” welcome to Nigeria, Rose should make sure you are not bullied; he officially gave me the daughter.
With my weekly pocket money accumulating, I offered her a cup of coffee on a Saturday evening which she accepted. Being new into the town, she led me to her favorite casino where we romanticized.
“Shooter, you are so kind and polite,” she admitted and told me how rude and arrogant Nigerian men are.
The first date was done the second would never come possibly and she expected it sooner because she had told me how she loved my company.
I didn’t have any money to take her out, but I didn’t want her to know. So I kept popping up all sorts of excuses.
“Rose, am broke” I finally told her the truth “oh come on shooter that is why you act like that!” she was not bothered. “Look everything is on me this evening” she offered.
I was embarrassed but I stood my ground. During this date, she told me that the casino where we went belonged to her as a business that her father started for her and the hotel where we were belonged to her as well.
I could not continue in this relationship because of the inferiority complex weighing on me heavily. I loved her but I would not sustain this. I requested my dad to take me back to the east of the continent prematurely which he did.
I never saw her again though she kept sending messages through my brother who stayed and when he returned the story ended. Rose I am sorry though I loved you.