A true story:

Today, being Friday reminded me of an embarrassing incident on a Friday night/Saturday morning years ago. In my early days in Abuja over a decade ago, I resided at FHA Lugbe while my church was at Durumi.

On this particular Friday we were scheduled to attend a vigil service in church in the company of the wife and my then one-year old Josh. You see, my sojourn in Abuja needed God’s personal intervention, and I was ready and willing to attend any church at any time of day or night, as long as I was assured of an opportunity to touch the hem of His garment! Those were dark days m-e-h-n!.

A story for another day.Anyways, I can not remember what I ate that day at work or what I ate at home after work. But I recall that my problem started before I left home for church. From nowhere, I started feeling some unexpected pangs around the walls of my stomach.

Naturally, I ran into the rest room to take solace. After a few splashes of waste here and there, much to my shock, I came out relieved.Not quite long afterwards, I rushed back into the rest room, this time like a deranged man in dire search of food. When I came out, I hardly could stand upright. But I felt so much better. So we headed to church.Service was billed to commence at 10pm but we left home 6pm to stand a chance of getting seats inside the main auditorium.

Service progressed smoothly and I was almost speaking in tongues for once! Then came 2.14am. That sharp pain again. But It was brief so I felt comfortable after a few minutes. Thankfully, church would close at 4.30am. 4.15am: Hell broke lose. I felt beads of sweat cascade down my face on a very cold morning. But I held on. While resisting the urge to let out a repugnant gas. That moment revealed an inner strength I didn’t know I had. The wife noticed that I was dying in instalments and held my hand reassuringly.

Finally church closed. Luckily for me, my car was parked close to the exit. I quickly dashed in and drove off. I was already in transit before I remembered I came to church with my family. I noted with a sigh of relief that they were both seated already.Unfortunately the worst was yet to come.

Just when I was about to negotiate my way out of the church’s link road, some congregants waived down my car:’Lugbe! Lugbe!!!’Like The Good Samaritan, I stopped and 3 ladies sashayed into the back seat. It felt morally reputable to lend that helping hand. All this while I was sweating profusely. I just wanted to speed home and use the rest room.

From where I was, I figured it would take me roughly 20 minutes to get home. Little did I know that I would become a taxi ‘along’ driver enroute Lugbe. As soon as I moved, I felt like my stomach had moved to my behind. I was in severe pain but I was determined to get home before ‘doing it’.Sweat!So you can imagine my frustration when the 3 passengers alighted separately.

Infact the last lady got engrossed in a phone conversation that we passed her junction, and had to reverse to drop her off. As soon as I approached the long stretch of road leading into FHA, I knew I would die the next minute if I did not apply the brakes. So I stopped immediately and ran into a nearby bush surrounded by rocks, leaving the car door open and the engine running. For those who do not understand Ibo, google ‘Osondu’. That was my story.

With one full swoop, I pulled down a tight pair of jeans and everything underneath. Then there was an aggressive sound! An outpouring!And instant relief! Pheeeew! Then I heard ruffles of feet behind me. I turned around immediately to see a man pointing a dane gun at my head.

I screamed with every breath in me:’Abeg no shoot me o na poo I dey poo o…abeg no shoot me Sir…’He came very close and pointed his torchlight on my face menacingly, then turned around and walked away. Vigilante! Since that incident, I have been mindful of what I eat. These days too, I spend long hours in the rest room at home before going out to avoid stories that touch. That’s how the son of man would have been killed like a rabbit!

I am Chris Ojei


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