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Ade's Journal Part 6

Ade's Journal Part 6
My Valentine & The Elegance Of A Clean Breakup

Ade's Journal Part 5

Ade's Journal Part 5
My Scrumptious Valentine Kiss

Ade's Journal Part 4

Ade's Journal Part 4
A Scorpion is not a Lobster

Ade's Journal Part 3

Ade's Journal Part 3
My Insane Week Before Valentine

Ade's Journal Part 2

Ade's Journal Part 2
He Had The Guts To Come Back

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Sunday 31 July 2016

Volunteers Volunteer To Volunteer


   The Plateau curved and dented formed a unique peak, flat and rounded at the edge. It called you and wooed you to climb with age old trees, swaying at its side. It stood at an impossible angle, and looked unclimbable. But it's beauty will stay with me, the unsurmountable alluring plateau.

         Abuja is beautiful and everywhere I look, a hill adds beauty to the beautiful city. It's well planned with a working rail system and calm warm people. A contrast to the fast paced time conscious Lagosians I know.
We are dressed and early and have started moving the goods to the graduation site for the IDP camp graduates.
 Last night's drama is a far memory, I don't have time to dwell on. We have a job to do.
Many Nigerians and foreigners have donated with no strings, their time and efforts to make life a little easier for the Internally Displaced Persons. The stories are disturbing and they all want to go back home to Borno, Adamawa and Maiduguri states.
 I served my country as a Youth Corper that is NYSC, after graduating from the university in Adamawa state. A beautiful state with lyrical names, I can never forget. And a generous family that made me feel at home. It's sad such warm, content people have been chased from their homes. I feel their pain and suffering and cannot understand why Boko Haram has killed and kidnapped their family members. But they have not given up, they believe it would be resolved and they would return to their homes.
 I am even more impressed by their fellow campers zeal to lift themselves up and start all over again. She is also displaced, a secretary in her local government office which was torched and two of her three children killed. She has taken charge and has worked with a former Town head to ensure they are documented, taken care of and relocated. Another camp leader Mr. Was has taken the bull by the horns, documented their challenges and presented them to government bodies that have empowered and given them tools to survive. In fact, one hundred women were graduating from fashion designing and sewing school with certificates, to teach and empower other camp members.
 I could not help but capture their dance and celebrations. All of them have used their pain and suffering to lift themselves up to become better people. I have learnt that Volunteers Volunteer To Volunteer and in the scorching heat, you are motivated by their plight. Such strong resolve to get back on their feet, they appreciated Raman's kind gestures. And I appreciated every friend and family that cares, more.
It's true what they say, you don't know what you've got till it's gone.
This humbled me, big time.
  Leaving the camp, I thanked them and said my goodbyes. They are excited to be going back home. Even with the challenges they may encounter.

  I was quiet as our vehicle drove us back to our hotel. For so long, I have grumbled, complained and blamed everyone around me for everything. My father for not grooming me to be a traditional Yoruba woman, my mum for been too homely, my friends for hiding the truth from me and my love for betraying me. The truth is that people can only do what they believe in, your job is to wallow in the pain or move past it. The pain the camp people feel is real and they all talked holding back tears and pain. Millionaire's humbled to squatters and beggars stepping up to camp worker's. People change, but not everybody. And change comes from the language you speak, in a negative past tense tone or a positive future tense tone. The past is gone, it's now and the future we can change or influence.
  I squeezed gently, Henrik's hands and thanked Raman. He had done more for me, more than he could ever know.

  A grand shower and a little rest and I was brand new again. Refreshed and excited I smiled at Henrik.
'Where to?'
'Suya at white house then my cousins Birthday'
'You have a cousin here?'
'Volunteer Doctor, she's leaving tonight's
'When did she get here? Or has she always...'
'She's always traveling and helping, you'd love her'

 The Suya was tender and the yadji delicious and spicy, not too peppery though.
'Reminds me of Jos... I remember those days of suya and bread, students burger'
'What, when?'
'My secondary school... I schooled in Jos'
'Ade, that's nice. You are well traveled across your country'
'Not that well but I cherish all the wonderful memories and look forward to building more'
'What's your favorite memory?'
'Climbing Sheri Hill's in Jos Plateau state, it was beautiful and exciting. Meeting those rounded edges and been afraid i'd fall off... Magical'
'Mine is climbing Cheddar Gorge, all those books and corners... It's in the U.K.'
'I've climbed that too, I have pictures if this'
'See. We are kindred spirits'
 The words I long to hear, the adventurer I've been waiting for. The man in my reality...
 I felt the phone viberate and I looked at it, twenty one missed calls. I pick it up and Celine sighs.
'Please don't do that to me, I can't worry about you two. ..'
 Of course I jumped into conclusions, she's worried about her cousin who is also my ex and me. I say nothing and wait for her to judge me all over.
'Celine, I can hear you'
'Ajoke had complications...'
 God Almighty forgive me, I was there thinking about me when it was Ajoke in trouble.
'Is she okay? Are the babies fine? Aren't they due next month?'
  I got up and started pacing up and down with some suya still in my hands, waiting for Celine's reply.
'They are out'
 I did not know what else to say.
'They are and they are tiny, it's almost unreal'
'And Ajoke'
'Panicked but once Bala cut off his overseas trip, she has calmed down'
 I held my rapidly beating heartbeat pumping sporadically and making protrusions through my chest.
'Thank God, can she talk?'
'She's sedated, she would not stop talking so...'
 I chuckled.
'Text me Henrik's number, I don't want to have to be scared you are unreachable...'
 I looked at Henrik, not everyone wants people calling. He gave me a look and asked.
 I cover the mouthpiece.
'Can I give Celine your number? Ajoke has had my twins...'
 Did I just say that?
'I mean her twins'
 Henrik laughed.
'I thought we agreed triplets, two girls and a boy's
'I've said that already?'
'Yep and yes you can give your closest front number, you are my life partner'
 I was smiling too much until I heard Celine's voice.
'Are, I'd text it. See you guys soon. And wish all of them a fantastic weekend'
 I blew kisses at the phone and Celine laughs. I am happy I am still in the loop and I still have my friends.

  Mari-Liis his cousin was from Estonia and very pretty. She was a sweet doctor and worked with women. I was happy to celebrate her birthday with her and wished Henrik and I could stay longer but we had to hit the road back to Lagos. Raman still had much to do and we left him at the party. Henrik was happy we all got along well and it was strange until Mari-Liis mentioned that Athena didn't like public places and gatherings so much. I just smiled, that's her choice.

  The ride home was quiet and I was about to dose off when my phone rang. I looked at it and saw the name and hissed.
'Who is it?'
 Henrik asked in a sleepy voice.
 I said and put the phone in silent.
'This one that you have switched off your phobe. Don't give any guy my number'
 I waved my phone at him.
'It's still on, I put it on silent and I won't give any guy your number'
 He was frowning because he had seen who called.
'Why is Frank still calling you?'
'Should I change my number because of one man'
'For peace of mind, yes'
'I've already changed...'
  I realized I was arguing about my past with my present. I sit up and face him.
'I will change that number'
 His smile made me smile and I knew that Henrik was not going to tolerate any exboyfriend drama.
 Na die I dey ...

**Season 1, Episode 53**

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Adebusola Ukayat Elegbede is a Playwright and Content creator with a passion for real life challenges. Born in Kaduna state and lives in Lagos Nigeria, she has a passion for story telling from the perspectives of characters in conflicting situations. I started out on the New Writing Project in Nigeria with the British Council Lagos Nigeria and The Royal Court Theatre, Sloane Square U.K. My passion for creating stories led to comic books, television drama's and an online journal on my website (busolaelegbede.com). As part of the WPIC in Stockholm Sweden 2012, the experience has forged life long friends and ignited my passion as a volunteer and advocate for human rights and the United Nations 17 Sustainable Development Goals.

Follow @Busola Elegbede