The Illusions of the First Year in College - Part One
By Isaac Audu-Usman
The excitement that builds up in our minds immediately after those five or six years of being condemned to putting on bland, unsavory uniforms almost every single day of the week can be so exhilarating that most students who are just on the verge of blowing a goodbye kiss to high school, often find themselves basking in the euphoria of unfettered joy. Whew!! What a relief! You just can’t imagine that hot molten magma that is bubbling down below, filled with the knowledge that you don’t have to frantically rush to make the 8am cut-off for resumption, no more school lashes, no more assorted blend of school chores and punishment, and the big one: the fact that you are now considered ripe enough to venture into the next level, the adventure of being finally set free to attend the university! Over the moon!
Then, depending on your academic clout, as well as your fate in the draw of luck, you find yourself in the university even before you have barely recovered fully from the escapades of after-high-school loafing! ‘It can’t get any better’, you whisper mischievously to yourself. Now you can brandish your new identity: ‘I am a student of Engineering at the prestigious University of Lagos’. Congratulations! What a great achievement! More power to your elbow indeed. You just can’t help falling in love with the ambience and sophistication of your new world: the campus environment. It seems your life has just been well scripted by some invisible being, who watches attentively from some mysterious ivory tower of elephant tusk, to the finest of details. Your level has changed astronomically to the point that you are the envy and hottest gist among your high school mates.
You are an Akokite! What could be better at this point of your life? Life couldn’t be sweeter and you couldn’t care less about relishing and enjoying every bit of it along the way. After all, you have worked extremely hard to get here. So, it’s time for you to just puff it out and give yourself the treat of a lifetime. The babes are noticing for sure. They can’t help asking you to take and send those selfies. And why not please? Who cares after all? It’s your life. You are the architect of your own reality. Your conscious efforts, actions and decisions brought you to this bliss of Lagoon heaven that is finely dotted and punctuated by loads of endless opportunities to make the next few years the best of your life…
Your matriculation party was the bomb! It was just so tight that your peeps and goons just couldn’t stop talking about it for weeks. Your matric pictures flooded the Facebook sphere. It garnered the most active discussions on Twitter among your friends. BBM DPs were awash with your colourful matric pictures. Instagram even brought them far more to life by adding that exotic gloss that only those very few suavely designed Apps can possibly pull off, to make you look like those superstars you see on HELLO! Magazine, on E! Online or on MTV with the verve and poise that would be simply unrivalled any day….
Then, the classes begin. Fun time is here! Or so you had thought at the very outset. Then, you were blown out of the water by the seismic shocks of disappointment and disbelief in what the system was capable of actually offering vis-à-vis the very high lofty expectations you had surreptitiously bellied inside, up until this very currency of time. The classrooms are just a complete joke! The buildings are not only grossly dilapidated but feistily cursed with a plethora of meandering crevices crisscrossing every nook and cranny of the walls which have somewhat conspired to provide the perfect indoor sanctuary for all sorts of assorted insects and crawlers in the zoological kingdom to fester with sheer aplomb. Worse still, the classes are just plain stuffy with two hundred pairs of ever active nostrils snorting out, without restriction, an avalanche of carbon emissions capable of snowballing the indoor temperature levels upwards in leaps and bounds! It is pointless complaining that there are no fans, let alone air conditioners, as there is just no power to propel them in the first instance. What about having generators? Hmmm…that’s like looking for a polar bear in the Sahara!
It’s time to shelve the truckload of uncontrollable issues in the classroom environment and just find a way to enjoy the reason you are here in the first place. Ah, the lectures! Unfortunately, there is very little joy to be found in that space too. The lectures are just plain bland. In fact, the lecturers are some bunch of old fools who lack, in every sense of the word, the creativity and imaginative power of modern day education where fun is just supposed to be deeply embedded as an integral part of the total experience.
Well, it’s time to drift away and find something more fun to do in this heat. You raise your head up and out of the blue, your aerial satellite frantically picks up an unusual signal from outer space. Wow! What a site! That babe is cute. I bet you didn’t notice her all this while. Well, the class won’t be that bad after all with such a paragon of beauty who will be here to save the day for the next couple of years. Wow, her smile is so charming that it could easily freeze time! Damn, she is voluptuous. Just check out her onshore-offshore dichotomized features. Whew! The already hot temperature in the classroom may just have increased by another 5-7 degrees! You think about it again. Yeah, this may just be the reason you are here. To find her and make her your own! Damn those boring lectures. Damn that lecturer; that epitome of staleness. You are intelligent. You are smart. You did it in high school. So, what’s the biggie? You will do it again. You can study and assimilate and blast those exams. For now, you have finally found a new hobby: a new adventure with loads of fun hidden along its mysterious path. Something really close and surreal, yet feels magically out of this world. This is it. You will hunt her into any hole there is on this planet and break all the China walls on your path to finally decoding the password to her heart!