Thursday, April 9, 2009
Confessions of a latecomer, sometimes early comer: I sha come!!!
I’m a notorious latecomer at my office, in fact my boss always expresses shock anytime I make it into the office at 9am on the dot or a few minutes past.
“To what do we owe this honor?” is her usual jibe
But I have an excuse ... I mean I have several extremely important REASONS because, well … I exercise first thing in the morning. I know some of you are wondering what it has to do with anything so I’ll start from the beginning… here goes …
“I’m an exercise freak, and since I discovered jogging I’ve given up other forms exercising. At this point I’m supposed to tell you the benefits of regular exercise a la flat stomach, pert tits, firm butt, slim arms, stronger heart, better health etcetera etcetera etcetera and then say that regular exercise means that you can still eat regular meals (not gorging yourself) and still stay fit and all that jazz.
I really should tell you how I love the early morning silence, the communion with God and nature, I should rhapsodize about how things become clearer as I clear the garbage from my mind and body as music flows through my blood, it’s rhythm in tandem with the beating of my heart and my feet hitting hard tar. How can I describe the way every word of the songs drop into the depth of me? But as wonderful as all the above are, they are not the real reason I jog regularly.”
The question then is “Ayodele why do you resume late for work?” The answer is “Because of the view.”
Then you go like “What?”
And I give you a totally senseless answer like…
“I’m not talking about the deserted streets, the beautiful trees, dirty gutters and traffic free roads. No it’s not the serenity it’s the people. I love watching people come to life early in the morning.
Hookers being dropped off by clients or returning home from a night of hard work, all bleary eyed and disheveled, transvestites fixing their wigs, returning home to confused wives and girlfriends. Night watchmen still in sweaters and holding their torches like lifelines. Drunks waking up from gutters looking disoriented (like “what the hell am I doing here?”).
Watching beggars sit according to rank and realizing there’s more to begging than meets the eye. Watching young men and women clearing the shack they slept in the night before. Discovering that your average schizophrenic sleeps too, finding out exactly where they sleep, watching them get ready for the day and wondering where they find all that crap they carry around.
Getting hailed by passing bus conductors “Ta lo nran e ni se, ma se wo’le” (Translation: What the heck is wrong with this fool, hop in so you’d get to wherever you’re going faster!).
Watching Hausa boys pee in the middle of the road and watching me watch them (I’m the early morning mad woman who is always running from God-knows-what). People going to early morning services .
Listening to the lyrics of the Mullah as he calls “Allahu Akbar” (No other god like Allah). I study the methods of washing carrots, I get toasted by okada riders and motor car drivers (“let me give you a ride now.”) and finally arriving at my neighborhood around the time the akara and pap sellers start hawking their goods and receive my usual greeting of “E ku jogging o!”(translation lost in English but you can manage “well done for jogging!” ridiculous)and from my more nosey neighbours “E pe di e l’eni” (you are a bit late today) as if they synchronized their alarm clocks with mine…"
Now you wonder why I get to my office late …