I remember the day I met you
It was one morning in Primary 4
You were the new kid
I had never seen anyone so dark and yet so handsome.
I had never met anyone as cocky and childish either.
You weren’t exactly the noisy type
But you weren’t quiet either.
You chose who you spoke to
And you decided that you only wanted to talk to your guys.
You became popular…fast.
Partly because you were really smart
And partly because, you were really charismatic.
Even though you were very picky with who you spoke to or associated yourself with,
You still managed to get a lot to people’s attention.
I remember when you started that really irritating habit that I so despised.
I know it was all child’s play but I didn’t think it was then.
If a girl touched you, you will brush it off with your hands.
And with time, all the other boys followed suit.
You know, it was for that reason Paul got in trouble once.
Maybe you don’t remember but I’ll remind you.
Remember that Creative Arts teacher we had at some point?
She came to class one day with a bunch of Elementary Science Text Books.
We were about seventeen in class but she only had eight books
So we had to share.
She wanted us to draw a chicken that was in the book for class.
She told Paul to sit next to me so she could explain.
But he refused.
Because I was a girl.
And he didn’t want to sit beside me.
He got a bit rude
And he was sent to the headmaster’s office.
I also remember the day Belema stood up to you.
I always thought you had a crush on her anyway.
You just weren’t sure how to express it.
I mean how could you not.
She was a light skinned beauty.
And very sharp too.
She got angry with you one day because of this habit.
She flipped on you dude.
You defended yourself alright, but I don’t think you expected it.
I think that was the moment you changed.
It was a slow process but you eventually got there.
You started to talk to us all.
You had softened up a lot in Primary 5.
And of course, the boys behaved too.
And a lot of people really liked you. Myself included.
I knew that you were going to go places.
You were so full of light and promise.
On graduation day, you were the best graduating student.
I mean, they didn’t say that but it was pretty obvious.
I mean, you won most of the awards.
Not for a moment, did I think that the next time I would hear your name,
It will be with an ‘R.I.P’ next to it.
I remember the day I heard the news.
It was a few months after graduation.
December, to be precise.
I was still in school actually.
I was walking round my hostel and I felt like there was something wrong.
Then, I heard that there had been a plane crash.
Apparently, an airline called Sosoliso
That had been carrying more than a 100 Loyola Jesuit students had crash landed in Port-Harcourt and had left a lot of people dead.
At that moment, I had a flashback.
And I remembered you saying, you were writing exams to go to either Capital Science or Loyola.
As soon as I remembered that,
The first thing I said as I was walking round that hostel was:
‘I hope my friend wasn’t in that plane.’
I didn’t want to believe it was true.
And I didn’t.
Until I got home for the Christmas holidays
And everyone around me kept asking me:
‘Have you heard the news?’
Even then, I still didn’t want to believe it.
It finally dawned on me one day when I was reading the newspapers
And I saw some pages dedicated to those that had lost their lives.
Then I saw your name and your face beside it.
And I couldn’t believe what I was reading.
It’s been almost 9 years since this tragedy.
However, I never really felt the pain of your death until about three days ago.
You suddenly popped back into my memory.
I started checking Facebook to see if it was possible that maybe, somehow, you were there and alive.
I went searching for your name on Google and all I could see was your name on a list.
Boluwarin, you would have been 20/21 this year.
I really was looking forward to seeing the man you would become.
You were a very special person.
On graduation day, I saw the look on your mother’s face as you were given all your awards.
She was proud of her son.
She had every right to be.
She had had the honour of bringing something special and amazing into the world. YOU!.
Boluwarin Adeyemi, Keep on dining with the angels.
Rest in Peace and Paradise, My friend.