Thursday 2 September 2021

RSS Mischief III - Swimming like crabs

Water all around

Apart from the front gate and a side gate there were no walls around my boarding secondary school, Remo Secondary School that we all knew as RSS. On the outskirts of Sagamu to the east, over a river bridge called Májọ̀pa that came with its tales of intrigue and paranormal dread that we at times exaggerated into fabulously unbelievable tales fed by imagination.

Then to the right was a hotel complex and a standpipe where we sometimes came for to fetch water if the taps around the school or the water source called Odò gàrrí (Garri pond) was too dirty for any use. The hotel was a disorderly house of ladies we eventually made friends with as aunties and not for any untoward activity.

To the gate

Further on to the roundabout, with two exits, the one to the right towards Ìkẹ́nnẹ́ and ahead over it to Ìpẹru, that part of the roundabout forming the northwest boundary of the school before a wall was built from the west round to the north and then to the east, leaving the south exposed to Odò gàrrí, farmlands, the rain forest that harboured a laughing jackal that for the best part of the first year at night howled the peace away. A path was later cleared for electricity pylons which opened parts of the unnavigable forest to exploration.

Soon after the roundabout was on the road to Ìpẹru was the main gate to Remo Secondary School on the right, facing onto the main staffroom. The wall was just a demarcation not a barrier, as no intrusion deterrents were placed on the tops of the wall, like broken glass or spikes, they were easily scalable to escape the confines or regimentation of hostelry and pathologically sadistic seniors.

Crabs swim better

Crossing the road after scaling the wall just before the roundabout from the school end, we plied a footpath through cocoyam farms then bearing left many pathways presented but one after about 1,500 metres of walking came to a river upstream of Májọ̀pa we called Ibù from which water was extracted for the waterworks and mains.

That part was deep, and no one ventured there because we were told someone drowned having been sucked up by one of the pipes, that was to the right. Ahead of us was a rickety wooden bridge and to the left shallow water where we went for a dip and pretended to swim, moving underwater like crabs.

We ran for dear life

This became a draw, for as many as 10 of us set out for this apparently illegal escape from authority to play. Though, without really witnessing it but following the stampede back to school that ensued. There was a fetish priestess in white who arrived from the other side through the bushes between the river and Sagamu probably to do some ritual to the river goddess.

When she arrived, whether it was a tall tale or not, one can not tell, but apparently, she got to the bank of the river and began to walk on water. We all jumped out of water hardly remembering to pick up our clothes as we broke sprinting world records literally unable to catch our breath and another fantastic yarn on our lips ready for any listening ear.

I cannot remember when the novelty of Ibù wore off, but it was not due to any official action of the school, I guess we found other distractions apart from where a river runs through it.

Blog - RSS Mischief I - Yikes! A snake

Blog - RSS Mischief II - The fundamentals of fluid mechanics

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