Yoofi groaned inwardly when the siren went off. That was the one thing he hated about Capital High- that loud intrusive siren that dictated when to eat or sleep. He was a nocturnal person and could stay awake until 3am. Just when he was settling into the cozy arms of sleep around 4:45, the siren would go off.
Back to the same old routine.
He liked Capital High- when the siren was not blurring. For a public school, it was pretty well-run. They had well-trimmed lawns, clean bathrooms and the food was not so bad. Even the rats knew how to stay out of sight. He could see that Gagert had spent some money painting the walls during the vacation and he could still hear her warning them at opening assembly not to write on the walls, in her high pitched ‘capable of breaking glass’ voice.
That woman was a legend, to say the least.
He had no idea how she had come by that name but that was what his seniors were calling her when he came to the school. And that is what their seniors had also handed down to them. He could only guess that her first name, Gertrude, had something to do with it. Gagert was responsible for transforming the school into what it had become today, and she never missed an opportunity to rub it in anyone’s face- for the umpteenth time! She was rather hefty but rumor had it that she could run after and catch up with anyone at all- especially when the person was trying to escape punishment. One of the athletes who had told Yoofi the story said, ‘Charle, then I figure say I be runner, but Gagert dey run! Stop! Ibi me I dey talk you so you for see say I make serious.’
It was yet another term with Gagert- his first term in 2 Arts 2. He had not landed in her bad books yet and he intended to keep it that way. Form 1 was such a struggle because he was always trying to keep up with the siren but he was hoping that Form 2 would be different. Up ahead, he could see Collins talking with Akunor. Akunor was one of the cool kids, Collins was one of the ‘I’d tell a lie to appear cool’ guys. Last term, he had made quite a fuss about having the latest Nike kicks*, only for them to discover that they were not original and they were not even his. Ever since then, Collins had been trying to get back into the cool squad.
‘I hear this Busta Rhymes song this vac oo.The title bi-‘
‘Ma guy, who still dey listen Busta Rhymes? Why are you always trying to remain relevant? Shun that life!’
The boys stopped chatting because Mr Krampah had turned the corner and was walking towards them. He was the Elective Mathematics teacher and his specialty was confusing students and whipping the consciousness out of them.
‘Herh, have you started revising what I taught you last term? Class test, first thing tomorrow morning. Pass mark is 9/10!’
Yoofi smiled to himself.
Not much has changed after all.
The Form 1s are coming!!
Cleaver House was literally buzzing with excitement. The newbies were landing the next day.
The list of Form 1s had been posted on the notice board near the front door. Most of the Form 3 girls huddled around it that night, trying to pick a school daughter for the next year.
‘These things, you have to pray about them oo. Don’t just pick anyone to sleep on top of you. Do you know what she is bringing from her house?’
‘Ei Grace nono! Everything must be spiritsu*. When you prayed, what did God show you?’
‘Ei, what kind of name is Agbormetodzi?’
‘I like this one. Her name is dadabee- Clarisse Briandt-Coker’
‘So me na I look like I deserve a surname like Asamoah eh?’
‘Ah, but what is wrong with Asamoah? Why are you people being tribalistic? Fante and Asante, aren’t they the same thing?’
‘This Adriana girl, did she go to Alsyd Academy? I have heard about her papa!’
‘What if the girl pees into the bed at night? My nose is sensitive oo!’
‘I know this girl. She is my boyfriend’s cousin.’
‘Which of your boyfriends?’
“Herh, Ernestina, what are you implying? That I am an ashawo*? Is it my fault that Koomson left you for me? If he was really yours, he would not have left.’
‘You have no shame!’
‘Ladies, there is no need to quarrel. The Bible says-‘
“Grace, don’t come and quote scripture here! This is not the place nor the time.’
The bickering went on for a while, but in the end, every girl had chosen a school daughter.
Well, almost everyone but Afrakuma.
Afrakuma settled on her bed and opened a box of Digestive biscuits to go with her pineapple Kalyppo.
‘Why didn’t you pick one?’, Shormeh asked curiously.
‘I deliberately didn’t pick any of these ones. My target is the protocol list; that’s where the real meat is. Who knows, my school daughter might be the Vice-President’s niece. Before you know it, I will be invited to state functions. You need to think ahead, you see?’
Shormeh laughed out loud. Trust Afrakuma to think outside the box.
Francisca, the bossy assistant house prefect was trying to stamp her authority and show everyone that she was the one who called the shots. But everybody knew that the real boss was Afrakuma. Nobody could touch her. Nobody really knew how she had become this powerful, but nobody dared defy or threaten her.
Her light stayed on for a good 45 minutes after Francisca had belted out her command. She wasn’t using the light. She was sending a message to Francisca.
I may not sleep in the prefects’ room but I’m the real boss around here.
She could not wait for morning. Even though she would probably not admit it, she was excited. The form ones were coming!
*ashawo- prostitute, flirt
Yep, our very first episode! And this time, you don’t have to fight me for sequels- you will get them. Lots of them, this and every Wednesday 🙂 The official artwork for this series is by my talented adopted little brother Gregory Nartey, a student of Kwame Nkrumah University.
When you leave a comment, add the name of your school too!
P.S: Caught by the SHS/SSS nostalgia bug? Share your memories and stories with me–> firstname.lastname@example.org. Who knows, they might be inspiration for another episode. See you next week!