Dear Diary: Birthday Party

Dear diary,

A man’s source of joy is not in the things that he has, rather in the people around him- people who show him love wholeheartedly. Many things tried to kill my week but No! it was filled with so much joy after all.


On Saturday, I thanked God for the people he placed in my life even the annoying ones like Olamide. The classes were hectic throughout this week. There were numerous impromptu classes, I lost count. It was one of these classes that almost spoilt my day on my birthday on Friday.

On Thursday, Prof. Ajibade gave us an assignment, despite the loud noise and pleadings that followed Prof turned deaf ears. To worsen matter or maybe, make it beautiful, it was this same assignment that would account for our Continuous Assessment Test. I couldn’t figure out how I was supposed to write four pages of jargons about Slave Trade – its history and its effects on the whites. All we had was 13 hours - that was if we choose not to sleep, eat, bath, talk, pray or do another other ‘normal’ thing. Prof’s 7.00 AM was 7.00 AM.

As at when I received the first call from a friend wishing me happy birthday, I was writing my assignment. It wasn’t easy trying to pick up calls and writing my assignment but by 3.00 AM I was done.  I woke up 6.45 AM to make my 7.00 AM class. I barely brushed my teeth, put on a gown and rushed out. In fact, I brushed my hair in the cab. It didn’t help matters that it took almost fifteen minutes before a cab came. By the time, I got to the class, 7.04 AM; Prof had already collected the assignments and didn’t allow we, latecomers, enter the class. We all rushed along with him to his office but he refused to collect it. I was so pissed; I was tempted to pull out the scanty white beards on his face. He finally collected the assignments after we had waited, or should I say wasted, two hours in front of his office.

It was when I had gotten home and taken my bath that it dawned on me that none of my close friends had wished me a happy birthday. Not even my roommates… Not even Ikem! It was funny because the previous evening, I was discussing with Antonia that since I was turning twenty-one, I wanted to drink alcohol; maybe get drunk for the first time. And all of a sudden, she too had forgotten? My day dragged on slowly, I was alone in my room, watching “orange is the new black”. Nancy and Amaka, my third roommate had left for class early and I didn’t care where Olamide had taken her big head to.

Things took a swift turn in the evening when Anthonia called to tell me that Ikem was terribly sick and that he was rushed home from work. I couldn’t breathe. I dashed out of the room the same way I dashed out that that morning. When I got to his house, it was dark. I opened the door with my spare key, lo and behold, the lights came on and I heard “surprise”. I was shocked beyond words. Everybody was there; my friends, some course mates, my roommates, and yes - Ikem.

The party was dope. Amidst the loud music blasting from the speakers, the birthday song that was sung, the hugs and birthday wishes, I was almost moved to tears. There were food and drinks, two huge cakes and small chops to nibble on. Bisi and Tonia took me to Ikem’s room to change. On his bed was a glittering black gown with an extremely low back. It was the same gown I was drooling over the previous week in one of the shops at Shoprite. There was a deep blue purse with matching sandals. I asked them how they were able to pull it off. Anthonia said that Ikem had called her a week before and told her that he wanted to surprise me. It was at that moment that I realized that Bisi and Tonia were not just joking when they asked me “If you were to have a party, who would you like to be there?”

Anthonia took care of the guest list and invitation, Adebisi did the planning; Nancy and Amaka were in charge of market duties and they all came around to do the cooking. How they all did it without me knowing still baffles me. The best part of the birthday for me was the gifts and they were huge. Though I couldn’t get drunk like I planned, I drank some cups of ciroc. Above all, Nkem gave me the best gift ever;  a pencil sketch of me in a frame and a gold necklace with the letters I and E locked together as the pendant. Both letters are the initials of our names.

It was music, dancing, eating, drinking, but not being drunk all the way and it was fun. My day ended with me wishing that all my days could be like this; filled with laughter, joy, and happiness. It's Sunday again and though I wasn’t happy that I had to leave Ikem’s place yesterday, I know it is the right choice. My exams start soon and my head has to be in my books. I just pray that all my reading won’t be in vain at the end of the semester.


Your friend,
Me.

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