Chronicles of NYSC camp - CAMP ROMANCE

Well, I didn’t go to camp to get hitched, as I already am, so I was out to make some friends, and hopefully tie some people together (Miss Cupid, as always). I made some new friends, and moved with the old. A particular guy felt that the fact that I “claimed” to be engaged, did not deter him from making his advances. I even went as far as facing him outrightly and telling him that there was no way I could consider him as a date: he’s NOT my type (notice the emphasis). He was not listening to me though. There was this scene at the kitchen that I didn’t find funny. Okay, the Camp Director had requested for a financial report of each platoon’s expenditure so far, and a budget of the future expenses. I prepared the report, and told him to tell the committee heads to prepare their budgets so the final one would be a compilation of all the others. But he wanted me to do everything – I put my foot down. I refused, then our platoon was helping out in the kitchen and he starts saying stuff like – “I need you! Please I really need you!” “You know I cannot do anything without you.” Stuff like that. The other platoon members started pleading for him, “Please now, don’t say no” “Don’t hurt his feelings” and stuff like that. I was irritated. Seriously irritated. Put in another context it might not mean anything, but he was having so much fun with everybody thinking along the dating lines that I just left the place, and came back after thirty minutes – for my Rock Buns.
I thought about things: there was Kay, who still wants more than friendship, and kept calling even when I had the faulty phone to contend with. Of course his calls increased after my uncle branched on his way to Ife and dropped my own phone for me. Now add this guy to the picture, who didn’t see my group of friends as a barrier, or as the protecting wall they were. He was not fazed – all he had to do was say it was platoon business and that was that. Then I made a new friend – the other leader of the IT group, Osun state division, who turned out to be quite a conversationalist. I enjoyed (still enjoy) chatting with him.
On Endurance Trek day, I stumbled on a very good weapon. Initially we were instructed to walk according to platoons, but after a while it all got muddled up, and everyone was with their friends. I was walking with Tommy at first, but he accelerated to join Lola who’s in platoon 14 (we are both in platoon 17, so it was quite a distance). AY, who’s in platoon 18, accelerated, with a friend, and I joined them. After two and a half hours we got to our destination, to discover an MTN dominated party in full swing. There was food (for sale of course), and alcohol and drinks everywhere. People soon got high on the cheap palm wine for sale and started doing crazy stunts. We were pitched in front of a local secondary school and soon some drunk guys had gathered the students to teach them all we had learnt in two weeks about marching. It was hilarious. I was still with AY, gisting as usual, when I saw my clan and we went over. Now, the same beef (slang for resentment) given to the other guy (let’s call him PL) because he was determined to take the clan’s “glue” away, had also been extended to AY, and I noticed that very day. I greeted everyone, then still went off with him. Even though I made sure that I was within visible range, it seemed every member of the clan still wanted to know if “something was going on between us two”, later. Lola told me later that PL had come looking for me, and his face had gotten darker with resentment and rage when he saw that I was with AY. Lola had teased him, “Why are you jealous?”, and he had replied that he only wanted to protect his platoon treasurer’s best interests. Imagine that, best interests indeed.
I was oblivious to his animosity then, though I felt a bit of it on our way back. Ay and I were bent on getting back to the camp in time so we could rest, so we were walking quite fast. We met PL on the way, in a ‘situation’ – he and another guy we call Doctor, had three girls leaning on them in the following sequence: girl – doctor – girl – PL – girl. There was no way PL could leave them and come and join us. Doctor and PL began asking questions when they saw that AY and I didn’t slow down. “Are you using something?” “What energizers did you take?” stuff like that. I knew Doctor’s questions were friendly, but I didn’t like PL’s tone. Anyway we got to camp and that night my laps woke me up – excruciating pain. I woke up to find that I was crying. It was serious, the whole room kept chorusing ‘sorry’. I didn’t know that people had been going to the clinic to massage their legs after the trek. I just went to eat at Mammi, with Hippy, and then went to bed.

Then just before the final volleyball game, one of our players fell off one Man – O – War rope ladder, and dislocated her left arm. It was the dampener that allowed the other finalist team to beat us.

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