The shortest night in a week for any student in the boarding house of a Unity school has to be the night before Monday morning. With little or no hostel chores to do, the day before Monday is blessed with such goodies that i will need another post to be more detailed.
The rising bell breaks your dreams into shattered pieces, bringing you to the reality of the beginning of the working week. Yes, we were not workers but education is work and Monday was the beginning of another challenge. It is the opposite of Fridays but without a Monday, there is no Friday to look up to.
Monday brings out the best in most of the students of FEGO – Everything seems to be normal and in other. Clothes have been ironed the previous day, or just washed if the luxury of ironing could not be attained. Whites are brighter than ever, ghettos are sharp enough to bring down the elephant grasses on the road. Socks clean, shoes clean, hair combed, a wonderful week to look forward to.
Apart from the Saturday inspection mornings, the hostel is in a cleaner state on Monday mornings than any other day. The portion bell signals the awakening of the lazy room heads and the whips of the officials coming to ensure sanitation of the hostel before the legendary food bell – who doesn’t eat? Food bell is like the biblical trumpet to signify the end of time. The food bell brings so much joy not just because of the food but because it releases you from the morning cores just like we would leave this mortal body.
If there was a meal that was least attended by FEGO students, that meal has to be Monday Morning Beans. Loved mayor, avoided by the girls, the beans was a kick starter to the week. Depending on the times and kitchen supervisor, it was served with hot pap – so hot that it could zap your brain of all you have learnt if not eaten with respect. The beans was so hot that the cold in your system will be heat exchanged in no time. Mayor loved the beans so much that he could do anything for it. He was once baptized with a full pot of hot beans. His immaculate white bore the grunt of his love for the protein. The white was the messiah for the beans. Mayor wept… how much he loved his beans.
After the battle of the beans which is usually fought and won by junior boys, everyone heads to the Assembly Hall for the first of the two assemblies in a week – excluding the dining hall assembly and hostel shenanigans. Before the era of queuing out side the hall, we had the luxury of sitting in the hall. There four rows of long benches with about 20 benches per row.
The first row was for the junior students, especially the newbies and fresh students – JSS1. it was occasionally infiltrated by older students by reason of authority or as a means to enhance immediate escape from the hall in the case a “wait-behind” is announced. The second row was for SS1 student, the third was for SS2 and the fourth for SS3. In all of these rows, if you are not siting on the first 5 bench, then you are more likely to be bounced.
Just like Newton discovered, every action begets a reaction – every bounce begets a counter-bouncing. SS3 bounces SS2 – SS2 bounces SS1 – SS1 bounces JSS. The JSS is left with nothing to bounce but to head up to the gallery where he is to sit down on the dirty slabs and hearken unto the voice of the principal.
Graced by the National anthem, opened by a Christian morning prayer, the Monday morning assembly was peculiar and unique. It was a day to announce the results of the Saturday inspection – Mr Balogun and his Cross House Gang took delight in winning the hostel inspections. I missed those “Cross House tour jous!!! Plueur vous!!!” – forgive my french spellings. Class sanitation inspection results were also announced. House and class captains involved gloried in the temporary plague that was presented at the assembly.
It was also a day where most results of competitions were announced. I was blessed to be one of those that stood in front of the school as we went for various competitions. Offenders had their share of the mornings too. New innovations are introduced and other matters as deemed relevant by the Principal or VP. To many of us – especially junior students, we cared less. We longed for the new school anthem to signal the end of the meeting.
In all, nothing suffers most on Monday morning than the first period. Assembly has never finished on time – Never. so the first two periods of the week is usually wasted.
An afternoon load of Eba with Obe romanced with Ewedu, the very short siesta, the afternoon prep, an hour of freedom or captivity, evening white rice and night prep summarizes a regular Monday for all and sundry.
How were your Mondays in Boarding School?