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enitan omowunmi, 24 Sep '12

Blues for the Blues

The killing had been on for days and the state government was yet to find a way to stop it. It was the usual story: Muslims versus Christians. When will they learn that it was all about power? More political than religious.
Each night I go to bed in fear. Only my weakness and respect for temporary unconsciousness when nights come take me to bed. There I was, a Muslim in a christian area, they could come for me anytime. My neighbour had left and the house stood alone far from any residential building. I could not leave town, the outskirts were unsafe, day or night. I received calls from family and friends quietly during the day and dare not forget to switch off by dusk.
My family wanted me to leave for immediately the situation calmed. I was in the north central part of the country.
Days after calm returned I was yet to move. What if they burn my apartment, steal or destroy my property in my absence?
My sister had just put to bed (her second child and I had not seen her since she tied the knots,) so I guessed that was reason enough to go visiting down south.

I felt her anger before I saw her. Description to her house was served coldly and how welcomed I felt when she asked me, as I entered the living room, if I was too blind to greet those seated.

My aunt told me she has been touchy since she was discharged, my cousin said he received a few kicks for instructions he didn't carry out satisfactorily while she was still on the hospital bed; whenever he was close enough.
Few days after I arrived my neighbour called to say my apartment was burgled and some of my things were destroyed. That was it. The statement was well understood: leave or face our wrath.
My family were glad I had left before they attacked. They advised me to find another house and put up with friends while I get another place to live. "Only go there to pack your things." Said my dad.
"And to say you spent so much to make the house habitable." My mother said.
"You should ask the landlord to refund you."My cousin was serious
His sister joined in. "Yes. If I were you..."
There was no need to listen. Their words were hurting than the lost.
Money was no problem for me. I had done the painting of the house myself, designed my bedroom in different shades of blue and white. With many part of each wall I had become a friend that's shared secrets and all parts were partners in smiles. But some crazy, jobless fools had decided I leave and my people complained about money? Will they refund my time and pleasures if the landlord compensated with money?

My sister moved on with the baby blues. When my mum complained about her moods she said she was just depressed in such a matter-of-fact manner that I felt like spanking her butts because it sounded like 'it's no big deal. Just take the heat I give out, smile and enjoy it while it lasts.'
"I do get depressed too but I don't scream and take it out on people. I 'd rather remain quiet and eat more and feast on chocolate. Why don't you get a bar, it will help you."
She looked at me with irritation and told me mine was not depression but psychopathy, or was it psychosis she said?
She changed little after that. Thanks were scarce (or was there any?) but she had complaints ready whenever.
All I could was avoid her. Once when I complained about the way her friend barged into the room I was staying she told me she did not invite me and I could leave if I was not comfortable with the way she lived.

There were news of more attack up north. Though I could not go back I had started making calls to get a new apartment.

Few more weeks and it was okay to go back. While I packed my things I felt strained physically and emotionally. School had not resumed and I still had some weeks to mourn my loss. I bought some chocolate after I settled in. There was no need to cook, had enough cereals and snacks to last a month. Though all I needed was a week to soak in the mood. My lips stayed together, the sadness I welcomed. I knew it will be a guest for days and no more. I had recipe that will send it on its way. Music was the first item on the menu. Jazz will start it and country will come on later. I wished I had a powerful speaker to play it loud, (police won't come knocking even if your neighbour cursed and kicked). My earphones were strong enough. Only my ears will pay for it, probably when I am old.