#AkungbaIgbeyin: ‘Tag Along For Food-For-Two’- Sophie

 

I had just graduated from the Polytechnic and I understood how the system works.

At least for the most part, if we consider the difference in school and all. It helped me fully prepare for the last month of the semester; “THE IGBEYIN PERIOD”.

Begging and enticing every relative I know does not start until I have my examination timetable.

This style works for a few of my relatives. For the other stiff-necked ones that needs their emotional strings touched, all I have to do is just cry, fake sickness and have my close friend tell them I had fainted while reading in night class and the funds come running in. EXAM FEVER SYNDROME!

That was my Akungba Igbeyin Strategy for 100 Level but COVID had other plans for me. I did not even have a choice in the matter. Luckily, I did not starve in 100 Level at the end of both semesters.

200 Level came with a lot of breaks in between. Since the semesters’ schedule decided to be a dutiful brand ambassador for APC by not failing its slogan, I was not able to efficiently monitor the calendar.

My inability to keep up with the semester calendar made me have an experience of the glorified Akungba Igbeyin at its fullest.

It started when I noticed my situation the day I had to redo this particular test for the umpteenth time in school. Getting back home from class that fateful day I was hungry, stressed and tired.

I decided to go hunting for water to cook. Then go to sleep and then eat whenever I wake up. All in that order.

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I made up my mind to cook concoction rice as soon as I was done fetching water as I still had leftover stew from the day before.

After putting the remaining rice left in the bucket on fire to cook. I decided to refill my paint bucket of rice only to notice that I don’t have any rice left. Draining the rice with immediate effect, you would think I was on fire.

I picked some beans and then proceeded to cook beans and rice so I can take it along with cassava smoothie, giving me chance to eat and still have enough for the next day.

With my rice exhausted on Wednesday and less than a bowl of beans and 6 noodles to survive adding to the fact that exams starts on Monday, I knew I was set to be doomed.

I acted the part of a very sweet and nice girl to my relatives and was only able to get urgent 2k.

Thinking about what I could do, I took to my WhatsApp and randomly sent texts to some of my friends who attends all the parties and knew all the guys.

I hope I get paid for revealing this secret. My friends and I would go visiting a friend who invited her over so he can buy food for 2 visitors.

Thing is, we don’t go together. She goes first, then I stop by with an “I am bored at home” story. Only to leave 10 or 20 minutes after I have eaten or after my phone is fully charged.

Whichever the case might be, then I go back home waiting for the next update. More like the next guy who would be interested in having either of my friends over.

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Exam was looking tough, tutorials got nosier, nobody wants to fail, people needed tutors and I am a good student. As long as I was fed, tutoring was not an issue.

Those that agreed to this clause are a part of this success story on how I survived Akungba Igbeyin without actually dying.

Lessons learnt from this story should hopefully include that being a good student pays. Having friends who are social, and even more social on your behalf, pays more. It might be your only ticket to survival, especially if all road seems to be closing up.

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