As I always say, life is too short to be too serious. Sometimes we just have to create a time out of time to have some fun. I am not a good blogger, but I like blogging, thus, I just do it the way I do like it, hoping that one day I shall be the greatest of all times among the good bloggers. I decided to start blog-writing my stories and experiences of life so as to make it easier for those to write on me when the time comes, As I decided to leave the internet with a lot of it by the time my days will be over. Since my mind is always whispering to my inner mind, saying “Auwal, you may not live very long”. But that is story for another day. Blogging feeds me with fun, fame and finance. So, do not hesitate to call me Blogger in addition to Geographer among so many other names of mine.
As for now, the first among my series of accounts concerns my love story as a very young man. And after this, more are coming. So, here we go:
- I wanted to marry at a very young age, and Zaliha Yusuf was my first true date as far back as 2003, but unluckily, I lost her to a T5 Vespa riding businessman while I was away for National Youths’ Service Corps (NYSC) exercise in Cross River State (The story of my relationship with Zaliha can make the greatest movie script of all time, thus, let it be story for another day). And when I was done with the NYSC, Naja’atu Abdullahi was the lady that showed me what a real ‘love’ is, I just have to settle on her. And she supposed to be the wife as far back as July, 2008, but unfortunate to both of us, her biological father rejected me five days to our wedding after two consecutive postponements. And to this day, I do respect his stand, and whenever the street brings us together, I do greet him in a respectful manner. And maintain a good relationship to her siblings to this day, they do address me as ‘Doctor’.
2. While waiting for the clarion call after my university graduation in 2005, I accepted temporary teaching job at Bristow International College at Zungeru Road, Sabongari-Kano, where they pay me N6,000 every blessed month. Meanwhile during that period, the management of the evening session for the local Islamiyya classes in our neighbourhood (Titin Gidan Ruwa, PRP Quarters, Gama C – Kano) unanimously agreed to voluntarily commence a joint weekend-morning Islamiyya session. I, not being part of them, decided to forward my application to teach Arabic Language, a subject initially not in their curriculum, and I was granted.
3. To me, Fadila, Naja’atu and Usaina were the most intelligent and hardworking students among the so many obedient and respectful senior female students in the amalgamated weekend-morning session. Thus, I made regular inquiries on them from anyone that is due to give a reliable information concerning their upbringing. Moreover, this three students, are among those schooling at Government Girls Secondary School Maikwatashi at Igbo Road, Sabongari-Kano. And they do trek to school sporadically, and since we lack adequate space in Bristow College, we do conduct our assembly outside the school premises. Thus, they sometimes see me and even greet me, as they usually do everywhere they see me, even amidst of the crowd the respect manifests. This attracted my attention more and more, reasoning in my mind, ´Perhaps the lots and arrows might one day be casted upon one of them.
4. Zaliha Yusuf, then a schoolgirl at the neighbourhood Quranic Memorization Section of Arwa´u Islamiyyah School at PRP Bus-Stop, a Fulani teenage, was the one I was craving for, despite of the big competitive challenge ahead, I made all my possible attempt to lead the league of the competitors, but unfortunately, I could only attained second position, while one Bashir led the league. When I left for Cross River State, for the NYSC, my weekly attendance sheet started recording zeros, and there was no communication between us since she uses no mobile phone. Consequently, Bashir won the tournament, and finally she was betrothed to him, and that was the end of that story.
5. By January, 2007, the national assignment was over, I was back to Metropolitan Kano, and that was the year I planned to get married. Although no permanent job at hand, and in spite of multiple ladies awaiting my approval, including some from among my relatives, I still face the world to spread my net. Meanwhile, at Imamu Adam Amalgamated Islamiyyah School (That is the name given to the weekend-morning session), Fadila was not only betrothed, but got married to one Auwal. It was Naja’atu and Usaina left now. Although Naja’atu is proven to be the best student in the entire school, I still have to screen the duo, and in the end, my mind was satisfied that I can take any of the two as a potential wife. Meanwhile, I still have to consider some certain factors that concern my personal likes. Finally, I settled for Naja’atu, the problem now is how a teacher would approach his student with such a very powerful clause — ´I LOVE YOU´ in his mouth? If it were not for being my student, my magic tongue would have done it all with 99.6% certainty. But here, I had no heart for that since it is on my student. In the end, I finally contacted one Malam Basiru (a.k.a. Tsuket) to counsel me on how to solve this, since all arrangement on his marriage with one of our students of that very school were then made; therefore, he must be well experienced on how such cases should be faced.
6. I finally forwarded my application in written to her, through one Muntari, Mallam Basiru’s cousin. Meanwhile, I and Malam Basiru inquired from one A’isha (Now Mrs. Bunyamin), a friend to her. And she confirmed to us that her friend was still ´for sale´, she was not betrothed to anyone. However, Naja’atu replied my four foolscap pages written application with three and a half pages, revealing that I was just a week late, that she was just betrothed. Moreover, Naja’atu later invited Malam Basiru and myself to A’isha’s house, where her mouth reconfirmed to us what was written by her pen. She added that, before I left for Cross River State, she had a feeling for me, she loved me so much, but she was only afraid of the consequences if she was to forward it to me being her teacher, unknown to her that the same was in my heart. She also added that had it been she was aware that this day will come, she would have not accepted the offer she accepted from someone else. She insisted that “Surely, God must have kept something hidden. And if not that I don’t want make my father irresponsible in the face of earth, I shall surely reject the previous engagement, being very sure my parents will only give to me whom I want. Despite all these, I suggest we should not give up, we should just continue to pray, ´We plan, God plans, and God plans best´. So, it will be better if we keep in torch; anything can happen”. Despite the fact that, I was shivering, my voice was shaking, having perceived the implications I still have to re-admit a party of my appealing—that she should please help me keep my unsuccessful approach secret among her classmates, because they may be looking at me one kind. “You don’t have to bother yourself, you are safe”, she re-admitted and re-admitted. As for me, immediately I returned home, I fell on my back with my face towards heaven, I began reasoning in my mind that A’isha, being one of the closest friends to Naja’atu, should be in better position to be aware of all what Naja (short version od Naja’atu) was saying if at all she was truthful. And I continued to recall all what I could, in order to classify her words as either ‘true’ or ‘false’, I then finally junked three-quarter of it. Not only that, I was in the end able to bin the entire matter. However, It came to past that I could not even position myself in places that I am sure she might see me, even though in the past I have been engaging in unnecessary activities in places and times that I am sure she must see me, most especially on her way back from school. What a shy and internal suffering!
7. While I put her case behind, having believed there was no hope. Naja’atu continued to extend multiple of greetings to me, a sign that she was developing more and more interest in me. A phenomenon that encouraged my return to Imamu Adam School. Before you know it, not only reuniting, but a mutual relationship began. Although she allowed me not to knock on her father’s house door to see her, as she insisted that she was not expected to attend to any other lad in the name of love since she was already betrothed to someone, otherwise her father will be considered irresponsible by the society as she said, but in the end she granted me the license. Moreover, she requested that she visits and greet my parents which I equally granted. That was how I continued to reign.
8. While we enjoy a mutual understanding, one Isa Dabchi just appeared on the screen, he was the leading contestant for taking her as a spouse. Although from the beginning she disclosed his story to me, but I saw him not as a threat, however, he succeeded in inducing her father to destroy the already growing relationship, an action which the father was not successful in his first attempt. Having his ancestors from Borno State, Isa Dabchi was at that time an influential politician at Nassarawa Local Government of Kano State. He loved Naja’atu so much that he spent a lot on her. He had the opportunity to be discussing the matter with her father. So, when I jumped in-between from nowhere and succeeded in overthrowing him from the throne, he was heavily shocked as shown by a lot of his actions. Mr Dabchi then decided to take all possible measures toward restoring his initial status, an action that was defeated by a student-teacher relationship; I believe that favoured me a lot. And even though he has been delegating elderly people to go and make false allegations on me in addition to his, I continue to be on top until one day when her father warned her not to attend to me anymore. And the incidence was on one Friday, by Saturday morning, we united at the morning session school. By that time the name Imamu Adam Islamiyyah School was only a history, the school was shot down by its initiators as a result of different understandings and interpretations of some aspects in Islamic jurisprudence by the Izala vs Tariqa division among the school teachers. A party pressed that the school must be closed, and then decided not to be attending anymore, yet the school is run in one of their night school classes. In the end, the school’s lessons were relocated to the site of Kulliyatut Ta´alim Islamiyyah School, a school that runs in the night and evening belonging to the serious party, thus, I joined them.
9. As usual, the school closes at 11 o’clock, and on one day while I, Malam Rabi´u and Malam Sani Taska remained in the school premises chatting, a messenger was sent to call me, when I asked him the sender he said two ladies, and I understood. I met Naja’atu at her friend A’isha Sabitu’s residence as usual, as we began talking, she started shedding tears, an action which I insisted to know why about, but Naja’atu was busy suggesting that we simply part away, when I enquired why, she replied that she cried and cried until she was tired during the last night, and that was due to the instruction given to her by her father, that he doesn’t want to see her with me anymore. By that time it was already raining, she was in the house entrance while I was standing outside, the water landing from the roof had already wetted my feet. Naja’atu suggested that I get into the entrance because of the rain, but in order to show her that I was touched by her father’s action, I remained dormant in the rain, and she called my name almost half a dozen but I remained quiet. This forced her to admit that I should not bother myself, her father was only persuaded to take that action, but she will try all her possible best to see that things are back to order.
10. During the night of that very day, I met with the father begging that he pardons me for the fact that I started relationship with his daughter without his consent. “No! This is common in our contemporary Hausaland”, he responded. And finally, I formally requested for his consent, which in the end was somehow granted.
11. A couple of days later, our relationship became better than before. The relationship continued, sometimes smooth and sometimes rough, so many other problems were later introduced by my top rival and his allies. I then found myself in a period that I suffered psychologically and emotionally, a period that forced me to make a declaration to Naja’atu almost thrice, that I have exercised more patience and I either quit or Isa Dabchi must go. Whenever we had such a talk, I would quit, but she would come and forced me back into the relationship, saying I have no right to quit because of what she called minor problems, since we have mutual love (This also requires more explanation, but I will only summarise so as to make the essay less bulky). “Today is the final day, I will never be in love with you in as much as you continue to keep someone standby beside me, perhaps you decided not to discard him completely because you have no trust in me, you kept that in case I disappoint you, then he takes over. For how long would I be telling you to stop him, and your responses were no more than you want to separate with him in the best peaceful manner, while you are very much aware that he is responsible for almost three-quarter of our problems. So you kindly choose now, either ‘me’ or ‘him’. I will no longer endure such a curable tension, now the decision is with you”. These were the heavy words I casted upon her ears on one Saturday. By Sunday, she declared him Isa Dabchi as her ex. And that was his last appearance on the screen. And to this day, I cannot say with an evidence, that this is the specific reason why he decided step out. But as for us, that was the beginning of a period of calmness, peace and prosperity.
12. By the beginning of the year 2008, I was already employed by Yahuza Suya Spot Nigeria Limited, I only visit Musawa and Kano occasionally since my new job had already relocated me to the Federal Capital Territory. Meanwhile, my relationship with Naja’atu was very smooth by this time. As usual, her words are no more than send your guardians to my parents to discuss on our marriage. At last, a delegate from my family arrived their house for that, as usual, they arrived with a token amount of cash that will serve as a confirmatory gift, and will prevent other lads from her. Unfortunately, the father refused to accept the money, they insisted and he insisted too; at last he won. And they returned home unhappily. I was very unhappy too, and so she was. The two of us were in great agony. I together with my people continue to plead for approval from Malam Abdullahi, and he finally granted us permission but not without stress. A couple of weeks later, tens of women from among friends and relatives from my side stormed Malam Abdullahi’s residence for the formal betrothal procedure, and that was on the 19th day of October, 2008. And they took a decision that the wedding should be in the next nine months.
13. Unlike before, we by now experience a distance relationship, where we only hear through our mobile phones. Moreover, a peaceful relationship flourished until when the wedding was around the corner. By the beginning of the last quarter of 2009, I was already employed by Katsina State Ministry of Education, to teach Geography at Government Pilot Secondary School, Musawa — my home town school. Here, the relationship is short distanced, because almost Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays I will be in Kano metropolis to see her.
14. By the beginning of the month of June, 2008, we were already in the midst of preparations for the wedding, which is to come on the first day of the month to follow — July, 2008. Suddenly, it was sent to us that the wedding is no more as scheduled, but should now be on the 14th day of the month, two weeks added, and we finally accepted that, but not without arguments. The first week of the wedding month began with a conflict between the spouses to be; and that was as result of a claim by her step-mother and elder sister that they were not welcomed honourably by my sick sister when they visited her in our family house. While one respectful woman, a neighbour to Naja’atu’s house that we call ´Mama´ was in the course of doing all her possible best to resolve the misunderstanding between I and Naja´atu, and by now the lass had already noted her mistakes promising no repeat and was so eager to see the dilemma over so as not lose a portion of the money she was expecting from me for the party she was planning for her friends and family, since we were then only seven days to go. But suddenly, Naja’atu’s father delegated Mama to my family, saying the wedding should be postponed again until August, a request that we heavily rejected this time around.
15. When two weeks were added in the beginning I was not home, when I returned and heard of it, I made inquiries on the how about, and they said they have another wedding a week behind at Zaria, and a week interval is not sufficient for them. I pleaded ‘why not they add only a week making the interval two weeks?’ They insisted “No! We have already informed friends and relatives, so there is no way to return to them and say date is changed from 14th day of July to the 7th day of the month.
16. In the end, my in-law to be succeeded in dismantling everything. And all arrangements were then cancelled. My family decided that I marry from within our bloodline (another very long story). And since I understood that one of my major crimes in the eyes of my in-law to be was not having a fat bank account to maintain his angel, I decided to play a role in making sure that she gets married before the next 12 months. And I was successful on my mission, as I persuaded her and a friend that is financially well to do and desperately in need of a pious woman marry. This friend once dated her long before I appeared, only that he was not that marketable in the eyes of many ladies of her generation. Although she told me that since arrangements were already made on my within-family marriage, she promised to wait for me if at all I shall equally promise to marry her as my second wife within the next 3-4 years to come (A story of another day). Even though I was not in town, but I have to come back to play my role as friend to the groom. And I have to thank my tailor for not disappointing me with regards to the uniform wedding attire.
17. Their marriage was not able to last long, and they both fed me with their respective comprehensive versions of the sad story, each one of them blame the other—blame game. And when it was very obvious that they were not interested in one another anymore, most especially herself, I decided to ask her when exactly is she planning to settle in her matrimonial house once again, as I am always against a single-life for a once married lady most especially in her young age, but not without an undisclosed intention at the back of my mind. But she insisted that Education first before marriage! She then secured admission to study Geography/Economics in one of the colleges of Education in the metropolis.
18. To cut the story short, as her father rejected a poor geography teacher, she went ahead to study Geography at the higher institution, married a geography teacher at the college of education. It will interest you to hear that I also attended their wedding even though she only told me about it some few days to, and to this day I am still in confusion for such an action from her. Anyway, she was very happy seeing me in her wedding once more, and she welcomed me laden with hospitality.
19. I just have to admit that no matter how small, I contributed in one way or the other in missing her, most especially for this second chance. But Wallahi I am verily very happy for her in her fruitful marriage life, and I just have to congratulate her husband, my fellow Geographer for having such an outlier-wife.
20. And in case Naja may able to come across this essay, I hope she still respect that promise of ours, that since we were not able make it to marriage, we both agreed that we are going to hook our kids when their time comes in order to compensate our failure.
21. Verily, I wish our two families long productive life, peace and prosperity.
22. May the Lord God bless us all. Ameen.