One might crawl in a tunnel, a rabbit hole. But there's always a space to crawl to the light. As there was an entrance, there is also an exit.
Many tales begin with a conflict to resolve. Then, the resolution comes, with subsequent rise in tension.
She had learnt something...
Each day we experience, we form how the future will be. She had chosen her path. One with a hopeful dream of glory, albeit, tough. And, like most opportunities are, her first breakthrough came in a seeming coincidence. Disguised as a passing chance.
The ladies went on, unknowingly giving her the information she had been yearning to hear.
A federal university was recruiting new students with attractive bursary. Thirty thousand naira! And the tuition fee was just twenty one. What the extra money could do! Of course, it was to cover books and a little of living expenses it could reach but it really was a nice offer.
The day sped by. Or, maybe it was her mind that raced past all the events. She closed at her regular time.
Well, not without having gotten all the information she needed. How open was the grant? Did it have strong academic preferences, since she hadn't been the best of students in her previous school. She had a just average, struggling GPA that barely met a 2.1 ( Second class degree upper). She would have to begin again. From year one. In the new school. There was no direct entry or transfer option of some sort.
But she was comfortable with it. She had just resumed her second year, anyway. The school granting the bursary was a reputable institution, although it wasn't very near to where she lived. To others, it might sound too good to be true, but Seyi knew a lot about opportunities that flashed only momentarily and about grabbing them. She made up her mind that she was going to grab this too. She was writing her life, her future and possibly, the future of her family. And she would write it in indelible ink, in gold.
"Showers of rain are blessings."
Seyi muttered this repeatedly to herself as she stood under the pouring rain, shivering and totally drenched. Her skin itched from the tiny, irritating pieces of sand like substances that seemed to fall with the rain. She'd lost her umbrella somewhere on the way, most likely on the bus. She knew, she had a bad habit of forgetting things when she was tense.
There was a small crowd of people standing with her. A few with nylon bags on their heads, some with umbrellas and others like herself, standing in the pouring rain. But they all came for the same purpose: to settle one issue or the other with the local government in the Secretariat. Only, she had come to get an application for the bursary. It took a while before it was her turn.
She entered the office, soaking wet.
The lady behind the table looked at her with disgust.
"Don't you know it's human beings who clean this floor?" She asked savagely. She side eyed Seyi as she turned to look at the computer, muttering words about the office not being her, Seyi's, house. Seyi pursed her lips and looked away. She knew better than to argue or pick up a quarrel with a working official, especially since what she needed was priority so, she let it slide. Besides, it was Seyi's fault for messing up the floor.
After an unnecessary pause, the official returned her attention to Seyi.
Politely and calmly, she answered the questions.
That was the school Seyi hoped to get into. The University of WaZoBia.
"Yes, ma." She said in a cool tone.
"Coming from The University of Lara. You'll need your local government attestation letter. Are you from this state?"
She walked out of the office, feeling happier than she'd been in weeks. It was only an application form but to her, it was the door to a new lane. It was her father and brother, smiling from their abode, her siblings going to school, her mother having peace of mind, and herself, being something and the focal point of it all. The application was more than just mere paper, it was a contact card to a promising life ahead. She had already made a photocopy of her document, while the original copy sat in a plastic file purse in her bag. She would show her mother the photocopy, draft her application on it. The original paper had to be kept safe.
She had already read it through. The requirements, the information. She had learnt that from the time she wrote her secondary school leaving certificate exam... Instructions first. And care in filling information. She was Oluwaseyitan. A mistake could make an Oluwaseyifunmi get her slot, instead of herself. Her stars were shining well now. She couldn't risk it getting dim.
Her mother was happy to hear the news. Like all mothers, she offered first, a fervent prayer against all obstacles that may 'wish to cross her daughter's path.'
Gathering the requirements wasn't easy. Although, she was sure she must be on the advantaged zone since her late father was quite influential. Slowly but steadily, she progressed in her application. She walked a lot, especially while collecting information and she spent free hours practicing for classes she had missed. Juggling duties had never seemed so scary to her. At least, not when she wasn't practicing it.
But regularly, she drew strength. From her family, from her dreams. And it was with this similar strength that she submitted her finished application on a Monday morning, exactly a week and three days since she collected it. Her registration number had been one hundred and forty five but her submission number was thirteen.
"You didn't tell me..." Màámi said with silent joy as she held the paper in her hands.
"I haven't gotten it yet, ma." Seyi said, her smile as large as her mother's. Her application had been accepted and she had received a letter of processing request. It wasn't the grant, no, but she had been considered for the offer. She received the message early that morning on her mobile and she had taken excuse off duty to retrieve her paper. Her mother had been the first to know. And only.
"I know." Màámi said, smiling. Then, she looked at her daughter, adoration and pride filled her eyes. She looked so stressed that Seyi felt like she might cry. But the old lady held herself. She gave her daughter a hug instead as she whispered silent prayers in her ears. Prayers that Creation heard from the tell tale breeze, and replied;
"Àṣẹ." (May it be so).