From where Bako, Damba and Mera stood on a pyramid of sand, they could see Master Hagi. A popular old man in the village of Kaluri who loves to tell children night tales and parables. “Master Hagi the school of the Kaluris” as he is fondly called, leaves no stubborn child unturned. His name rings a bell in the mind of those who needs advice of any kind. But due to the Corona virus pandemic outbreak, crowd gatherings were suspended.
As the master drew closer to the kids…
‘Master Hagi!’ They exclaimed simultaneously.
‘Yes my boys!’ He replied with a smile.
You should all be at home maintaining social distance he said to them as he walked pass them.
‘Yes Master but we have questions for you.’ Mera said aloud.
Master Hagi halted, sighed and turned to them.
‘Alright boys. Grab those seats under that tree and maintain some distances among yourselves.’ He ordered.
The three boys did as they’ve been instructed to
‘OK I’m all ears.’
‘Master, When will COVID_19 be over? When will mama and papa be allowed to start their businesses again?’ Mera asked
‘When will I be free to visit other villages where my relatives stay and when will i attend festivals again?’ Bako said depressingly.
Master Hagi smiled… ‘Boys, what has been the positive lessons you’ve learnt from COVID_19 that relates to you?’
“Ermm..no matter the situation we should keep all hopes high and make plans for dry season.” Damba answered.
Good! Master said.
“Master, I learnt that when we think things are bad they could get worse. Life goes on regardless the happenings.” Mera said
Hmm..Good! Master nodded in accordance.
Bako the youngest of them said “I’ve never been close to my parents this much…they never had time but this period made us one family.”
‘Hmmmmm…That’s good Bako.’ Master said.
“You all have said well.”
This outbreak placed its thumb on the pulse of our subconscious kicking down the walls that often confine us. Many parents never imagine such a time as this when they would spend their 24/7s being at home with their children due to their 6-8 daily jobs.
Some of us never believed we will make it through to this present stage…we felt we’ve had the worst.
This period also made us critical thinkers, thinking what will be of us tomorrow and next to come.
This period made us cultivate an habit(s) positive or negative, knowingly or unknowingly… Eating more, writing more, meditating movies, games…name it.
This period birthed creativity, the power of giving and self sacrifices.
This period birthed unity and love among nations.
It made us build relationships with relatives and friends far and near through call and text messages to assure one another’s safety.
You see boys, these trying times has not only made us stretch the boundaries of our imagination but also grasp that there is more to us than we know..we are made of more. So gird your loins boys! Produce more!
The question is not “When would this be over?” but should be “What good can i make of it?”
So when this time is over, we would be proud to say we did things we never had time for.’
‘Thank you Master.’ The three boys
So boys, what have you made of yourself in these trying times?
©Ochei R. Chidinma.
Story inspired by those facing hard time challenges sequel COVID_19.