It all started on my way back to Ikeja, I was in high spirits, life was looking good, and the traffic was at least bearable, even though I had already been irritated by the small inconvenience of the “telephone card boy” running off with my 50 naira change! I would have chased after him, in fact, I am quite sure I would have caught him, after all, I used to be known for my agility those days in secondary school. Anyway, nobody explained the cardinal rule when buying from street vendors from a car window which is “get your change first”, so I gave him the money first, and off the guy goes like a gazelle! (this was at the roundabout at salvation road, he was about 5 foot tall, dark in complexion with tribal marks running down both sides of his face, he also had one of those yellow vests with a religious slogan on it, just in case).
I get to Ikeja and what do I see? My people, if I tell you, you won’t believe the sight that met my eyes. I was amazed; I never knew Nigeria had such a special force! All young men, police men, in special gear with dogs! Dogs! Rottweiler, German Shepherds, I was dumbfounded, I thought I was in one of those action movies, I kept expecting to see “Rambo”, in fact, if Arnold Schwarzenegger had appeared, I would not have been surprised. I really thought they were shooting a movie. They were all so clean and fresh, lined up by the side of the street with their dogs. It was a long line I tell you, and as usual, I just had to find out what was happening, perhaps all the presidents of the African Union were having a meeting somewhere in the vicinity? Imagine! Discussing the different ways on how to end the Darfur conflict, the meeting must be here, somewhere, perhaps at the Sheraton? But there goes my fantasy again, it might not be our African leaders, perhaps the governor is inspecting the police and its resources in fighting crime? Ahhhhhhhh that must be it! Our uniformed men and women, the best we have to offer, showing their skills in crime prevention? This is so exciting! Things are happening in this country and I am here, at the right place, seeing history happen, well, let us ask, see what is happening, then we can celebrate....
Waffarian: na wa oh, see as you just dey shine anyhow!
Policeman with dog:......
Waffarian: ah ah! I dey hail una oh! Anyway, bros, wetin dey happen? Na meeting?
Policeman with dog :.....(mumbles something)
Waffarian: what did you say? I did not catch that...is there a meeting somewhere around?
This man is clearly not feeling comfortable about his job, his head is bent, and he is mumbling....
Waffarian: speak up na! I no hear wetin u talk, na meeting?
Policeman with dog: na wedding
Wedding? This is quite strange, I have to find out more about this, you mean Nigeria has a special squad for weddings? Perhaps they have a special name, like “Nigerian Wedding brigade”, motto: “ensure smooth passage for the wedding train”, something like that, I guess, although I don’t know if other countries have a special wedding brigade, it must be a new concept, perhaps it comes in a package? “Includes flowers flown from South Africa and special wedding brigade”. How much does it cost I wonder? Do they do naming ceremonies as well? I have to ask; perhaps you can even get a discount if you order on time.
Needless to say, I spent the whole afternoon watching the special brigade, even though the officers did not seem so happy to answer my questions, I’ll have to write to their superiors about that, the special wedding brigade must always have a smile on their faces, after all, no be wedding?