Notes on Nostalgia: Cool and the Gang

I've had a little bit of a stressful action and adventure packed weekend. I really don't know where I get the energy to do some of the things I do but then again this is hardly surprising for I am Afam, I still get a certifiable high from a glass of Sprite. On Saturday night I was in Cirencester celebrating my friend's twenty-first birthday. I'll say more about him later. At this event I got to see friends that I had not seen in three years. It really is true that the more things change, the more they stay the same because we fell back into the old way of things so easily. It felt like it had only been a day and a half since I'd seen them last.

Now let me talk about this friend that I went all the way to Cirencester for.

Cirencester hasn't got a train station. The nearest station's Kemble.

I started at Cheltenham when I was 17. Before Cheltenham I had been at Loyola Jesuit College in Nigeria. Even that had had it's own challenges but after 6 ears of living with the same people a respectable equilibrium had been reached. I was amicable with all and friends with a few - a proper gentleman. I must confess that I was equal parts excited and scared of my first forray into the life of the English Public schoolboy. Within a few weeks, I was on the phone to mummy.

Enter Mama Afam and Afam

Afam: Mum, call me back NOW!

This is because it is not worth your pocket money to make an international call to Nigeria that lasts for anything longer than a minute.

Mama Afam rings back a few minutes later, before she can get a word in I state the purpose of the call.

Afam: Mum I do not quite like it here remove me at once!

Mama Afam: Pardon? You want me to deny you an opportunity that so many of your countrymen lack. You've even got Hot Chocolate on tap. I fail to see what could be so monumentally difficult about the school.

Afam: But I'm brutally unhappy. I know I'm a bit of a loner but this is ridiculous. I'm lonely!

Mama Afam: Don't be absurd! The people in your house are lovely. I even met your head of house, Jimbo. He's a brilliant chap.

Afam: He is but you can't possibly understand. I am the only black Nigerian. There are only two other Africans and we don't really talk because they both speak French. I dress weird, I talk weird, I'm uncertain about things I didn't have to think about before.

Mama Afam: I don't quite follow. Have you not made any friends at all.

Afam: It's been a little difficult. I've only been here for two weeks and we all know that the best friendships are not forged in two weeks. So while I do have friends, they're not the sort of friends I need. They're not the sort of friends you discuss all the intricate details of how you perceive the world. They're the sort of friends you complain to about the weather...

At the end of that phone call I was in tears. Mama Afam was shocked because I hadn't shown any of my tearful tendencies to her for about 4 years.

Soon after that I made my first real friend. I can't really describe how the friendship was formed but I looked at him and I understood that somehow we would be friends. That if there was any friend I needed in that crazy English jungle it would be him. For two years we spent most nights between 10pm and 12 am together, talking. It's a friendship that I can't forget or neglect because I forged it when there was a storm raging about me.

So when he said I'm going to be celebrating my 21st on the 15th of September save the date, the date was saved. And when he said it's going to be in Cirencester and not in London, I booked my train, and made plans to pass the night in his car (I eventually ended up passing the night in the stables, LONG STORY!). And when he said can you make sure that Bangy (Our Bangladeshi friend) makes it I did my best to ensure that he did.

So today I christen him Aburo. He has been awarded this title for incalculable services rendered. He shall be my "aburo" from now until the end of time, and if some fraction of me exists then, he will still be my brother.

Happy Days,


Lauren jonczak said...

Interesting read. I came across your post while looking up how to make an international call. I am so happy that you found the kind of friend that you needed. Great story, thanks for sharing!

Afam said...

Thanks for reading.

Happy Days

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