It was another Monday just like any other that I had to go to work. I was so disorganized that morning that I returned to my room three times to pick something before finally getting on a bike that will get me down to my work. My flatmate who got up from bed long after me eventually set out to work before me. The reason for my oscillatory motion I wouldn’t know but it will soon be revealed. I will have to stop over at the ATM on my way to withdraw from my account. Again.
Expectedly, I was late to work that morning but thankfully only one patient was waiting, which I quickly saw and had plenty time to think before the next patient. And the thoughts came. They came rushing. Like a bout of sweat I couldn’t control. I thought about how my bank balance has lately been experiencing a one-way traffic without roadblock as I continuously withdrew for non-investment use. I have tried hard to put some resistance and impedance to the flow but the current still manages to flow still. More familial and domestic channels keep opening up to drain from this limited resource. There has to be a counter-current multiplier. If not, hypovolemia and anaemia will set in.
There, I thought of all the money I have hanging outside, in the hands of government and individuals who are dragging endlessly to pay. A large windfall it would be if I could get all at once. The reality began to dawn on me. It was real. If there was no transfusion or rehydration soon…Shock! My countenance changed almost immediately as I became cranky to the innocent patients now sitting before me. It got worse when they could not understand my now ruthless grammar or when they gave poor history of their children’s fever, cough and catarrh or even more annoyingly can’t recall their own LMP! I still attended to them though forming fake smiles.
LUTH was the first irritant in my head. First, I felt cheated that they didn’t pay back the arrears of an illegal deduction (more than one-quarter) they made from one of our salaries during my housemanship year. Then the salary for my gruelling last month of work was yet to be paid after six months. They should also have paid the refund of sumptuous hostel damages fee five months after clearing out from that fifth RMO. My heart thumped faster within me. What’s all these nonsense?
Halfway through the month and I haven’t been paid state allowance for the penultimate month. Did I hear someone say “Your own is too much, it’s not that bad joor”? Excuse me, It is that bad! If I worked for four weeks without delay, fairness demands that I get paid without delay. Its even worse now that it’s happening to me. Ahhh. I’m watching. No! No more. I must be paid. Shikena. INEC will also compound things by skipping me alongside a few others (either by omission or intention, I don’t know) from payment for those three days we spent in hell distributing permanent voter’s card. My muscles ached so badly from those long journeys by motorcycle into the bush on the most terrible terrain I have ever plied. Hmmn, why then am I among the omitted? The answer to that question doesn’t answer it- I must be paid!
Finally, the individuals who are owing me (there names are written in the book of life), one would not even pick my many calls. Haba! Insult on injury. I started calling everyone again. From the Oga who would ratify the payment of my state allowance which is already with him, a LUTH public officer in department of housing, my very good friend who knows how things run in LUTH, to my CDS president who was also omitted, I called. Promises here and there. I could bribe (or induce) public officers to expedite action or involve corrupt police to get (and share) my money back from persons, but my heart will not conceive or bear either. Eventually, I still have to wait. Maybe “oju booro ko la fi n gbomo lowo ekuro” (it takes effort to get the seed outta the palm kernel) in Naija. Whew! My hot blood will have to simmer. I will need to calm down. But I also need my money. Seriously.
The story would have ended there but my frustration that Monday wouldn’t just end easily. After typing this piece at first up to the point of ‘Seriously’ as above, my blackberry hung. Without that black clock-like thing that gives hope in display. Devil is a liar! It froze endlessly, staring at me like it had Grave’s disease. And I hadn’t saved the write-up. Crazy! I lost the data as I had to reboot and write again in pain.
With my own hands.