THE SHARP CAMP
THE SHARP CAMP
By Morak Tade.
One afternoon, Jimmy was
coming from football practice. Jimmy and his mates were chatting and he was
carrying a carrier bag, which contained his socks and ball. He showed his
friends a small smart phone that was given to him by his aunty. She just
recently returned from a holiday trip to the United States of America.
Suddenly, as he returned the
phone into his pocket the ball falls out of his hand and it rolled into bushes.
Jimmy dropped all he was carrying and ran after it. When he thought he found
it, there was nothing there. His friends pointed in a further direction.... “It
is over there,” they said. So Jimmy ran even further till he could no longer
see his mates. But he saw some movement and he looked and indeed he found his
ball. It was a small mud puddle and he was a little reluctant to get mud on his
shoes. But as he was about to move ahead to pick it, a Land Rover drove up and
a young teenage lad jumped off. This lad goes over and gets the ball instead.
Jimmy looked around and saw that there were two Land Rovers around. He saw the boys all dressed as soldiers; they were wearing camouflage gears and seem armed.
Jimmy was fascinated. But when he took a look at the jeep he was even more excited. It was a real military jeep just like the ones he had seen on television and in the movies. He once had a toy of it.
The lad handed the ball to jimmy and jimmy said “thank you, are you an army man?’ jimmy inquired.
The lad said, “We are the special boys company corps”. Jimmy asked yet another question, “Are these your jeeps?”
“Yes,” the young man in uniform said.
“Wow,” cried Jimmy, “I love you guys.. You guys rock. You are so tough and strong and I wish I could be in your corps.” The lad smiled and said, “What’s your name boy?”… “I am Jimmy,” came the reply I was on my way home from football practice with my mates over there.”
“Football, well if you want to be a real man and be strong and tough you will have to join our training… but you are too young anyway.. Maybe when you grow older, you come find us.”
With that the lad returned to the jeep and started it up. When he was about to drive off, jimmy called out! “Wait please can I just come along with you sometimes.. You know, maybe just to help you do things…?”
“Do what kind of things Jimmy?” The young man in uniform asked.
Jimmy said, “I can help you wash you wash your jeeps, polish your shoes and even clean out your guns- you do have guns don’t you?”
“Ha ha ha .. You are a very interesting one boy, tell you what, next week instead of going to your ball thing, come over here and I could take you to our camp and we’ll see what you can do… ok? “
Jimmy happily said “ok!” . “Oh yes it’s ok then, I shall see you next week,” the young man said.
Jimmy gave a military salute as the lad drove away along the bushy path in company of the other boys and doesn’t fail to turn around to salute Jimmy back.
Jimmy rushed back to his mates grasping his ball and looking very pleased with himself indeed. Jimmy could not wait to tell his friend about this, he finds them and tells them about his meeting with the military lads but they were not really impressed. They did not see any reason why a jeep and an army uniform could stop them from going to their football practice after he told them about his experience.
“We want to be big premier league footballers someday … millionaires, that’s what I want to be. Another boy announces “I want to be famous and see myself on a big TV screen scoring goals!!” said another one boy added, “..and to make lots of money ha ha ha!”
The following week, Jimmy was waiting to be picked up by the military boys, instead of attending football practice. The jeep came up the path and lad from last week drove up to Jimmy and said, “Jump in my boy... I’m Joe by the way...call me private Joe.” “Yes sir,” Replied Jimmy.
They got to the camp and Jimmy saw the tents and many teenagers all dressed in army uniforms doing lots of different things. While in a tent he noticed that some were in training all lined up doing physical exercises and others were chopping wood. Some were tending to the Jeeps and others were digging ditches.
It looked fascinating to Jimmy, he wanted to be part of the activities! “So Jimmy, here we are. I will show you where you’ll be working. You be in the kitchen for a while. Ok, you will help the boys there to do whatever they ask you to do,” said Private Joe.
There around him Jimmy observes a coal furnace and the heat was simmering the coals, as they were turning red with heat. Jimmy knew they were going to using them to roast something soon. Perhaps they were going to be making barbecue meat, corn or even yams. “Hmm,” he thought, “We are going to be eating something nice soon,”
Suddenly a loud bang was heard! Jimmy looked around and saw that the camp boys were not disturbed as it was something they heard often. It was the sound of a grenade going off. “But where?” though Jimmy.
Just as Jimmy was about to settle down another set of noise filled the air...the boys began to shout and this was not customary as even the boys where he was became scared and agitated!
Jimmy ran out and saw that the place was in chaos....”Bees! Bees!”, shouted the lads, some began to throw water in the air, one lad fired his rifle.
Jimmy knew that this was trouble. They were under a bee attack and these lads were not prepared for it.
Jimmy saw the men and boys crying out. He ran back to the tent and pulled one peg off the ground that allowed the canopy to fall on him. He hid under the tents canopy, which saved him from the bee stings.
But then he thought that there must be something he could do to help and he suddenly had a bright idea.
Jimmy jumped out from where he was hiding, ran to the place they have gathered their tools and picked up a shovel. He then runs to the coal smoldering in the furnace and as quick as he could dug the shovel into it and ran towards the buckets of water he sees nearby. As he pours them into the water a mighty stream erupted out into the air with a massive WHOOSH! Never minding he heat, he ran back to collect some more hot coals and throws them in another pale of water which resulted in the same reaction. This hot steam now enveloped the whole camp. The steam, which made visual ability rather hard but has made the insects move away!
The bees disperse in the face of hot mist they have all gone away from the steam-beclouded air.
He gets a call on his new phone and it was his aunty. She was told that he didn’t turn up at the football practice ground. She was trying to fine him to tell him to get some milk on way back and she was told he was not at the football field.
“I am in a little army camp not too far from the field aunty,” he told her.
“What? Ok wait there tell me how together there I will be with you soon, Wait for me you hear?” she insisted.
The young corps members all came around to Jimmy. They were glad that Jimmy had been so witty and helped them out of the trouble with the bees. They thanked him for having such a rapid solution at the nick of time.
His aunty now found her way to the campsite, she arrived just in time to find the managers all together chatting with Jimmy.
This is when she heard about the ordeal with the bees. They assured her that everyone was now safe. Then the Real Army men came. They disbanded the camp and told all the boys to go home. They were called by Jimmy’s Aunt.
Jimmy’s aunty advised them that to join the Army they had to go to the Nigerian Army, fill the forms and follow proper protocol. She said that their outfit was illegal and the two organizers were going to be dealt with by the Law. She advised the children to never join any secret organization that operate inside bush camps and always let their parents know what they were up to.
Its an Adventure
Good and nice advice