That evening, my group had to prepare tirelessly for the next day. This time around it was a contest amongst Mfantsipim (my school), Yaa Asantewaa Girls and Holy child school. Before all schools journeyed to legon, it was a corollary for all schools in each region to battle amongst themselves in a friendly way. Maybe, to reduce tension and build confidence.
My school had done exactly that with many schools in the central region. Some of which included: Adisadel college, Holy child, Wesley Girls, Mfantsiman…, and a host of others. Frankly speaking, not to boast, my school got the best track record. But a very humiliating one was when Wesley Girls, our girls school, beat us by 19 points. That day, I could really feel weightlessness as though I was falling freely in a disconnected elevator. I sweat like never before, and the questions they asked us, only God knew! But as the saying goes, “there is always light at the end of the tunnel.” Truly, our light showed when we reciprocated in that same manner. Thanks to the events that happened in that spacetime!
The next morning we had to go to the cafeteria to take our breakfast, and prepare for the battle. We were the second group to contest, though. We had gone for our food. On my way to my bench I saw her with her mates in one corner. She watched me watching her. She smiled and waved at me. I also reciprocated.
When I was about five minutes into eating, she approached me and wished me good luck. I delayed with my meal only to see if she would approach me and say something. And she did exactly that! I shook her hands and kissed the back of her palm. She smiled and left.
My group hurried and left for the place of contest. The first contest was just about ending. They were on their last round. My heart had already started beating. PUM! PUM! PUM!…I wanted to stay calm, but I just couldn’t. I probably needed her presence, but there was no possibility of it happening so I had to do something myself to stay calm. I really was in a difficult situation. Difficult, isn’t it?
After few minutes we sat at a particular place and got ready for our facial make-up. I wanted to find out (why?)from the ladies, but I didn’t. I only found out later. That was when I got to know that make-ups were applied on the faces of all who prepared for a television program. The reason only is to add beauty to your face. Hmm. Anyways, thanks to cosmeticians! We mounted the stage, sat and scribbled some important facts before the contest commenced. We started with introduction. You introduce yourself and your school. There was always a scream after each school’s introduction. The tension had built up (maybe, to maximum. I couldn’t tell) and my heartbeat was pejorating. I’m sure if my BP was checked at that point the machine would have read ‘out of coverage area’. However, the tension and the uncontrolled heartbeat abated when we were through with round one. After round one, we were trailing behind Yaa Asantewaa with three points, with Holy Child coming third.
We continued the rounds as required and , finally, at the end, my school came up victorious.
I felt gay. She also was happy. We were both happy seeing our schools qualify for the next round. The QUARTER FINALS! which supposedly meant we were gonna see ourselves for a couple of days again. After departing from the stage, I met her outside. We hugged ourselves, and I kissed her on the cheek. Our buses were waiting outside to send us to our hostels, but she decided against it and made us walk so we could chat.
“So how did my contest go?” I asked.
“It was intriguing and exciting. Plus, I liked your confidence on stage. You were just awesome.” She answered.
“Aww, thanks for your compliments. I am so happy.” I responded.
After walking for about thirty minutes she said, ” give me your two hands.”
So I gave her my two hands with my palms opened. She placed her opened palms on mine and caught my fingers in her fist while I also flexed my fingers. She looked straight into my eyes. I got confused because I couldn’t remember any special event that had to occur that day. But she couldn’t see from my face too because the beauty of the moment had overshadowed it and rather produced a smile on my face.
“Someone once said that a friend remembers your birthday, but not your age. I remember both. Shouldn’t that count for something?” She voiced.
“Really, what date is today?”
“You mean you don’t remember today’s date? Well, if you don’t, today is 5th July for Christ’s sake, kane.” She said with her face grimaced.
“Ooh yhh. That calls for a celebration! But I don’t think you should grimace your face because I couldn’t remember. Besides, I won a contest. Erm…I understand it sucks simetimes. But if you didn’t know, I was just about getting my palm filled with a whole galaxy of stars just because of your smiles so you know what that means if you don’t smile for me.” I said, convincingly.
Just when I ended her smiles were all up again.
“Yhh, you look good in that.”
As part of the celebration, we walked into a pizzeria. We ate, and drank candy apple punch. The pizzeria was about a hundred metres from our hostels so after having fun we continued our journey walking and chatting till we got to our hostels. It was around 7pm. Our hostels were oppositely placed. We stood in front of hers. She had her hands around my neck while I had mine around the small of her back.
“I’m gonna miss you. And thanks for making today a red letter day for me,” I said.
“I’m gonna miss you too. And it was a pleasure having you.”
I hugged her and tousled her hair lightly. She then left for her room, occasionally waving until she finally disappeared.