Within An Inch of Heavenby Bunmi
The driver had just turned the key in the ignition when a man rose at the back of the bus with a revving ‘Prrrrrrrrr-aisedaLohd!’
In response, somebody laid out a good, deep fart — this blessed fellow was kind enough to spread it, with practised flourish, over a quarter of a minute, in measured detonations.
I was hugely impressed! ‘The Lord is good,’ a madman cracked. ‘All the time!’ a few high-spirited ones chorused; while others contributed evil chuckles to the occasion.
Undeterred by the stink that had now possessed the entire bus like an evil spirit, a murmur that had to be either curses or pentecostal tongues tumbled from the preacher’s tight mouth, spilling into the bush of his big biblical beard and disappearing… He rifled through his burden of a bible — ‘In the book of Jedidiah, my bible tells me that —’
A quick mouth told him something else, ‘Book of Jedi-daya nor dey my own bible sah.’
‘Your own bible.’ The preacher looked up from his bible, and down at the offender. ‘You have a bible there?’
The reply was a wave of ‘Lolly’, a local pornographic comic-rag, which was greeted with approving guffaws.
Just as our preaching friend broke into a ‘Blessed is the man that —’, another man, determined to seek his own blessings by less tedious means, rose at the front and began handing out worn brown envelopes that read: NIGERIA SOCIETY OF DEAF & DUMBS. I NEED YOUR HELP….
Short Story Week Review
This story was amusing and it rang true for me in more ways than I can explain. Riding on a bus not too long ago, I was treated to an encounter with one of the preachers who preach in the vehicles, most times I don’t pay them any mind, as long as they leave me alone. But this one day, the guy who was preaching, went out of his way to make sure he got everyone’s attention. Talking about women and how they’ve lost their way, dressing how they want, talking how they want. Now, I know our society is riddled with those who still have traditional views, and I can take a little, okay, a tiny, tiny bit of hating for not following the traditionalist ways. That’s okay, just don’t shove it down my throat when you’re trying to get your head in the game early in the morning. Most likely you’ll get to town and the things you were going to do there, end being harder. So, this preacher annoyed me, and I wanted to leave the bus, but I didn’t. I stayed, and gave him a mean eye when he came around to get his ‘tithe’ after he preached in the bus. I kept wondering if we’re the only ones who get treated to such crazy situations in buses.
This story gave me another perspective and the ending is quite fitting since my sentiments fit those of the passengers at the end. Which makes me wonder about myself, really….lol.
This is a great story. Great writing Bunmi.
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