Àìrí rárá làá jèko
Kénu máàdúró ni ti gúgúrú
My grammatical foundation was laid in my JSS classes. I was fortunate to be guided through English language through out my secondary school days by the same stern and knowledgeable teacher. His linguistics and grammatic prowess cannot be over-emphasised. This story however is about the legion of capable yoruba teachers I had in my secondary school days.
An elegant woman first took me through the formal learning of my native language. She was tall, dark, graceful, kind and in her early 40s. She also happened to be my literature teacher. Look, she is an Ibadan descendant and as such no one can fault her for reading us the ‘tiri musisians’ in our literature classes. Actually, I happened to always choose that reading period to remember my roots too. I often, or shall I say the whole class often uncharacteristically read those two words out loud everytime. The tiri musisians, an awesome read.
My second yoruba teacher prepared me for my junior WAEC. She was dark and beautiful too. She doesn’t believe in capital punishments. She prefers talking sense into us whenever we err and she often makes us feel understandably remorseful. She knows her trade and she taught me well; quite evident in my WAEC result. She laid my foundation in word markings (àmì). She was so good that the only Igbo guy in my class then fit put àmì ontop àròko.
To my favourite miss Adeola, how can I ever forget you? I still actually can’t fathom how a beautiful lady like her would enthusiastically study Yoruba in the university. Anyways, she was the only fair Yoruba teacher I had. She was so beautiful and she was my very first older crush. The thing was, three male teachers were publicly courting this lady. Put me in that mix and you would realise I had absolutely no chance (I was in SSS 1 BTW). Yet, I publicly experienced and felt what all three of my teachers could only secretly wish and long for- to rest their head on her delicate bosom.
Honestly, I didn’t ask for it. I couldn’t even ever have longed for it. Yet, there I was, pressed tightly against her soft, warm skin. I had just lost a quiz competition to the best grammarian in my school- my social prefect. I lost by a single point and the moderator could have given me the points I needed to win, but he didn’t because I replied ‘Nigerian Orientation Agency’ instead of ‘NATIONAL Orientation Agency.’ I found tears falling from my eyes outta anger and frustration. Then came her soothing embrace, her soft hands on my head, drawing me closer and her tender words in my ears. NO! I can’t forget that moment and that awesome lady. Long will she live in my memory.
My last teacher was a short, intelligent man though and yes, he was dark. He notably taught me ‘ifaara’ and ‘áyan ògbìfò’ and I credit him for the distinction I had in my SSCE.
Age is an issue of mind over matter. If you don’t mind,it doesn’t matter..