The Sun was high, just hot enough to bake the tears and sand on his face. The wraps of grass: his only shade from the heat was withering instantly. A few minutes ago, Bayo thought the worst had happened. His phone rang, “you need to come home” the doctor said.
“why? How is my baby?” the silence told him all he needed to know, his wife had been wheeled to intensive care. A thousand miles away from home and he had nobody to call, no one to run over to the hospital and hold his wife, maybe even cry with her. The factory was on fire, he could hear his supervisor shouting.
“Get out of the building, everybody!” Bayo ran like someone in a trance, the flames licking his rumpled shirt. Few weeks back, someone in the maintenance crew had reported that the mine was heating up unnecessarily but they waved him off.
HQ had sent a message that budget was tight, the facility would be shut down if crude oil was not located soon enough. They had to patch a lot of things, the wells were poorly maintained, the men fell sick a lot and Bayo was hardly able to keep the work together. For some unknown reason the Federal Government had put this crew together to find oil in the north, they had been on the search for months and payments were coming in late.
Maybe this was the sign, the fire tore at the facility. The smoke rose to the heavens, Bayo and the men all sat exhausted on the hot sandy ground, far enough from the buildings. The Sun was mercilessly bright, Bayo was almost dozing under the shrub he had picked for shade. The tiny tree started to dry up really fast, the heat became really unbearable, he flung his shirt away as sweat poured and dried on his bare back and chest.
We only come to appreciate who we are when everything is taken away, then the little bit that is left is taken away also. When we make several efforts to find peace in the money left in oir account, we get bank debit alerts. Just as we reminisce on the beauty of family, someone dies. The work we so much cherish, the busy schedules and important meetings are suddenly torn from our grip.
This is who we truly are, we are not able to hide from being flesh and blood. Every other thing is just a wrap of grass, jist like the human flesh, they die away.
Would you prefer to peel them off? Or allow the process to painfully rip them off?
Someone once said that “life takes the little from those who don’t have and gives it to those who have plenty”. It does not sympathise with our poor state, life wants us to have nothing till we truly have it all.
This is about finding meaning in our true selves and not in the quality of things we have acquired, not in the figment of emotions we attach to family and friends. All these things will end, they would be burnt by the adversity of life. Life is harsh to those who are desperate to live and generous to those who are at peace with their own existence.