Yours truly continued to observe his mien with glee and by the time we got to Lokoja, Volcano was positively foaming at the mouth, spoiling for a fight.
Now if you've ever undertaken the long journey from the North to other parts of the country, then you probably know that the buses usually stop at Lokoja. Anyway, once we arrived the designated park at Lokoja, we all disembarked to eat, use the convenience or just stretch our legs. I spotted a guy selling suya and I made a beeline for him; yes, I love red meat. Sue me. 😚
Anyway, just as I drew level with the suya man, someone shoved me rudely from behind and almost tossed me right onto the hot suya thingy to join the grilled beef. I looked around, in surprise and my gaze clashed with the culprit's; it was Volcano! Without planning to, I threw up both hands in the classic symbol of surrender as I muttered 'sorry' with the sole intention of keeping the peace. He cast me a superior look and then took himself off, apparently pleased with himself. I glared at the back of his head but my mind cautioned afresh, DO NOT ENGAGE.
Hours later, we had left Lokoja far behind and were just exiting Benue when our driver obligingly halted for everyone to relieve their bladders. Any woman would tell you travelling with a full bladder is one thing, finding a private enough spot to relive oneself is something else entirely. The menfolk scattered around, doing their thing willy-nilly but the ladies had to wait for privacy. Upon returning to the bus, I witnessed my hitherto amiable seat mate hotly exchanging words with ... guess who? Yep, that's right, the angry little man; Volcano!
The man was in his element; underneath his anger, I could see his glee that he had found someone to give him an opportunity to blow off steam. All his veins bulged as he screamed at the lady beside me. He told her that he thought she was a local champion, illiterate bumpkin, unkempt and ill-mannered so-and-so. She was an upstart and not worthy of his attention. Of course he tossed in "Do you know who I am?" a few times to let us know he was the typical Nigerian.
I tried to intervene as I tried to find out what had gone wrong. My seat mate, shaking with anger and apparently uncowed by Volcano told me that he had referred to an albino woman in the bus as "a witch". He had further declared that she resembled the sort who "flew at night and sucked the blood of children" simply because like the rest of us, she had waited for the men to finish before going to relieve herself to ensure her privacy.
Am I a prophet or what? Told you we hadn't seen the last of Volcano. First he called someone an Ogbanje and now we also had a witch in the same bus? Boy, it was quite a gathering.
Volcano turned from his seat beside the driver to yell once more at my seat mate. In his ire, his already big eyes bulged so alarmingly that for a crazy moment I wondered what would happen if the eyeballs popped right out of their sockets and rolled across the bus.
I stifled a horrified giggle at my weird imaginings and tried to calm my seat mate again. She stared right at Volcano and in the clearest terms informed him that she thought he was crazy.
And that's when the shit hit the fan...
To be continued...
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