The worst part is that Rosco’s N100 compensation no longer satisfies my feeding needs. I suddenly feel a lot hungrier than I used to, and want to eat more frequently, too. Sometimes, I feel I like I can eat for two people. I wonder what Rosco would say if I asked him for improved benefits.
I must start to think of new ways to improve my conditions of living. I don’t think Rosco would be open to reviewing the terms of our arrangement. The danfo people, like Rosco, usually have money, but those buses must cost more than N100. But, the ones that shout “Ojuelegba – stadium – barracks!” also have money, but I don’t see any women among them. The ones that sell Igbo to Rosco also have money, but I don’t like the smell. And, the Area Fathers may not give me money like they always give all those fine girls in the evenings – maybe because I am not as yellow as they are.
The LaCasera woman has gathered quite an audience now. Some of the danfo people have parked and other people who are always rushing somewhere have stopped to look. She is shouting now, and chasing some of her audience. The children especially enjoy this as they would run and the circle created by the crowd would widen briefly before narrowing again when the woman calmed and returned to the centre to resume her ritual round her container of drinks.
I looked at the people and saw some of them had looks of pity on their faces for the woman. “What happened?” a new onlooker would ask no one in particular. And, someone would answer, “She don dey mad!” I suddenly felt dizzy and hungry again. My attention was drawn to the unguarded container of drinks as the newly turned mad woman made to chase another set of kids. I moved nearer it watching to see if anyone observed my movements. No one cared. I got close enough and took one bottle of coke. To one side there was money. I N100 and moved away quickly as the mad woman returned to her trade. I looked around and saw no one noticed me.
I saw Rosco in the crowd looking on with a smile. I had seen that look on his face before when he looked at me. I glanced at his zip area and noticed the swelling there. The image of another N100 popped in my head. I thought that this just might be my escape from hunger. As it appeared I now had more people to feed, and this mad woman was getting a lot of attention, I could join her and manage her mad potentials.
Without giving it another thought, I joined her in the middle of the rarena formed and danced to the rhythm she created while I sipped my coke, and thought that this was the beginning of a beautiful relationship.
If only they all knew I was not really mad!