Chapter 1: Back to Europe.
As i sat inside the Lufthansa jet heading back to Europe, i recalled what had happened at the Lagos Nigeria Airport.
I had walked to the check-in desk and asked for my boarding pass. The fat Yoruba man at the desk had asked for my papers and after examining them, he had issued me the boarding pass with seat number 22A. Seat 22A was not far from the first class chamber. I had specifically demanded to stay close to first class since i always liked getting off the plane as soon as it landed. It was also a window seat.
After collecting the boarding pass, i had proceeded to the Immigration stand where i was stamped to go into the main departure hall.
”Where are you traveling to” a voice said as i was about to pass through the Nigeria Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) stand.
”Germany” i said, deciding to keep the answers short.
The Drug lady asked for my passport and i gave it to him.
”First time traveler” she said.
”What do you have with you” she asked the silly question.
”Money and cloths” i said.
”Did anybody gave you anything to give to anybody in Germany” she asked.
”Yes” i said.
Her eyes became alerted. She had finally caught the ever eluding drug dealer.
”Mike, come and take this young man to the machine room” she shouted to a man sitting opposite her.
Mike came and motioned me to follow him. We walked down to a room where i saw three other people waiting on a chair. I was told to sit down and wait as well.
On our way down to the machine room, Mike had asked me if i would go to the danger room or give him money.
”Give you money for what Sir, I am not giving you any more” i said.
I sat there with my handbag and watched as they scanned the three men with some imported machines, wrote something in a file and take them away.
When it was my turn, i walked to the machine and stood opposite it. Some kind of scanner was placed on my stomach and a button was pressed. While the scanning was going on, i managed to ask the man what he was doing. He said he was checking if i had drugs in my stomach.
”What kind of drug sir, because i took Chlorine for my malaria yesterday” i said.
”Shut up and stand still” he said. I obeyed.
After some moments, he wrote something and told me to go. I followed Mike through a way and out to the departure hall where i had already cleared earlier.
I had to start walking through immigration and custom again. I explained to them what happened and they allowed me. After clearing all the agencies including NDLEA, Customs, Immigration, Police, Army, Boys Scout and Girls brigade, all mostly of Hausa and Yoruba Origins, i preceded to the gate where our plane was loading. The passengers had already started boarding when i came. I stood in line and waited for my turn to board the Jet. Finally i was cleared to enter the state-of-art- aircraft
We sat and waited until it was time to go but the plane didn’t move. After over an hour delay, the pilot made an announcement that one of the three engines had failed. He made us understand that the remaining two can easily take us to Germany but the standard safety procedure requested that the plane be grounded until the engineers from Germany arrived in the morning, he assured us that the engineers were already on their way from Frankfurt international airport. It was very easy for me to grasp that we were no longer traveling that night. People were angry but i didn’t care. An announcement came again and asked us to exit the aircraft. We were taken to a restaurant bar inside the airport and were asked to eat whatever we wanted.
I ordered for glass of Jack Daniels and sipped until it finished, then i ordered more. I also ate rice.
My brother had called me to know if we had left but i told him the latest developments. I told him that we were told to wait until the next day.
”They said the engineers from Germany are coming to fix the engine” i had told him.
Sometime after 1am, we were told to go back to the main hall. The stamps in our passports were canceled.
The airline had provided three buses which took us all the way to Airport Hotel in Ikeja. We were given a room each and were told to come out for free breakfast and lunch the next day.
Among the people on the grounded airline was Ikenna. He was going to Denmark Via Frankfurt with Spanish resident permit. He had drugs in his stomach. He had left the airport hotel as soon as we arrived. A car had come to pick him up at the hotel. He was visibly angry with the development since he had targeted the time to release the drug balls from his stomach. But he had no option than to go back into town and remove them. He would have to re-swallow them the next day which was a double punishment. His people would also have to bribe the drug agents at the airport once more especially if the people on duty the previous night were to be changed.
I went to my room, took my bath and slept. I was tipsy and tired from the Jack Daniels i had taken at the airport.
The following morning, i went down to the food hall and took some potato and vegetables. Then i went to the swimming pool and played with some girls.
People really enjoyed life in Lagos. I watched as parents came with their children to swim at the pool. Lovers came too.
There was a particular girl that interested me a lot. She was wearing some attractive swimming trunks and had noticed that i was staring at her from time to time. When she finished swimming, i walked up to her and greeted.
She introduced herself as Emily and said she lived somewhere close. I told her to give me her number.
”I will call you when i get to Germany” i had said.
”Wow, you are going to Germany” she had said.
We sat on the chairs and talked until the buses came to take us back to the airport. Then we parted ways,
it was time to go again.
” The World is a book, and those who
do not travel read only a page.”