The Lorry Driver

*The Lorry Driver*

Episode 1️⃣

The time is 6am in the morning. The place is Benin, Edo state. The Lorry driver just drove into the city with a full load of bananas he carried from Ikom in Cross River state. This is his second trip for the week. The lorry driver jumped down from the long vehicle and went to one side of the motor park to urinate. He was heavily relieved when he finished urinating because he has held the urine in his bladder for a long time. He zipped up his trouser and went back to the place where his lorry is parked.

“Give me the mat under the driver’s seat. Be fast about it. I want to sleep for a few hours before going to my village to see my daughter.” The Lorry driver tells his conductor. The conductor was about opening the trip board of the lorry so that the banana could be offloaded. The young man quickly rushed and attended to his master’s requests.

“Wake me up when you people are done with offloading. Make sure you don’t forget.” The Lorry Driver said to his conductor who nodded his head in obedience.

By 12 noon, they were done offloading so he went to wake his master. Soon, they started driving to the village where the lorry driver said he was going to see his daughter. He had withdrawn N150,000 cash which he intends to give to his daughter. He also bought some clothes and food items for her.

“My daughter is passing through a lot of difficulties and I have been saving this money for a long time. It is time for me to use it to help her out. I hope the money and the food items would make her confortable for a long time.” The lorry driver said to himself as he negotiated a bend and branched off into the road that led to his village.

It was not long before they arrived in the village but just before they entered his compound, he matched the breaks and the lorry stopped. He brought out the cash, the clothes and food items and handed everything to the conductor.

“Look at that compound over there. That is my compound. I want you to go there and give these items to the girl you will find there. Stay there and wait for me. I want to go back and buy some loaves of bread. I forgot to by bread for her. I want to go back and buy it because she like bread a lot. Please, tell her I’m coming in few minutes.” The lorry driver said. The conductor nodded his head and jumped down from the lorry. He walked with speed to the compound where the lorry driver had shown him. When he walked into the compound, the lady looked at him with surprise in her eyes.

“You are welcome, please who are you looking for and where are you from?” The beautiful lady in her early 20s asks the conductor. She looks exactly like the lorry driver. The conductor concluded in his heart that the lady must be the lorry driver’s first daughter.

“Good evening. My name is Ahanna, and I work with your father as a lorry conductor. I was coming with him but he said he was going back the town to buy some loaves of bread for you. However, he has asked me to deliver these items and cash to you. He also said I should wait for him since he is going to come back here and pick me up after buying the bread.” The conductor informs the lady. The lady looked surprised, but first, he offered a seat to the conductor and also collected the items in his hands.

“My name is Ada and I’m my father’s only child. My mother is also dead. My father died more than fifteen years ago when I was still a child. I can even show you his grave. He is not alive and he could not have sent these items to me. You may have missed your way. This is the wrong compound.” Ada said to the conductor who was very surprised to hear all that she was saying.

“What do you mean your father is dead? I’m telling you that I came to this village with him but he just went back to buy bread in the town. He was even the person who drove the lorry into the village. How can you say the same person I just saw a few minutes ago is dead?” The conductor asked.

“Are you sure you are in the right compound? I know that my father was a lorry driver when he was alive, but look over there and you will see his grave. He is dead. I knew the day he was buried. I even poured sand into his grave. There is no way the same person can still be alive.” Ada said.

“His name is Achili. Is that your father’s name?” The conductor asked.

“Yes. But he is dead.” Ada said with tears in her eyes. “Since his death, I have faced a lot of challenges, eating hand to mouth and struggling to pay my school fees. Things got worse for me as my mother also died a year ago. Since then, life has been hellish. I have gained admission into the university but I can’t start school because I don’t have the money to pay the fees. All my father’s relatives abandoned me after his death. I still have a place to live because my father was able to build this house before his death.” Ada said amid tears.

“He gave me some cash to give to you. Please, stop crying. You can use the money in the bag to pay for your school fees. But, I’m going to stay here and wait for him to be back as he promised.” The conductor said. Ada took the bags of clothes and food inside the house. They waited all night and the lorry driver did not return. The conductor became very scared and agitated. He has never seen such a thing before.

“I have worked for this man for a long time. I have travelled to several places with him. I have slept on this same room with him. How can he be dead? Does it mean I have been working for a ghost?” The conductor asked himself. He thought seriously over the matter during the night.

“Let us go to the motor park and look for your father. I’m sure he will be there.” The conductor said to Ada.

“I told you he is dead. There is no need looking for him. But I will follow you if you insist we should look for him.” Ada said. It was already day break and villagers were going about their businesses. Ada and the conductor rushed to the motor park where they hoped to find Ada’s father.


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