POSTED 07/27/2018 14:59
‘Aaargh! Aaargh!’ Adaolisa shrieked in fright.
She was clad in a lemon overflowing gown and spun a puffy medium-length Afro. Her protruded belly hung like an oversized breadfruit ready to plop. A blood-tinged-jelly-like glob had dislodged from her body. She panted heavily. She was in a fix. Her piercing ululation rang out once more. Her servants and neighbours skittered to the expansive flat apprehensively. They saw the stretchy blob on the neatly scrubbed white titles and knew the pangs of labour had overwhelmed Adaolisa.
They were fond of Adaolisa not only because she was good-natured but because of her husband’s magnanimity.
‘Kilode? What is it?’ Iya Sherifat, one of the neighbours asked.
Adaolisa couldn’t speak up. Her breathing went up and down rhythmically. It was past midday. The giant ball of fire radiated in the sky. The fan started twirling. One of the servants had turned the switch as the room was stifingly hot. There were picture frames and some calendars of “33” Export Lager Beer that dotted the walls of the sitting room. A mini throng of sympathisers and well wishers had milled around the apartment.
‘Oga 33 Lager no dey?’ a raspy voice shot out from the small crowd.
Adaolisa shook her head sideways uneasily. Oga 33 Lager was Adaolisa's husband. His real name was Uzondu but only his relatives and a few close friends called him such. Virtually, everybody in the vicinity knew Oga 33 Lager. He was the tallest man in the neighborhood. He was brawny with huge brown bushy hair. He was a mountain of solid fat.
Oga 33 Lager was a shipping magnate who shuttled overseas as if it were at his backyard. He always came back every weekend. Whenever he was around, his apartment pulsated with excitement. Relatives, neighbours and friends trooped in their numbers just to eat and drink. “33” Export Lager beer was the favourite drink of Oga 33 Lager. He would order crates and crates of "33" Export Lager beer for his numerous guests. His benevolence endeared him to many in the neighborhood. They renamed him Oga 33 lager.
Good enough it was weekend and Oga 33 Lager was in town. However, he had gone to the wharf to fix up things. One of the neighbours had already reached him on the phone, telling him of his wife's condition. Another neighbour had brought his Jeep and Adaolisa was rushed to the hospital. Dr. Tobi and his team of midwives flung into action. Adaolisa was trolleyed quickly into the delivery room as she was having mild sporadic contractions.
Adaolisa lay on the birthing bed staring into space. Hot rivulets streamed down her cheeks. Her water broke afterwards and the contractions amplified. She was in fiendish pain. Dr. Tobi and the midwives were very professional and confident during this period.
‘You are doing pretty well’ Dr. Tobi encouraged her.
Adaolisa started shaking vigorously. The waves had returned rather intensely. There was no need for an epidural as her labour was too far advanced and had progressed too quickly. She moaned and yelled, panting heavily. Dr. Tobi and his team were very supportive. A crowd had milled around the precincts of the hospital. Some talked in hushed tones, some in high grumbles. Some stomped and clomped about while others prayed.
The news had spread like a rampaging forest fire. Oga 33 Lager’s wife was on pangs of labour. She would soon birth her first child. They needed to show Oga 33 Lager how he had been wonderful to them. They held him in high esteem. They appreciated the fact that he threw his doors open every weekend. They appreciated the victuals served. They were grateful they were always inundated with crates and crates of “33” Export Lager Beer on gratis. They were out to support him fully.
Adaolisa was in full-blown transition. The waves took over every nerve of her body. She could feel her body pushing. A couple of more pushes, she began crowning. The pains were excruciating and hellish. She blubbered bitterly. The baby’s head glided out. Adaolisa was ready to let go at this point. She gave out two more decent pushes and the baby popped out. It was a boy. Dr. Tobi passed him over to the midwives who cleaned him up and suctioned off his nostrils. One of them slapped him on the back and he let out a rather healthy cry.
The baby weighed 7 pounds and 15 ounces and was 21 inches long. Adaolisa didn't tear nor did she have an episiotomy or a C-section. The warm and squirmy sprog was laid on her chest. He had little wispy tuffs of hair all over his head and the softest skin. He was absolutely beautiful. When he opened his eyes and looked up to her, she saw an amazing side of him that she didn’t know existed. She realised everything she had gone through was totally worth it and she would do it again in a heartbeat. Dr. Tobi announced the good news to the mammoth crowd outside. Everybody rejoiced in glee. Some were even rushing inside to greet the new mother and her baby.
The noise outside rose to a frenzy. Shouts of ‘Oga 33 Lager’ ‘Oga 33 Lager' tore through the already polluted ambience of the hospital. Oga 33 Lager and his entourage had arrived the hospital in style. They came to embrace the new gift and happiness bestowed on them. Oga 33 Lager was not a little masquerade, he was the king of masquerades. He came with ample crates of “33” Export Lager Beer. Another party kicked off in earnest. The crowd toasted and cheered happily. Even the doctors, nurses and recuperating patients were not left out.
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