Studying in University without sight is a rough journey…Chronicles of a blind Nigerian (4)

By Demola Adeleke

Today, I don’t feel like doing anything, just wanna sit back, relax and reminisce on my university life so far. You see, it takes only a determined person to study in college without eye-sight because there are myriad of discouragements one is bound to experience.

I’ve, on several occasions, missed lectures because I can’t walk independently. You don’t understand? I have classmates who come to my hostel in the morning to take me to school, and their failure to come may result to not attending lectures for the day. Yes, I know you may ask why I can’t subscribe to an alternative, boarding the campus shuttles, but their operation is as inconsistent as the human temperature. There are times when you will need them desperately but not even one will drive down to appease your urgency.

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At least, I can give 2 to 3 instances where tears almost dropped from my eyes due to the mobility disadvantage that comes with blindness.

One is when my friend, Agaz (my mobility angel), went to class earlier in the morning and for that reason, I needed to find another means of conveying myself to school. It was a Monday, and the 1st lecture on the timetable was ‘Book publishing. Meanwhile, it had been announced the previous Friday that there would be a quiz on Monday on the course, so everyone, including the truants among us, deemed attending the class compulsory.

The quiz was by 9am, Agaz had gone to class since 6:30am in order to read with other friends, but it was almost 8am before I learnt about his early departure, so without wasting the slightest of time, I dashed out of my room and headed for the shuttle park. Behold, I was at the park waiting and hoping for a shuttle to come till 8:30, till 8:45, till 8:55. Immediately the time struck 8:55, I lost the little optimism in me and resorted to flagging down passers-by at the sound of their footsteps.

Remembering the lecturer taking the course welled up my head with sweat and of course, the quiz was about to go down, it was already 9am. After some minutes of help seeking, I eventually came across a good Samaritan who volunteered to walk me to my class, but at that time, it was past 9am already and the zeal to be in class had fizzled out, but since there’s no harm in trying, I took the offer and we both set off for my department.

On getting to class, I realized the test was still ongoing, so I greeted the lecturer and attempted joining the exercise but he bounced me back, saying I came late and hence had been disqualified from writing the test. All my explanation to him on how I got delayed owing to a lack of help fell on his deaf ears, he walked me out of the class and shut the door against me. Like, I was almost crying, I felt so bad for having to lose my marks all because of …

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Anyway, that was just one of the experiences my university life served me with, there are other ones which I wouldn’t share now because of time constraint. But all in all, it’s been somehow discouraging, some situations you find yourself in as a blind Nigerian undergraduate and you can only wish to have your sight restored in a tick. Well and well, in spite of the undesirable situations posed, I, we still don’t get discouraged of dreaming and aspiring for a good life. Or if I can’t condone the insults and ticklish study method of the university, is it the hopelessness and disturbing honk of passing vehicles that I will settle for? As a street beggar.

It’s been a rough journey here in the university, but believe me, I will surely get there. I really don’t feel like doing anything right now, just wanna stop reminiscing and drop my head on the table for a nap.

Catch you guys later…

 

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