.

elijah44

Little drops of water make a mighty ocean

Ilorin, Nigeria

I am a graduate of Chemical Engineering. I look forward to setting up an engineering firm that will employ many Nigerians, thereby reducing unemployment.

I have a great passion for environmental maintenance and sustainability, which I believe can be achieved by Recycle and Reuse.

My love for writing has been fanned into flame by active participation in writing prompts and competitions. This has greatly improved my communication skills and aided my interest in oratory and debate public speaking events.

I am a Christian who enjoys thinking, understanding nature and discovering people.

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It is 4.00pm in dapchi, a small town in the northeastern part of Nigeria, the blaring heat of the sun would not make anyone suspect that the day is far spent, neither would the rigorous and delightful sporting activities performed by these young girls make them aware of the looming danger even if they could gaze into the future. Mother earth in her benevolence would try to avert the looming calamity and had employed her siblings the elements to cause a shower and a hazy sky, but this would not dissuade these deadly predators from continuing their heinous task. At about 5:30 pm, all hell broke loose, ‘boom, boom, boom' the sound of gunshots could be heard all over the place. By the wake of dawn the dust has settled down, but the havoc wrecked will remain one to be unforgotten for many decades to come: about one hundred and ten (110) schoolgirls aged 11–19 years old have been kidnapped by the Boko Haram terrorist group from the Government Girls Science and Technical College Dapchi on February 19, 2018. Approximately four years ago about 276 schoolgirls were abducted from Chibok a small town in northern Nigeria with many of them still missing today. The previous year, dozens of student were killed at a secondary school in Yobe State, Nigeria. Who is responsible for all these mayhem? And what is the possible reason for targeting the young ones? Abubakar Shekau, the ringleader and spearheader of this insurgent group responsible for all these disasters, would never have turned out to be a dispenser of sorrow if this was not done: if everyone had not shot the bowels of mercy if everyone had not turned deaf ears to the somber suffering of the lad. Entering into orphanhood from an early stage in life, Shekau took to the street to join the countless number of “Alimajari” (street beggars) to get his daily bread. Rising early in the morning and not resting till sunset— Shekau's only duty was to roam the street begging for alms. It is 7:30 in the morning; Shekau could be seen standing dutifully at the corner of the street, with a bowl in outstretched arm waiting for blessings from passers-by. Vroom, vroom; the cars kept on passing, spilling on dust to his face— every one hastening to drop their children in school, they dare not look on the poor kid, let alone offer him something because he is some contagious disease that no one should behold. No one bothered of where he slept when last he took his bath or what he ate; not even his torn and tattered clothes or his young age would arouse their side of pity— he was a god-forsaken scumbag. By the afternoon time, he would have traversed the city to the other part, where the less classy ones stay, hoping to get the remnant of the kids lunch basket, but it would never happen, every parent have warned their children not to talk or give those ugly shit begging for alms anything; they better throw away their remnant than move closer to them. With time, things began to change; the young lad always gazing at the school kids hoping for help is no longer doing such, the helpless look on his face has now being replaced by disdain and anger: no doubt, the seed of hatred had already been sown and would soon reveal itself in the coming years. Days turn to month, and months to years; so did the small kid advance into his youth. Probably if the bowels of mercy were still opened then, the soul of the young boy could have been redeemed— unfortunately, it was not so, the young boy soon graduated from alms begging into stealing and other anti-social vices and soon became a hardened criminal. Along the line came the war profiteers, angels of darkness transforming into angels of light, people who needed cheap labor to perpetuate their evil, and of course the young man matched their profile well and was enlisted into the evil workforce. A very popular adage says “an idle hand is the devil workshop”, so also is an empty mind void of knowledge. Abubakar Sheakau lacking knowledge and education easily gave in to all manner of corrupted knowledge and belief and joined the Boko-haram terrorist group. Advancing quickly through the rank, he became the leader of the dangerous sect in 2009. Since then, there has been a drastic change in the operation of the group; over 3 million lives have been affected, thousands of children turned into orphans and many homes left desolate. The beast in him has been unleashed and the fire of evil has gotten out of hand. This is, therefore, a clarion call to us all: brighten the corner where you are, show a little bit of love and kindness, and help an erring soul. Shut the bowels of mercy and expect the rains of terror.

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Who told you that dreams cannot be educative or enlightening? “Little drops of water make a mighty ocean”, a statement I'm very conversant with, yet did not come to the true understanding of it, until I had this dream, which I consider a “real life” dream. It happened that I wanted to transplant a flower to the backyard of my house, which had been layered with a cement floor. Setting to work, I marked out the area that I intended to break and till, hoping to accomplish my aim within the shortest time frame. With strength and might I unleashed my digger and spade on the impervious layer, hoping to break up the fallow ground and graft the plant before the sun is over the horizon. Unfortunately, after working furiously for about an hour, there was no tangible result. The concrete floor seems unyielding to my plea, neither was my weary hand interested in creating the staccato rhythm of digging again. Quenching my thirst, I spent another thirty minutes toiling with the floor, employing the best of my tactics and the full of my strength but to no avail. Finally, after another 30 minute of weary wrestling, my failing hands quit responding and I came to a halt. Looking down at the intangible result of my futile effort, I came to the conclusion that it was impossible to break up the floor. Four months later, looking down from the balcony, to my utmost surprise was a pool of water right at the spot where I had wanted to plant my flower, coming down to inspect it, I found out that a hole three times the intended area I mapped out, has been dug by a leaking tap and had filled it with water. Inspecting further, was another shocking discovery; just at the bank of the pool were some sprouting grasses, whose seeds have probably gotten there by the wind. Looking up, I exclaimed! “Little drops of water make a mighty ocean”, then I opened my eyes and lo! It was a dream, but the fact is that those little drops did not only fill a pool but created one and caused grasses to grow. Pondering over the dream I was able to pinpoint three distinct characteristics of these little drops of water that allowed it to perform such a fantastic result. The first thing I picked out from the ‘little drops of water' event was persistence. If every second there is a drop, then there would be sixty drops in every minute and 3600 drops in every hour, which is approximately a liter. This equates to a tenth of the force of impact made by a single blow of my digger. This was what went on continuously for 24 hours over a space of four months. Traversing down the lane, I began to imagine what would have happened if I had spent twenty minutes every day for a month to dig that ground; there is no iota of doubt that I would attain victory. Thus, it can be said that little persistent or continuous drops of water make a mighty ocean. Another thing is Focus; each drop of water was hitting the same mark. The term focus can be attributed to the water drops in the sense that every drop was in the same direction and fell on the same spot; millions of drops hit the same target. Looking backward I realized that throughout my attempt at breaking up the floor, I never made an impact up to five times on the same spot. Every single blow fell on a different spot with most out of range. Considering the matter, I saw that it would be difficult or improbable to achieve such a high precision; this made me do a rethink and I realized that I had chosen the wrong tool. To achieve one-point impact or a continuous single-point force like the water drops, I probably should have made use of a chisel and hammer and not a spade or digger for breaking. Therefore, I can now modify the statement to, persistent and directed little drops of water create a mighty ocean. The third factor that made that little drops of water able to achieve such feat can be traced to the property of water; its ability to lubricate or softens, and here lies the secret behind its success. Little drops of oil would create no pool, but rather litter the floor. Water is known to soften and break apart compact material by dissolving the binder and dislodging its components. This allows a little force, such as impact from the leakage drops and disturbance from the ripples, to break and expand the hole. Looking backward, I imagined how I would have easily accomplished my task if I had quenched the thirst of the ground when I quenched mine; I had not simplified my problem. Although a dream, the lessons I have learned from it have been my guiding principles since then and the characteristics of those little drops have been my approach and watchword in the face of any problem, which is; persistence, focus, and simplification.

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