What are the things i feel nostalgic about?
That is a question that has too many answers.
Not long ago i went back to my old secondary school and as i walked along the acacia lined driveway ,it brought back so many memories, some as strong as if they only just happened and others like tiny wisps of silk or spiderwebs that broke as i tried to grasp them.
Some of my memories filled me with pain, some with joy but most of all i was left with an unexplainable longing, for things even i did not know.
I remember boarding school very well and it wasn't all that fun, i remember the punishment from seniors, the food which was never enough and missing home. I also remember the good times, cool evenings spent around the art studio sneaking peeks at the sometimes unbelievable paintings that students like us had done. I remember sneaking food out of the dining hall, making fun of seniors and teachers alike. It was so easy to have fun in school because there were so many laws to break and many ways to break them.
Sometimes i walk into a room, or open a wardrobe or a drawer and there is a smell. I dont know if it is a real smell or just imaginary but the smell always transports me back to my days in Federal Girls Benin, the bunk beds and arranged lockers, Cosmetics - Top shelf, Clothes -Middle shelf and Provisions - Bottom shelf. I remember forbidden trips to the staff quarters to buy items like sardines, sneaking into the teachers canteen to buy food, and playing volleyball in the games field.
These memories make me long for things that have passed, that i didn't necessarily enjoy when they were here. I don't want to be in boarding school again, counting the days till vacation. I am glad to be an adult.
Sometimes when i am feeling particularly blue and bemoaning the lack of beauty in this world, i remember the long driveway during the rainy season when the acacias have sprouted beautiful pink flowers, i imagine myself standing in between the trees with the green and pink providing a natural wallpaper behind me and the soft pink petals falling ever so slowly on me.
It is like poetry in motion, like the beauty of childhood, like carefree days gone by and there is only one word for the feeling this image conjures in me. Nostalgia.