My Wamakko experience – NYSC Orientation Camp.

Hey guys!

If you’ve been reading my posts, you’d know I got posted to Sokoto and i did not go last year because i was simply unprepared for the struggle. I found out on the 12th of January 2018 I’ve been posted to Sokoto again and i decided to book my flight immediately to avoid stories that touch. Luckily, i got a flight for 70k (to and fro) with aero contractor. I’m mentioning the airline because they’re actually the worst. I went to the market on Saturday to get things i’d need in camp. I made a list and tried to follow it. I made some enquiries online and also asked my siblings so i was able to make a solid list. My colleague gave me a box full of NYSC shorts/tshirts that she did not use because she ended up not staying in camp but most of the things she gave me were not my size so i ended up not using them. She also gave me a waist pouch which was super useful. Thanks Keni!

I got 4 white tshirts, 3 white shorts, 4 pairs of socks, 2 white sneakers, black camisoles, disposable panties, baby oil, vaseline lotion, bathing soap, detergent, golden morn, sugar, milk e.t.c I took Garri from home because i’m obsessed with Garri and i couldn’t imagine not drinking garri for 3 weeks. I printed my call up letter, green slip and other essential documents. As a foreign trained graduate/doctor, i had to upload most of my documents on the NYSC website. So i made photocopies of all the documents i uploaded – and they were quite useless, i only ended up submitting one copy of each. I had about 6 passport photos but your girl went and snapped like 8 more.  I was fully ready to go to Sokoto. The only thing i forgot to do was check my email until the night before my flight only to see that aero contractor sent a mail. I suspected that they’d delay the flight so i had no problem paying the extra N150 for SMS notifications but guess who didn’t get any?

Anyway, they sent a mail at 5pm. I panicked as i read it.

‘Dear esteemed Customer,

This is to inform you that our Flight NGXXX from Lagos to Sokoto on the 16th of January 2018 has been cancelled due to operational reasons.

We sincerely apologize for any inconvenience.

For rescheduling, pls call ………….

Regards

Kate’

Now, Kate did not mention that the number only works from 6am – 8pm. I read this email at exactly 8:05pm. I still tried to call the number but it was unavailable.  At this point, i’m furious like what manner of stress? I was legit thinking this was God’s way of telling me NYSC isn’t for me after all. I was so done with NYSC, Kate and Aero contractor. Like can the country be any more ridiculous? You’re cancelling a flight and i should be the one calling to reschedule.

I went to the airport on Tuesday morning and went straight to aero contractor stand. They were very rude. Like I got there and they were like ‘flight is cancelled. Didn’t you get a call/Email? Just go and collect your money back.’ I was livid. Like how am I supposed to get to Sokoto? They literally did not care.

My dad and i quickly went looking for any other flight to Sokoto but apparently there was no flight to sokoto from Lagos but I was able to get a ticket for a flight to Abuja.

I got to Abuja and there was no flight to Sokoto. Time was like 10am. I had to move fast.Thankfully, my brother is familiar with Abuja/North waka so he told me the name of the bus park in Abuja to get a bus to Sokoto. I got to the park and quickly got in a bus to Sokoto. Thankfully, I saw corpers going to Sokoto as well but I really wasn’t in the mood to socialize but I felt more comfortable and the bus wasn’t bad. After waiting for passengers for hours, the bus driver finally decided to leave at 12:30pm and then he stopped to pray at 1pm (We were still in Abuja). He also stopped in every state till we got to sokoto. Kaduna, Katsina, Zaria, Zamfara. If I tell you I wasn’t furious, I’d be lying.

I sat next to someone that was trying so hard to talk. I tried to be polite but the journey was so long I had to tell him I’m tired of talking and I’m just trying to relax. He understood and wasn’t offended.

I finally got to Sokoto at 11pm and then we(fellow prospective corpers) got a keke to the camp which was N300 per person if I remember correctly. The cold that first slapped my face and body had me shook. Fam, I wasn’t ready. I forgot my sweater/cardigan. That was the first thing i bought when i got there.

I pretty much got settled in that night but had to register the next morning and I spent the whole day registering, opening a new bank account and getting my kit which was ridiculous because everything they gave me was extra large and I’m extra small. I was given a size 11 jungle boot, I wear a size 4. The shorts, tshirts and khaki pants/jacket they gave me looked ridiculous. I went to adjust it but they messed it up because they’re idiots. So I decided to wear everything like that. Later in the day, i registered at the clinic (which I regretted pretty much the next day) and Yes, that took the whole day.

Now let me get right into it.

A lot of people say camp is stress but honestly it depends on your tolerance level for a lot of things. I personally don’t like stress but I can easily adapt to new a environment especially when I don’t really have a choice. The most stressful part of Wamakko camp for me was the bipolar weather. It got as cold as 14 °C in the morning, 30 °C in the afternoon (I did not buy sunscreen and i got roasted! Like it’s terribly hot ) and like 17-20 °C at night. Crazy right?

Also, I legit don’t mind waking up 4am. But I realized waking up at 4am with cold breeze almost lifting you off the ground wasn’t cute.

The famous mami market where i got the noodles, suya, fried potatoes/yam, chips and chicken I survived on.

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Another aspect that was super frustrating was living with dirty, loud and extremely obnoxious people. I’m not used to this hostel life abeg. I barely stayed in the hostel. I didn’t want this post to turn to a rant but people were so damn rude. I realized that people lack basic etiquette. They don’t know how to say excuse me, thank you, please, or just politely ask to use your stuff. It was mind blowing.

Girls will pick your bucket without asking you, if you see them with it and confront them. They tell you ‘ehn I’ll return it when I’m done now’. I was frustrated.

People don’t have respect for your space. I know i’m not in my fathers house but shit we all have our bonks. One hot afternoon, I met a babe sleeping naked on my bed when I got back from the parade ground. I was pissed. It was frustrating because we are all supposed to be graduates but clearly there are different types of graduates in this Nigeria. 😭Let me not talk about this babe that snapped her fingers and pointed at her cap that fell. Lmao sis what? I was very confused. I hissed and she goes please pick it for me? Authoritatively! I said surely they taught you how to politely ask people to do things for you. She then corrected herself. O din din graduate. Or the one that shoved me because excuse me is not in his vocabulary. I flipped out and he was confused as to why I’m upset and that alone got me even more upset. Or one that grabbed my friends ass and got slapped. Or the guy that kept following me and catcalling and saying some horrible things because clearly he has no home training. I had to ask if he was aware he’s harassing me then he started apologising and said he was joking and I got annoyed because young guys these days think it’s funny to harass a female. Like it isn’t funny. It’s annoying and unnecessary. Gtfoh with that shit.

My routine:

  • Wake up 4am. Get ready (By get ready, I mean put on my shoes. I have my bath at night just before bed and sleep with my clothes on. Judge me all you want but I’m not trying to bathe with cold water in a 14 °C weather. Issa no from me! )

They start chasing people from the hostel at 5am for morning jog/parade. They eventually pitied us and moved it to 5:30am because we were about to die on the line.

  • Go to the parade ground and stand with my platoon members. I was in platoon 9. Someone from a platoon (they move accordingly. We started with platoon 1…) leads Praise and worship then someone else from that same platoon comes out to give a motivational talk. Then we go jogging for about 20 minutes. Right after jogging, we do some stretches/exercises and those that have been picked to march start marching till about 8am then we go for breakfast and we are expected to be at the lecture hall at 9am. Lectures usually end at 2pm sometimes earlier.
  • After lectures, I go for lunch and then back to the hostel.
  • They start chasing us (literally) from the hostel at 4pm and we go to the parade ground. Those marching start practising, those playing volleyball or football start practising as well. We leave at 6/6:30pm.
  • I have my dinner around 7/7:30pm
  • We assemble in front of the lecture hall at 8pm for social night organized by OBS which I thoroughly enjoyed. I normally don’t like boring people trying to be funny and things like that but weirdly, I looked forward to social night every single night. I found it hilarious.
  • We are expected to sleep at 10pm.

I really loved Sundays in camp. Sad part was that no one told me to bring fine clothes o. Matter of fact, the only outfit I brought was what I wore in which was jeans and a retrocode shirt. 😂 People don’t joke with Sundays in camp o. Come and see dresses and make up. O serious gan. That’s not why I love Sundays though. I loved it because we don’t get to do the morning parade and we are allowed to rest till 4pm. I wake up 12/1pm. It’s quite lit tbvh.

I hated the weather, the flies, the rudeness. I made ‘new’ friends. I don’t know how people meet the love of their lives in camp. Maybe in Lagos camp or tush camps but Wamakko was such a dead place. Lmao. The guys in Wamakko were all razz and badly behaved. The whole thing made me super thankful for Tolu. 😭

About a week to the end of camp, I started battling with URTI. I decided to wait till I got home before starting antibiotics. (Update: I’m home now and I’ve started Augmentin but I have diarrhea now which is most likely a side effect of the drug.) I also came back home with my thighs and legs looking like roasted chicken guys! The sun burn was real

We all had to do the man o war drills. It was compulsory. It wasn’t fun for me because i’m a chicken. I did everything eventually but the one that involved somersaulting got me stressed.

Carnival day was pretty boring. Each platoon randomly pick a tribe. I was in platoon 9 and we picked Efik. I was actually pretty shocked that we won.  Each platoon had their different tshirt designs. I liked that my platoon people didn’t do too much. Our design was pretty simple.

 

L-R: Ope (Platoon 8). Dara (Platoon 9). Yours truly (Platoon 9) and Funmi (Platoon 7)

 

I participated in Parade competition and we came third which wasn’t bad. Although, i was so sure we’d win.

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My hand got slightly swollen because people kept hitting my hand during practice. lmao
Posing with the trophy. L-R: Uncle Shaibu, yours truly and  Aunty Peace.

The last day of camp was not as stressful as i thought it’d be. I got up pretty early. I already packed my bags the night before. I got news that one of my friends was sick and spent the night in the clinic so we had to help her get her stuff together and return her mattress. By 5:30am we were already done and just waited in the clinic for the passing out ceremony to start. They called us out at 8:30am to the parade ground only for them to actually start at about 10am. The ceremony ended past 12 noon.

Once the ceremony was over, I got my posting letter. My friends and I decided to stay at this guest inn the day we left camp because the flight to Lagos was the next day. They came to pick us from camp so that was a plus. The inn was literally in the middle of a village. I guess it’s for people that are into lowkey waka. I was very glad to be out of there the next morning. It would actually not have been so bad if they actually put in effort but it’s Nigeria and clearly that’s too much to ask for.

Our flight to Lagos from Abuja got delayed but they were able to put us on an earlier flight. I still got home late because Uber delay and Lagos traffic.

I am so excited and grateful to be home.

I tried to make this post as short as possible because no one likes long ass posts. So i hope you enjoyed reading it.

Have you done NYSC? Did you enjoy it? Do you think it’s necessary? Share in the comment section and tag someone who is yet to do it!

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Love & Light

 –  TOSIN

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22 thoughts on “My Wamakko experience – NYSC Orientation Camp.

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    1. The Doctor thing in Wamakko was stress but they were threatening us and I didn’t like that. The toilet wasn’t bad also. I tried to use it immediately we get back to the hostel because that’s when it’s clean. I thoroughly enjoyed the exercises and parade. 😂

      Thanks for reading!

      Like

  1. As far as NYSC experiences go, I had the overwhelming complete experience of ZERO as I successfully got myself an exemption certificate. Please don’t ask me how, it might affect my future aspirations.

    I still feel the entire scheme is a waste of graduate time but then as you might have seen, there are lots of uncooked graduates that are in no way ready for the real world, so maybe the one year of service gives them some sort of prep time.

    But yeah, I cringed at finding a naked person (who might be actually dirty and smelling) on your bed…omg! I need to go throw up.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Please show me the way on this exemption something. Lmao I think NYSC is a waste of time as well.
      Oh and I had to wash my bedsheet immediately because this person IS actually nasty. That was the hardest part for me. Living with nasty people.

      Like

  2. The part about a naked human on your bed made cringe so hard! Yuck.
    My NYSC experience was ridiculous. All I remember is NYSC staff who were ALWAYS mad about something and the horrible mami market food (I had to leave after 4 days or so cuz everything in Obubra camp in Cross River was trying to kill me).
    The only thing I took from it was the realization that a LOT of Nigerian graduates are uncouth. I could not believe they had gone through uni – so loud and filthy.
    I really enjoyed reading this, though! Picturing some of it made me laugh hard.
    About the relevance of NYSC – the programme just needs an overhaul but too many people “benefit” from the chaos so I doubt anything’ll be done to fix it anytime soon.
    Verdict? It should be made optional – some people actually enjoy it.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I can imagine how bad it was for you. I did not even share some stories but I remember saying if these graduates are the future of this country then we really are in trouble. I’m glad you enjoyed reading this. I was all for them just scrapping it because I’m still struggling to see the point of the whole thing but then making it optional does not sound bad at all.

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  3. Enjoyed reading this. Could totally relate, well except for the naked human part.. lol. Some people don’t understand the concept of personal space. I enjoyed my NYSC year thoroughly, Camp and the entire year after. I wish the scheme could just work as it was designed to but we live in Nigeria and this is asking too much.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. I was posted to Adamawa. Camped there but got redeployed to Lagos by my parents despite insisting that I wanted to remain there. My PPA was close to Abti America, *hello, young rich good looking educated husband with a hint of Hausa accent*

        I loved the people too. They wouldn’t take money from you in the markets or public buses once you were in your uniform. And one time in Lagos, a bike man from Adamawa carried me and refused to collect my money.

        In hindsight, I’m glad they were firm. The Boko Haram insurgency in the state started shortly after I got back to Lagos. I could recognize a few places that were attacked and most of the people who stayed back before were redeployed as well. Plus I got a good placement in Lagos and I’m still with the company.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. I enjoyed reading this so much ’cause you wrote in details all I’ll have wanted to write….. See ehn, I was in Lagos camp and the guys there were so stupid. I can remember always wondering…. ” people meet their significant others in camp?” Like really? I simply did not talk to any guy. Like you talk to me on the parade ground I simply ignore you. I subsequently made a few friends towards the end though… the persistent nice ones. Also, I could totally relate with being thankful for who you have. I was always so grateful for him the whole time.. Like thank God!!!! The girls were mostly rude and felt entitled. There was a stupid one in my room who had the guts to leave her panties in my bathing bowl and when I asked that she should not use it to wash her intimates or touch my bowl she thought it was okay to say crap to me. I honestly felt bad for you to have found the naked girl. I would have made her feel like she had something seriously contagious if I was in your shoes. For me, camp was crap. A waste of my good time. I kept thinking of what I had to do and I was low-key depressed cause I could not leave as I reside in Ibadan. The only good thing was leading a little about sign language and meeting some nice colleagues. Okay, so two good things. I personally think the whole scheme can be better. They don’t need to scrap it cause the intentions behind it seem awesome they just really need to improve it and if that can’t be done I think it’s time to just pull the plug then. They need to stop wasting good time. P.s. I’m sorry I left such a long comment but I could totally relate and that gave me so much to talk about. Good read though

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    1. Aww! Thanks for reading and I absolutely love long comments. Sorta shows that you actually read the long ass post. Here I was thinking Lagos camp would’ve been awesome. About entitled girls, I had my fair share. I did not even share all my experiences. One babe poured water on me and i flipped out and her response was that I complained too much. I was livid. You’re right about them not scrapping it if they can improve it but call me pessimistic but these people are not capable of improving anything.

      Like

  5. NYSC!
    Fam , I left home with my mum and the driver and on getting to Akure, we were told that we were still three hours away from Ikare( Note that we just knew it was Ondo state, we had assumed camp was close to Akure but nah, long man journey).

    My woes began when we got to camp and a soldier screamed at me that my mum and the driver should stop helping to carry stuff because I am not a kid, so they should drop it all for me. I’m like, wait what? (I need to chip in that I carried so many things to camp; Beverages, clothes bla bla, I don’t even know what I was thinking) . Everything that happened after this was a blur, I only remember crying from time to time and wishing I could fly back home. But it got better after a while and I actually made few friends.

    See,it should be scrapped abeg, what is the point gangan? Yes to uncouth and nasty people who call themselves graduates. Lord! Too many nasty people in Nigeria. The toilets were a mess and we eventually contributed money to pay a worker who would regularly clean but even at that, I went home with an infection.

    I have so much to say but let me just stop here.

    Omotolaniee.com

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I did enjoy reading it and I literally laughed out loud most times. I can imagine Nigerians with their entitlement mentality and the rudeness oh boy. God help us. All I can say is God should guide our leaders right and help our youths the truth to know.
    My brother also served in Sokoto, he finished the batch before you. And yea he always talked about the weather.

    Like

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