Wednesday, 10 May 2017


Papa Mmeso the Lagos Based Teacher
I was once like you, someday you will be like me…”

I would never forget this quote in a hurry. My interlocutor then noted that it was picked off a tombstone. In a way it gives me the shivers however its message grips my attention like a vice.

It is said that those who don’t care a hoot about history will end up making the mistakes of the past in the present. The holy book has it that there is nothing new under the sun. Whatever is, has always been once upon a time.

Till date, great architects, engineers still study ancient mega structures and reuse most of its engineering marvel in reproducing what we call prodigious edifice today. The past’s claws will always have a grip on the present and from time to time, determines the future’s trend.

So my dear students, today you have put West African Examination Council to the sword. Your result is on the pipe line. I wish you all the best.

Dusting WAEC leaves one with this I-have-arrived-feeling. The world is at my feet. The sky within a touching distance. You feel freer than an eagle soaring somewhere high in the sky. It is a wonderful feeling. I wouldn’t begrudge you that. I would always smile in nostalgia seeing you rejoice after walking through WAEC’s gauntlet. I was once like you…

So celebrate this milestone. Pop champagne, party hard for a week, month, as much as your body can take. Relax your wearied nerves and massage you aching joints. However, don’t forget that you have just taken a step in the journey of a thousand miles.

But you should know deep within that WAEC is just the beginning of a new era. In the scheme of things, it is the first step. If your dream ends with it, then you are as good as finished. Life is just warming up, haven’t even started yet. You just scaled your first stepping stone, more are already stepping into position; your proverbial stumbling blocks.

The world has just recognized you and has invited you to its ultimate search quest. How prepared are you to drink off its chalice? Your perception of reality is about to be confirmed or take a serious hit.

If you would be kind to keep a diary, years to come will reveal how far the world has left its imprint on you. You may not consciously notice the change except you put down your ideas in black and white – in a book.

Your world view would have undergone serious changes by then. Some of the things you consider less important in the past may become the corner stone and vice versa. Regrets and gratitude will trade places in your heart with alarming frequency.

In all this, be yourself. Stick to your mentor’s advice if you have one and if you don’t, go find one. The past will always repeat itself in the present. There is nothing new under the sun. Stick with those who have seen it all. Hearken to their advice. It may sound somehow to you but it may be your saving grace at the eve of the day.

Remember, the world will not end because of you. I bet the WAEC body are already scheming for the next set. Time and tide waits for no one not even you.

You have to get on with life. Listen to your parents, they have your good intention at heart. Listen to your teachers, their words have no market value. Listen to friends well advanced in age, they have been there.

You need not make mistakes of the past. You can learn from others’ and improve on your experience. Experience is not the best teacher I dare to say. It leaves its scar and you may not like it. Learn from others and move on.

Congratulations and welcome to the table of men.

Yours sincerely,

Papa Mmeso.

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