The Magnanimous Pharaoh Forever Lives in Me On the morning I was making plans for my summer break, I got a package from home in about a 6 inch 4 mail box. I ran to my room in excitement to unwrap my new gift. Surprisingly, I saw a blue and white hardcover textbook. I sighed in disappointment it was the Kaplan textbook I had to study for my SAT exams. At night, when I was about starting to read I was so uninterested and disturbed that I started flipping through pages. Not long after, I felt dizzy and went to bed.
That night, I had a dream, I saw myself in a completely new lifestyle, attitude, behavior and most of my rinds had same transformation as mine. I wonder how this rarely believed dream came true and made me a wonderful young man I am. Every morning in my brick hostel, in my clean and small room at the four walls of Immaculate High School on the outskirt of Kirkwood in Lagos, Nigeria. Before I hear the six loud bells of the tower when the sun ray penetrates my window, there’s a knock on my door. I hear a shrill and high pitched voice say, Get up! Get up! A slender man in his daily stripped khaki pants with a glass of cold water stands tall over me. I suspect the glass of water could e used to drench my shirt rather than quench my thirst if I fail to wake. This is Pharaoh, 45 years old, house helper, sweeper, caretaker, and the only person to know where I keep my letters from my girlfriend. He was Just a man all students believed was either a high school dropout or a douche that had no word of encouragement or could be of influence and importance. He is like a precise robot programmed to keep my life and that of the other seventy other boys in my boarding house in order.
For five years, I saw him every day cleaning and washing. It is a mystery to me how someone who lives such a mundane life sill greets me with a flash f his 31 teeth overtime I cross his path. Growing up, I never felt respect and I was not ready to give it back, my disregard about life didn’t make me see the exigency of being a benevolence to people and life my tender mind was only bothered about the positive aspects of life having fun, hanging out with friend, play video games, and surfing the internet were my priorities.
I was not ready to be pestered by the negativity of life all I wanted was pleasure, I felt no remorse about being rude and disobedient I thought money could solve every difficulty and problem. I ponder recurrently to know what the cause is. Was it my parents? Should I have not be nurtured as a rich kid while growing, or was I influenced by school mates. I thought of all this in my early teenage years. I wonder how a minor incident could be of transformation and totally put a stop to my way of living in my early teenage years.
Few months before spring break, I had a terrible night tossing and turning before my SAT exam. Words swam in my head as I pondered the difference between allusion, illusion, and elision. The next morning Pharaoh looked more tense than surprised to see me awake. He asked me much like my mother would, “What happened? Why do you look so worried? Has the sun risen from the West? On filling him on my war with words, he smiled and assured all would be fine. It was the first time I heard him speak, and it was a revelation. I didn’t realize that this man was more than Just a “come and go’ machine.
The fact that he empathetic with me like my mother convinced me that he was going to influence my life for the better and make great amends to my way of living. That afternoon when he came to clean my hostel room, I inserted a #100 naira note into his hand and requested him to get a packet of chips. He frowned and frowned even more. I snatched back the note and ran to the dining hall for a barely edible breakfast. I felt bad for having crossed the line. I should have respected the school rules, I wished that he would not complain about my transgression.
To my astonishment, that afternoon, I saw not one but two packets of chips lying neatly on the pillow. He grimaced, displaced his 31 teeth, and walked out of the room. I was taken aback, I couldn’t believe that a man with a large family to support and a meager income to do it with had generosity to fulfill my petty temptation. Many chips later, I realized that he didn’t grudge me the chips; he was simply against taking money from me. He found Joy in giving and he had great pride in himself. Secretly, I envied him.
For he had found the contentment most people spend their live chasing. I envied him because he smiled all through the day. I learned from his example, that there are some things money can’t buy. Contentment and generosity are Just two of them. Pharaoh may not be a Mahatma Gandhi or a Nelson Mandela that might have influenced a lot of people due to their reputable positions, and encouraging lifestyle, but Pharaoh lifestyle as an average living Man though he wasn’t educated, rich or popular but he was till generous with the little he had and was contented with what he had left.
He was able to influence the life’s of other teenage boys in my high school dormitory through his simplicity and humility and made remarkable changes in our lives, my parents were happy to see the new me and lauded him for being a great influence to my life and that of my school mates. Pharaoh may not have the ability to do great things, but I saw the greatness to have the ability to do small things in him.