Being a goody-two –shoes never pays off but I can’t help who I am. So on my first day of work, I was petrified because I was about 10 minutes late. I walked into my new work place with trepidation that an almighty voice would shout my lateness to the whole world, what a way to start. However, my new bosses and co-workers didn’t mind, especially since they didn’t even know a new corps member was even coming to work with them. Of course, once again forgetting that I was in naija, I expected a memo to have gone out to the manager at least, saying that he was getting a new worker at his branch but I walked in and on asking for the branch manager, I was told he wasn’t even at work yet. I was stumped at that point but a kind lady there could tell I was an otondo and asked what it was about. I told her I was supposed to resume today and she sent me back downstairs to go talk to the team leader for operations. I got downstairs and went to see her and she too was stumped on what to do with me since she hadn’t been given any advance warning about a new worker. She pulled one of the other workers who worked there (I would later find out she was a Batch A corps member) and asked her to show me around and introduce me to people. After this was done, there was really nothing for me to do so I just tagged along with my new work buddy, J. (PS- I am working in a bank, no need to delve into which one ) J worked in the bulk room so I went in there and just watched for the first day. I would end up being in the bulk room for the whole time I was in the branch but it was a mellow job. That first day, thanks to my antsy nature, I was able to see what she was doing fast enough but only helped with counting the money and packaging it for her to sign and stamp. I started work on a Wednesday and by the Friday; I was doing everything I had watched all alone with just the other bulk teller available to ask questions from.
Something stumped me by the same Friday though; I had only been working at the bank for just 3 days, hadn’t gotten any training or information on the bank except what I had read online and was basically a novice at the best definition of the word. However, they were having some sort of expo at Transcorp Hilton and they chose me to go and represent the personal and business (PBB)aspect of the bank. They gave me a little cheat sheet right there and then and that was what I spent my whole time looking at so that I didn’t screw up, so that the few times I actually had to present, I sounded like I knew what I was talking about. However, if anyone had asked any deep questions, I would have stood there looking like a fool, because I truly hadn’t been given any training. (I mean, am I asking for too much when I ask to get a quick- maybe one day- training on the bank I work with, what they do, what my role is etc so I know what am talking about if a situation like that Friday arose again?) Then again, maybe I was expecting too much from them again, I can’t get used to these Naija ways of doing these things I guess.
By this point, after all the many ways NYSC had screwed me over, I was determined to get a break from them, damn the consequences. I had found out from the friends I made in Kaduna that most of them got 2 weeks break from their PPPs to go and get their possessions from wherever they were from and I decided I wanted my own 2 weeks break as well. Added to this was the fact that my family was coming to Nigeria for the xmas holiday and I wasn’t going to miss them just to stay here and work, I needed some TLC and just wanted to get some rest before I went back into the BS I had gotten myself into. I set the wheels in motion by going to see my team leader and telling her that I needed to get the 2 weeks “NYSC required that I get to go get my possessions” (this statement was later proved false in a very public way ). I also stated that I couldn’t take it before I started work since the possessions I was to pick up were coming from the United States and would not come in until the middle of the month. The woman didn’t have a problem with this story and said she had no problem with it as long as I go to the head office and inform human resources of what I was planning to do. I went and did as she instructed and they also said they had no problem with it, as long as I got a letter from my team leader to the effect of the dates I was off for. I did all of this and on the 16th of December, I packed my luggage and got the hell out of Abuja, with all its NYSC madness and came over to Ibadan and Lagos, where entertainment and fun and no stress and eating and all around mega fun was the order of the day (wish I could post pictures, they would explain better than any words I can how much fun I truly had, shout out to all my loves who made the time fun). On the 24th, I got a call from my team leader telling me that HR came to the branch and was annoyed to find that all the corps members had disappeared and was saying we should all return at the start of work the next week, especially me since I had left on unjustified grounds. It was like she had just told me she was going to kill my puppy and I immediately started devising a way to not go when I was supposed to. I eventually called her Tuesday afternoon telling her that I couldn’t come back because the coming weekend was my grandfather’s 80th birthday and if I missed it, my mother would never forgive me (this wasn’t completely false, except it wasn’t my own grandfather, but a friend’s.) My team head was noncommittal in her response but basically I could stay. I was overjoyed and went back to having fun until Wednesday (29th – the day i was to start work again) evening when I got a text from my bank saying I had been expected at work that day and if I didn’t appear the day after, I would be fired. I was stumped but knew there was no way I could make it back for the next day as they wanted so I just dealt with my panic and didn’t even think about it. I made the most of the last days with family and friends and finally left for Abuja on Monday, Jan 3rd. I went to work the next day to find out that 2 corps members had been fired and we were all to go see human resources the next day (all youth corps members working with the bank evidently absconded for the holidays ). The meeting was just the HR man telling us off for what we did, using me as a scapegoat, calling me out on travelling, brandishing my posting letter and saying I left without permission. At this point, I kinda figured I wasn’t getting fired so everything else mattered little, let him talk. So he talked and then we left to start the New Year.
I love my co-workers. The branch I am working in is so relaxed and everyone treats each other like friends and family. I hated the branch at first because it is old and relatively not cute but the people make up for it so much. I have made friends with all the corps members there as well as most of the permanent staff and I even like my immediate bosses. Events occurring there made me BB once that Naija men like women too much! From the co-workers, to the bosses, to the customers that come in and are always trying to get the digits (even the married ones – ps do marriage vows go for anything for these people, – but that’s an article for another day), it makes me smh for them all. All around though, I am loving my time at the work and since I only have to deal with NYSC once a week or when else I choose to (I refused to do the INEC stuff because that would be inviting more headache and bullshit into my life and it isn’t worth it for whatever money they are planning to pay), things aren’t too bad.
This past week, I was called to the head office and informed that I was being transferred there to work directly with the regional manager. This is a good thing, but I have also been informed that the worst womanizers are in this place so I am going in with prayersJ. I start tomorrow and we will see how things go. Overall though, I only get exasperated like 40% of the time now so its progress from the almost 90% of the time before.
To Be Continued…