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Wednesday, 16 December 2015


I don’t really know how to rate this true life experience. Maybe it’s funny, scary, embarrassing but I learnt my lesson. I hope you learn from it too.
It was a noon like any other; school activities going on as usual. To be frank, I can’t really recall what the queue was for but I know it was definitely for a compulsory school process. I was in my 200L then.

Usually, I carried my knapsack with me always just to be sure my items (books, drawing tools, hair brush, snacks etc) were intact and I could reach for them anytime. I hated asking for things like pencil eraser, sharpening blade etc. As I was saying, the queue, yes, I took my space behind the last person and waited with folded arms. The line was moving quite alright but I started browsing my phone to ease the boredom of waiting.

The whole movie started playing few minutes later when someone from behind tapped me. "Guy, your bag is smoking!" Just the way it sounds like a joke, I couldn’t really figure out what he meant initially. I noticed that others behind me started to space out, looking suspicious and frightened. "What do you mean?" I asked, looking confused. He stepped backwards, creating a safe space and pointed to my knapsack. "Smoke is coming from your bag!"

Before anyone could say Jack Robinson, people started to run helter-skelter and yell, "Sucide bomber! Boko Haram!" By then, I could see the smoke myself. It was actually coming from my bag. People ran haphazardly, fearing for the worst. The attention of security agents standing close by was drawn. Two hefty agents rushed into me while I was trying to take the bag off. "Put your hands in the air!! Don’t touch the bag!" They knocked me hard on the wall, pulled the bag from me and flung it outside on a nearby field. They searched me for a remote detonator or whatever they thought they could find.

Okay, that was some thriller there. I watch a lot of American movies. Let’s cut the crap. First, no one said Jack Robinson. Secondly, no one ran helter-skelter. This is what happened after the dude notified me of the smoke. I pulled off the bag and threw it off me. Not like I was scared, it was out of caution. People’s attention was drawn and they wanted to know what caused this smoke. Not like the smoke was thick, it was just as light as cigarette smoke yet visible enough to catch attention. I was equally astonished and couldn’t wait to unravel the magic smoke. How could this be? I didn’t go about with some fireworks or local explosives. What or who could be smoking inside my bag?

Grabbing the bag from the floor, I pulled open the zipper of the small section where it was coming from. Lo and behold, the source was the spare battery of my phone in the bag! The battery terminals had come in contact with a silver necklace still in that section. This caused a reaction that led to the heating up of the battery. Everyone was at ease when they found out how the smoke came up. Since then, any time I carry a spare battery, I wrap it securely with paper and stuff it in a special section of the bag. I hope you’ve learnt something too.

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