I stood in line with hunger while waiting for Big Alhaji’s gateman to on the tap. It was almost four but the sun was shining in the sky. I felt scorched and thirsty but couldn’t afford to leave the queue for a shade. When you’re fighting for water here, you never leave the frontline of battle.
Today is different. There are fewer boys at the public tap because school has reopened. I don’t go to school but I know someone who does.
I have always wished I lived in the area beside mine. It has everything good. Good light, water, houses etc. I know this because I stare at their houses when I walk by. They have fine cars, fine clothes and food with nice smell.
I can see that some boys are fighting at the end of the line and others are cheering them but I don’t join them because today I feel sick. I think it’s cold because I slept outside the masjid yesterday. I swallowed my saliva then dried the sweat on my face. The sun is hotter than usual because it’s almost the harmattan period.
I stood beside my bucket and waited.
Sophie Aay is a student writer hoping to achieve one of her dreams. She is currently a judge on Reedsy where she also writes weekly prompts.