Marco’sfatherwasdriving a black BMW car. It was a little past eleven ona Friday morning. The sun hadbegan to set and the trees besides the old road had casted their shadows upon the road. Marco`s father, Femi was driving at a fast pace. The car was fully air−conditioned and it seats was covered with a white leather silk. Hewasheading towards Marco’s school for enquiry about what had happened to his son.Marcowas seated with him in the front seat all grown. He was in a deep thought about the incident that resulted to his father going to his school for the first time. His father would be heartbroken, if he finds out the truth about the whole incident that took place between him and his friends. His father suddenly broke the silence with a frown on his face. “So are you telling me an insect flew into your eyes while carrying a bucket of water to your teacher?” Mr.Femi queried..
“Yes daddy, it came like a flash and since then I found this reddish blemishes inside my eye. And what did the doctor say about it dad?”
“The doctor said you will be fine.” Replied Femi hastily. “Only be very careful next time. You know I have always wanted you to be a great leader and besides you need your two eyes to function well in pursuing that dream. We do notwant a president or governor who has just one eye.” Mr Femi said jokily without removing his eyes from the road and he smiled.
· Marco was quiet for some time and then spoke out.
· “Dad mustwe embark on this journey? Everything is fine now and besides I don’t want to be a politician.” His father looked at him and then fixed his eyes back on the road.
· “We must embark on this journey because my child is very important to me. So if I may ask son, what do you choose to become in the nearest future?”Mr. Femi inquired.
· “I want to become a ballet dancer and a rock star. I want to travel around America to meet stars like me and make somedollars and pounds, “he declared boastfully.
· Without saying a word, Femi quickly applied the brakes and pulled over to the side of the stony road. There was a dead silence inside the vehicle for some minutes before Femi finally spoke.
· “I’m totally disappointed in you,” said Mr. Femi.
· Marco was amazed to hear that from his father. He bent down his head as he couldn’t look directly into his father’s scaring eyes.
· “I’m disappointed in you because are you beginning to reason like our corrupt leaders and politicians,whom only assume office to amass and steal wealth from the nation’s treasury. It is a big shame regarding the fact that our present generation has failed to invest in knowledge, rather they run after Dollars, Pounds, and Euros. Our government has failed to realize that knowledge is a weapon that every nation must possess to win any impending socio-economic battles. Our country is flooded with substandard and fairly used goods because of lack of knowledge to reposition our factories and labor force. Even this very car I’m driving is a tokumborcar.”
· “Dad! You mean our mathematics teacher made this car. Marco interrupted.
· “What do you mean by that question?”Femi asked hastily.
· “Dad our mathematics teacher’s name is calledtokumbor.”
· “Come on son! Not that tokumbor.Fairly used goodsare also known astokumbor goods. What I only meant was that, this car has been used by the white men before shipped to Africa for consumption and moreover your mathematics teacher can’t even make spindle,” he mocked.
· “Hmm!You told us that it was a new car. However, I already told my friends that you bought a new car,” lamented Marco.
· “Now listen to this my friend, am not joking here!” His father said harshly and then he continued his sermon.
· Mr. Femi reached for a bottle of water at the side of the driver seat and he opened the seal and drank some of it. Afterdrinking, he kept it back and continued to reprimand Marco. “Well my son, Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.It is a big shame to you that of all the whole careers in this world you couldn’t find anyone to choose from but to choose to become a dancer.” he nodded his head in disappointment. “You did not choose to be a lawyer, a banker, or even a software Engineer like myself.”
· Marco made a grimace on his face and looked through the car window. “You did not even wish to be a Pastor; at least Pastors and politicians are now some of the richest people in our country today.” Marco looked at his father and said.
· ”dad but …but you are rich already,”he stammered.
· “Inasmuch you are making impact and changing lives with your preachingand books, it is more preferable to me than you being a dancer.” his father interrupted.
· “We all want the best for you. Youngsters of these days only care aboutmakingfastmoney and not education.” He forged ahead.
· I did not make all this achievements by taking dancing as my profession. I became a Software Engineer by hard work and persistency.” Femi never gave up on his sermon despite Marco’s lack of interest on the subject matter.Marco was seated staring outside of the car window, wishing that his father would just end the lecture. ”Son, I want you to be a great and charismatic leader. When you grow up to become the president of this country someday, I would want you to invest into education enormously so that wewill not have to be sending our children to study abroad anymore. Instead let the Western world marvel at the depth and width of our educational and scientific breakthrough.” Mr.Femi turned off the car engine, as the sound died down; it resulted to a total silence. They only began to hear the chirps of birds around the bushes.
· “Daddy this is a dangerous place. We have to leave here please,” said Marco in great fear.
· “The most dangerous enemy of man is ignorance and fear. Mr. Femi objected in a harsh tone.
· “You are ignorant of whom you truly are and the potentials which you possessed. You are afraid of admitting your ignorance; lack ofknowledge. Our people perish for lack of knowledge.”Femi admonishedlike a preacher.
· “Come on! Dadyou arebeginning to sound like Mr. Ojo − our principal. I have made a good decision to be a dancer in the future besides I’m no more a child; I am 14 years for Christ sake.”Marco declared. In a high pitch his father said,” Plato once said that a good decision is baseon knowledge not on numbers. You may be hundred years for all I care but what reposition your mind towards making good decision is the experience and knowledge that you possessed.”
· “Dad but I possess the talents to be a very good dancer. “Really?” Femi asked in amusement.
· “Yes I know I do possess the ultimate talent to be a very good dancer that the whole world will marvel at. Marco bragged.
· “Then show me the wonderful talent that doesn’t need knowledge and experience to showcase.”
· “Daddy I can`t show it here because this place isdangerous.” Marco claimed.
· “That’s not an excuse my boy! Come out of the car and showme those wonderful talents of yours.” His father insisted.
Marco came out of the car and asked his father to switch-on the car stereo so he could show him how talented he was. However, his father refused and asked him to dance without any music. Marco did some few press-ups to warm up hismuscles. He then opened his legs wide apart, bent down and he touched his toes to exercise his waist. He started as he flicked and glided. He moved forward and twirled very fast. He jumped on his father`s car bonnet and he tried to balance on one foot. He jolted and tumbled on the ground. Marco was only able to show him some few stunts because he was scared and there was no music.
“Stop this madness!” His father commanded in a loud voice.
”Is this how you wish to become the so-called world best dancer as you said, if I were you I would quit this madness and focus on my education”. This is foolishness and madness; you almost got yourself injured. If I may ask, why did you perform that little warm up exercise before the acrobatics?” Mr. Femi asked.
“Ohthat!I just needed to stretch my muscles just the same way an athlete would do to become physically fit.” He replied still trying to catch his breath.
“Oh I see! You are just deceiving yourself son. Our so-called leaders and politician are growing financially fit and muscular by carrying huge Ghana−must−go completely stashed with money and you are here engaging yourself in some senseless press-ups.”
“Incredible! Marco exclaimed.
“Where do they take the money to, if I may ask?”Marco inquired.
“Some of them launder massive amount of money and courier them abroad to avoid any suspicion,” answered his father.
“Oh I see so is this the reason why you wantme to become the president of this country, sothatI can always carry big and heavy Ghana-must-go filled with money?”Marco asked thoughtlessly.
“No son that is not what I meant. Femi disapproved. “Then why?”Marco asked hastily.
“I want you to grow up to become a transparent and charismatic leader. I want you to be a leader who willinvest unsparingly into education.”
“Daddy I couldn’t dance well because there was no music, I dance best following the rhymes of pianos, keyboards and drums.”Marco said, trying to negotiate for the music to be turn on. Nevertheless, his father interrupted and said:
“Look here my friend, those keyboards and other musical instruments were all invented by great inventors and manufactured by sound engineers. Since you have passion formusic, you can choose to be one of them instead of wasting your precious life dancing yourself to poverty. You might even sustain an injury, especially with this senseless acrobatic you just displayed now. You need knowledge and experience in everything you do including promoting your so−called talent. David Bailey once said that the best advice I ever got was that knowledge is power and to keep reading. I draw my curtain from here. A word is enough for the wise.” Femi concluded his sermon.
Femi threw the car keys to Marco and he caught it as if he was expecting the throw.
“What do I do with the car keys? Marco queried, looking surprised. Keys areuse for opening a particular door. It is a means of gaining access to anything in this world. Education is the key to success. If you must access this world of unlimited opportunities you must pursue knowledge and strive to be educated.” He lectured.
“Now open the car doors and drive the car, said his father.
Marco looked amazed and he said. “Dad you know that I can`t even ride a motorcycle,” he objected.
“Off course I know that you can`t drive a car. Femi responded. “Those keys symbolizes knowledge and the engine inside this car, symbolizes the brain, there are the driving forces behind all technological and socio−cultural innovations. You do not know how to drive a car because you lack the practical knowledge of how to drive a car. Instead of choosing knowledge you havechosen fear.” He sermonized.
“Thank you daddy but your words are too big for me to understand.”
“Don’t worry son, someday you will understand all I have said.” He said assuredly.
Marco was still afraid what his father would do to him if he got to the school to find out what had really happened to his eyes. Therefore, he tried to advise his father to turn the car to the opposite direction.
“Dad, We have already wasted a lot of time here, I think we better go back home because school must have closed by now. His father smiled and said:
“Talking with my son is not a waste of time besides the film actor; Steven Seagalonce said that the most important seed I can sow in this life is in my children, and the love and knowledge that I can bestow them. It is just 11:35am now anyway; we can still make it to your school. Now get into the car so that we may continue our journey.”
Marco entered the car as his father went to open the car bonnet to check on the car radiator. “My father always treats his car like a new born baby, “thought Marco as he frowned.
Suddenly as Mr. Femi was checking on the car radiator, three giant fierce looking men harmed with cutlasses and battle-axes approached from the back of the car and walked through the rear of the car to the front. They took Femi and Marcounawareand restrained Femi from moving by pinning him to the ground. They subdued Femi without respecting his personality.Marcosaw them from inside the car. The rear glasses, rearwindow, and windscreen of the car were tinted and this made it impossible for them to see Marco who was watching them from inside the car. Marco was terrified and thoughtless as it happened. They headed for the door of the car after they had successfully confined Femi with a strong rope. It was like a flash and like a dream to Marco; he quickly pushed the lock buttons of all the car doors from inside. They held the door by its handle and tried to openthe car door, but they could not. One of the fierce men spoke to the other men, informing them that somebody is inside the vehicle. They raised their weapons preparing to smash the rear glass with their metal weapons. Marco was now very terrified and had to do something to save his father or himself. They began to smash the windscreen with their weapons. Marco froze to death. He screamed out aloud but nobody was nearby to help them because they were in the bush. Suddenly he remembered that he was holding his father car keys.
“These keys are many, which of them will be the right one for the vehicle,” he thought. While the men were busy breaking the glasses of his father`scar, Marco was busy trying the keys to see which of them would fit into the ignition hole.
Suddenly he finally got the one, he was looking for, and he turned on the ignition of the car without thinking if he could drive or not. He had sometimes watched his father while he was driving, so he followed his footsteps.Immediately his father discovered that the engine of his car had come alive. He was certain that Marco was about to do something crazy, so he was alert to save his life incase Marco mistakenly wanted to hit him with the vehicle. However, Marcoimitatedhis father as he put his arms at the back of the other front passenger seat, he pulled the automatic gear stick and hit the accelerator with his foot, expecting the car to revise, but instead the car jerked forward towards where his father was lying down. The car had already hit two of the men as Marco moved it forward, but suddenly after some yards the car stopped and Marco was shouting at his father to move quickly as possible to the car. However, he knew his father would not make it as his both legs and arms were tied together like a goat being taken to the slaughterhouse.