The Bridge

Describe an instance when you effected change in your community


It begins with a dark cerulean sky eerily illumined by forks of lightning. To a visitor, this might be an ordinary thunderstorm, but the locals exchange anxious looks and murmur "Nne tse logun": the rains are coming.

As a child, I looked forward to the urban chaos that each rainy season brought to Lagos. A sixty year old fir that succumbed to a lightning stroke and lay across the single road that led to my school; murky floodwaters that ruined car engines and seeped into the vehicle's interior, causing my brother and I to draw our feet onto the seats with exaggerated shrieks; these were terrors to be cherished. However, my views were greatly altered when I acquired a job that required a commute to a different town three times a week. On the third day of my work, the heavens unleashed its bowels. A knee-deep stream formed in the half-mile stretch between my home and the nearest bus stop. No longer the sheltered child who squealed as her father's vehicle defied the flood's currents, I proceeded to wade through the waters. It was the longest half-mile journey I had ever made.

When I returned home, I was informed that a man had been electrocuted to death after stepping on a power cable that had lain underneath the waters. For...

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