A surprise CAT on a Sunday 2.0

I saw darkness in the calculus exam that left me certain of failure

In Summary

• After handing in my paper, the best I knew that I could score in that test was 10/30

A student in class
A student in class

The thing about being in university is that no one follows up on your whereabouts. How you decide to attend classes is solely your choice.

On that fateful Monday, Prof Obonyo’s 8 o’clock calculus class looked a bit impossible to attend. Call it the Monday blues or choice to extend the weekend for another day, Sunday 2.0.

It was not until I saw a WhatsApp notification popup on my phone that I quicky changed my mind on skiving that class. It was Lisa, one of my classmates: “Uko? Lec anapeana CAT in the next few.

You would think I was a mad woman with the speed I left the confines of my bedsitter. A pen and a ruler in hand, I dashed towards the school, which was just a few metres away.

On reaching the school’s main gate, panting like a dog, guess what hit me? I don’t have my school ID or a mask. It was during the Covid-19 pandemic, where a mask was mandatory in all spaces.

Wasting no time, I hurried back to my house to fetch my school ID and a mask. I hadn’t even locked up the place properly. Again, I hurried back to school. Literally running for my life towards the lecture hall.

I found that the Continuous Assessment Test had already started. The lecturer was a bit reluctant to let me sit for it, but he gave in. Another thing about my university is the reputation of having to drag one desk from room to room. However, I was lucky that there were enough desks in the room on that day.

You would think that in those 30 minutes I was seated in that CAT, I was probably having an Einstein moment, but you’re very mistaken. The darkness I saw in those derivative equations, yaani niliona tu giza and not the city in Egypt.

There's a moment I even became an invigilator, as I helplessly watched some of my classmates pop out their mwakenyas in eagerness, while others discussed one or two formulas in low whispers. I’ve always been afraid of cheating in a test, because I always feel that the day I attempt to do so, I will instantly get caught.

Time elapsed and after handing in my paper, the best I knew that I could score in that test was 10/30. Well, in every class, there are those wajuajis who loudly discuss answers with the aim of crushing anyone’s hopes, because your answers don’t even come close to what they’re discussing. Haidhuru!

Off to Studeez (the student centre in my university) I go with my two friends, Barbara and Lisa. Here, we go and order our usual smochas and fresh juice. We munched away the despair of the CAT as we caught up on what each one of us was up to during the weekend. But I know for sure that of the three of us, Barbara would get the highest score, since she’s literally a human calculator.

WATCH: The latest videos from the Star