Unless Brymo says otherwise, I am sure he wrote the song Adedotun during a visit to Obafemi Awolowo University. The vivid description of the bats with the song verses is a reality that is well known on the campus and its environs of Ile Ife, Modakeke and their neighborhood.
The setting of Brymo’s Adedotun is evening, the time of the day when everything is winding into rest. Against the human norm of rest in the night, the bats are nocturnal. The evening time is the time they become most active.
I had the opportunity to visit OAU in 2016 and then 2022. That of 2022 was frequent, Monday to Saturday, for two months plus, and the bats and their activities are what I cannot forget.
Many buildings at OAU, departments inclusive, are lined by very tall trees plagued by millions of these birds. These birds, when not intruded, are known to only leave the branches of these trees mostly around 6.40 PM in the evening for a faraway place nobody is yet to discover.
They only return early in flocks at dawn. You could go on to count their numbers in flock and I assure you you will count 10 thousands and still won’t reach the end. According to certain indigenes I questioned, the birds are as old as the school itself.
They are hunted by indigenes after prior authority from the school, safe for one intruder who killed the birds without permission and got arrested in 2020. Indigenes believe when the bats leave Ife in the evening, they journey to a faraway farm to feed and return as early as 6 the next morning.
The bats are yellowish in colour with black linings on their wings. They rarely disturb the school. According to students, there’s a place called Spider, it’s like a cave where the birds could rush out in their numbers and disturb an intruder who disturbs them. I never got to reach there!
Last night, I watched the birds as they spread across the sky for their usual routine, and I could only remember every line of Brymo’s Adedotun. The picture became clearer with nature and its undisturbed calmness. Like the bats whose destination and mode of survival we do not know, we should not worry over our destination and how to survive too: Brymo’s message.