Wednesday, 29 January 2014

Living My Life Again

“Tomi” I called hesitantly, she turned to look at me. We were in one of the popular eateries in Lagos. We had gone shopping and was exhausted both physically and financially. We had spent so much more than what we budgeted for and I just knew that I would regret it the following day. We decided to crown our effort by having lunch. Actually, I had ulterior motives, I had wanted to talk to my friend about her relationship and I just didn’t know how to brooch the subject. Moreover, she has avoided talking about her boyfriend.

 “What are your plans for this year?” I asked. “I mean you and Mr O.”

Tomi kept quiet for a while. I wondered what she was thinking about or maybe she would not say anything as usual. Tomi had been dating Mr O as we call him for three years now.  Nobody has met him and we her friends are beginning to think maybe he was an imaginary boyfriend coined by our friend in order to keep us off her back. We were rather protective of her because she had suffered a lot. Her fiancĂ© had died a week before their marriage and that had made her shut down emotionally but that was several years ago. We were very happy when she told us about this man that we have never met. Initially she was very excited about the relationship. She looked radiant and beautiful and was very full of life. This lasted for one year. She had since become very pensive and withdrawn again and I worry about her.

I waited patiently for her response. She played with her fork for a while. Making circles on her plate. She seemed far off and I wonder if I have not over run my mouth again.

“Ose,” she said.” I have decided to live.” She smiled and her eyes shone. “I have decided to live my life to the fullest. I have been afraid for too long. Afraid to live life but now, I am going to live. I will travel, go out on dates and enjoy my life. If I find love I will embrace it but if I don’t, so be it.” She said happily.

I looked at her curiously. I wasn’t satisfied by her answer because that was not what I expected. Tomi held my hands in her palms.

“I am going to be fifty in a year. I have mourned Ola. I have laid his ghost to rest and I think it is time for me to live again. It has taken me years to get to this point but I thank God that I finally did.” She said smiling.

“What about Mr O.” I asked tentatively. She looked at me and smiled again. “Mr O is there. But Mr O has developed cold feet. He has commitment phobia” She replied shaking her head.

“Have you guys broken up?” I asked now confused.

 “No we have not. He is my friend and will remain so as long as he wants.”

“But…” I said interrupting her.

“Hear me out. She said putting her fore finger on my lips. He has a choice. He can either get his act together or the relationship will frizzle out but for me, I am going to go on dates again. Go to the cinema, travel to all those places I have always wanted to go; do all those things I have always wanted to do. I am going to cast my net wide, in the deep ocean as far as I can. I am going to spread my wings. I am going to live again.” She replied giggling.

Then she laughed. She laughed long and loud. The laugh was very infectious. I joined her laughing loud too not mindful of the people around us.  Then I knew my friend is finally healed. 

Tuesday, 21 January 2014

Shopping for a husband

It was a very hot afternoon. The heat was too much and as usual NEPA had struck again. I was restless so I decided to pay a friend a visit.  My friend, Ronke's house was just a walking distance from mine. Walking in the scrounging sun, I arrived at her house all sweaty. Ronke opened the door for me. "Hi, Ose! How now?" "I am fine" I responded walking into the sitting room. I sat down and as I expected her house was cool as she had her generator on. "Men! this weather is killing" I said. "Hmm Yes o!" Ronke said distracted. She was a bit distracted as she kept on responding to the messages on her phone. I sat there watching the TV. I had started dozing off in front of the TV when she tapped me. "I am very sorry" she said smiling sheepishly. "I can see you are very busy." I replied. "Not so busy except that I joined this dating platform on the internet and since then I have had hordes of suitors." she explained. "Dating site? I asked surprised. I didn't know Nigerians visit the dating site. "Yes o!" she replied excitedly." My friend introduced me to it and I have met a lot of interesting men" Ronke explained. "Please pardon my ignorance but aren't these sites dangerous?" I asked." No, Its actually interesting. I meet all sorts of men there but some of them can be crazy. Like the guy who sent his naked picture to me. I was embarrassed and quickly blocked him. But most guys I have met are very decent." " But why a dating site?" I asked "I can't trust anybody I meet through such a platform" I said. "Ok Ose wetin man go do?" She asked. "See I am in my forties and never been married. All the men I have met are not serious but with this, it is like casting my net wide." She explained. "But you don't know them. What if they are psycho?" I asked worried. "Oh girl, there are a lot of psycho out there. I beg. All I know is that I must marry this year and I have gone out shopping for a husband. "

"How many of these guys have shown interest and how do you begin to know the serious ones?" I asked still pondering. She left where she was and sat beside me. "Look at this one, he is extremely quiet". "After our initial contact, I have had to do all the calling and maintaining contacts". I am beginning to wonder why he contacted me anyway. It is like he developed cold feet. Look at this "flipping to another picture," he is actually very nice. Always chatty but there is something not right about him. He is too quick to talk about his wealth and I wonder if he has as much as he claims. This is the main person I am interested in." She said showing me his picture and profile. "He is very attentive and caring. We have gone to the extent of arranging to meet each other." She explained.

Now I wonder what if the guy is not who she thinks he is. What if he's a psycho and probably worst than any of the guys that she has rejected? Well she has to take a risk but is it worth the risk?