A Mirage (Part 1)

A friend of mine insisted that I attend a women’s lib conference of sorts in Abuja.
She had been on my case for 2 years running and I decided to give in. It was a
good opportunity to see the sights and buy real good kilishi from the Area 2.
At the MM2 Airport lounge in Lagos, there was this really good looking semi-
young Alhaji type. I wasn’t sure whether he was checking me out or looking at
someone else. I didn’t want to make it obvious that I was digging him, so I just got
up from my seat and sat elsewhere.
Even though I had a book in my hand and had my eyes on the print, I couldn’t
concentrate. This was a first for me. I could feel eyes behind my neck. I kept up
my pretend reading.
Next thing I know, I hear a male voice whisper into my ear saying “You’ve been
reading one page for over 15 minutes. Is the book that hard to read?”

I turned around or rather he came round to stand In front of me. I almost died of
embarrassment! I looked up at the man; it was the good looking man again. Close
up, he looked even better! He had that shuwarab complexion, curly soft hair, a
pointed nose and soft features.
“Can I sit with you?” He asked. “I have about 30 minutes before I board and
I’d love to get to know you. There was something electric I felt, the minute you
walked into the lounge. I think you felt it too when you saw me”

“Look Mr. whoever you are, what sort of talk is that? I have no idea what you are
talking about. Please can you let me be? I’d rather be alone. I don’t know you!”
He sat down beside me anyway. My heart began to race for reasons I can’t

He said, “I am confused too”. My religion and culture don’t allow me relate to
women the way I just did. I would never sit beside a woman except she was
my betrothed or wife.
I hissed, ”How does that concern me?” I asked.
“I know this will be a first for you too, it shows. I know that you’re a good
woman, and you would be a great lover”

Now I am livid! I got up, gathered my things together and went straight the ladies.
After about 30 minutes, I come back to the lounge and find that my Alhaji toaster
is gone. I sit down and bring out my book. One of the attendants in the lounge
walks up to me and says” I have a message for you, Ma”. She hands me an
envelope with a note inside. The note addressed me as
“Dear “you broke my heart”, I really apologize for making you uncomfortable, I
didn’t mean to upset you. I’ve gone to board and I’m guessing you are on your
way to Abuja. I am too. I live there. I’d love to see you again. I have no bad
intentions, but I think we will make good friends. I don’t know what telephone
network you are on, but I have asked the lady at the front desk to give you
N30,000 airtime of your choice. Please oblige me by calling me. Tel 080xxx xxxxxxx.
Now yours,
The Lady at the front desk comes to me as if on cue. “Hello Ma, one Alhaji came to
me describing what you are wearing and paid me 30,000 to give you airtime.
Which one do you wat Ma?”
It was all like a mirage to me!
I have to say this. I was stunned. N30,000 airtime??? A newly divorced woman like
me with 4 children can still get this kind of attention? It felt good and really, it was
the first time any man had ever done such a thing for me. My ex had had it all on a
platter of gold. He didn’t have the faintest idea about wooing any woman. On the
plane I pondered over whether to call this Hamza person or not. My face tingled
and I felt like a 16 year old again. I decided not to call him.


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