Dele, a friend of mine was relocating to the Canada and wanted to dispose of his property. This included the utilized portion of his lease. When he informed me about his apartment, I told him with all confidence that I’d take it up. I didn’t have enough money to pay for it, but I badly needed a place of my own as I was tired of putting up with friends.
Through some stroke of luck, the last N150,000 in my account and the help of a friend, I was able to raise the rent in full. I set out with another friend ,to Dele’s place to make the payment. He was out. There was a Lady doing her washing in front of her apartment which was next to Dele’s. She stopped her washing temporarily to say Hello When we got close to her gate, she said hello and we ceased the opportunity to ask her about Dele’s whereabouts. She said he went out not long before we arrived. She asked whether we had any message she could deliver to him. We said no and left.
I was eager to tidy up the house arrangement; I went back the next day. Again, as I was approaching Dele’s house I saw the same Lady again, washing clothes. I cracked a joke about the coincidence. She smiled. I moved into my new apartment and saw the Lady almost every day many times, washing clothes. Things were tough and I sometimes had to convert being broke to fasting and prayer.
The girlfriend I was dating at the time Wonnu was a lovely lady. She had a way of encouraging me to look for the Golden Fleece. She would often say that her dream was for us to live in Banana Island. She was always on my case for money too. Once she got it, she’d throw me a kiss in the air and leave. I began to entertain doubts about her after a while. She said she had an aunt who was bed ridden and that because her aunt was so fond of her, she had to visit her at least twice a month.
Dele came into town a year after he had left and for that week, it was hangout after hangout. One of those nights we ended up at Ojay’s at the Stadium in Surulere. We placed our order while Dele puffed away on his cigarette. All of a sudden, there was commotion; a couple began to quarrel loudly. The Lady stood up from her seat and held one of the empty bottles menacingly in her hand as if she intended to break it and use it to stab the man. The man too was in the loop. Many of us got up to calm them down. When I got close, I stopped dead in my tracks, it was Wonnu! She saw me too and looked away as if she didn’t know me. I asked my friends to go back to our seats and didn’t mention that she was supposed to be my woman. Wonnu never came to apologize or explain. In fact, she never came.