It happened in December 2011 while I was trying my luck for a job two years after graduation.
Here it goes...
"Welcome please enter your secret number" quickly, I punched in my four digits pin and barricaded the machine with my body so the guys on the queue would not see the movement of my fingers.
I pressed balance to check if I Now had money, the last time I checked (an hour ago) I had 386Naira, I was expecting money and since my bank fails to notify me of transactions, I had to keep checking.
"Thank you for banking with us.
Great! I still had 386N. There goes Iya Yusuf food canteen I thought as I collected my card and made way for the next user. A lady on the queue was asking me a very annoying question...
"Is it dispensing?" I didn't respond. Not pride, how was I to know?
I was going to G. R. A., and it was getting quite late. I hurriedly crossed to the other side of the road to get a taxi going towards Tanke...
"P.S main campus!" The cabbies were chanting non stop. I was still waiting when I heard my uncommon name... I didn't move.
"La'bostical!" The male voice called again and I looked around...ha! Not now! Without much ado, I bared my teeth in greeting.
"Hi! What's up?" I asked, not wanting to know! Whatever was up should remain there.
"La'bos, I am fine o...look at you..." Who should look at me? I thought.
He was talking on excitedly, obviously thrilled to be seeing his favorite songito, to my ears, it sounded like a dirge. My mouth with the bared teeth was smiling, my eyes were spiting fire. I wasn’t snobbish, it just wasn’t a good time for me. I needed to leave, but I had to know something...
"em...where are you going?" I asked.
"em...yoruba road" I replied automatically.
"so what are you doing on this side of the road? You should be on the other side." He said sensibly.
"Maybe I was waiting for you" I replied feigning a dead sense of humor. He laughed and I touched his shoulder briefly, murmured a 'goodbye' and Crossed to the other side of the road walking towards yoruba road! My 4inches heels were killing me!
All because I couldn’t risk being in the same cab with that boy, not paying his fare.
So why didn’t I just pay? Good question! I couldn't risk paying...sefini!
I stopped at a business centre to make copies of my documents, after which I had just 30N left! Ok! So I had to walk all the way to my destination and back to where I came from, on my naughty heels, except a miracle happened.
Who would have thought Challenge to Tanke junction was that far? Well...I trekked. An hour later, I got to my destination.
Luckily for me, I was able to locate the exact house I was going to even though I had been there just once two years ago.
I stopped briefly at the gate, checked my bag for my handkerchief, I got it and bent to my dusty and tired shoes. I re-glossed my equally dusty lips, patted my hair and added a layer of powder to my face. I didnt bother with a mirror.
Did I remember to say I was wearing my best shirt? No? Okay, I was wearing my best shirt on a pair of pants and I particularly liked the way I looked, my confidence was fed by that dress code. All I needed was a touch of that popular fake smile! ( Sorry. But I lost the original since I left the Atm.)
My ankles were throbbing yet I summoned all the energy in reserve, one, two, three, I catwalked into the lodge! I saw a huge machine (sorry, vehicle) parked outside and my fake smile widened!
I heard voices coming from the house and instantly recognised one of them.
I walked into the lobby where the voices came from and a young man met me.
"Good evening" He greeted politely and I was amazed at the politeness. I expected curtness or a cool indifference, anything but politeness. This was a senator's residence naa!
"Good evening" I replied in my best Shakara accent baring my teeth at the innocent man!
"You want to see the senator" He stated and I bared my teeth more. My jaw was already complaining
"Come this way" he said and led the way to a huge guest living room.
Jeeesu! Was this man as big as this the last time I saw him? Seriously speaking, he was looking like an overfed hippopotamus! More seriously, he looked twenty times my size, he was sitting alone on a three sitter and he conveniently filled it up! This man is sick… I thought as I knelt in greeting.
“Good evening sir…” I said smiling my customer friendly smile (fake!)
“Hen…Abosede abi?” He asked in a voice that belied his stature. He sounded like a mouse.
“Yes sir, Bamidele Abosede.” I was still smiling
“You are welcome, I will be with You shortly…”
I was directed out of that space through an adjacent door to another room, beautifully furnished with a sony plasma TV, a mini refrigerator and a huge king-sized bed! I looked at the guy who brought me in, he could be mistaken. He only nodded and left.
Well, I could not sit on the refrigerator could I? I could not sit on the TV no, no, no! sitting on the beautifully carpeted floor would define me…so, I sat on the bed and waited. 5:20pm.
To be continued.