I take a retrospective look into those days and I ask myself, how could I have known that such romantic beginning characterised by fond companionship would be fraught with this kind of problem? How? I again asked, I sought for an answer to this nagging question and I got none, safe for the tick tock of the wall clock. Then my tears began to fall from my eyes like scales. I would stop crying because to continue was to wake my five-year old son, Ayodele from his deep peaceful sleep.
Before you get pissed off at my depression, I shall hasten back to my story and continue where I stopped, only that, the gloom and sadness that now engulf my life as a result of my in-law as brouhaha beclouds my thinking and I find it difficult marshalling my thoughts in a logical manner.
Before I knew it, a sizzling romance between the two of us, was at its incipient stage. Kole was always full of jokes, hilarious ones that would send one reeling in belly aching laughter. He was always fun to be with and a gentleman. For the whole of the forced break, until resumption, he never attempted making love to me.
Not even during the many nights I spent in his house in Lagos. At such times, we would take a stroll at night, holding hands while he told some of his funny jokes. A further voyage into those past days and I remember one such stroll in the night. We’d gone to the National Arts Theatre to see one of Late Hubert Ogunde’s films. As we walked back to his Surulere residence, he thrilled me with one of his many jokes.
“I promised you a joke, didn’t I? He’d thrown at me.
“Oh yes! I thought you’d forgotten or maybe you’ve exhausted your collection of jokes.
“You ought to know by now that my repertoire can never be exhausted. Okay, I’ll tell you this one about a man who had a pet pig he so much liked.
“Every evening, he would walk the street with the pig, until a cool breezy evening when he appeared on the streets, with the pet pig’s left leg and right ear missing.” As he pursed to catch his breath, before he could continue, I’d asked.
“What happened to the ear and leg.”
“Chill a while, will you? He’d said, paused, then went on. A curious white lady soon walked up to him to inquire exactly what you’ve just asked and he told her thus:
“I so much like this pig so I opted to eat it in bits to make it last longer than how long it would last, if I’d decided to eat it at a go.”
We continued to enjoy, savour and relish each other’s loving and caring company. Our romance continued to wax stronger and strong, even though it was not pronounced. It continued so much later when school resumed.
Back at school, we would trip together. We were at shows, parties and other fun gatherings and sports together. We became Siamese twins, rarely seen apart after lecture hours and whenever there was a weekend around the corner, it was to consolidate our proximity.
Our romance continued till we both left University of Lagos and afterwards. After our graduation from Unilag, I was posted to Kwara State for my NYSC while Kole was posted to Plateau State. The distance between us was not enough to douse the glowing embers of our romance. Instead of such happening, we would enjoy to the maximum our time together whenever he squeezed time out of his busy schedule to come visiting, usually every two months.
Soon, very soon, the service year came to an end. It flew past as if it was only a weekend in December and we again reunited in Lagos where I came down to, in search of a well-paying job.
After our service year, we continued to live the life of live-in-lovers. Getting a good job wasn’t difficult for him, as he quickly pulled together the vast connection his wealthy father had in the business world and got employed with Julius Berger – a reputable civil engineering firm.
I was soon to benefit from his parents’ links as I also got employed in a thriving financial institution along Marina on Lagos Island. Things couldn’t be rosier for us. Even then, we knew what next to do was get married as we were very much in love with each other, we didn’t rush into the stormy world of matrimony until a couple of years later.
By the time we decided to walk up the aisle, we were very comfortable. We had a whole duplex to ourselves. Two official cars were always at our beck and call.
It tried hard and submerged my grief, albeit temporarily, then thought of how my loving, caring Kole of blessed memory, proposed to me and hot tears again sailed down my chubby cheeks. How would I have known such romantic happy times would not transform into this sordid in-laws’ palaver. Oh gracious God, lift me out of this dark tunnel of gloom and I will forever be grateful to you.
Kole had opted for an outdoor dinner on that night of November. Yes, I remember now that the NTA news of 9.00pm had just relayed the death of Dele Giwa. We went to a highbrow restaurant on Olowu Street, in Ikeja. The name of the restaurant I suppose I’m right is Checkers restaurant.
After the three course meals, we left the cosy interior of the restaurant and as we made for our Toyota Crown car, Kole stopped me in my tracks, went on his knees, right there in the public glare and chirruped.
“Please, Mosun come and be my long partner, I’ve treated and loved like I never did to any lady all my life. Please marry me.”
…TO BE CONTINUED