I am a serial monogamist. I meet a girl; romance her, and when the time comes to commit I cut and run. A lot of girls I have known have my name down in their little black books. Heaven knows I wonder why. The first time I heard the song ‘Miss Independent’ I had an epiphany: Independent girls are the way forward!
I first met her on a flight to Dubai. Her sister was getting married and they were going to Dubai for her Bridal shopping. Working in business class that night, I could not take my eyes off her, and though my section was the right aisle, I always found an excuse to drift onto the left aisle. One of the best things about long-haul flights is the time. After the first service you still had enough time to invite a passenger to the galley to hang out, and because most passengers are usually too afraid to leave their seats – except to use the lavatory – they jump at the invitation. In this case though, since she was in business class, it was the bar. She was too wired to sleep, so she left her sister sleeping and sat at the bar to chat with me. We enjoyed each other’s company thoroughly.
Off the aircraft and walking towards immigration, I heard someone asking for me by name and since I was expecting another colleague of mine to leave me a parcel, I didn’t think it odd the Airport Manager should know my name. That was until she handed me a slip of paper with a hotel I didn’t recognise and a name I did. The Concierge at the hotel I was staying was really helpful in helping me get a number and address for her hotel. It was when I called and was asked which guest I wanted that I realised I only knew her name, but didn’t have a surname for her. It must have been my lucky day because after describing her and giving her time of arrival, I was put through to her room.
We fixed to go on the desert safari the next day, she brought her sister along. They ooh-ed and ahh-ed when they saw my hotel room, and I was feeling like quite the rock star. The safari was wild! The dinner later was really beautiful, and afterwards we got henna painted.
The day after was dinner on a dhow as it sailed on the lagoon across two wharves. On my last day we went to the Mall of the Emirates, and it was only the fear of breaking something that kept me from going down the icy slopes. I was in Dubai for four days, and we spoke everyday – breakfast, lunch, dinner and in-between meals. Talk was cheap, so we indulged. I was reluctant to leave, but I had work. I had to work, and although she gave me her number the first thing I did was lose it. See, we come from different sides of the tracks, and I am wise enough to know a crush for what it is. The danger of it is that I was more likely to get crushed by a train coming down those tracks!
The next time I saw her was at the airport. She was going to Ghana and I was going to London. She accused me of not keeping in touch. I made all the right noises, apologised and gave her my number instead. We talked frequently and hung out every chance we got, and everything was beautiful. For her birthday I promised to take her anywhere she wanted. She wanted Chinese, so Chinese it was. I am a jeans and T-shirt guy. My preferred mode of transport is the Okada, but for this event – and it was an event – I pulled out all the stops: jacket, pants, cufflinks, shoes and I even broke out my once-a-year Guess wristwatch. Giving myself a once-over I knew the only way to go was by e-taxi, having no car of my own. The night was magical. After dinner, she offered to share the bill with me, but being a Naija guy, I would not even hear of it.
That was a year ago. These days I am back on the shelf. What happened? My babe became a Boss Lady.
“How come you have never offered to fuel the car when we go out together?” Have you ever offered to get the popcorn while I get the movie tickets?
“Why don’t you have your stuff at my place?” How many of your stuff do you have at mine?
“Do you plan to fly all your life? Any plans about going back to school?” Is your father employing? I mean specifically VP-in-charge-of-something. Plus I graduated o! One degree is enough now, abi?
“My car is in for repairs; please send your cabbie to come fetch me.” You are less than four minutes away! Try walking, or else jump a bike.
“Move in with me.” Chick, I pay rent somewhere o! Plus why don’t you move in with me?
The following Ha! Ha! Ha! is not from amusement, just from contempt, and that is the difference between what you think you know and what is real.
Ha! Ha! Ha!