I was by the well, both hands wrapped around the rope tied to the container inside the pool of water below, when the sound of Korede Bello’s Godwin started filtering into my ears. As it grew louder and louder, I recognised the car at once. I’ve returned home to find it parked in front of our apartment more than a couple of times, but I never saw the owner. I just knew he came for Keji.
People said Keji’s big gal status is thanks to her car-owner boyfriend, so I had a picture of him in my mind, one that naturally screamed money. I sized him up as he stepped out, he had very dark lips that seemed too heavy for him to hold apart long enough for a greeting to escape them, I hissed. If you combined the effect of his bloodshot eyes, multicoloured skin and overly muscular upper body, it was easier to see him as a hardworking labourer.
The heavens had finally hearkened to our cries that day, by wiping the sky free of clouds. So it was with a smile that I approached the clothesline. My smile froze as I neared the line and saw Keji’s boyfriend walking towards me. Within seconds, he stood inches away, collecting Keji’s dry clothes and folding them up neatly.
“C’mon!” I screamed in my head. “You can’t possibly be that loved up, or is the garri finally getting to my eyes. I’m always right, please, don’t make me a liar!”
While opening his mouth was a chore still, he did make a greeting gesture with his face. I returned the gesture in kind and walked back to my room trying to replay the moment he stepped out of his car. Could I have missed something?
For consolation my mind brought up Dike. Very tall Dike with biceps that are bigger than my thighs and a chest that fills out every shirt he owns. Dike who hates rap music and whose favourite musician, in spite of all his machismo, is Adele.
Keji’s palaver had slipped to the very back of my mind as I settled down, right hand buried in a plate of eba and okra soup. But then, somewhere between my second and third mouthful, I began to hear her scream from the corridor.
“Give me my phone! You’re not the one that bought it for me. At least you have packed everything; you even went to the line to pack the clothes I washed...”
Related country: Nigeria