I considered that as the joke of the century. Why would I remember myself first? I wasn't brought up to be selfish. I was taught to help others in any little way you can. God blessed some so they can bless others. That blessing isn't meant to be enjoyed alone. That's why it's called blessings.
But when Lagos was grooving, the reverse was the case. I considered what I called a joke the reality. It wasn't long it dawned on me life can end before you blink your eye half way in a quarter second. Life is sweet and meant to be enjoyed. Life is adorable. Life is beautiful and it is meant to be explored to the fullest.
"Eyan le ku at any goddamn time" was what I always said.
I made few contact and always got in touch with my parents in the village. I call this place home. But this home is so crazy if you aren't wise, you won't be taught so. Lagos, amongst its hustling and bustling always had its own down time.
The traffic here is so depressing I almost thought we were headed heaven. The queue for everything and other parts obstinate. The different voices of men you will hear from 360 degrees of you will make you wonder if you're actually safe.
Kemi had secured a place for me in a major oil company and all I needed was just to show up nice, well mannered and early enough for the interview. Yeah! She had great and influential contacts well, respectable from her husband to be. For a whole week, she took me round the major places I needed to know.
The fun part of this was when she were descending the foot bridge and she told me to place my bag right in front of me. I never understood what she said.
My people will say "a ti k'fa nle ifa tin se" which means the much predicted thing had happened before much has been said. I hope I got that right.
My first day in office. Well I was looking forward to that. Less work at least for a starter other than errands. I was placed in a cool office like I was in charge of the whole building. Didn't take up to 30minutes or less before I knew what work actually meant. No time to smile. As a matter of fact, I forgot when I was called for lunch. I was obscure and nervous of the surrounding too and the kind of people I will work with. Thankfully, I scaled through successfully and a job well done was delivered by me.
Months into years and I became the much talked about in the company. I once heard my zeal towards whatever I did was nothing that has ever been seen. I became so over worked I forgot mama and papa in the village. Yes! Now I hardly even call them twice in 3 months. I even heard my mother is hale and hearty. All thanks to God.
The last time I visited the village was when I Kemi insisted I do so. Not for any reason but because she was visiting her in-laws and she thought it deem fit for me to visit my parents too.
I made sure I built a good house for them and did everything I promised I would do.
"Papa, my work time and everything I'm doing there won't make me visit here frequently." I said sitting on a smaller cane chair as we sat facing each other.
When the look on mama's face became worrisome, I decided I bring her to Lagos. My father has always been a man and I believe he won't miss his darling wife much. We joked about that.
I made some gestures to my mum and she quite understood how terrific Lagos could be. So she won't miss her husband, she always made use of the home phone to call her darling. From there I knew love was a beautiful thing. When built on a strong foundation, it keeps increasing its deck. It's an unending thing I wished same for me. Thank God she didn't actually do the normal talk the typical African mother will do.
"When will I be expecting my grand child?"
She tried raising such issue and I love my mother for what she did after my response to that.
I told her I love and appreciate the way she takes care of my father even when they aren't together.
I told her if she had me rushed, will she expect me to fall into wrong hands? And have me wailing at the end? If I have to rush into marriage, will she be ready to come in anytime we have little misunderstamdings? Was she ready to solve minute issues? Was she ready for my nags? Because at the end, I will have her to blame.
"My son. You're just like your father. Whatever you insists on doing, you make sure nobody takes your gaze off."
" I understand you so well. And you know quite well that I love children. If I still have the strength, at my age I will ask your father for more" she said
We joked about it and she promised not to bug me about it anymore.
It was past 11 in the night I received a call from my department boss that I have to report to the office before 6am. "Before 6 in the morning? What for sir?"
My mother shifted her gaze from the TV to me and was eager to know what exactly and why I had to scream.
As usual, iya mi the caring one asked in a conforming manner and I told her how tedious my job is. It's not like I have any other elsewhere but I'm not just getting it at all. I'm not being comfortable with what I do for a living. I hardly have a time of my own. Now that I'm not married, I wonder how I will be keeping up.
All these I laid down to her like football rules.
"And do you know what I will ask you to do?" Was what I heard in a manly voice.