They say that when you complain about something a lot, it just might mean that you have been called to solve it… Well, in my case, to write an article about it:
Last Friday morning, I called upmy friend Emeka, -Emeka is a guy I have known for three months now and in that period he has been asking me to be his girlfriend. He is tall, fair and handsome, in his early 30s, a bit on the chubby side, chubby in a way that rang “cuddle me” to every lady who meets him, which I find very attractive, so I was lost at the fact that something in me wouldn’t just let me date it –You can call it my sixth sense or any other thing that comes to your mind-.
I kept giving him “the yellow light”, You know the kind of light we ladies give those guys who we do not want to take seriously, but also do not want out of our lives: I would talk all mushy today and snap at him the next day; I would never go clubbing with him on a Friday night, but dress in a very sultry way the next day for our dinner date. I held him with a really tiny rope, pushing him just far enough not to lose sight of him.
But this particular Friday, I was feeling a type of way: the feeling of a lady who is past the age of 25 and does not have any serious relationship; the same feeling a lady has when her friends turn down the hangout invitation she gives them because they all have significant others in their lives and they put them above her, always. Well, with that feeling, I called Emeka and told him that I was up for a hangout that night if he felt up to it. The way he voiced out the “Aha” with so much excitement stained in it, there was no doubt that he had been waiting for me to make this call. We agreed that he would pick me up from my place at 10:30pm that night. I did my 8 to 5 job swiftly and headed home to prepare for the night.
At exactly 10:30pm, Emeka was at my gate waiting for me. He really wants to create an impression, I said to myself as I put finishing touches to my makeup and met up with him to begin the night.
We headed to Spice Route on Adeola Odeku Street in Victoria Island to attend his friend’s birthday celebration. Throughout the journey, Emeka kept gushing about how he could not wait to show me off to his friends. I on the other hand, could not wait to meet his friends; to see the kind of guys he hung out with; to know if my single female friends had a chance, especially Onyeka who had been complaining about how she hated to be single as if it was a disease that she had.
As soon as we got to their table, I knew I wouldn’t stay there for as long as I had envisaged: It was a table full of married men accompanied with ladies who clearly weren’t their wives. The thing that baffled me the most was the fact that they did not have the courtesy to take off their wedding bands as a sign of respect to their wives as they hungrily caressed these ladies; ladies who wore faces of people whose eyes were fixed on the price. I started to ask myself if Emeka was married as well. I doubted this thought because I did not understand how he would have a wife and spend long hours on calls with me both at night and during the day.
An hour later and I had had enough. I felt like I was going to choke on my thought, I had disgust written all over my face, I couldn’t dance, I couldn’t be free. I just wanted to leave that place, to go home to sanity, to what I felt was cleanliness and think it through.
I informed Emeka that it was time to leave. He tried hard to convince me that we only just got there and that if we stayed an extra hour, his friends would not find it rude us leaving, but I just got up and started to walk out. As I got to the entrance of the club, I turned back and saw Emeka walking along with me. He pulled my hand back, gesturing that I wait as he caught up with me.
“What is the matter, I thought you said you wanted to hangout?” He asked with disappointment written all over his face.
“I need to go home” I replied.
“Home? -he asked in surprise- I thought you would be spending the night at my place”.
I hissed and walked to his car. He came along, unlocked the car, we got in and drove off. It was an awkwardly silent drive home. He didn’t try to make all those funny jokes about how I sounded like an Ajebutter or to explain the interior of the hotels he once stayed in during a retreat or meeting, with that smile and look he usually gave me when he explains this. I could tell the real business that went down in those hotels.
It was until we got to the back gate of my estate that he broke the silence and muttered “Goodnight” as he unlocked his car with so much urgency and I knew I had to run out of the car before he threw me out himself. I came down and watched him drive off, I stood there long enough until I couldn’t see the rear light of his car, then I walked into the estate and straight to my house.
Before noon, the next day, I was sure my flat mate, Toma, had become wary of me recounting my experience of last night.
“It was a club Bimpe, you should have just danced, what was your business” she kept on telling me as I recounted the different scenarios of the night. I knew she did not understand, so when she received a call from her boyfriend, Shola, inviting her for a movie date, I resulted to joining them, I needed to get a man’s perspective on this.
The movie was set for 6:30pm and we got to D’Palms in Lekki at exactly 5:00pm. I had thousands of questions that I needed answers to, so I couldn’t wait for us to get out of the car already. We got the ticket for “Assassin’s Creed” and then went to Cold Stone to have some ice cream while we waited for our movie. Half way into the ice cream, I asked Shola the first question that has been on my mind all this time: “Apart from the excuse, which I think I think is a lousy one, that it is in a man’s nature to cheat, why do married men cheat?”
He smiled, then said to me: “You see, I hear ladies talk a lot about this, but have you guys stopped to ask yourselves why the ladies these married men cheat on their wives with allow it. Don’t they know the men are married? Don’t they see the rings? Where have the values every lady claims to have gone to? Where is their loyalty? Are you ladies even loyal to yourselves at all?
Then Toma, signaled that it was time for our movie and we went to the cinema hall. Needless to say that I was in the hall watching the movie, but my mind was far away from that environment.
Now, you see, his questions are true. Who are ladies really? Hypocrites or what? We complain bitterly about men cheating; the single ones, the married ones, our boyfriends, our husbands. But, we are the ones allowing this happen. We hate it so much, but we do it too. We go clubbing with men who tell us out rightly that they are married and even have they wedding bands on and we are fine with it. We give them all the naughty dance steps that we know. Do we take a minute to think about their wives at home and how they might be feeling at that moment, what they have resulted to doing to keep themselves sane, to help them forget that their husbands might just be with some other lady the better part of the night, come home smelling of all sort, with lousy excuses of work or meetings?.
Well, in our defense, I think the blame shouldn’t be totally on us: A young lady is done with school, tries to get a job and finds it hard to get, has her family to feed, house rent to pay, cloth to buy, food to eat. Sometimes, she might want to go somewhere really important and not have money to transport herself there. And then the men see these as weaknesses to capitalize on all in the name of rendering help.
What if women start to help women? How about the next time you are driving on the road and you come across a lady who is at the bus stop or even walking down your street you stop and give her a lift; Oh, by all means, speak to the spirit in you to know which lady to give the lift and which not to, but make sure you help someone out. How about you assist the next young lady you see around you, who is in need of a job to get one, by simply dropping her CV with your HR. How about giving out a thousand or five to the next truthfully needy lady you meet. How about mentoring the next young lady you see, who seems confused, one who might be at the verge of throwing away all the values she has to just feed, to make ends meet.
You see, it is one thing to complain about something and another to try to solve it. I just tried to solve it in a way I think makes sense, what will choose to do?