Oh gosh, what on earth was Tunji doing here? I thought to myself as I came out of my car to open the gate to my apartment to drive in. He came out of his car immediately hesaw me, but I totally ignored him, opened the gate and drove in. when I had parked and came down to close my gate, he already had that fixed.
“What are you doing here Tunji? I asked.
“I came to check…”, I cut him short and said,
“To check on me, to see if I would sleep at my apartment or my new lover’s place. To check what? Woh, it is too late and I cannot even deal with you now”.
“Your new what? What on earth do you mean by that? Who the hell is this guy? Probably one riff raff that wants to reap where he did now sow. So you asked me for space because you want to be with the riff raff. Didn’t the trip mean anything to you? I gave it my all, I was in my best behaviour and this is how you want us to end? That you are too tired to talk to me because you spent the whole day with the riff raff. What nonsense…”, He said fuming with anger.
I was stunned. I had never seen Tunji shout, in fact scream. He had never screamed at me before. I just stood there watching him, like a melting ice block under the sun.
He was pacing around my compound.
“I think we should continue this conversation inside my house”, I said.
“Inside your house? Oh now you are no longer tired and you want me in your house. No, I should give you the space you require. I should allow you taste those waters you have been craving for a long time now. I should allow you start afresh with a total stranger, waste two years of your life trying to figure him out all for you to realize that we are all the same. We are men, it doesn’t matter how many ladies think they have us, all that matters is that that one lady that we love and can give up our lives for knew she was the one. PERIOD!!!”. He screamed in reply.
Tunji was obviously angry, I didn’t know he loved me this much to be this angry because I just had dinner with another man, so what would then happen if it was sex?
“Oh do not but me” he ran off, “but what? Do you think the riff raff doesn’t have a girl friend? Which twenty first century guy doesn’t have a girlfriend now? You must be the biggest joker if you think he had been sitting single for however long, waiting patiently for you to waltz through so he would get hooked up with you and probably marry you, hmmm, you must really be a joker”, he said.
I took a very deep breath, raised my hand to my face to cover my mouth and only then did I remember that I was holding the flower in my hand, I quickly put my hand down. If I had known, I would have left it in the car because with this mood that Tunji was in, who knows what he would do.
“Ohh, now I see. Ahh, he is a romantic guy. Oh now you're into romance right? You suddenly like romance, but all those times when I tried to do romantic things with you, you would bluff it off and say it is not your thing, abi that you are shy, but just a bunch of flower and you are running to have a date with him. I get the picture Juls baby, I would leave”, he said and walked towards the gate then came back to me, put his hand into the ash Nike joggers' sweatpants he was wearing, brought out a box, folded it in my hand, hissed and walked out of my house.
I was short of everything: words, actions, reactions… Everything.
This guy just came to my house, screamed at me nonstop and left me with an engagement ring. WHAT?
I thought about packing my things to Chioma’s place, but I could keep running. I just had to seat down and think and sort out my own demons by myself, through my own thought. So I walked into my house.
Next day, news was everywhere about my performance and how my boss came in smiling, that morning, greeting everyone. Later in the day, he sent a mail to all of us that we would be having a movie treat at the Galleria and that it was compulsory for everyone.
I sincerely was not in the mood for movies; I didn’t want crowd; I just wanted to be alone; To talk to someone I trusted; To clear my head; To have Tunji call me so we could talk things through. I just wanted something, anything.
So I picked up my phone and called my Mum. The moment I heard her ‘Hello’, I began to cry.
“Mummy, I am confused and sad. Tunji proposed to me and…”
“Ehn? What did you say? That Tunji proposed to you? Haaa, I knew that boy was a reasonable boy. My dear, you do not have to be confused, even though I understand you. Most times, when these men give us the ring, we all get confused. I remember when your father asked me to marry him; unlike your time now, then we didn’t used to do all these romantic things you children do when your boyfriends propose to you. But I was confused. I wasn’t sure if I wanted to marry him. Or if he was the right man for me. Thank God I went ahead to marry him, if not, I am not sure I would have been happy with any other man or even given birth to you my beautiful daughter”. She said.
I could tell she was excited; how do I now dash her excitement by telling her all what we had been through. So I tried one more time and said,
“But mummy, Tunji hurts me a lot, I do not think I can live with…”
“Hurts? My dear, marriage is like baking a cake, it is what you mix and how you mix it that you get. And even like the oven, you put in it the mixed flour in its raw form and give it time to turn that flour into cake for you. Ojuolape, for Tunji to have proposed to you, you have mixed your flour well. Now do not be like other young ladies, expecting a cake immediately. Give it time, let your oven bake the cake for you. Turn up the heat of your oven with prayers and a good communication with your God and I assure you, your cake will bake and you would look back to this day and thank God that you did”, she said.
“Okay, Mummy”, I replied.
“One more thing, do not go discussing it with all those your friends, Juju, you are now a married woman, your single friends cannot be giving you married women advice. I will introduce you to my friend’s children; responsible married ladies, so you people can be sharing ideas and grow together. But for now, let me call my son”, she said.
“Ehn, Mummy do not call him o”, I said. But by that time, the call had cut and I was sure my Mother was on the phone with Tunji the next minute.
I got distracted by the movement of my door. It was Becky informing me that I should pack up, because everyone was on their way to the movies. She could have just called me on the intercom to say this, but I guess it was always important to her that she had conversations with me directly.
As I was packing up, my phone rang. It was Paul. Oh Paul, I had forgotten all about him until this minute. I picked up the phone and said,
“If you are not busy, I would like us to have a movie date at the galleria, I have something to tell you”.
He agreed and I packed up.
Now in my car and all that I keep asking myself is: Should I tell him about the engagement? Am I even ready to get married to Tunji? Is Paul a better man? Should I give him a try? What do I do?