Your Stories. My Stories. Our Stories. Please forward all enquiries to seunodukoyaofficial@gmail.com.

Posts tagged “faith

Rio 2016: Lessons In Passing

 

 

rio-2016-banner-newer

 

 

I haven’t done this for a while.

I cannot tell you why; mental fatigue? Distractions? Personal issues? Being unable to motivate because I’ve been unmotivated myself?

All of the above.

Well. All that is over and done with. I’m back.

For now, at least.

I don’t particularly like sports; I’m indifferent at most. So I wasn’t invested in the whole Rio 2016 thing – especially the most-laughable conduct on the part of the government – as usual.

But something made me put this note together.

I saw a post on Facebook; somebody said something that went roughly like this;

 

“How do we expect to beat Oyinbos at the Olympics when they’ve managed to make sports out of their hobbies? See sports like swimming, fencing, gymnastics, archery, canoe sprint and so on! Maybe we should try that too and see how far we can go! Imagine anybody beating us at an Olympics where the events are:

Eba swallowing

Fence jumping

Akara frying

Spice/pepper eating”

 

And a number of other things uniquely ours.

It was funny; it afforded me a good laugh. I still love to think however, and so within moments I found myself wondering if there was any deeper meaning to be found in that joke.

I found one, and that is what I want to share today.

The most profound lesson is embedded in the line; “they’ve managed to make sports of their hobbies”. In other words, they started to take serious something they normally do for fun.

Take a moment. Let that sink in.

While we know winning at the Olympics (or anything for that matter) has a lot less to do with ‘comfort zones’ and a lot more with preparedness, steadfastness, focus, available resources and so on, the truth is; like Heath Ledger’s Joker said in The Dark Knight movie;

 

“If you’re good at something, never do it for free”.

 

What is your passion; that thing you really enjoy doing? Is there something you love to do so much; something that gives you so much joy you would do it for free anyway?

Have you ever thought seriously about making a living off it? Seriously?

You’d be surprised at the things you can turn to money these days. I have one friend who is a life coach and shares lessons and notes via Facebook – lessons and notes you can access for a price. I have another who does speaking and writing lessons on that same platform – Facebook – for a price. I’m sure you have a friend or you know someone who became a chef/cook/event planner/DJ/clothes designer not because they were desperate or didn’t have anything better to do but because they enjoyed doing it – and then saw a way to make a living off it.

Have you ever thought about monetizing your passion?

There’s at least two websites nowadays you can actually buy stew from. You read that correct; stew. Efo riro, egunsi, okro – whatever floats your boat is available at various pot sizes at different sizes. Somebody thought about giving dance lessons.

Have you heard of Nothing To Do In Lagos?

Yes, that site that informs you about events and activities happening over the weekend in Lagos? That was somebody’s idea!

As an aside, I have a series currently running on their blog titled ‘Lagos Is…’. I just started this month – read the intro here.

 

In a sermon I heard sometime ago, the pastor was making a point that it is better to focus on your strengths rather than weaknesses. He was speaking in the context of a company – and said ‘Instead of hiring people who do what you can’t, hire people who do what you can so they can do that while you focus on what you can’t”. It does sound like good advice, and maybe it can work in the employment place, I however disagree with that approach when it comes to personal development.

As far as I know or concerned, that’s a pretty good way to become a Jack of all trades, master of none because you cannot give the time required to be exceedingly proficient at several skills.

Or maybe you can – but at what cost?

I don’t believe in spreading myself thinly over too many things. I’d rather focus on two or three things and become really amazing at doing them, things I gravitate towards naturally. Things that come easy to me, things that give me joy and pleasure.

Life is too short to spend doing something you don’t like. What if I die tomorrow, do I want to die wishing I had done more of what I wanted to do, or do I want to die knowing I did my bit and I will always be remembered?

The choice is obvious.

So, till Nigeria figures out a way to include Eba Swallowing in the Olympics – or in her own sports tournament, be the best you at the thing(s) you enjoy doing. Nobody; I write again nobody can quite be you like you can.

So shine on. Grow.

Be.

 


A Meal Of Love

They don’t understand what we have

They’re not stupid

They just don’t think anything like this could exist

 

The aroma wakes me; I don’t know what she’s cooking

All I know is it got me good – got me thinking

Got me up from a dream in which I was wishing

REM – eyes closed but still blinking

 

 

I’m a man, I’m her king; that’s what she says

I got an appetite that needs to feed all day

She’s got that covered; me, she can feed all day

She tells me I have my own space in her kitchen always

 

 

She can do wahala; not only does she cook, she cleans

Wipes the whole house down until it gleams

Her friends think she’s stupid; mine think I’ve got it made

They think I’ve got two in one; a wife and a maid

 

What do they know?

 

When they said ‘eat breakfast like a king’

I’m sure they meant me

I sneak to the dinning; table covered with several dishes

This aroma woke me up; time to see what she was cooking

 

A meal of kings.

 

A meal of love served steaming hot;

She tells me; ‘love is a verb baby, forget that not’,

It’s a constant with us; even when we hurt,”

I said, “Baby can I see what else is in the pot?”

 

A spicy stew containing thick pieces of romance;

Something she said she learnt somewhere out in France,

The smell is heavenly; the taste – what great spice

Hope, trust and faith enough to last a long night

 

 

My drink is determination; cold from cold storage

She knows I need motivation and courage

She’s brave; understands what a man needs

A man determined to make it in this nation of needs

 

She says there’s dessert – uh oh I laugh

When it comes to dessert, we can carry last

It does come – but not at all as what I expect

Leaves me speechless with something that I can respect

 

A bit of thigh, of flesh, of underwear

A costume made entirely of beads; I stare!

I swallow; I can call in late but she asks me to wait;

She says “go; hurry but come back running”

 

That’s what I need

That’s what any man needs to survive

A meal made with, from, of love

Even if it’s one fist of garri in a can

That man can never starve

 

courtesy belindamann-nutrition.com

courtesy belindamann-nutrition.com

 


Saving Dapo XIII

 

Read previous episodes here.

 

 

SAVING DAPO - Masthead 13

 

 

 

Yemisi watched Dapo disappear and burst into a fresh wave of tears.

 

 

 

*************************************************************************************

 

 

“Thank you, God bless you too. I’m so glad you’re happy,” she responded to Rita. “Em….he’s fine I’m sure.”

 

 

There were a few moments of nods – and then; “Yes, yes thank you. You too! Take care of him o!”

 

 

The phone clicked off and Yemisi held it to her chest, smiling skywards. It had been a huge success; more than she had expected.

 

The food had finished, even the reserved stash finished – and the business cards Dapo printed for her too were gone – all she had left were two copies she intended to keep as memoirs.

 

 

Her conscience poked at her with hot fingers, twisting in her chest and burning her heart. Maybe she had been too hasty – and maybe it was the shock of seeing Remi like that…

 

 

Still, it was hard for to accept the accolades being heaped on her without feeling some guilt; because she realized it wouldn’t have happened without him. Opening her purse, she picked up one of the cards, running the edge of a well manicured fingernail along the embossed logo.

 

 

Blue Flame Catering. It felt good underneath her fingers and in her mouth.

 

 

Looking at the design again, she knew it wasn’t something that had just been thrown together in a hurry. It showed a lot of care, a lot of attention to detail…it showed passion and faith – a belief in the work of one’s hands.

 

 

Dapo did not design the card himself; he’d said as much, but his passion for the design had shown in the detailing. This was someone who took her and her dreams seriously.

 

 

Why then…would he have done what she seemed so determined to believe he had?

 

 

Finding no answers, Yemisi opened her curtains and stared into the night.

 

 

 

*************************************************************************************

 

 

 

Yemisi sat in her car and dialed his number again. Switched off.

 

 

She bit her nails nervously as she thought about what she knew of him. Maybe she had not done him much good; she surmised.

 

 

The sudden knock on her window made her jump – and she looked up to see Adura staring at her. Quickly she wound the glass down and smiled at the younger girl. “You scared me,” Yemisi said.

 

 

“You scared me too. Where have you been – and why are you still sitting here?”

 

 

Yemisi smiled wryly at the windshield. “It’s nothing o, I just have a lot on my mind.” She reached and pinched Adura’s cheeks.

 

“How are you doing?”

 

 

She smiled prettily. “I’m fine. I just went to get some breakfast.”

 

 

Yemisi switched off the car AC, stepped out and locked the door after winding her side window. “Let’s go,” she said.

 

 

 

***********************************************************************************

 

 

“You’re what?”

 

 

Yemisi looked at her boss for the past five years and repeated words she’d said only five seconds earlier. “I’m resigning sir. I think it’s time I focused on other things.”

 

 

He stared at her, his face containing as much emotion as cooked noodles. She met him look for look, trying to figure what he was thinking. After a long while of neither of them yielding, Yemisi finally lowered her eyes.

 

 

“But Ms. Adeoba – I really do not understand. Is something wrong? We haven’t been treating you fairly enough? Your monthly package is not robust enough?”

 

 

Yemisi sighed. “It’s none of those things sir, as I’m sure you know.” She rubbed her hands together and looked at the clear nails.

 

“Never in my years of employment have I worked in a place where I had this much fun.” She paused.

 

 

“But I’m convinced it’s time for me to move onto other things – things that give me more fulfillment. I’m sure you understand that sir,” she looked directly at her boss.

 

 

He wrinkled his nose at her. “You’re trying to blackmail me with my common sense?”

 

 

Yemisi laughed, knowing in her heart it was alright. “No, I’m trying to blackmail you with your fair and kind heart.”

 

 

Her boss sighed. “How long do we have?”

 

 

“As long as you need, boss.”

 

 

***********************************************************************************

 

The words on her computer screen blurred and she blotted her eyes with her handkerchief for the thousandth time that day. Time of the month; she thought.

 

 

Looking around helped her confirm no one was looking at her and she tried to focus on the costing she was working on. But she couldn’t concentrate. “Adura,” she called.

 

 

The girl came hustling over, giggling at something Fred said. “Yes, Yemisi?”

 

 

And then suddenly the girl blanched. “Are you okay? Why are your eyes so red?”

 

 

Yemisi smiled. “Had a fight with my boyfriend – and it was my fault. Now I can’t seem to reach him.”

 

 

Adura’s mouth hung open. “Oh no, Yemi. I’m so sorry. I mean…you guys were so…are so…I mean…”

 

 

The girl stumbled and halted, embarrassed flush covering her pretty face. Yemisi smiled bitterly and patted her elbow.

 

 

“I need you to help me finish this costing. I can’t concentrate…”

 

 

Adura interrupted. “Say no more.” She turned away, moving quickly to her system, dragged her chair over to Yemisi’s and shooed Yemisi aside. “This is the cereal campaign costing, right?

 

 

Yemisi nodded. “Rrright.”

 

 

“Okay. So where does this go…”

 

 

 

***********************************************************************************

 

 

 

But for a few kids running back and forth, the neighborhood was quiet as she drove up to Dapo’s house.

 

 

Stopping the car, she thought for a bit about the reception she had received at his office when she had gone earlier – just to be sure he wasn’t there even though she knew he wouldn’t be. Grace had surprised her with a hug – the same Grace who had all but insulted her at Chidi’s wedding.

 

 

Seems things are conspiring to make Dapo such a good guy everywhere I turn; she thought, smiling wryly. I should just go and talk with him.

 

 

So thinking, she picked up her phone out of the bag and swung out of her seat. Removing the car keys from the ignition, she shut the

 

door, locked it and hurried into the compound.

 

 

“Sannu,” she greeted the grinning security guard who waved distractedly in her direction. He was talking to someone in his shack – so she just hurried past. Soon enough she was standing in front of Dapo’s door, a small knot making itself known to her. I’m just nervous, she surmised. I’m not sure he would want to talk with me – after the way I treated him.

 

 

She took a deep breath and knocked.

 

 

Almost immediately footsteps announced themselves on the other side of the door – and it began to open before she had a chance to get herself together. The door opened a bit wider as she bit her lower lip to keep it from trembling – and then a voice wiped away her fear before replacing it with something else.

 

 

“Yes?” the voice asked before sounded startled, “Yemisi!”

 

 

She smiled shyly. “Hi Remi.” She pushed hair out of her eyes as she watched him from under lowered lashes. “Is Dapo home?”

 

 

“No…no. He had to go to Ibadan – seems his father had a crisis or something over the weekend.” He stepped away from the door and looked her over. “You really look nice. Why don’t you come in?”

 

 

She hesitated. “That might not be such a good idea…”

 

 

“You’re going to keep running?”

 

 

Yemisi was indignant. “Running?! From who – your cousin or you?”

 

 

Remi leaned against the doorway and folded his arms across his chest. “Both of us. You know we should talk, so let’s. Please.”

 

 

Yemisi hated the way her body seemed to jump as she brushed past him and she hoped he wouldn’t notice. Which kain wahala be dis?

 

 

“You know Dapo has – or had nothing to do with our meeting. Why are you so mad at him?”

 

 

Yemisi sighed. “At least let me sit down first,” she said accusingly as her mind scurried around trying to find the answer to a question she had been asking herself. An image of her and Dapo playing Scrabble flashed across her mind as she stepped into the living room inspiring a sad smile. He really is an amazing guy.

 

 

She perched herself on the edge of the couch and eyed Remi as though she was a gazelle eying a grazing lion. He stood just beside the door, looking at her with half a smile hovering around his lips – lips that were made for just one purpose.

 

 

To drive her mad.

 

 

Oh Lord have mercy. Is this what I should be thinking?

 

 

“Why are you so angry, Yemisi?”

 

 

She felt something similar to anger rise within her chest and she chose not to push it down. “No part of this is my fault, you understand? I had nothing to do with this whole thing – so if you’re looking for someone to blame, take it somewhere else!”

 

 

Remi sighed. “I’m not trying to stress you, madam. Cool down.” He walked over and dumped himself on the other end of the sofa Yemisi was perched on and smiled as she stood up shakily.

 

 

“You know…I came to see Dapo…” Then she remembered what Remi said about his father. “Oh my God. Oh no! Do you know what happened – do you know how he’s doing?”

 

 

“Dapo or his dad?”

 

 

She smacked his shoulder playfully. “I was asking about Dapo jo!”

 

 

Remi laughed. “In that case, why haven’t you called him?”

 

 

“I have o, I have been calling him all day.” She sighed in frustration. “I don’t know why he would just turn off his phone like that.

 

Does he not know there are people who care and would be worrying about him?”

 

 

Remi shrugged. “All appearance to the contrary,” he said, looking stern all of a sudden.

 

 

Yemisi waved a hand in front of her face. “Whatever.”

 

 

Remi stood up. “Do you want a drink or something – anything?”

 

 

“No. I’m fine,” she answered, watching him walk towards the kitchen. She allowed her tight frame lean back on the sofa and thought about the triangle in which she found herself. What’s a girl to do?

 

 

She thought about her mother and tried to imagine what she would say. “How do you date a man, dump him and then decide the next best thing is to date his brother?”

 

 

Yemisi shuddered.

“However did you and Dapo get together? From what he said, you were friends in the university and stayed in touch after that. How did it become a romance?”

 

 

Yemisi smiled mentally. So Dapo had not told his cousin the circumstances surrounding their relationship!

 

 

For some reason she loved him more.

 

 

“Can I be honest with you?” she asked Remi who nodded slowly.

 

 

“I like Dapo. He’s sweet, kind and considerate – he’s the kind of guy most girls would love to marry. Sure he has his skeletons – but don’t we all?”

 

 

At Remi’s nod she continued; “But then, I find I’m very attracted to you – which makes no sort of sense to me! I barely know you, and the only reason I have to trust you; the fact that you’re Dapo’s cousin also makes it impossible for me to do anything about the attraction.” She paused and looked at him. “Does that make any sense to you?”

 

 

Remi looked away – and then turned to face her, staring in her eyes with an intensity she found…unsettling.

 

 

“Looks to me like you’ve made a choice,” he said dryly. “So what happens now?”

 

 

Checking to confirm she was still holding her phone and keys, Yemisi stood and, giving Remi a wide berth as possible moved towards the door. “I’ll just need some time to sort out my feelings…tell Dapo I’m really sorry I…reacted the way I did.”

 

 

At the door she turned – and froze to find Remi standing almost face to face with her. She shrunk away from his unsmiling visage and reached for the door handle. He did not look amused.

 

 

“At least let me walk you to your vehicle,” he said as he made to follow her.

 

 

“No…no. Thank you. I think I’ll be fine by myself.”

 

 

He shrugged. “Okay – take care. I think you should send Dapo a message however – text, Facebook, Whatsapp…” he turned and walked back into the house, closing the door firmly.

 

 

For some reason, the finality of that gesture stung Yemisi.

 


Saving Dapo VII

Read other episodes here

 

SAVING DAPO - Masthead 7

 

 

“Why hello there,” Dapo said as Yemisi stepped into his apartment. “Uh…there’s nothing wrong with MTN or Etisalat today o,” he added.

 

 

Yemisi’s smile was bright. “I wasn’t sure you’d pick,” she answered. “I wasn’t sure you won’t be in one of those your alcohol-induced hazes.” She dumped her bags and hugged Dapo tightly. “Thank you for Monday again,” she finished.

 

 

“Ah. Em…don’t mention it – again.” Dapo said as he eased away, face averted slightly. “You’re my babe, abi?”

 

 

Standing hands on hips, Yemisi looked picturesque image in a pink blouse and azure jeans. Her hair was done in a ponytail and soft-soled shoes completed her ensemble. Standing next to her t-shirt and boxers while resisting the urge to scratch his armpit and yawn, Dapo felt filthy.

 

 

She looked around. “You’re the first guy I’ve dated who I don’t need to clean up after. I’m not sure how that makes me feel.”

 

 

Picking up the bigger of the two bags she winked at Dapo as she walked past.

 

 

He waited till she had disappeared in the kitchen and moved quickly towards the larger of two sofas in the sitting room. He disappeared behind it for a few seconds – and then reappeared carrying a bottle of McDowell’s. Throwing furtive glances towards Yemisi’s back, he tiptoed till he was past the kitchen door – and then ran full speed into the room at the end of the short corridor.

 

 

“I hope you’re still in ‘banga-eating’ mode,” his girlfriend remarked when he emerged behind her seconds later. “I’m making you enough for two days.”

 

******************************************************************************************************

 

 

“Have you seen Ini Edo lately?” she asked Dapo, snuggling against his chest. “She’s so hot.”

 

 

Dapo looked down at the top of her head. “Yeah, I noticed she’s shed all the baby fat and stuff. I assume that happened because she started having babies, yes?”

 

 

“Who cares? She’s hot!” Yemisi snuggled deeper against Dapo who quickly put down the glass he was carrying to avoid spilling the juice in it. He nuzzled the back of her neck and whispered, “Maybe, but you’re hotter.”

 

 

“You’re just saying that,” she mumbled sleepily, shy smile caressing her lips. “You don’t really think so.”

 

 

“You know I wouldn’t say it if I didn’t think it,” Dapo answered, heat from his mouth raising goose pimples on her neck. “You have the nicest legs I have ever seen on a human being – male, female or the third kind.”

 

 

Yemisi sat up, her eyes searching Dapo’s, “Do you mean that?” she breathed.

 

 

He sighed.

 

 

“Why do girls like to deflect compliments? Why do you think every guy who pays you a compliment has an agenda? Well, you’re mine already – what kind of agenda could I have?”

 

 

Yemisi lowered her eyes. “Sometimes its insecurity,” she said slowly. “And sometimes – it’s really because you’ve heard so much of it from the wrong sources it’s lost all meaning.”

 

 

Dapo kissed her forehead. “Truth is truth, honey. No matter the source or how many times it’s repeated.” He pushed away from her gently. “You wanna watch some more AfroNolly stuff while we wait for the meat – or I should just kick your delightful ass in Scrabble?”

 

 

 

******************************************************************************************************

 

 

Interestingly, Dapo’s delightful ass was being kicked.

 

 

A few minutes into the game, they were neck to neck. After a bit Dapo got in the lead and then Yemisi caught up and sped past – back and forth like that. Then Yemisi hit premium by spelling D-A-R-L-I-N-G-S; springing off an ‘S’ Dapo had left carelessly unattended.

 

 

That was the end.

 

 

Imagine playing Scrabble with someone who had the entire Webster’s dictionary – that hardbound, nineteen thousand one hundred and eighty-six-word unabridged volume in her head.

 

 

It was worse than that.

 

 

After a while, Dapo simply stopped playing and sat back; watching Yemisi effortlessly massacre him. And she, having the most fun she’d had in a long while, kept dishing it out.

 

 

What saved Dapo was they ran out of tiles – else it would have ended something similar to that mythical Nigeria vs. India football game; 100 – 2.

 

 

As it were, the final score was too shameful to write down.

 

 

“You could have at least allowed me win, seeing how I’m the man and all that,” Dapo said, sounding like he was across the table from a client. Yemisi laughed, covered her eyes and stuck out her tongue at him.

 

 

“Score one for all the –“ She stopped talking with the abruptness of a loudly-playing sound system suddenly switched off.

 

 

“All the hearts I’ve broken abi? Always tagged you for the vindictive type,” Dapo finished as he rose to his feet. “Drink? I’ve developed a thirst.”

 

 

Yemisi stood up and blocked his exit. “I’m sorry. That was careless of me – I meant nothing by it.”

 

 

“I know, no offense taken,” Dapo smiled and kissed her perfunctorily. “I do need a drink.” He stepped around her and disappeared into the kitchen.

 

 

“The meat is burning o!” he yelled some seconds later.

 

 

Yemisi shrieked.

 

******************************************************************************************************

 

“So how did Toke’s party go?” Dapo asked, mouth full of banga-flavored Semo.

 

 

“Oh, it was great,” Yemisi answered. “They liked – her friends actually liked the food. They kept coming for more helpings and her husband asked why I wasn’t married.”

 

 

Dapo sucked noisily on stockfish bone. “You should…” suck “…take this…” suck “…cooking of a thing seriously though…” suck “I mean….seriously….” suck

 

 

Yemisi chuckled. “I wouldn’t know what to do – and who would trust me with cooking for a party sef? I couldn’t handle that volume!”

 

 

“Toke did, and have you tried to cook that volume before?”

 

 

“No, but…”

 

 

“Don’t knock it till you try it.” Dapo picked up a toothpick and looked at Yemisi, punctuating each word with a stab in her direction. “I trust you, and I know you’ll make a go of it. “

 

 

“Maybe it’s what I need sef, after plenty years of the same thing. I don’t know how it would look sha, me professional spinster cooking for marrying couples and naming ceremonies.”

 

 

Pausing dramatically, raised toothpick a few inches from his open mouth, Dapo looked at her as though she was overpriced boxers in a boutique. “That’s encouraging – and me being your boyfriend and all,” he finished.

 

 

Yemisi punched him in the shoulder. “Oh you – you know what I meant jo!”

 

 

He nodded. “Yeah, you’re my friend and that’s why you feel so comfortable being so pessimistic about our week-long relationship. I mean, what was I thinking?”

 

 

“Actually, that is your fault. You’ve been reminding me of it all day.”

 

 

He pulled the toothpick from his mouth. “And how have I been doing that?”

 

 

She ticked the points off her right-hand fingers as she talked. “Kissing me like a sister, not looking me in the eye – and hugging you is like hugging a teddy bear; even the bear puts its arms where you want them to be!”

 

 

Dapo’s sigh coincided with Yemisi’s release of pent-up breath, and they both laughed self-consciously.

 

 

“Okay, I admit. I have been feeling a bit awkward since…I was just wondering how to make the transition from ‘friend’ to ‘lover’. You can’t blame me for that,” Dapo finished.

 

 

“Maybe if you stopped worrying about hurting me and just enjoyed the fact that you’re no longer alone, you might actually start to live like a lover. Ever think about that?”

 

 

Dapo looked her in the eye. “No, but I’m starting to.”

 

 

 

******************************************************************************************************

 

“Is there some sort of juju you have?” Yemisi asked, arms around Dapo’s neck.

 

 

Dapo rubbed his hands up and down her waist and smiled. “Why do you ask?”

 

 

“I like…like kissing you. I think I like it too much sef.” She self-consciously brushed her hair as an okada sped past, and then smiled at him. “If this is why you’ve been holding out on me, it was well worth it o.”

 

 

“Is your mum still around?”

 

 

Yemisi untangled her arms from around his neck, pulled her keys from her back pocket and opened her car door before answering. “Yes o, the woman no wan gree go. I tire sef.”

 

 

Dapo dropped his arm. “Give me a minute,” he threw over his shoulder.

 

 

“And where are you going?” Yemisi said, confusion on her face.

 

 

“To freshen up. We’re going to say hello to your mum.”

 

 

“Oh. Wait.” Yemisi ran up to him. He’d turned and was waiting for her, looking expectant.

 

 

“Yes?” he said.

 

 

“She’s not home at the moment – she’s visiting friends or something like that.”

 

 

Dapo looked at his girlfriend patiently, nodding as he realized; I’m obviously not the only one who’s scared about all this.

 

 

She touched his left arm. “You’ll meet her soon enough, baby.”

 

 

He nodded. “Whatever makes you happy.”

 

 

Suddenly he scooped her, laughing at her screaming and gently deposited her on the boot of her Corolla. The shriek became laughter as she put her hands against his chest. “You crazy boy, we’re outside o!” she said. “What are you doing?”

 

 

“Being crazy,” he answered, and kissed her slowly, savoring the banga aftertaste that flavored her lips.  Yemisi gasped in surprise, hands freezing around Dapo’s shoulders as she tried to meet him passion for passion. He stopped and looked into her glazed eyes.

 

 

“Tell me that felt like a brotherly kiss,” he said, grinning impishly and supporting her with his hands around her waist.

 

 

“Hmm…uh…” Yemisi looked like she was trying to gather her scattered wits. “Why did you stop na?”

 

 

“Do you want to finish everything in one day? Cool down jo,” Dapo said. His girlfriend burst out laughing. It’s funny how everything is different.

 

 

“I swear, what possessed me to ask you out I’ll never know,” she said when she was calmer. “If I knew this is what I was asking for…”

 

 

“We can make it work,” he said, interrupting her. “I know you see something in me – something worth you risking your heart. Do you think I’m going to play around with that?”

 

 

He eased away and helped her down from the rear of the vehicle. “You know me better than that,” he finished.

 

 

Yemisi nodded. “I do, don’t I?”

 

 

Dapo nodded humbly as he opened the car door for her. He waited till she was seated comfortably before shutting the door and putting his head through the window.

 

 

“Tell your mum I said hi. And think seriously about the…you know; the catering thing.”

 

 

His fingers lightly brushed her forehead and she touched his cheek with her palm. Holding it against his mouth, he closed his eyes and pressed his lips to the center of her hand. He felt Yemisi shudder and he smiled, tasting the different parts of her hand. There was a haunting scent around her wrist and he nuzzled it, trying to remember where he had smelt it before.

 

 

The memory eluded him and he deepened his kissing of her wrist – and the next moment he was kissing air.

 

 

Her hand was gone.

 

 

“What are you doing?” Yemisi asked, bosom heaving as she dragged in air. “You don’t want me to go home again abi?”

 

 

“Mi casa, esu casa,” Dapo replied as he leaned back out of the car window. “Oya fasten your seatbelt –“

 

 

“Stop. Just stop, you hear? I’m your baby, not a baby o.” She strapped the seatbelt and took hold of the steering wheel. “I’ll call you as soon as I’m home,” she said.

“Thank you for not drinking anymore.”

 

 

Dapo shrugged. “I’m not a alcoholic – and I don’t drink because it solves problems or makes me forget. It helps me sleep nights it’s hard to.”

 

 

Yemisi dipped her head. “I don’t care why. Thank you for stopping.”

 

 

“You’re welcome. I want to –“

 

 

Dapo broke off as Yemisi sped off, waving goodbye to him.

 

 

As he turned to head back into his compound, a voice across the street stopped him.

 

 

“Uncle Dapo! Wassup?!”

 

 

He waved at a grinning thirteen year-old. “Just chilling, my guy. Just chilling.”

 

 

The boy gave the thumbs-up signal. “I want to be like you when I grow up!” he yelled.

 

 

Dapo smiled. “Grow up first, you hear?”

 

 

The boy ran off as Dapo waved again and walked into his compound.

 


Missing

I keep thinking

Should I have said something when I didn’t?

Or should I have kept quiet; or is that wishful singing?

Couldn’t look in them eyes; I kept blinking

But I did nothing wrong

I just forgot the song

Forgot the words I used to sing to you

Forgot everything; down to the instrumental

Now saying I’m sorry can’t be half-enough

Why did I change your smile? You never had it rough

But ‘something different’ is not always good

Somehow – losing this weight came to mean losing you

Wow.


Weight

 

I ask you wait; I need to carry some weight

Bringing sexy back; can’t afford to be late

Feed your soul more; though you already ate

They say life is a storybook; let’s turn the next page

If marriage is a trap you’re an attractive bait

But you do run well, so set the pace

You tired of men who can’t see past your face

Only interested in the weight below your waist?

Iyanya was honest at least; thank God for grace

Two hearts intertwined.

This heart comes with responsibilities; can you take the weight?

Lying/laying and crushing on you at this rate?

Love is from the inside out; don’t hesitate

These lyrics feed your muscles, you can handle whatever without struggle.

Weight.

Photo courtesy Google

Photo courtesy Google


All

 

Not once

 

No one

 

Not without

 

No soul

 

But it’s all heart

 

Through the heat

 

We pitch

 

So nine we won’t stitch

 

We put

 

All In

 

What do you think we will get out?