…’Well, after all said and done, I’ll like to make a toast.’ I said and went to the kitchen to get the cups and wine. When all cups were filled and raised, I said;
‘Our greatest fear is not that we are inadequate, it is that we are powerful beyond measure. We ask ourselves; who am I to be gorgeous, sexy, smart, beautiful and intelligent? But the actual question should be; who am I not to be? My mum once told me, it is bad to fail but it worse never to have tried at all. In these views, I say well-done girls for trying. I wish us joy, love, happiness, achievements, good sex, loving husbands and the best the future can offer us!’ We clicked our glasses and drank our drinks, we hugged, said our goodnights and went into our respective rooms. The weekend of fun and fantasy was over. Work and reality start tomorrow.
Everybody was in a rush as we all slept past the time we should! Who wouldn’t? I bumped into Koyin in the sitting room and said good morning to her.
‘Where are these girls?’ Koyin asked me. Bimpe and Amanda were still inside and Koyin and I have to drop them off at work.
‘Amanda!’ I screamed.
‘Bimpe!’ Koyin screamed too. Bimpe came out fastening her belt.
‘Ma binu! Sandra good morning. Let’s go.’ They left and I called after them;
‘Have a good day girls!’
‘You to bae!’ They screamed back. I checked my wristwatch, time was running fast!
‘Amanda! I am going to wait for you in the car and if after five minutes you don’t come out, I’m dumping your ass!’ I said and left. She came out seven minutes later.
‘Ama! I don’t like it oo! What were you doing inside?’ I complained.
‘No vex please. I was looking for my account book but you are always in a hurry sha!’ I was sure she was lying. She was probably looking for what to wear and the accessories to match it!
‘Why won’t I be in a hurry? You are the boss but I have a boss! In fact, get your own car fast fast because I know you can afford it!’ I told her.
‘Arh! Buy a car with my money? Lailai! Alhaji has promised me a car when he gets back from his trip. Besides, na your own money you take buy this car?’ Amanda replied. Truth be told I was gifted this car by my man friend and now that Amanda has mentioned it, I felt like I was still a cheater. The car will have to go. Thank God I can afford to buy a car now.
‘That’s hitting below the belt Ama!’ I said truly hurt.
‘Awwwww! I’m sorry, I was just joking…’ She apologized.
‘It’s okay.’ We drove in silence till my phone rang.
‘Ama please help me look at who’s calling.’ She took my phone and told me;
‘It’s Habib.’ My heart skipped because I was already worried he hasn’t called me yet. I told her to put my handsfree in the phone and put the drums in my ear.
Habib: Hey baby. Good morning.
Sandra: Good morning dear. How was your night?
Habib: It was fine but I miss you terribly! You?
Sandra: I slept well and miss you too. Are you on your way to your office?
Habib: No. I’m already in my office. Listen, can I pick you up for lunch today?
Sandra: Eeehhhhhm… I’m not sure yet. Depends on the workload but I’ll let you know before lunchtime. Is that okay?
Habib: Yes but if you can’t make lunch we can do dinner and you can sleep over at my place.
Sandra: I will let you know as soon as possible dear. I’m driving dear, let’s talk later.
Habib: Okay love. Drive safely.
There was silence and then the line dropped. I desperately wanted to hear him say I love you! I didn’t want to say it first or was that what he was waiting for too? My heart ached! Love is a serious affair oo! I dropped Amanda in front of her shop and as I was about leaving my phone rang again. It was Mariam. I kicked myself for not calling her throughout yesterday though we chatted on BBM. I have missed her energetic, lively, and troublesome presence. I picked the call.
Sandra: Hello sweetheart!
Mariam: Don’t sweetheart me jor! You don’t call, you don’t chat! Lemme oo.
Sandra: I’m sorry. I was very busy but we chatted yesterday now?
Mariam: Yesterday Is gone jor. I’ve been pinging you since morning!
Sandra: No vex. How are you?
Mariam: I’m fine! I miss you! Can we eat lunch today?
Sandra: Arh! I can’t say for now. I think I will be busy and may not be able to leave my office.
Mariam: Don’t worry! You don’t have to leave your office, I will bring lunch! Hope you like Chinese?
Sandra: I do but…
Mariam: Great! See you at lunch!
And the line went dead! Mariam! So troublesome and charming! She said I didn’t call or ping as if we had been friends for ages. Also she said she had been pinging me since morning but it was still morning! What could I do? Lunch was settled, Habib would have to wait till dinner or some other time.
I got to the office in record time and was able to meet the morning briefing. I got to work immediately and didn’t even have the chance to gossip with Ada. I was immersed in my work and didn’t know when it became noon until my phone rang. I ignored it until it ran out then it started again. I wanted to ignore it then it occurred to me it might be Habib. I would have to set a ringtone for him so I could distinguish him from other callers. I picked up the phone and it was truly him and it was then I remembered I promised to call him!
Sandra: Hello baby. I’m so sorry I haven’t gotten back to you. I’ve been busy.
Habib: I thought as much. It’s okay. Dinner then?
Sandra: I will try but I’m not promising yet. I can’t sleep at your place during the week…
Habib: Why not? I can always drop you at work!
Sandra: I won’t have clothes to wear!
Habib: Hahahahahaah! For real? We can always buy new clothes! Come on!
Sandra: Oookay. I will let you know…
Habib: No. You will forget again. I will pick you up at five! Since you are not going to lunch, what will you eat? I don’t want you to lose weight oo!
Sandra: Arh! I forgot to tell you. Mariam is bringing me lunch!
Habib: Mariam? How come you can have lunch with Mariam but not me?
Sandra: Hahahahaha! Are you jealous of your own sister? Anyways, you wanted to take me to lunch but she wanted to bring me lunch. Besides, you know your sister! I was left with no choice!
Habib: I know! She is sneaky! She did it on purpose! She was right in front of me when I was asking you to lunch! I will kill her!
Sandra: Arh! Don’t kill ooo. See you later baby!
Habib: Bye love.
My intercom rang as I was dropping Habib’s call.
Receptionist: Good afternoon ma’am. You have a guest at the reception. Her name is Mariam and she says she has an appointment with you.
Sandra: Yes. I’m expecting her. Please direct her to my office. Thank you.
I began clearing my table. Two minutes later, she entered my office with a very big smile on her face and a big basket in her hand.
‘Hello bae You look gorgeous!’ She dropped the basket on my table and grabbed me. We kissed each other’s cheeks.
‘You look dashing too! How are you?’ I said abandoning my seat and sitting in the visitors chair opposite her.
‘I’m okay oo. I’m very hungry! Let’s eat and you can gist me about your work and I will tell you my brother’s dirty secrets!’ She said laughing and I joined her! I so wanted to hear his dirty secrets! She began taking the food out of the basket but her phone rang and she stopped. I took over the unpacking. From the first word she said I knew she was talking with Habib. I eavesdropped on her side of the phone call.
“Yes brother? Hmmmmm! She’s my friend too! Dwaaaar! I’m faster than you! Come on! Be a good spot! I love you too!” She dropped the call laughing.
‘You told him we were meeting for lunch! He’s mad at me cos I stole his spot! Hahahahaha! He even said he hated me!’
‘You are very naughty! He told me you were there when he was asking me to lunch.’
‘Yes I was and you should thank me!’
‘Thank you for separating me and my boo? No ma!’
‘Just say thank you first and I will tell you the favor I’m doing you!’ She said opening a box of food, I followed suit and rolled my eyes at her before saying;
‘Thank you ma!’
‘Good girl! You see, Habib is used to having his way and girls throwing “I love you” to his face and he’s finding it very difficult to say “I love you” to you even though he has told everybody that he loves you! So we are going to make him miss you so much that when next he sees you, he will not think about it before telling you! Now do you understand?’ She said smiling sheepishly as if she had accomplished a great task. I laughed so hard I almost dropped my food.
‘He’s going to kill you! He’s going to pick me up by five today, how am I going to escape that?’
‘It’s simple! I can kidnap you!’ She said and we both laughed. I didn’t doubt for one minute that she could kidnap me!
‘Don’t worry, we will come up with something by the time I leave here. So…’ and we started talking about everything and nothing till the door opened and Ada came into my office.
‘Babe, today na…’ She was saying when she noticed I had a guest. She smiled at her and said.
‘Good afternoon. I will come back Sandra.’
‘No wait. Ada meet Mariam, my boyfriend’s sister. Mariam this is Ada, my friend and colleague.’ They shook hands and trust Mariam, she said;
‘Please stay and have lunch with us. I brought enough food for four people!’ Ada looked at me and I told her it was okay. I relinquished my visitor’s chair for Ada and I went to my seat. We all talked about boys till the break was over. Ada and I escorted Mariam to her car but Ada left me with her after thanking her for the food. Getting into her car she said;
‘So I’ve come up with an idea! Tell him that there’s an emergency you have to attend to in your parents’ house! Don’t give him any details or pick his calls until very late at night! Don’t fall my hand oo! I want to be introduced as your sister-in-law next time and I want a niece or a nephew ASAP and this can’t happen when he can’t even say “I love you!” You hear?’
‘I think you should take it easy on us. We both don’t know if we love each other yet!’ I said and she shook her head at me.
‘Both of you are the same! You are both in love and everyone can see it! I will have to do something about you too! Anyways, don’t sha see him today! Or this week for that matter!’ She waded her index finger at me in warning.
‘Arh! I can promise you I won’t see him today but this week is not possible oo!’ I sulked and she laughed at me shaking her head!
‘And you said you are not in love!’ She got into her car and drove off throwing me kisses. I was in love but I wasn’t going to admit it to her yet. I needed her brother to say it first!
Ada was waiting for me in my office and I knew I couldn’t work again. She gave me the accusation look the moment I entered my office!
‘When were you going to tell me?’
‘Today! Everything happened over the week! It’s crazy really!’
‘Really? Wow! I came here to gist you but you have to tell me yours first!’ So I told her about how I met Habib leaving out some parts!
‘Wow! Seems love found you and me at the same time! Finally, Demola and I are together now!’
‘What! Wow! Tell me what happened!’