Hi there! Today is Friday which means story time! A new short story which started 3 weeks ago centers around a foodies struggle as she fights the triangle of her love for food, her need to lose weight brought on by child bearing and her determination to prove to her husband that she can keep a resolution. Hope your week has been fruitful! Now let’s find out what Caro has been up to.
Enjoy! Please feel free to drop a comment.
As the music starts playing in the background I swear to myself I need to change my name! The receptionist asks for the name table reserversation was made in…..I kept quiet silently considering a best answer, this was a dicy situation almost like being caught between the devil and the deep blue sea. I made the reservation earlier on in my name as Henry was too busy and I had waited all week for this treat, wasn’t about to miss it but why didn’t I use his name? ‘In what name was the reservation made?’ The receptionist asks again cutting through my thoughts….giving up, with Caro still playing in the background I answer ‘Caroline Martins’ The silly girl goes through her register, looks up and says no one by that name called earlier. I swear Chi Chi, according to her name tag is looking for my trouble, rolling my eyes I said ‘Caro’ she sucks in her breath as if to say ‘oh my goodness! A living Caro! why I didn’t use Caroline to make the reservation beats me.’Pardon me’ she says doing a terrible job of hiding the amusement on her face. ‘Caro’ I said with emphasis this time ‘the table reservation is for Caro’ our eyes met and I realise too late that the last sentence might not have been necessary, realising the implication I bit my lower lip.
All this while Henry stood wordlessly beside me busy with his SNote, with a smirk on her face she looks at my husband then at me, neither of us wears a wedding band having outgrown our original ones, Chi Chi finally smiles boldly, she just couldn’t contain herself could she? a real life Caro right at her door step, voluptuous with a man standing beside her, tonight was going to be an interesting one she must have thought to herself. Oh! How I long to meet Starboy one day and ask him why? Why didn’t he use Susan or even Chi Chi in the song? Still smiling, the little imp led us to our seats herself, making sure we sat beside a speaker still blasting Caro now on auto repeat. ‘Dear Lord’ I prayed ‘help me not slap Chi Chi before this night is over’
We get to our table, with my nose pushed up I look at the other customers snobbishly before taking my seat opposite Henry. At least no one here knows my name so the song can play all night for all I care! At that very moment I hear a familiar voice behind me, I cringe at the possibilities, if the voice belongs to whom I thought it did then I’m finished. She didn’t leave me guessing for too long ‘Caro! Caro! Hei Caro! Is this you?’ Everyone previously minding their isi-ewu and Star bottles turn in my direction. I look into Henry’s eyes and I can see mirth in them, it’s literally killing him not to laugh, I dim my eyes into slits daring him to, he clears his throat instead. I turn, through gritted teeth I face my cryptonite Bella. ‘Hei Caro longest time, is this you?’ ‘No it’s not, it’s Michelle Obama’ rubbish. ‘So good to see you Caro’ I’m thinking to myself ‘Babe you have done a great job of announcing me to the world, now can we get on with this farce so I can settle down and enjoy my Isi – ewu in peace!’ ‘And Caro, I was just thinking of you a while ago oo’. Of course you were, Caro is playing in the background, nonsense! All eyes were on me at this point, I smiled and finally stood up to hug miss loud when I felt all the mens eyes pop out of their sockets and their mouths drop. Strange thing I walked into the bar with this same body drawing no attention to myself but armed with the knowledge of my name, it suddenly looks different, may this name not be the death of me! I really need to loose my selective weight. Henry says he doesn’t mind me that way but he doesn’t go to Yaba with me and not wearing a wedding band isn’t helping.
After miss pepeye and I end our meaningless conversation, I take my seat but I can still feel the eyes of every man in the room on me so tei I heard a couple arguing behind me. The lady is claiming the food they were served isn’t what she ordered, her man insists he will eat it while she orders another. Babe no gree, she was no longer hungry and wanted to leave, I rejoiced in my heart because as a fellow woman I know her main annoyance is that her bobo hasn’t taken his eyes off me since Bella left. Serves him right!
Bella is an old university friend whom I haven’t seen in ages but won’t miss. We met at the admissions office green eyed and ready to be under graduates. We didn’t know our way around campus so naturally we stuck to each other concious of stories we had heard of how 200L guys took advantage of jambites, we were too smart for them or so we thought. We went every where together, we were focused and planned to graduate with first class or manage second class upper. Suddenly Mgbigion started desserting me saying she met a student lecturer who was giving her math tutorials. Wondering who Mgbigion is? Our dear Bella 🙂 . One day I dropped by her room only to be told by her room mate that she no longer stayed there, I marched down to her department to seek an explanation, I didn’t want to beleive what I was hearing. She told me she had an urgent class that she would meet me later at our sculpture garden by 4pm, I should save her suya and coke because she’ll be coming straight from class and was already hungry. I got to our favourite spot and placed our suya order. Mgbigion shows up with ‘Mr. Lecturer’ and says ‘hei Caro, (Starboy wasn’t a star then so there was no shame in answering Caro) you ordered only for me and you, hei, and he said he’s hungry too oh, and I forgot my purse in the room’ ‘Err what’s wrong if ‘Mr Lecturer’ pays for himself, for her and even for me as well?’ She took me aside and assured me she will pay me back whatever I spend on she and the silent muse. They both gulped down 500naira worth of suya and 2 bottles of coke each, back in 2001 500naira was alot of money for a student.
I didn’t see Mgbigion after that day, each time I went to her department she was always very busy and had something important to attend to until the end of the session. The next time I saw her, her name was Bella and was living with student lecturer off campus who turned out to be what we called ‘Splash’, a student who had spilled over and carried over courses more than 3 times, need I say more?
Back to present day jare….
Chi Chi comes to take our orders and I’m thinking to myself ‘since when did a receptionist start taking orders biko nu? She stands inbetween Henry and I, faces me then asks ‘Madame, what will the two of you like to eat?’ Seriously!? I look at Henry who smiles graciously then places our orders himself. As gossip girl walks away, Henry calls her back and makes our orders to go, I heave an audible sigh of relief, my silent knight in shining armour saving his damsel in distress! Chi Chi returns with our orders packed and ready to go then hands me the bill….. ha! I had had enough, I held my head with both hands shaking it because this sh*t was about to go down!!!!!