Today I got a job as a marketer based on commission. I took the offer grudgingly and I began work. Greg is one years old and I am happy he is still hale and hearty. My mother developed back pain the same day I started work. I guess she is getting too old for the stress. She ought to be with her husband enjoying life. But here she was, paying for the sins of her youth. It was fine because if she was not here, who would have helped with Greg. Life always had a funny way of turning out nicely. But I had three extra children to feed and send to school. One year is not a joke. I called my dad for the umpteenth time. He was still not saying anything concrete. So, I went to see him and you could imagine my surprise when I saw one of my mother’s friends with him. She wore my mother’s clothes and share the same bed with my father I knew it was mother’s clothes because I bought that grey skirt and black top for her. It was irritating.
‘Backstabbing evil woman.’ I muttered to myself.
‘What did you say?’ She asked.
‘Nothing’ I said.
My visit was brief, I spent one night and that night I couldn’t sleep. I tossed till the cock crowed and I jumped out of bed. Eager to begin my trip back to Lagos. I had missed my son, my mom and even the three little children. My dad begged me to stay longer but I refused. I could tell from his eyes he was lonely. My mother’s friend was only there for her gain. I blamed him for not giving mother a second chance. We never had the chance to speak alone. Mother’s friend hovered around like a hawk waiting to delve on its prey. Maybe, she would be mad at him if he said he was ok with Mommy coming back. I knew because I got the undertone of his message.
“Tell your mother, that under different circumstances I would like to see her.” He said as we parted ways at the junction. It was 6am and I was lucky to get a bike by that hour of the morning. The wait at the motor park was terrible. I got so bored I bit my nails and fantasised about Dwayne Johnson a.k.a the Rock. It was a pleasant fantasy. He was so muscular and I wondered how many men could go through that stress to build that muscle. I smiled until I felt the tap on my hands, it was the driver.
“Madam, your money, we wan move now. Motor don full.”
I sat up and looked around.
‘Write your name for that list.’ The driver continued.
I did as I was told then my phone rang. It was my dad, was he not supposed to be at the town meeting. The one he talked about with so much vigour and enthusiasm.
‘Hello Rara. Have you left the park?’
‘No dad, the car is about leaving, it got filled up 10 minutes ago.’
‘This is 10am, since 6am? maybe many people have decided that they can’t afford to travel anymore.’ He said.
‘Well….’ I paused.
‘How is your mommy doing?’ He asked.
‘Why not ask her yourself, she misses you.’ I said.
‘She hurt me, it will take a very very long time for me to recover.’ He said.
‘Are you not repaying her with the same coin? You are not only sleeping with her friend, but the woman has turned into an emergency wife.’
‘I …I thought you understood. You of all people, you are also as lonely as me with your husband away in that far country of his.’ He said.
‘But you know better dad. I am not the judge here. I want you to the right thing. She has paid for her sin. One year is such a long time, don’t hold this grudge forever.’ I said.
‘I shall one day visit you…’
‘Who are you talking to? Who is the woman? …’ I heard a female voice in the background screaming no barking as the bitch she is.
‘No one…’ My father said.
There was silence and the line went dead.
So this is the reason my dad cannot take my mom back that woman has been monitoring him.
The rest of my journey was spent in silence.
Back in Lagos, I refused to tell my mother what her friend had done. I knew it would break her heart. I was sketchy with the details of my visit. Then I started the job. It was difficult. My mouth became a basket and still no one was buying the internet bundle. At least not from me, So I changed tactics. But it was just as bad until I met Lora. She was nice and decent I thought until she revealed certain things.
I tried using her methods, and it worked well but I hated myself each time I made a massive sale. The commission was just 10%. Not enough money but enough to make us go by. The prices of food stuff increased like a garri soaked overnight. They said it was part of change. Everything suddenly became expensive. A bag of rice sold at N18,000, not that I bought rice in bags but it was equally worst buying a paint rubber of rice.
I did not know what it was with the economy but the naira felt like paper. It was worthless. Each time, I went to the market I wore a frown back home.
I couldn’t even afford to buy nice suits for work, I settled for second hand clothing. Life was a vicious circle of struggling to survive. I was living on the edge and it made me so tense.