What’s up with people going all “You have added o!” when they see you walking along the road; those people will not make heaven I swear.
It was the middle of august and I was rushing to a job interview. I was so stressed out, I was sweating profusely while praying my boss doesn’t see me. I mean how else would I explain that I was not in fact sick but dressed up all nice looking for another job.
I was about five minutes late and that was already a bad first impression. I was not late on purpose I promise. The cloth I planned to wear miraculously disappeared. Of course, my two-year-old niece would have a better idea where it was but I didn’t have time to check. I was already late. I got to the office and managed to relax myself. Thankfully the air condition dried me up quickly and I waited to be called. It was sooner than I hoped, the sweat underneath my boobs were still showing but I didn’t mind at that point. We are all in Nigeria after all, if that’s why they will reject me, then no wahala.
I walked into the office and froze. Oh no, not again! This was not just Déjà vu. This was really a nightmare. I stood frozen at the spot wondering if after all these years, that old woman at the village whom I pretended not to see so I wouldn’t greet her finally found me. She was angry as I could recall and said some words I couldn’t hear because most of her teeth were missing.
You’re confused at this point, right? Okay, there is something I should tell you before I continue. This will clear it all up for you. This happened a good two years ago, in Enugu.
I was about 15minutes late (I promise late coming is not my trademark. I know what you must be thinking but I swear I am really an early riser.) Jumping down from a battered yellow Coal city cab, I immediately bought a sweating coca cola drink. What started out as a very promising morning turned into a disaster as my foundation began to fail me.
I had a job interview and I was totally into the first impression thing. Of course, my running late had everything to do with the mad traffic I encountered on my way and I am not even going to talk about the heat but it’s not like am going to tell that to whoever was going to interview me.
The sudden vibration from my bag alerted me to the depressing fact that my phone has finally given up the ghost. To top it all up I was sweating profusely and I was dressed in a black silk shirt which clings to my skin and traces the outline of my underwear.
It took about few seconds for me to realize I was at the wrong place and I had to ask for directions from a passerby whose help I accepted with gratitude (of course I’m not counting on the fact that her makeup was so heavy I needed some Ray Bans to be able to look at her face and that her super tight leggings failed to hide her cellulite induced bacon thighs).
Few minutes later I rushed into the reception of a shiny and colossal building and promptly slipped on my 6-4inch stilettos. Luckily a hand from somewhere grabbed me just before I reached the ground and when I looked up in gratitude to my saviour I was sad to discover a very short balding man grinning up down at me with kolanut stained brown teeth. (No, it is just not my day!) Smiling my thanks I took special care not to fall again as I walked towards a busy looking young girl in a desk.
‘Mr. Duru’s office please’, I murmured politely. After what seems like a million hours (30 seconds but who was counting) she looked up and sized me up probably wondering why I looked like a wet cat. Of course, I don’t blame her, seeing as my mascara was already running down my face.
‘Your name, please?’. Her voice was raspy, almost like she had swallowed a whole packet of ‘tom-tom’ the night before. I hid my smile as I gave her my details taking care to not to mention the time for my appointment. That I would find this situation completely amusing baffles me.
‘Take the stairs to the last floor, you will meet his secretary, she will show you to his office’. I couldn’t have heard right
‘Excuse me did you just say the stairs?? why can’t I use the elevator’. She looked at me like I was vermin and said in a not-so-friendly voice, ‘It’s stuck’. Great! Just my luck. No further explanation, I watched as she went back to whatever she was doing before I met her and I fought the urge to hit her with my purse. Murmuring my thanks. I headed towards the stairs.
By the time I got to the last floor (which was the fifth floor by the way) I was sweating all over, my shirt was so clingy; it was indecent. As I stood to catch my breath I could feel sweat pooling up in weird places where I was sure I have never sweat before. I mean, how can my ears sweat? I tried to discreetly wipe sweat from inside my shirt without appearing to get to second base with myself. Finally, I was directed to the man’s office by a much nicer person.
The blood drains out of my face as I realize who was about to interview me. I stutter and almost stumble as I greeted him. I was already looking to the door as an exit thinking ‘does he remember me? should I make a run for it? how far can I go before I fall on my heels again? His eyes just seem to bore into my soul. If he even remembered me he gave no indication.
It all started last week at my friend’s birthday party when I met this very handsome guy who just couldn’t take his eyes off me. Granted I was a little tipsy (I mean who mixes vodka with Smirnoff). He was so charming and handsome I felt like the luckiest girl in the party. I was already fantasizing our wedding and how our babies would look like (of course I was tipsy!) when I saw my friends signaling me to come over and looking like they just got bad news, they did. It turns out that I was flirting with a married man. Angry and humiliated I went back to him and dumped the contents of my drink on his body and then I went about calling him all sorts of names which would give a nun a coronary and to make matters worse I did it in front of everybody (God forbid I turn down my chance at being a drama queen).
Fast forward to a week and now that same man is just about to interview me. Wiping my already dripping mascara from my face I settled down for what already promises to be the worst 2 hours of my life.
You should now understand better when I said the old woman has finally found me. It has to be her because I know my village people. They have written me off a long time ago so they would not have time for such. Anyway, standing in front of me was the same man. Did he follow me? If I was a white woman I would have assumed I was being pranked and search around for cameras. But this is Naija, everybody is too tired and angry for such frivolities. He smiled at me and motioned me to the seat next to him. You see unlike the last time, where he pretended not to know who I was, this time was different.
”Ekene, you’ve added weight! Wow! look at you. How have you been?”
Nope this man did not come to play. It was two years and I was finally paying for my sins.
Ekene Ephraim-Mgbechikwelu grew up in the eastern part of Nigeria. She is called Kene, Kenny or KK by most close friends and relatives while she pretends not to like it.
Ekene wants to live in a world filled with innovative businesses, books that come bundled with extra dark chocolate and a force field around her keyboard that repels cats and prying eyes. As a writer with less than 5 years of experience she has worked for Spotter magazine, TheMustyCorner, stylebeat magazine, paired up with some locally known writers and has her own personal blog.
Apart from writing she also happens to be a graduate of Electronics and computer engineering in Nnamdi Azikiwe University Awka, Anambra State in Nigeria. She majored first in Computer Engineering and afterwards in Software Engineering.
When she’s not writing, or writing software codes, you can find her whipping up a delicious gluten-free treat, running barefoot around the house, walking under the heavy downpour of rain or answering the question WHY for the eleventy-bajillionth time…
Her hobbies are reading a good book, watching movies, travelling and convincing her shadow that she’s someone worth following.
Ekene is a misfit and so by default she is a social wanderer. Ekene is naturally sarcastic and so most times can appear quite rude but though she is keenly aware of the impracticality of her actions, her allegiance to her sense of self causes her to live primarily intuitively, often disregarding her affinity for reason.
Ekene often rebels against social norms and traditions, most of which are carried out unconsciously. She does not think that convention should be upheld for the sake of order, rather order is the counterpart to chaos both of which should be explored and embraced.
It’s not that Ekene doesn’t fit, it’s that she doesn’t fit well. So, in the end she belongs only to herself…and her willingness to embrace this only renders her more socially odd.
Facebook : Ekene Ephraim-Mgbechikwelu
Instagram : ekene__
Twitter : @MizKeny
Personal Blog: www.dasweetestgirlever.wordpress.com
Business Blog: www.AceTrendWorld.wordpress.com