“So tell me about the woman in your life?” She had asked, planting her fork into the matoke stew, picking a piece of the yellowy matoke in an excitable feminine fashion, before looking you in the eye, waiting for you to start. You hate when a woman looks you in the eye directly, you can’t squeeze in a lie. This question is the interview equivalent of ‘what do you expect to earn in the event you are taken into the new company,” You are just glad she has made an assumption that it is one woman.
Your brain is racing if there is any trace of Emma, your on-and-off girlfriend, in the house, for women have a near forensic ability to discover even the minutest of details of the presence of another woman in the house. Women you bring over always leave the silliest of clues.
You are absolutely sure that you picked her shampoo from the bathroom and there isn’t a hair band misplaced somewhere. So you do the number one strategy of evading a question, or at least buying time; “Why do you ask?” “Come on, I want to know, duh.”
“I am currently single,” you tell her without thinking of the consequences. You just hope that Emma does not have a fly on the wall to hear or get to know. Truth is, you and Emma are going through a rocky patch and nothing can mend the relationship. Only that you have dated for long and you are both afraid of losing each other, but it is inevitable especially for you to move on. Ever since she lost her job she has been in the countryside.
So, the beautiful neighbour gives that incredulous, “REALLY!” look and without batting an eyelid, you look her directly in the eye, and ask her, “why would I lie?”
Now you have the freedom to ask her.
“How about you?” you ask.
“I’m dating. Actually he should be proposing anytime soon, as soon as he gets back to the country. “Then why are you wasting my time, and my dinner raising my hopes?” you want to ask her as your eyes twitch, angered, but you check yourself.
“What kind of a man is he?”
“We have been dating for three years. We were to do a wedding, but he went away for his PhD in Germany for two years, but he always travels back. So he is coming at the outset of winter,” she explains without any hint to you that she is available for games in the meantime.
You hate her. She goes into a long monologue on how she loves the man and how she got the best deal, blah blah blah. And you have already made your mind that this is the last time you are entertaining her. You pinch yourself and wonder why you ever thought that you just hit the jackpot.
Once the dinner is done with and you clear the table, you bring some drinks. She goes for canned Redds, and you pour yourself some whisky and water and you sit across each other, not knowing exactly what to talk about given the circumstances. As a man, she just switched you off, but you would love to press her some more. Maybe, she may be engaged but still available.
“Your man must be very happy and satisfied,” you say.
“You never know. You men, you will never know what he is up to.”
“Does he know what we are up to tonight?”
She looks up at you, startled by the ‘we’ in the question.