That Time I Was Mistaken for a Prostitute…Twice in One Morning

It was a typical frigid harmattan morning in Abuja. The day was still waiting to break so it was dark when the cab driver pulled up in front of a plaza in Wuse II, which was to be the takeoff point of my friends and I. Our friend was getting married in Delta State, you see, so a number of us were to travel together with a hired minibus.

It seemed I was the first one to arrive but before I realised this, I had seen two women standing a few yards away from the gate of the plaza, just before the car stopped.

“Those may be my friends,” I remember saying to the driver.

“Ah, Aunty…” he replied with obvious cautiousness, “you sure? Those babes, na ashana them be o…”

Ehn? Ashana ke

Prostitutes?

I looked at them again, noticing they didn’t have the typical ‘look’ prostitutes are depicted to have.

“Sister,” he said hesitantly, “you sure say this place good so? Call your friend, make we know where she dey.

I took my phone out of my handbag and proceeded to do so. I don’t remember if she picked up or not or if her number was unreachable. I just know I was still stuck in a dire situation after all said and done.

Make I carry my bag from boot,” I told him, my heart slowly beginning to fill with apprehension.

We both got out of the car after he popped the lever to open the boot. He took out my suitcase and handed it to me.

You no want make I wait?” he asked again. “Make day break small…”

I thought hard about it. It was dark and lonely and if he left, apart from those women, it would be just me. Also, it seemed the gate of the plaza was locked, so the option of me waiting inside was ruled out. I desperately wanted him to wait with me but I knew that would require me paying for his extra time. I had no spare cash on me, save for my cab fare. My plan had been to use the ATM as soon as I could find one. Preferably in daylight.

So I turned down his offer to wait with me.

“OK,” he said finally as I gave him his money. “Happy Christmas.”

He drove away while I rolled my suitcase, deciding to wait at the gate of the plaza, whose security lights were thankfully switched on.

So there I was, a thousand and one things running through my head, my pashmina wrapped tightly around me—whether it was to ward off the cold or my fears is open for debate. I hadn’t been waiting for too long when a black sleek sedan pulled up in front of the two women who had been there earlier. I watched them walk to the car, one leaning through the front passenger window. There was a brief exchange before the girls walked away from the car, back to their previous position. The car drove away from them…and pulled up right in front of me.

I froze.

Aye mi. Continue reading “That Time I Was Mistaken for a Prostitute…Twice in One Morning”

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Story Time || Creatures of the Night and Prayer Warriors

It was almost 1 a.m when my dad asked for the generator to be turned off and unfortunately, I wasn’t asleep. I was doing some writing actually, trying to complete my post on happiness. PHCN decided to do what they’re best known for—holding power—and that week had been particularly bad. I worked till I was satisfied with what I’d written; or at least satisfied enough to go to bed. The time was about 3.25 a.m or so. I settled under the covers, closed my eyes…and that’s when they came.

ZzzzZZZZ…BZZZzzzZZZ…

Sigh.

Our rather unfriendly neighbourhood mosquitoes.

What is this now, I thought. Did I not spray this room with insecticide earlier?

BBZZZZZZZZZ…

I’m surprised my skin has not scarred from slapping myself so much in a bid to kill the idiot buggers. You know the most annoying thing? They can let you be for a few minutes. Then when you’re just about falling asleep, zzzzZZZZ! In your ear! Short, quick, but highly irritating. Ugh! My brother once told me, a few years ago, that he read an article which stated that mosquitoes in Africa have somehow evolved to develop exoskeletons. For this reason, they have become resistant to conventional insecticides. I don’t know how accurate that information is, but, omo, I believe! It’s like we are dealing with a special specie of mosquitoes nowadays. And if you see how huge they are, ehn! Ha!

Continue reading “Story Time || Creatures of the Night and Prayer Warriors”