Hey guys, I’m back from work. Have tossed off my professional-girl trousers suit and kicked off my shoes, had my dinner of fried plantain, eggs and a chilled bottle of fanta and now settled in front of my laptop to give you the download of today’s events.
Anything spectacular happen today? Heck no! It was dull, dull, dull. My boss is on a casual leave—which means he’s away for two weeks. He’ll be back next week Monday, and that simply means less work for me.
Now let’s shine a little light on what I do. First and foremost, I’m a French honours graduate from the University of Benin, with a diploma from the Speedwriting International Secretarial School, Lagos. So, you might say that I’m a professionally trained Bilingual Secretary… which is what I am at the French owned company where I started work about a month ago.
Now don’t let the title French-owned get your imagination going hyperactive, it’s just a medium-rate oil and gas company and they are not even paying me the big bucks, or any other Nigerian for that matter. The real money is always saved for the expatriates.
But that is not the gist for this evening. Tonight, we talk falling into the arms of tall, dark and handsome, as I promised you guys. I know some of you have been drooling for this tale, lol.
Monday was a public holiday, thanks to the sallah festivities, and I had nothing better to do with myself except dress up, hot and nice, and wait around in my compact but classily furnished self-contained apartment for my bestie—PJ—to come pick me up for our planned girls’ date.
Hey, girls’ date don’t mean nothing that should raise your brows, hehehe.
So, I was lounging around on my double loveseat sofa when her knock came. I quickly clinked to the door and opened it.
PJ… real name, Peace-Jane Ovunda is the true Port Harcourt babe. We became best friends foreve when we met during our faculty registration processes in Uniben. But she lived in Port Harcourt, was born here, grew up here and still lives here.
PJ is one of those who believe that PH is indeed the Garden city it claims to be. And so, there she stood at my door this average height, dark skinned, seriously curvaceous and smokingly hot chick in slim-fit leather black pants and sheer red silk top. PJ was a lover of red and bold colours.
“You are not looking bad, babes.” She said in that purring voice of hers that never failed to send the men folk into convulsive moves. “Simple, yet gorgeous.”
I flashed my winning grin. I’m a lover of compliments. And PJ never gave them out easily. She said it like it was. “Really?” I twirled around on my four inch beige pumps, showing off my slim-fit lemon green jeans and white T-shirt clad frame.
PJ chuckled. “Mmm hmm. Simple always looked good on you. Ready to hit the road and officially see your first film since you entered the Garden city?”
I was ready and pumping to go. It’s been work, work, work since I moved here five weeks ago and I haven’t even had the time to enjoy anything of the oil city. “Grabbing my bag and already locking the doors.” I cried racing back inside to pick my tan Lara Karen sling bag and rushing out.
We walked out of the yard and got into PJ’s Toyota Camry and zoomed off.
Minutes later, we were at the Genesis centre, managed to find a parking spot and sashaying through the wide glass door into the perfectly air-conditioned first floor.
This was my first time at the Genesis centre, GRA. I’ve been hearing talks about it, having been longing to visit it and finally here I was.
As a correct eko-babe who have seen all the gleam and glisters… at least a good number of them… I casually looked around the restaurant first floor as we walked towards the pop corn stand. PJ was on the phone with someone, a guy I guess, given the constant humphs.
The plan was to see a movie and then have dinner. So tickets bought, pop corn in hand, we swung off to the theatre to enjoy our first view of Dracula Untold.
After thrilling and scaring our girly selves’ silly, we came down and proceeded to order our dinner. I was replying a PM from my brother, who is really a pain in the butt, and had stepped back unconsciously.
My body collided with this hard, warm frame and these wide, hard, yet gentle hands grabbed me by the elbows and steadied me.
“I’m so sorry.” I said quickly twisting my head around to look at the victim of my involuntary slip.
And I swear to you by all that I hold sacred that at that quick, fleeting instant my heartbeat skipped and stopped. I swear it, on my honour, it happened.
This is no M & B tale, or exaggerated-fluffy-head-girl tale, it actually happened. I looked at this man and my heart went poing on an instantaneous skip and then ceased. I think my eyes widened and even my poor mouth dropped open in a British bulldog drool… can’t be sure, but it must have done.
This man was a… man. He had shoulders that could seriously compete with Dwayne Johnson’s and was surely at least six feet three.
I was a good five-eight on a four inch heels and still had to tilt my head up.
His face defined the word chiselled. It was all carves and juts and had this Banky-W type chin-strap beard. But he made poor Banky look like a pretty girl by the sheer masculinity of that firm, no-iota-of-fat clear-cut, well-honed almost squarish face.
I promise you, I am still drooling even as I write this. Damn! He was a man, phew!
What covered this over six foot frame of mannish gorgeousness, you are impatient to know? I can’t really say, I think it was some ancient looking stone-wash jeans and a loosely hanging white T-shirt… or was it even beige, or… I swear I was too dazzled and thought-less to do anything but gawk at him.
“It’s okay, easy mistake.” He rumbled out. And that further confounded me, the utter deepness and strength of his voice.
I felt like I had finally had my secret wish of having Josh Groban sing personally to me in a dark-hued room where he and I were the only occupants.
His voice put all ’em forming-baritone-voice OAPs to shame.
“Are you alright?” His rumbling voice came again. This time a trace of amusement sipped through.
That slapped back sense and sanity into my bedazzled mind. I stepped back again and brushed against PJ who pinched me at the small of my back, to caution me no doubt.
PJ was a firm believer of women doing the dazzling and not being the dazzled.
“Err… yes, I’m alright.” I nodded my head faster than an agama lizard. “I’m just making sure you are.” A hundred watts smile followed this last rejoinder.
It got a muffled snort out of PJ and a chuckle from tall, dark and absolutely handsome.
“Well, I am.” He said. “I think your order is up.” He jerked his head in the direction of the waitress behind me.
“Ah, of course.” I managed to turn, ordering myself to get a grip and be sensible. PJ paid for our dinner and we both grabbed our trays.
“Errm, sorry once again for the clumsiness.” I smiled at him, praying my smile wasn’t a sheep-eyed adoring look.
“No harm done.” He returned my smile. It was a lethal weapon. If it was used in a war against women, none would survive, I swear.
“Will you stop taking sneaky looks at him?” PJ glared at me as we sat down to eat.
“Did you take a good look at that man? His make-no-mistake-I’m-a-man face and build?” I gushed in a loud whisper my entire head still in the clouds.
PJ let out a low hiss. “Yeah, I took a good look at him. But a lady never ogles, drools or stutters whether she is shopping for clothing or for a man.” She tapped her fork on her plate. “Kez, you are a lady.”
Her words slid in through one ear and flushed out the other.
All my dear mother had taught me about the bad manners of staring was also flushing away and my personal policy of never-show-a-guy-how-interested-you-are? That too had joined the drain slippers.
He had his tray of food in his hand and was heading our way. I tried to remember the meaning of the word dignity by bending my head over and focusing on my food.
“You ladies mind if I join you?” He asked stopping at our table.
A zillion yeses had already gone through my mind, but thankfully at that moment I’d stuffed my mouth with a spoonful of fried rice.
PJ gave him a cool look. I swear that chick’s cool-and-collected approach beats the any military arsenal. “Well, you could… only if you are not a chatterbox.”
Tall, dark and handsome laughed. It was a deep, rolling sound, and it sent shivers and flutters down my spine. “Well, no one has ever accused me of being one, so I daresay I could take a chance. “ He laid his food on the table and slid into a chair, facing me. “I’m Luke by the way… Lucas but friend’s call me Luke.”
Luke. Gosh, didn’t I read it somewhere that virile, resilient male characters usually had four lettered strong first names? Well, it was somewhere about choosing names for your hero in books, but that surely applied in real life, right?
“I’m PJ and she’s Kez.” PJ introduced since I seemed to have lost my power of speech.
“Kez?” Luke looked at me.
My agama lizard nods were back again. “Yes, Kez, it’s short for Keziah.”
He smiled. “Oh, Keziah. One of Job’s daughters’ name after he was restored.”
Now, I got to tell you this, if some nondescript guy had made such a pointless observation about my name, I would be writing him off and never have to think of him again. But right now, I was too busy being dazzled by his wide smile to consider his observation pointless. Matter-of-fact, I thought it brilliant.
“Yes, it is.” I beamed like he’d just made a revelation from the encyclopaedia. “This shows a man who’s familiar with his Bible.”
PJ gave me a kick from under the table.
“Ouch!” I cried out glaring at her.
“Are you alright?” Luke asked instantly but the gleaming amusement in his eyes told me he had an inkling what’d just happened.
Damn that PJ!
“Errm, yes, I am.” I answered.
“So, what do you do? If you don’t mind my asking, that is.” PJ stirred the conversation to easy, light and just friendly topics until our meal was finished.
Turned out Luke was an onshore-offshore engineer with one of the oil and gas companies. He was single and had an apartment around somewhere in Rumomasi. And he was a Christian, a catholic just like me.
Hey, I know what you guys are thinking… she’s already doing a husband-material profile on him.
Well, why the heck not, I ask? You think it’s every day I run into Idris Elba, Boris Kodjoe and Will Smith all rolled into one, eh?
Well, judgers, this is one of those once-in-a-rare-blue-moon experience and I’d be damned if I’m gonna let it swing by unchecked, uh huh.
Back to the gist jor.
So, dinner over, we all walked out. PJ made sure to keep us separated by staying in the middle, the killjoy.
“This might sound like a cheap over-used line but I’m just going to go with it—may I have your number, Kez?” Luke asked.
He’d escorted us to where PJ had parked.
An over-used line? Like there was any other way… Before he was finished I had my card slipped out of my purse and stretched out in front of him.
“You don’t mind if I have yours too?” I asked flashing my mirror-practiced alluring smile.
He grinned. And boy, does he have perfect teeth too. “I’m honoured to let you have it.”
Cards exchanged, goodbyes said, we drove out of Genesis, heading back to my place. “What the heck has come over you?” PJ tossed me a glare as she expertly manoeuvred the car along Woji road.
She didn’t wait for me to answer but went on and on about the cheapness and imprudence of acting so googly-eyed with a man, and forgetting the Eve-old principle of never make it easy for them.
The lecture only ended when I thankfully jumped down her car and giving her a cheerful wave, raced off inside my apartment.
Had her lectures sunk in? Hell to the no!
I’d listened to her, but I’d heard nothing. Why?
I was busy forgiving Nicole Ari Parker for stealing Boris Kodjoe from me, Nayiana Garth for being the one to give Idris Elba his first son when my obsession for him totally surpassed that of Ali Lartar’s, Jada Pinkett for having Will Smith all to herself and refusing to let him go all these years.
Yes, I heard nothing she said because at that moment, I was so grateful and uplifted and feeling utterly generous, I forgave these women for their unknown crimes, set them free from their small cells in my heart and head.
I forgave Justin for breaking my heart last year… huh… no, I won’t go that far, there’s no forgiving that asshole.
But for the first time in ten months, I didn’t cuss him as I had my bath, slipped on my coral pink nightie… which I only wore when I’m feeling absolutely girly and cuddly… and got into bed.
Yeah peeps, I didn’t cuss that can’t-treat-a-girl-right spineless, ass kisser and I forgave ‘em crush-stealing ladies… and I went to bed dreaming of my tall, dark and handsome… Luke.