Where there’s a will there’s a way
Temi was no longer seen by other workers as a ‘P.A.’ but more like his business partner. After working hours, they both went out for dates and had fun.
In fact, they had already had a weekly routine. On Mondays, they shared French Fries at Rhapsody restaurant. Tuesdays, they ate Seafood at Ocean Basket at the mall. Wednesdays, they drank a cocktail at Cegeolie Resto Pub. Thursday’s, they are at the local bukka opposite the office. And on Fridays, they just drove around town sightseeing.
Today, Muhammad wanted to take her to a Chinese local restaurant. He had something on his mind and it was bugging him. But Temi had other plans. She wanted to visit the Cinema. They were airing ‘OMO GHETTO’ – a movie by Funke Akindele. After the movie, Muhammad pleaded with Temi to spend the night with him which she agreed to without much hesitation.
Back at Muhammad’s house there was no electricity but it didn’t matter – they fell into bed, Temi woke up early the next morning to find herself alone in bed. Muhammad was already up pacing by the window.
“What is it, Muhammad?”. He looked back in surprise.
“Nothing, My love”, He walked to her, getting back into the bed. “Morning,” He said, kissing her lightly on the forehead.
“Temi…”, he held her hand, looking at it “There is something you should know. I just don’t know how else to say it.” This time, Muhammad was looking straight into her eyes.
“What? C’mon talk to me Muhammad”, she said, rubbing her hand against his cheek.
“Temi… I… I love you… what I’m about to say is not a big deal… It’s just that our culture… I mean”, Muhammad stammered, getting out of bed and walking to and fro.
“Talk to me Muhammad, What is it?”
He stopped for a moment, stared past her, looking pained. “Temi… I have two wives and four kids.”
“You whaaaatttt?”, Her face slackened. For a moment she didn’t know what to say, She placed her hand over her neck, peering all over the place.
“Temi… it’s no big deal… Our culture permits marrying more than one wife”, He gasped.
“So, you plan to make me your third wife?” She grabbed her bag and stormed out of the room.
“Temi! Temi! Temi!” He called out.
But by then she was gone, slamming the door behind her, only vaguely aware that Muhammad was running after her.
“Put your head down”, Binta said.
“Ouch!”, Temi, lowered her head so that Binta could braid her hair to the back.
Binta started tightly at the scalp, and within seconds Temi could feel her finger flying down the strand of hair. She applied hair oil along her hairline. “I have greasy hair, you know”, Temi said.
“Yeah, I know but you still need it”, Binta insisted.
“Okay”, Temi nodded, smiling to herself about how Binta could be so stubborn about such things.
“So…how is Muhammad?…has he called you since then?”. She had already discussed it with her a day after the incident. Temi sighed. “He has, but I didn’t answer it”
“Perhaps, maybe you should just accept it like that… I mean, the third wife to someone of such affluence is bad.”
“No way”, Temi exclaimed, pulling her head forward so that Binta lost her grip. Binta laughed putting her head back in place.
“And you? Would you accept to be his third wife”, Temi challenged.
“No. I’m not a Muslim”, she replied.
“Not am I”
“But you still love him, right?”
“Ouff! It’s finished”.
She said it so well and with so much conviction that they both laughed, but later that night Temi went back to her flat and wept. It was the first time she would ever cry about him.