I twirled the ring about my fourth finger as we talked while waiting for his flight back to Ibadan. It was one of those times when the federal aviation authorities and the airline companies were having a squabble and like the African proverb…The grasses suffered. Flights got cancelled without prior notice and flight times were delayed by hours with the compensation of a snack pack and no apologies at the very best. The airport was littered with people…natives and foreign.. sitting on the floor..sitting on their luggage…leaning against the wall…or just standing. The seats provided at the airport were grossly inadequate. We analyzed that….and the traffic that would’ve been diverted if we had a functional rail system… We touched on the dilapidated roads and bemoaned the insecurity of road travels as the news was often filled with tales of rape incidents, robberies and ghastly accidents.
It was a copious reflection of the rate and intensity of corruption’s bite on our nations health and wealth… Our nations pulse was already weak and we feared it would give up the ghost soon.
It was one of our frequent conversations… How we could give back to our nation…how we could salvage the situation… A resuscitation plan of sorts.
Our feet were already sore from hours of standing…so we took a walk to grab some snacks.
It was getting more unlikely on our third day of wait at the airport….we had talked about so many things….my mom’s rubber business… His mom’s farming and clay roasting business. I never knew there was such a huge market for salted clay roasted in fire ….enough to make it a profitable venture. My mother in law to be was a very industrious woman I had heard… I hoped she wouldn’t deem me dainty and lazy on first sight… Taiwo always made a joke of how tiny and soft my hands were.
His dad was a respected curator at the famous civil war museum in Lagos. He had worked there for a little over 30years… Taiwo’s always lit up when he spoke about his dad’s openness and welcoming nature…and how many tourists had grown to become family friends… No one told the story of the civil war like Taiwo’s dad… I looked forward to staring at his face with glee as he told me the stories.
I had always prayed for a loving father in law…the void created by my father’s passing away five years ago had long been yearning to be filled.
1…2…3..4… The numbers came reeling loudly through the Airport’s P.A system repeatedly… Many passengers stood up and clutched their luggage listening intently when the announcer said… Sorry testing the microphone..
The airport shook from the thunderous laughter of eager waiting passengers..What a comic relief!
Taiwo said to me “Nigerians are light hearted bunch and easy to please too”..He often spoke about various tribes and the culture of precision and timeliness in service delivery that he observed in Europe and Asia.
I earnestly hoped it would be our reality someday…
Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world.
– 1 John 4:1