LEAVING IT TOO LATE
Today, I was bored, I decided to do what I love doing to relieve tedium. Driving. So I had this urge to visit a friend, an older friend actually. The yearning was so strong that I grabbed some bottle of wine, jumped into the car and drove all the way to her place. I have not seen her for over 25 years so I mentally scripted our dialogue as I drove on reminisces of our past conversations vividly filling in time and events. The screenplay even made me smile.
There was a visible change in the once picturesque and serene edifice. I had to double check if I was at the right place, by inquiry I was. Then I asked to see her, the guy said:
‘’ Oh she lives in Ijebu now’’
Ok, that was understandable. From my mental calculation, she should be rocking her 70s. Old folks are inclined to quieter living at that age.
I asked if anyone had a phone contact, he scratched his head, shaking it from side to side. In a flash, he dashed away to return with another guy. Bombshell, the new guy said:
‘’Oh mummy is dead, she died about 10 years ago’’.
‘’Oh my God’’ the words escaped before I realized it, I screamed in utter shock. Without asking, the guy added and the only brother I know also died 3 years ago. Giving an apt description that fits the next person I was just going to ask after. I was anesthetized with shock, then gloom swept over me.
Now these people aren’t family but they had been a tiny part of my voyage in life. I felt sad about not visiting until mummy passed on. I felt sad about the brother too. Even though I rejected his advances, he got married before me and he was altruistic enough to attend my wedding coming all the way from Lagos to Ilorin. At the reception, he came up to tell us he had to travel back to Lagos that same day he arrived because Ilorin was a new terrain for him. I never had the opportunity to say thank you for coming nor thank you for the gift he presented to us.
I feel bad. And blue.