I have just gotten to the check in desk. They insist on opening my check in luggage right in front of other passengers and the spectators above. Now I thought that was “old school” so I said to the man on duty, “why is Nigeria still doing things this way? They have stopped doing this in Ghana.” He says in his strong accent with a frown or maybe disgust on his face “Well in Nigeria this is what we do!” I said “fair enough” and allowed the search (public display of privacy). This tall, mixed race woman in a pair of tight blue skinny jeans, a leopard print loose sheer blouse walked past me on her three inch wedge pulling her trolley bag. Obviously, it would be too lady like to let that slide so I say “but why aren’t you checking her bag?” He said “Madam, she is not checking her bag in. Do you have anything in your bag you don’t want me to see? Eh! Stainless Madam, you are so fine! I hope you give us our Sunday special.” Imagine that! I chuckled and said, “stainless madam? That’s a first!” Moving on who do I see again? The same lady, taking sexy strides ahead of me. Just before she could join the immigration queue, she gets stopped. Oh typical! I thought to myself. Here is this tall, dark, well off looking man in his African print trousers and blouse most likely fascinated by her complexion and swag. Complexion first; I find that most Nigerian men are attracted to this complexion I carry around. I had an interesting encounter at breakfast on Saturday. I will however leave that for another day.
Anyway, he stops her and they get talking. She doesn’t seem like she is in any sort of a hurry. So I gently slide past them. I get to the passport check point and hand over my documents to one of these three ladies who are chatting away so aggressively in Yuroba. The expressions on their faces reminded me of Nigerian movies. For a second I wish I understood what they were “gisting about” (most popular Nigerian term) but then again maybe not. I look right, and from across the hall, beyond the annoying every curving stanchions is “Miss Yellow” and “Oga” exchanging numbers. She is pressing on her phone and he his. I smile. I remember Malibu Sunrise. Thoughts of him go through my mind. All I hear is Nelson which woke me up. Obviously “Kemi”, “Bukky” and “Shola” have finished chatting, finished going through my documents and mentioned my name at least once which I obviously didn’t hear, so they got louder and louder, you would think I was in trouble. I laughed, apologized and carried on.
“Ah! Fine woman, na you be designer woman with designer fresh legs” she says whilst patting my body down firmly, I didn’t like it. I felt like she was getting too intimate and her words didn’t help. I couldn’t wait for it to be over. I am not fond of a woman’s touch, more so a strange woman’s touch. She actually wanted me to tip her after fondling me and saying all those sweet nothings to me. Don’t you think it is right that I am the one who gets paid instead? She was the one enjoying it after all! Being polite I gave her Naira 4,000 and carried on. I hear “beautiful lady, do you want to try this drink?” the sales lady in front of the Amarulla stand. So do Nigerian women call every woman fine/ beautiful? No one calls me that in Ghana. Maybe I should move here. I could get used to this apart from the touching. Now I feel like walking back and saying to the woman “I know it’s your job but maybe you should go easy on the touching/ patting”. Another thing she said to me was, “where are you from?” I said “Ghana” and like every Nigerian that asks me that question, her immediate response was “it is a lie! You look Ibo.” I get that all the time…Argh!!!” she asked my name. “Debra, beautiful name. However can I give you an Ibo name? How about Ijeoma?” Laughing out loud I say “no! I have a friend called Ijeoma Onukoga. She is a mad girl. Please give me another name.” “Ada?” “Okay, that could work even though Debra isn’t too bad to keep. See you later.” I take my seat at gate 33, pull out my iPad and go through the usual routine. “Ah fine woman, beautiful woman”. I look up and it is the woman opening the gate doors. I smiled and carried on. It’s time to board the flight. This time she said “Ah! Your skin! What cream do you use sef? Look at my own skin. You are beautiful! What do you have for me?” there goes another couple of thousands of Naira.
Whew! I slummed into seat 12C. As we were in flight, I pull out sheets of paper and start writing. Glory starts a conversation with me as he reads from across my shoulder. Disrupting my flow but it would be rude to cut him off so I start talking to him. Along the way he asks if he could be my boyfriend. Ha ha ha. “Some” men can be so upfront. I asked him if he was married as I tend to only attract married men and he said yes but it doesn’t change him from being Glory. Laughing, I said I can’t promise to be his girlfriend and he tries to kiss me on my shoulder. Like seriously? Who does that? My eyes lid wide open, I squinted and grindged so bad, quickly moving back! I almost yelled at him. At this point I had had enough!!! He needs to realize I was only being polite by having a conversation with him but trying to kiss my shoulder is pushing it. That was the end of our conversation. On any normal day I would have lost my mind, flipped and told him the worst thing he must have heard in his entire time of being on earth. His saving grace is that I was emotionally tired from the weekend so I just let it go. I put away the sheet of paper, turn to the window avoiding any more talk and looked out the window. It is five minutes to six but there is no sunset. Indeed there is no sunset!
Some people find their way into your life hang around for a bit, disappear and reappear years later and almost leave again. Maybe this time they don’t leave again but you are not so sure you want them around. Imagine waking up one morning and there is no sunrise. The clock has moved forward but the moon is still up. Unimaginable! Confusion, chaos, fear is what comes to mind. Imagine watching the sunset in the midst of rage anger and with a broken heart. Not so pleasant. We all hope that every sunrise holds more promises and every sunset hold more peace. This is only imaginable in a perfect way, where you hope to be. I guess there is no such hope in Malibu.
Ticks, tock, moments are fast fading. With every past minute is a memory you may want to remember or forget. Ah! Do I really want to forget the train ride across the tunnel to the so called city of love? The cozy dinner, the cooling breeze on the balcony, listening to the sound of traffic and voices from afar. Taking photos of a city so beautiful? I must confess though, Paris has never been one of my favorite cities. I am yet to find the city that will replace Los Angeles. One thing I know for sure which adds to the memories of Disneyland is seeing that tall handsome man across the platform of Paris Nord.
So there were many sunrises and many more sunsets after that winter night. Watching one across the ocean on a strange land was an insight into what could be if we stayed in “Malibu” long enough to witness many more nights fall. I must say, nature is breathtaking from there. The sound of the ocean roar, the peace in the winds, Malibu – California is not as beautiful and to think it is only five hours drive away.
It was a normal working day, sitting in the traffic listening to Rose Royce. Like a tender fire deep inside my soul, love takes complete control. Warm and rosy feelings, passion draws me out like a flower that unfurls. I chase words cause I can’t speak. That magic touch! With curtains drawn closed for three days, I didn’t see the sunrise nor set. All I remember was there was day and there was night.
Can I see the sunset on Malibu to say goodbye in peace? Should I be saying goodbye? Argh those memories, that just won’t shift. What’s love without tragedy? Did I say love? Oh no! I didn’t think it was love. Wait, that’s what took control to start with. How else would I have found myself on a week day flight to a city of “Fi mi le”. Let me not start singing off key even though Kas did that pretty well one minute and forty three seconds into his song. But he has got too much swagger. He is the king of swagger!
You know, in the past, I would have been upset, I would have been sad and felt unworthy but life has shown me that no matter what , tomorrow always comes. And every tomorrow will start the way you imagine it before you sleep today. Maybe Malibu is not a good holiday destination. I heard Easter in Kwahu is pretty interesting. Hmmm maybe not so peaceful. How about the lush Peki Hills in the Volta Region? You can travel the world over in search of what you need and return home to find it. Maybe there is no sunset in the skies as we approach the runway at Kotoka international airport. But in my mind, the sun set on Malibu.
On today’s play list: http://youtu.be/WGCtyvWAE3g