April 29th, 2008
You think you know someone. You think you can vouch for someone 100%…and then suddenly, you get thrown for a loop.
My dear friend, Solape, had just completely blown my mind!
After the bombshell dropped on me at Croydon, I set off for her sister’s house last night. Even if Javier wasn’t out of town, I would have gone anyway! It was almost 8pm by the time I knocked on her sister’s door.
An amused Bukky opened the door “You’ve come to see your friend, abi?!” she laughed, as she ushered me in.
Seated in the living room was their Mother, talking on the phone, and shaking her foot in that frenzied manner Nigerian parents deployed when all was not well. I knelt to greet her, but she impatiently waved me aside.
Rising to my feet, I walked to Solape’s bedroom, and there she was. From the look in her eyes, she didn’t expect to see me there.
“Tayo!” she exclaimed.
“Solape, what’s going on?!” I asked
With a defeated look on her face, my friend decided to come clean. And my heart broke with each word.
No, she wasn’t lying about the baby-daddy. Everything she had told me about the guy was true. What she hadn’t told me was that she had also been seeing another guy. According to her, after her 3rd abortion for baby-daddy, she had been lonely and depressed. Around that time, another Nigerian lecturer at RGU had invited her for a get-together, and there she had met Ugo, a post-graduate student just finishing his program. She said that their chemistry had been crazy and, despite the age difference (which she was later to realize was 7), had proceeded to embark on a heated affair. It was exactly what she needed after her temporary break from baby-daddy. Alas, baby-daddy had come back begging, and she had taken him back. But she wasn’t able to give up the thrill of being with Ugo, who, in addition to giving her incredible sex, had grown to become a close friend and confidant…someone she could talk to about anything…someone she had even started to love.
“So why on earth did you go back to that other guy?!” I exclaimed “Why didn’t you just stay with Ugo??!”
And this was the point I realized that, truly, I didn’t know this girl.
It turns out that her salary as a lecturer was not enough to give her the lifestyle she had grown accustomed to when she was dating baby-daddy. Breaking up with him would have meant moving out of the expensive flat he had rented for her, and giving up all the treats she had come to regard as normal. Even though she loved Ugo, he had nothing to offer her financially. He was in the UK on scholarship, and had 2 part-time jobs to make ends meet. In fact, the Croydon house belonged to his Uncle, who had asked him to house-sit.
And so, she had continued dating both of them successfully. Her baby-daddy, with his 2-weeks in Aberdeen and 2-weeks in Nigeria schedule, was none-the-wiser. She had been able to coordinate her trysts with Ugo during the periods he was away. Ugo, on the other hand, thought she lived with her wealthy, but strict, Aunt, and was happy to make do with his apartment for their liasions when this “Aunty” was in town. Both men were completely clueless.
When she got pregnant the 4th time, the one that had happened before my wedding, she hadn’t even known which of them was responsible. But it had been a no-brainer to pin the pregnancy on her wealthy baby-daddy.
But she was very sure who was responsible for this pregnancy. Before Ugo had left Aberdeen finally in January, he and Solape had spent the entire Christmas holiday together. A dreamy-eyed Solape said it was the best Christmas she had ever had. Baby-daddy was away in Nigeria for the holidays, so it gave them all the time they needed. And going by the dating of her conception, there was only one person that could have been responsible.
I covered my face with hands, and sank deeper into my chair! This woman had tried to pin an innocent man with another man’s pregnancy.
As Ugo had already left for London, she had decided to anchor herself in baby-daddy’s life with this pregnancy. She had thought he would understand her decision not to abort a 5th pregnancy, would have set her up in a bigger apartment, and would have taken care of all her bills. But she hadn’t bargained for the reaction she had gotten. Apart from not wanting his wife in Nigeria to find out what he had been up to, he had, apparently, gotten wind of Solape’s affair, and blatantly told her he would not take care of another man’s baby. It was when she had insisted, that he had resorted to the threats on her life.
That was when she had realized that she had no choice but to inform the true baby daddy. As expected, Ugo had been overjoyed by the news, and had immediately asked her to move in with him. But here is where the problem was. Even though he had gotten a job with one of the large pharmaceutical companies, it was a very junior position, and his salary could not take care of her the way she wanted. If she married him, as he had recently requested, her quality of life would be nowhere what she wanted…especially with a baby on the way. In her mind, she was better off being a single Mom than tying herself down with a struggling man.
And besides, her parents would never allow her marry an Ibo guy!!!
I stared at this girl…stunned and shocked. My friend had become a gold digger!
Without a word, I rose to my feet, grabbed my handbag, and walked out…without even saying goodbye to Bukky, or their Mother.
I needed to be as far away from this stranger as possible!