……….. She was having her after service siesta when her phone rang, rousing her from a much needed sleep. It was Obi, the call ended as she was about to answer it. She rolled over to continue her sleep, her phone rang again. She sighed and accepted of the fact that she wasn’t going back to sleep.
“Hello” she croaked out.
“You sound half asleep, did I wake you?”
“Yeah, I’m awake now.” Maybe if the call was brief she could go back to sleep.
“Ok, the craziest thing just happened. Remember I told you about how my mom was always on my case about settling down?”
“Yea, like my mom.”
“Well, she forwarded the number of a friend’s daughter, and the number looked just like yours. Usually, I just ignore her but the similarity in numbers was too much, so I dialed the number. Lo and behold, it’s your number.”
“What!!!!!!!!!” Emily exclaimed, jumping up, all traces of sleep clearing out.
“This is a joke, right?” she asked him tersely. One of the things she and Obi discovered they had in common was meddling mothers. While her mom was always recommending her to potential suitors, Obi’s mom was always on the look-out for potential daughters-in-law, i.e a wife for Obi. They had often laughed about it, swapping tales of their mothers matchmaking attempts, and had joked that their mothers should form an association or something. It appears they did.
Her parents lived in Port-Harcourt, while Obi’s lived in Owerri. So, how did their mothers know each-other as to exchange contacts?
“You’re joking right?” Emily asked again.
He stopped laughing. “I’m serious.” He replied with all seriousness.
“HOW?” She screamed. “I don’t believe it, my parents live in PH, yours live in Owerri. How did…..” she rambled on.
“The way my mom is telling it, she went for a Church conference in PH, where she reconnected with an ex-schoolmate; your mom. She said your mom immediately took her in, cancelled her hotel reservation, bla-bla-bla, and, the rest as they say is history.” He explained amused at the whole scenario.
“Lemme call you back.” She mumbled and ended the call. She dialled her mom’s number on speed dial immediately, and as though sensing the urgency her mom answered the call immediately.
“Mommy!” She wailed. “Who did you give my number again? We’ve talked about this, I thought we agreed you weren’t going to do this anymore?”
Her mom; Mrs Ada Thomas Ikoku laughed.
“Has Nnenna’s son called?”
“Relax, Emily.” Her mom interrupted, speaking in her usual slow, persuasive tone of voice, or ‘teacher voice’ like Emily and her siblings call it; her mom was a career teacher with a passion for teaching such that even as a School Administrator, she continued classroom teaching.
“Nnenna and I reconnected after over thirty long years, you know there were no mobile phones when we were in school, and we got talking and discovered we both have unmarried single children, who live in the same city. So we exchanged kids contacts! I gave your sister his contacts to pass on to you, I hope she remembered to do that? Anyway, he’s called right. Gist me.”
Emily could hear the amusement in her mom’s voice, and she melted. Her mom was such an easy-going person, it was difficult to be upset with her for long.
“He’s someone I know already.”
“Oh that’s wonderful! You see, all this points to that we are on the nice track. What’s he like?”
Emily and her mom got caught up in the gist, and it was several long minutes later before they ended the call.
“This is so surreal, it’s like in the movies. So all those star crossed things really happen.” Buchi laughed.
They were their staff canteen having lunch, and Emily had just told her the recent matchmaking tale.
“It isn’t funny.” Emily said with mock seriousness, fighting laughter herself.
“It is, and you know it. This is the stuff from which great romance movies are made.”
“I thought you didn’t like him.”
“Yea, I’m allowed to change my mind.” Buchi winked at her. “So you guys are a couple now?”
“No o! We’re just friends, good friends.”
“Ahn ahn! Why, how? You guys already have both mothers’ stamp and seal of approval, what are you waiting for, thunder to strike, and trumpets to sound?”
Emily laughed shortly. “Please, don’t start. Eat up, we need to get back to work. Besides, Obi and I haven’t spoken since that call.” She muttered, sobering up.
Emily nodded her head in affirmation.
Emily shrugged, staring intently at the food she was playing with.
Buchi stared long and hard at her, shook her head in amazement, and continued her meal.
After a while, she couldn’t help it, and she asked. “I don’t understand. Is it that you guys don’t like each other, or, what? Why can’t you guys just take this relationship to the next level, and why haven’t you spoken to him since yesterday?”
Those were million dollar questions, which Emily didn’t have answers to.
“Has he called?” Buchi asked.
“Yes, twice last night, and messages.”
“Calls which you ignored no doubt, baa?” Buchi couldn’t understand her friend. Was this the same Emily she’d known for years? This person that was afraid to take a man’s call? What had happened to instil this level of commitment phobia in Emily? It couldn’t be those two clowns: Dayo and Korede, could it?
“I honestly don’t know which to recommend to you; a Shrink or a Spiritualist.” Buchi continued with her meal.
Just then; Emily’s phone rang. She glanced at the screen and silenced the call. Buchi immediately suspected it was Obi calling, she quickly snatched the phone immediately Emily dropped it and answered the call, Emily tried unsuccessfully to stop her from answering the call. When that failed; she gesticulated with her hands signalling she wasn’t there.
“Hello Obi, it’s been a while.” Buchi said, ignoring Emily, not given Obi the opportunity to get in a word, she went on. “And you won’t believe, but I just asked Emily about you; you’re the true son of your father. Emily is here, let me pass the phone to her.” And she quickly put the phone at Emily’s ear.