I reached for a towel to wrap my waist and covered my breast with my right hand some few minutes after I had seen him. It was pointless I did because he had seen what the eye could shop for.
I stared at him real hard, the kind that should tell him he was not needed in the bathroom, yet he stood at the entrance frozen in his track as though he was under a spell. He turned to face the door while he covered his eyes with his right hand like a child terrified with what he saw. "What are you doing here? Didn't you know I was in here?" I barked at him.
He answered me facing the door. There was an air of confusion about him. He didn't know what to do. I noticed he wished he could fling the door open. He would occasionally punctuate the air with his right hand in the series of "I am Sorry" pleas.
"Please forgive me. I thought the door was closed for me to use the urinal pot. I am so sorry. Will you forgive me, Linda?" he said. He rushed out and banged the door before I thought about replying him. I finished my bath and stepped out of the washroom.
When I got to the bedroom Kwabena had left the room. I reached for my phone from my purse, searched for his number and dialed. I paced in the room wrap in towel hoping he would pick the phone and tell me where he was. I dialed three times and nobody picked the call. Perhaps he was mad at me.
A pang of guilt began to weigh in on me. On one hand, I felt I had disappointed him by raising my voice on him. He's such a gentleman that nobody would ever imagine hurting. But I braced up for the worse. Come to think of it, who was in the wrong? Was it me or him? How could he barge into the bathroom without knocking, knowing very well that I was in there? This was so unlike him.
I picked the phone to dial his number for the last time. This time, I was told he was on the line so I disconnected the call without thinking. I jumped into my blue jeans and a tan top and settled in the chair waiting for him to reply my call but he didn’t. The sleep had worn out of my eyes as though I was just from sleep. I lifted my eyes towards the door and noticed it was partially shut.
I made way for the Hotel bar to see if I would find him there. "He should be out there taking fresh air or soothing his shame," I thought to myself and let out a smile. Some few meters away from the bar, I saw him with a white lady. I noticed they would occasionally laugh together as if on cue and lift a glass of what appeared beer produced by the Monrovia Brewery Limited up in cheers style.
I walked towards them half-laughing, half-mad at him and helloed the lady. She smiled. “Hi, how are you?” I didn’t honor her question with a response and turned directly to face him. The bar quite unusually was not parked to capacity. I took count of three separate couples scattered about inside the bar.
The man on the left hand was kissing his mistress as I realised. She laughed when our eyes met as though she was shy I had seen them kissed.
There was another couple behind them but their mood was frenetic. The woman was sitting on the man while they danced in unison to “They Vex” by SL. As for the last couple, I couldn’t tell what they were doing since they were far from the light. They sat at the far end of the bar which has no light.
"How could you get me worried? Do you have an idea what I went through upon realising you were not in the room?" He looked at me as if he had expected me to rant for what happened some few minutes away.
His eyebrows stood like a disturbed cock. "Do you care for something?" he said nonchalantly.
He lifted his glass to take a sip of the beer when I slapped his hand together with the glass. The liquid poured on the floor and the glass broke into pieces. "Answer me. Can you imagine how I felt?"
The white lady was withdrawing I realised. I wasn’t that mad but I was sure I could have extended a bit of the madness to him had she stood there for a while. She tried to be given a pass to the real issues but I kept quiet on that. I didn't want to enter into the detail of what happened because of she was still watching me after I had brushed her aside.
Kwabena rose as though he was going to assemble the broken bottles. He held me tightly. Pressed it close to his and kissed me. I resisted, but it was too weak.
“I’m sorry,” he said and kissed me again. I didn’t see much of the white lady again. I could not tell which of the ways she took.
That, contrary to what we had arranged, Kwabena and I slept on the same bed. He wore boxer shorts. I felt him pressed his body closer to mine. He was hot. It wasn’t long before we were buried in romance and we had sex.
He was a gentleman and gentle a man to give me the best treat of my life.
When I woke up I saw a letter he had written to me. The handwriting was so lazy that the words were loosely dancing about on the paper. It reminded me of my niece who is in the High School. She complained to me one day that her friends mocked at him because of his writing which they said looked like unregulated shit.
I reckoned you enjoyed what we shared together at dawn. I am sorry for what happened earlier on and pray it would not be repeated. I am heading to the programme's venue to meet with management of the facility. See you soon at the meeting later in the day.
I folded it gently into my bag and rushed to take my bath. When I got back I dialed the room service number and ordered for breakfast.
I later left the hotel and attended our last meeting. It was brief. Each of the group was made to give a final presentation on the progress of the programme. I didn't see Kwabena at the meeting. I quickly knew he was not back from the meeting with the management of the facility.
I left the meeting ground alone and went to Diana's Restaurant near the Broad and Johnson Street to take my lunch since I didn’t eat the food offered me at the meeting. I ordered for plain rice with potatoes green soup sprinkled with yellow corn. I chewed in silence after which I watered it down with a soft drink.
It was 5:00p.m. when I left the restaurant and decided I needed something to buy. I didn’t actually know what I wanted to buy. I stopped a man pushing a wheelbarrow to ask for a direction to anywhere I could get different types of sneakers and dresses to buy. From the way he talked, I realised he was perhaps in his twenties. He was hawking locally made soap bars in the wheelbarrow.
I was later to realise that people sell all sort of things in a wheelbarrows. Soap, rice, yam, cassava, coconut, clothes and even cooked food.
"Fine girl wetin yor want?" he asked under a heavy breath. He was drenched in sweat that one can mistake him for a champion swimmer who was coming from winning a competition. I explained to him just what I needed and he directed me to West point.
"Yor will see Ghanamen selling those things," he said with each word hanging on his tongue as though it cost him to utter those words. My phone rang. It was Ricky Roberts. He was off today and wanted to see me and talk about something so dear to him. I told him exactly where I was and that I was going to West point.
Without hesitation, he volunteered to accompany since he believed the sellers could cheat me if I was not helped in the bargain of the items.
He arrived less than 30 minutes and we boarded one of the yellow cabs to West point. It was difficult to detect which of the traders was Ghanaian because they all had a glowing command over the Liberian colloquia.
With the help of Roberts, I bought two sneakers and a pair of jeans. On our way home, we ran into a very thick traffic which we were told was as a result of an accident in front of the John F. Kennedy Hospital.
A pickup had rammed an ambulance vehicle that was entering the Hospital carrying a pregnant woman who was near death. An eyewitness told as the accident was serious that the driver of the ambulance vehicle died on the spot. The two occupants of the pickup also died when taken to the Hospital.
The only person who survived was the pregnant woman. She was terrified. A woman who was sitting by me shouted “God’s great.” Soon there was a chorus of Amen in the car.
The yellow taxi stopped in front of the Royal Grand Hotel. Roberts and I got down and headed to my room. I went to the eatery and ordered two plates of Fried rice. They were delivered to us in the room.
My body had run out of food so I hurriedly grabbed mine and ate it. Roberts was economic with the food. “Why are you eating the food this way?” I asked him. He smiled. “Aunty Linda it is nothing,” he said.
“Roberts don’t worry just tell me,” I pressed further. I was done with my food and it appeared he just started with his. He was eating the food as though he had been contracted to take count of the grain.
I remembered he said he had something to tell me. “Roberts what did you want to tell me?” I asked. He made a face at me. My question has swept him off his feet. He was smiling. I beckoned him further.
He would look at me and look at the food before him which was almost through. “Yes Roberts,” I would say.
“I want to tell you that I like you,” he said. I was keenly looking at him as though expecting something this day.
I enjoyed being with him, but there was no way I was going to tell him.
He smiled childishly as though excited for a present. “I want to say I love you,” he said coyly.
to be continued...
for Part 1 click here: Live From the Woods: How I got HIV AIDS from my first non-US man Part 1