Just how did I get here? It is more of inadvertent than plotted. It is a journey that I commenced arbitrarily. No design. But at some point, I think it was a novel idea.
It’s now a year since OCTAVIA walked up to me for a dance. Looking back, I think I have made great progress with the man I am becoming.
“Your girlfriend is on Line 1, Sir. “My secretary enounces as she storms into my office.
“Hehe.Doreen, I have told you time and again I am not dating Ms. Octavia…”
“But she is a frequent caller. And a regular guest here too.”
“Haha.Put her through, please. We will finish this discussion later.”
Almost everyone in my social circle now thinks Octavia and I are an item. It would be hard to convince them that I can keep a lady as a best friend without necessarily going steady with her. In a way, others are convinced with my explanation.
I have driven Octavia to her place after work every day for the past year. It has become a routine. I drop her off at her door step and drive off home when I have unfinished work that I am taking home. When I have none, we have kept a schedule where I prepare dinner at her place and then leave shortly after. Alternatively, she comes cooks at my place, then I drive her home. At no particular time have I ever spent a night at her place. She has moved to bigger apartments in the same period. Her current residence has 4 spacious bedrooms. I have 5 spacious bedrooms that I do not use.
Our fortunes have quadrupled. She has risen through the ranks in this past year to control operations in three countries. My firm also expanded operations to accommodate all cadres of clientele.
I once offered one of my cars to Octavia so she could use it before she acquired hers. She declined. She argued that she was okay with me ‘being her chauffeur for the next 100 years.’ She even turned down the official car and driver assigned to her. She diverted the allowances allocated to her for that purpose to a program we started together. We co – sponsor some kids’ education with those monies – from her allowances and from my business profits.
The metamorphosis from having amorous affairs to asexuality is something that still baffles me. Sometimes I ogle at OCTAVIA as she makes her way through the staircases in her house or as she walks out of my car. How I am able to control my sexual itch flummoxes me. We have been in very compromising instances and I still didn’t succumb to any of it.
There is this one time I asked her to accompany me on a vacation. I had booked separate rooms. That’s how we always do it. After dinner, I saw her off to her room. She was a little inebriated. So we walked arm in arm to her room. I opened her door and helped her out of her flats.
She requested that I stay a while longer as I wait for her to freshen up. She undressed right in front of me. And donned her bath robe before proceeding to the bath room. She didn’t even close the bathroom door. I have never been so much aroused instantly like on that night. Watching her strip down in my very presence made me uncomfortable. At some point, she stood with her arms akimbo and stared at me without uttering a single word. At that instance, I froze. My skin twitching in excitement. I began fidgeting in my seat. I had to keep off eye contact after a few seconds. That’s when she took her bathrobe and disappeared into the bath room.
After that night, we have joked about it severally. And she keeps confessing that she had done it on purpose to test my patience.
Some choices are never meant to be easy. The discipline to follow through such choices requires some extraordinary elan.
It all came in a flush. That Saturday evening, 34 months ago, after boozing with a few friends, one of the ladies I had been flirting with at the counter, drove me home. As we staggered into the bedroom, I stopped and excused myself to rush into the wash room. I washed my face and looked at myself in the mirror. I don’t know what came over me, but I remember walking back to my bedroom where I found that the lady had already undressed, leaving only her undergarments. I demanded that she dress up immediately.
Of course she reluctantly obliged. She kept asking if I didn’t like her what I had seen (her body) or what she had done to piss me off. Frankly, it wasn’t her. It was media had seen a version of me at the mirror that I couldn’t recognize. That wasn’t the man I wanted to be. With blood shot eyes and a hangover. As I dropped her off at her place, I knew I needed to start doing things differently. It was on that particular night that I made the decision to be the man I am becoming.
The man I am becoming is a gentleman. A respecter of persons. A man with integrity. A man with a set of great values. A dreamer. A worker. A man hungry for success. A stickler for promptness, quality and perfection. A man who has set his eyes on the prize. A man with a destiny. A man who is conscious of everything.
My legacy will be my turn around. My memories will be those of a man who defied the odds to create a version of himself he wasn’t aware existed.
I want to look back and be proud of the things I have done. Thus far, OCTAVIA has been a great ally in this journey. She has been pivotal in every major decision I have made. I don’t know how things will be between us few years from now, but I know I can always count on her. She is loyal and trustworthy. On weekends when we are together, she practically takes over my phone. She answers my calls. Replies my messages on my behalf. She does pretty everything for me.Our is an open association. That level of trust is not easy to establish. She knows almost everything there is to know. I have opened up to her in a way no one else has. She has done the same. We have become a formidable team.
As I type this, Octavia is dancing to Sarkodie’s “Pain Killer” as she tenders to her kitchen garden. Am at her gazebo. The freshness of the air here is therapeutic. When she is done, she has promised to fly with me to see my folks in the countryside. It’s been a fortnight since we last went there. It has become more of a habit. We alternate visits. We go to see her folks on one, then mine on the next one.
I tend to think I have created a purpose for myself and for those I cherish. I am happy with the progress. I am constantly working towards making lives of those around me comfortable. It is a privilege and an honor.