Monday, October 20, 2014

CHRONICLES OF A HOUSEMAID 5

Just then someone came out of the main entrance of the house, It was my cousin Julia. She was the eldest of my uncle’s children. She looked really pretty in her yellow top and skinny navy blue jeans.
“Open the gate, I am about to leave the house” she barked at the security guard as  she walked towards the parked black, Mercedes Benz which probably belonged to my late uncle, I had seen that car in the village a couple of times.
“Madam no vex, I dey come, this aunty here talk say she dey find madam” he said looking at me some type of way.
“Who is that?” Julia asked as she opened the passenger door and put her purse in it, she slammed the door shut and swung her hips and walked towards the gate.
“She talk say she be oga niece” he said.
“Open the gate” she said as I saw her walking closer.
 He opened the gate and let me into the compound. It was a sight to behold; there were well trimmed shrubs, a well paved path that led to the house.
Julia recognized me and her face lit up.
“Grace, how are you?” she hugged me, I could smell her perfume. She smelt so good it made me feel like I stunk like locust beans.
“I am well” I replied.
“I hope he did not harass you” Julia said giving the guard a dirty look.
“I am not sure,” I responded. I was not trying to put him into trouble but I was also not pleased with his snobbery, it wasn’t as if he had anything worth envying even though he looked well dressed in his uniform.
“Come, let’s go inside” she said and dragged me, she had probably forgotten she had to go somewhere. I followed her as I walked through the beautiful compound, there were three other cars in the compound, one was a black Range Rover, the Mercedes Benz in which she had put her purse and a Honda Civic.
We walked up to the front door, she rang the doorbell and Priscilla opened the door.
“Grace” Priscilla screamed and hugged me. I was overwhelmed with the amount of joy in which Priscilla received me.
“How was the journey? Come and sit down” Priscilla said excitedly. I looked at the interior of the house, I was stunned, everything looked nice, as if no one did anything, it was a very big house, no wonder people in the village said my uncle’s money had no end. Even in death my uncle was still wealthy and that wealth extended to his children.
“The journey was okay” I replied not knowing what else to say.
“You must be hungry, I cooked small rice, please manage it” Priscilla said as she got up.
“How is everyone?” Julia asked.
“They are well, they asked me to greet everyone here,where is mommy?” I asked, her mom was nowhere in sight.
“She went out to do some things, I have to run along too, I will be back in a few hours” Julia said.
“Okay no problem” I replied. Priscilla came out of the kitchen.
“When will you come back, I need to use the car?” Priscilla said.
“I don’t know,” Julia replied
“What do you mean by you don’t know, there is no driver, he took mommy out and I need the car.” She said. I began to wonder why out of the other two cars outside Priscilla wanted to take the one Julia was using, who am I to talk, my parents don’t even have wheelbarrow not to talk of one tire.


Friday, October 17, 2014

THAI CURRY CHICKEN

So i made dinner.
I was on Instagram and one of my guilty pleasures is FOOD even though i keep it a secret it tends to show on most parts of my body.
So i checked out this chick who did a 15 sec flick on how to cook the food. The shortest and most straightforward way to show you how to cook something.  Nice. So i decided to try it, i went to the store and spent $25, not so bad because i have a ton to last me three days instead of buying lunch at work. I got to work, here is the process in real time, what do you think?
(i apologize for the background noise, my parents were watching Family Feud)
video

My mom who is my biggest critic actually liked it, she fussed about making foreign food when i could have fried yam and made eggs. Oh well... You try it, its a challenge, upload videos and share pictures. Thank me later.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

CHRONICLES OF A HOUSEMAID 4

I absorbed the information he had just given me and I made up my mind that no matter how hard my life would get, I would not give up.
About twenty minutes later, he pulled up into a residential area, the row of houses in the estate were beautiful. He asked for the address once again which I recited out to him and he drove down the street trying to look for the number o the house, he ended up driving to a huge, white house, with a golden gate. The house stood so stately.
“Is this the place?” I asked as the driver put his gear into park.
“If the address is correct, yes it is” the driver replied with a smile.
“This is a nice house” I said out loud, I could not hide my fascination with the house. I have never seen anything this beautiful and I would be living in it for more than a few months.
“It is” he replied.
“Thank you for being so nice to me, what is your name?” I asked.
“Kenneth”
“My name is Grace”
“Good” he replied nodding his head.
“How much is the fare?” I asked.
“It is eight hundred naira” he replied. I looked at him doubtfully.
“Haba, I have five hundred on me, I am not a rich Lagos girl” I replied bringing out the five hundred naira note Mama Nkechi’s daughter had given me when she came to visit.
“This part of Lagos is not somewhere i drive to for a low cost” he said as he took the money from me a little crestfallen.
“ I have one hundred naira” I said as I fumbled through my purse, I did not want to short him of his money for the day.
“Its okay” he said with the same look on his face.
 I thanked him and alighted from the taxi with my miserable looking Ghana must go bag and another small travelling bag. I held on to those two for dear life because my whole life was in both. My clothes, shoes, some textbooks and my WAEC certificate from my school, the official certificate from WAEC was not going to be delivered for a few years. The cab driver drove off.
I walked to the gate, the security guard, a tall and lanky man approached the gate.
“Good afternoon” I said. He nodded in acknowledgement.
“Who you dey find?” he asked after assessing me.
“Madam” I stammered not sure if I made an impression or became a plain turn off. He looked rather snobby. He probably was not used to visitors like me at the residence.
“Who you be?” he asked.
“I be oga niece” I replied. He looked at me clapped his hands in amusement and laughed. I could not understand why he did that or what was so funny.
“Which oga?” he asked me.

“Madam husband” I replied, I was really getting irritated.

Baby's Age


I grew up in the time when a child's age was calculated in years. I moved to the United States in my late teens and realized that it was calculated in months until it sounded too much, anything past 24 months is already a pet peeve for me. Why cant you simply say the child is 2? Some say "my daughter is 29 months" i really don't have time to count. Maybe i should tell you my age in months, about 360 months, does that sound appropriate, will your math immediately kick in or would i have to hand you a calculator?I guess i would just look stupid saying so,
A lady brought her cute little son to my job,he related well with me and was very observant, i asked 
ME:How old is he?
WOMAN: He is 17 months
There was an awkward silence as i tried to do the mental math in my grey cells which are no longer math accurate, (after college my math skills only applied to counting money)
ME: A year and five months.
WOMAN: Is that 17 months?
I gave her the look, the one that had to put her in check.
WOMAN: I am sorry i don't count it like that.
ME: When did he turn one?
WOMAN: He turned one in May
ME: So he will be two next May.
WOMAN: Yes
ME: Okay, that sounds right 
I ended the conversation.

The development of a child in the first few months of the first year and maybe six months into the second year is important, after that please start counting in years, i don't think i would sound right telling someone my son started cleaning up his toys at 50 months.
What do you think?

Monday, October 13, 2014

CHRONICLES OF A HOUSE MAID 3

“I hope you will enjoy your stay” he said.
“I hope so too” I replied hoping that he won’t ask me anymore questions. I looked out of the window and observed the scenery, apart from the buses and motor bikes, I saw the hawkers who sold recharge cards and pure water. One could easily make some money in this city. The driver pulled to a stop, he had approached the other cars in traffic. I heard a lot about Lagos traffic and I am not surprised to see several thousand cars on the Third Mainland Bridge.
“This traffic won’t end today” I said not realizing I had spoken out loud.
“It would, most workers are leaving their office to hurry home, we are almost at the destination” the driver replied. In my experience with road transportation this was the most civil driver I had ever come across. He made other public transport drivers look like barbarians. There was something about him and right now I feel I have to ask him.
“Do you enjoy your job?” I blurted out without thinking but with the hope of directing the conversation to him.
“Yes,I do, I have been doing this since I graduated from university” he replied with a smile.
“You are a graduate?” I responded in surprise. What on earth would make a graduate drive a taxi cab around the town of Lagos when there were more opportunities out there in the world awaiting him?
“Yes I am”
“Very interesting” I replied.
“What is?”
“The fact that you are a graduate and driving a cab”
“It is the position of the country today, I graduated with a first class in Economics from the University of Lagos, and I haven’t found a job so instead I pimped out this taxi and made it my source of income.” He informed me, I digested the information with half pity and half understanding. I still could not imagine myself studying for JAMB, getting into school and spending all the time getting good grades all to end up as a cab driver.
“I hope to do well when I graduate” I said.
“What do you want to do?”
“I want to become a medical doctor” I responded.
“Strong young lady, you will do well, we have a need for doctors, I have accepted my fate” the taxi driver replied.
“I believe in something better for you” I told him.
“I love what I do, I am very content and I have no need to look for anything” he replied.
“What about all those hours you spent in school studying, the four years…”
“Five and a half years” he replied and smiled. “You forgot about ASUU strike” he added. I nodded in agreement. “Well let’s see this as part of life, sometimes you win and sometimes you lose, the experience is what counts.

I still could not get over what he just told me. In his case, I feel he clearly lost, from School of Economics to the School of Hard Knocks.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

TWENTY NINE FREEBIE

Hello Everyone. My book of short stories is going a free download  October 13th 2014 from 12am - midnight
It was published on March 29th last year, a few days after my 29th birthday, hence the name.
If you have a kindle or any kindle related apps feel free to download it.
There are about 10 unique stories in there
I want to give everyone the opportunity of reading it.
Please don't forget to share with your friends, enemies and families.
Please leave a review let me know what you all think.

THE BOOK TWENTY NINE BY LOLA OSENI.

Friday, October 10, 2014

CHRONICLES OF A HOUSEMAID 2

My thoughts were interrupted by one of the babies on the bus who started crying for no other apparent reason than hunger. The mother reluctantly tried to comfort her baby especially because of the rude comments that came from the other passengers
“Please give that child breast” a man sitting by the door said.
I slept with one eye open because I wanted to be more aware of my surroundings, I was sitting beside a dirty woman who had a runny nose and had almost exhausted her means of wiping it. The gentleman who sat in front of me had shaving bumps on his head and the seeing those bumps prevented me from eating without visualizing maggots coming out from the bumps.
“Madam your child is disturbing my sleep” the lady who sat in the corner by the window said rudely and adjusted her sitting position in order for her to sleep properly.
The woman with the baby rocked the child to sleep as the bus.
A few hours later, we got off the bus at the bus park, my mother had written the address on a piece of paper, I took a taxi cab to the house. My mother told me to pray before entering any form of transport as we had heard horror stories of kidnap, rape or total disappearance. I could not afford to have two out of the three happened to me especially kidnap and rape, if I was kidnapped my parents would never afford the ransom money even if they had to borrow it, if I got raped I would either catch a sexually transmitted disease or get pregnant, I couldn’t afford to take care of myself talk less of a child. The taxi driver had tribal marks, his taxi cab was surprisingly clean and air conditioned, the smell of air freshener was a pleasant relief from the terrible odor in the bus, half of the odors came from poor hygiene from the passengers which included bad breath and oozing armpits. He was playing some highlife music from the 70’s. He drove and hummed to the music occasionally looking at me through the rearview mirror. The third time he did that, our eyes met and he smiled.
“Is this your first time in Lagos?” he asked.

“No sir, this is my third time” I replied, I had been two Lagos twice when I was much younger, I have no recollection of the first time, the second time I came for Easter when I was eleven years old, my parents had to choose me to spend time with my uncle. I bonded well with his children Julia, Priscilla, BJ and Lewis and this is the third time I am going to Lagos and this time I am going to Lagos as an adult. Excitement was my first feeling but now I think I am nervous, I don’t know what to expect, I am going to a house where my blood cousins live but my uncle won’t be there to treat me like a little princess. I would be living with his wife who has bad reputation. She usually appeared friendly and kind when she came with him to the village to visit but I heard she is a totally different person on becoming too familiar with her. I just don’t want to get into her bad books but also I don’t know what I am going to face in that house.