Deputy Girlfriend – How We Got Here
What do you do when a friend calls you out of the blue, saying they have nowhere else to go and need a place to stay? What if the friend in question is a longtime female friend and you are a guy who lives alone? How do you turn down one of your closest friends without breaking her heart? What will your mutual friends say to her moving in? What about your family members, church members, neighbors, and more importantly your girlfriend?
Did I mention that I live in just one room and we would be sharing a bed? Or am I supposed to get her a mat? Or will I have to be a gentleman and manage the mat?
Pardon my many questions, my name is Andrew, but you can call me Andy. On a Wednesday evening, I got a call out of the blue from Tomi, my long-time friend. She told me she was on the way to my house and it was urgent we spoke.
In less than fifteen minutes, we were seated across from one another and she went straight to the heart of the matter. Her dad, a federal civil servant had just been transferred to Imo State from Lagos, her family was relocating and she was reluctant to move in with her relatives. Plus they stayed on the other end of Lagos and she needed to keep her current job in other to keep funding her part-time schooling. She will be moving out whenever she can save up to get her own place. By the way, she had until Friday to get a place, as her family was moving out of Lagos on Saturday morning.
For over a minute, I kept opening and closing my mouth with no sound coming out. I just didn’t know where to begin. I began to ask after every family member and female friend of her I knew about. what about colleagues, classmates, church members, anyone else but me. Apparently, she had been searching for the last three weeks and had found no one willing or capable of accommodating her. She was already close to the wall and believed I was her last option.
Somewhere in our hearts of hearts, we both know there was no way I was turning her away. But we also know life isn’t so white and black. We are humans, Nigerians at that, and I don’t want to be caught on the wrong side of “Bad decisions, Good intentions”.
We know how Nigerians have perfected the art of Jumping into conclusion and I am not ready to be the subject of my preacher’s sermons. Plus I don’t want to be a part of the “reduction of the value” of Tomi’s “bride price”.
As we both knew I would, I told her she could stay tentatively, though I will still have to discuss the issue with my Bae, and my best-friend, who doubles as her ex. I wondered how her London based boyfriend felt about all this.
This is how I got stuck (or blessed, depending on how you view it) with a roommate (or “deputy girlfriend” as I like to call her).