“Thanks but no thanks!” I said breathlessly. I didn’t want to be indebted to anyone, not to talk of a stranger…
I was not so surprised when Dennis and Rick attended Mom’s Thanksgiving. I have come to expect anything when it comes to both Men. I carefully avoided them throughout the ceremony. It was truly a beautiful affair and Mother was pleased. The girls did me proud and were fully on ground. I took leave from work the following week and made my Mom promise not to disclose my destination to anyone.
I needed time alone and the only way to do it was to take off without notice. I was exhausted from the preparations and build up to the birthday. I decided to go to Abeokuta; the place has always fascinated me and of course you can’t visit Abeokuta without going to Olumo Rock. Olumo Rock is a popular tourist attraction in the city of Abeokuta, Ogun State, Nigeria. Abeokuta was originally inhabited by the Egba. It was used as a fortress in the early 19th century. Olumo rock is a massive outcrop of granite rocks of primitive formation from which Abeokuta the capital of the state derived its name.
The rock is an historical monument which served as shelter and fortress for the Egba people who at 1830 had settled under the rock during the intercity wars. The rock is a monument of faith, unity and source of strength, an unfailing protection for Egba people. The highest point of the rock is 137 meters above sea level with existence of a muster tree growing for over 200 years and surrounding caves.
Thank goodness the Olumo rock tourist complex has modern infrastructures; a heavy duty glass escalator running through the different levels of the rock with a well-constructed stair way for visitors with phobia for climbing mountains. There is also an Eatery/Restaurant, a Museum, Conference hall, Multipurpose hall, Garden, Parking space and a heavy duty Generator. I spent the day climbing and even though I have a phobia for heights I managed to follow the old climbing path.
As I lay in my hotel bed that night exhausted physically but unable to shut down my mind which was in overdrive, I pondered on the happenings around me. I knew I would have to go back in a day or two but for now being in a city where so far I had not met anyone I knew felt good.
The next day I had ordered for a cab to take me around but it was obvious the cab man’s charge was outrageous and we eventually agreed to disagree. He went on his merry way and that left me stranded. “Hello, I couldn’t help over hearing your conversation.
You’re from Lagos, right?” I turned around swiftly and sitting negligently on the sofa in the reception with what he undoubtedly must believe was his winning smile was a very light complexioned, tall man and handsome if you’re into fair men. I looked at him haughtily. It wasn’t my intention but it was a ‘protective shield’ that had saved me more times than I cared to remember.
He continued, “My name is Teju, I can be of service and be your chauffeur for the day, if you don’t mind,” he concluded with a broad smile. “Thanks but no thanks!” I said breathlessly. I didn’t want to be indebted to anyone, not to talk of a stranger. “I am not a ritualist you know, you can ask her” he said giving me a hurt look and pointing at the Receptionist. Apparently she was taking in by his looks or may be wealth. He was obviously a good dresser I thought taking in his masculine swag.
He wore a Men’s tobacco suede, bomber Jacket, white crew-neck T-shirt, black Jean and white low top Sneakers. He didn’t look like the type that will try to be a smart-aleck with me and what is the big deal going out with him? I don’t know anywhere in this beautiful ancient city of Abeokuta. He took me on a tour round the city and educated me on the history of the town. It was obvious he loved the place. “I have a party tonight, will you be my date?” Teju asked out of the blues. I looked up in shock.