I read somewhere that writers are inspired daily but not every writer makes use of this inspiration, so I decided to experiment with what I perceived as inspiration……
We’ve gotten to that stage where it is difficult to hang out together as a family, not necessarily because we don’t want to but everyone is so busy these days that to have a common schedule is a feat. but on that faithful day, we were determined to make it work. This was the reason my sisters, my mum and I were on our way to one fancy restaurant a friend recommended to us for lunch. I was behind the wheels smiling to myself for finally getting a chance to drive my mum’s black 2014 Acura ZDX because she protects that car like those dedicated soldiers do at Fort Knox. I was so caught up in the euphoria of the moment that I didn’t quite catch what my immediate younger sister who was riding shotgun said, she had to tap my shoulders in order to catch me up.
“Sorry, what did you say?” I toss over my shoulder at her.
“This is nice, huh?” She replied.
“Nice? this is beyond nice, it’s not every day I get to spend time with all my daughters at once.” Said my mum who was sitting directly behind her at the owner’s corner or the executive seat as she chooses to call it. “I better milk it for all it’s worth because soon, you guys would leave home for good.”
My youngest sister smiled at this and said, ” I won’t be leaving home for a long time, so feel free to take me to lunch any time.”
A statement that was greeted with general laughter cos that chic doesn’t joke with food and we all knew it.
When I pulled into the parking lot of the hotel, we were all impressed by the ambience the surrounding environs portrayed, trust me to immediately make a mental note to bring my “special somebody” here. On getting out of the car, I notice a shiny red Mercedes 4MATIC parked at the other end of the lot. Why is T.T’s car parked at such an awkward angle? I think to myself.
You might ask, how I know the car belonged to T.T. This is because I’ve been coveting the car for as long as I can remember. I met T.T as a young graduate and in a space of 2 years, she had been able to afford a car, not just any car, a 4MATIC! Since I frst glimpsed her sitting in that car, I’ve been counting down to when I can slink down in the soft black leather of my own 4MATIC. I turn to head into the restaurant to catch up with my folks, that’s when I see T.T and her sister Niyi step out of the car. I notice that T.T’s eyes are puffy and red, Niyi’s face on the other hand is hard. Well, no surprise there, her face is always kinda like that. I contemplate walking away and letting them deal with whatever it is in their own way, but that part of me that is always looking to fix that which is broken got the better of me.
“Hello.” I say as they get closer to where I stand.
Startled, they both stop and T.T attempts to smile but instead a few drop of tears seeped out from her already puffed up eyes while Niyi just looks ahead. Something stirred within me, what could make this young lady’s composure falter in public. I put my arm around T.T’s shoulder and lead her and Niyi to a corner that affords us more privacy. We all sit and I want to say something but I decide to keep quiet, if T.T wants to say something she would. T.T opens her mouth to talk but the crying just resumed, then in the midst of her blubbering, I manage to make out something that sounded like
“….tired of losing the people we love, now our mom too.”
So I turn to Niyi and say, “Can you tell me what really happened?”
Niyi just looks through me. Then it hit me, Niyi is in shock! It was still crying T.T that said
“We were at lunch celebrating my promotion when Uncle C.J called to say our mum just died, we quickly ran out to drive home but I noticed my hands were shaking so bad I couldn’t even turn on the ignition, so, I decide we go back inside and sit for a while until I can pull myself together before driving home and that’s when we ran into you.”
“Sorry about your mum.” I say, “If you want, I can drive you guys home.” T.T’s relief was evident because she handed over her car key with no hesitation. I take the key from her and herd them both back to the car.
“Give me a minute.” I say.
I quickly walk into the restaurant to inform my folks of the change in plans. I meet them as they were about ordering their main meal. How considerate, meaning they already had the first course without bothering about me. I hand over my mum’s key to her and tell them about T.T and Niyi, then turned and walked right back to T.T’s car.
On the ride home, I wasn’t even thinking of the fact that my 2 distraught passengers quietly consoling themselves in the back seat might have just experienced what could be the worst day of their lives, rather I was thinking, Wow! Sheila you just drove an Acura ZDX and a Mercedes 4MATIC in one day, go girl!
T.T ended the phone call, turns to Niyi who was lying on the bed looking at her expectantly and say
“Well, that was weird.”
“Who was that?” Asked Niyi
” It’s Sheila, she wants to know if mum is okay”….