Long Distance Relationship………. Episode 1
It is one thing to be cheated and know it, but it is another thing to be cheated and not know it. Tobi had been cheated of a husband and his name was Mayowa. It did not matter that they were just dating when they parted ways. She knew they were headed for the altar.
Tobi and Mayowa had known each other for five years, with four of those years spent together in the same university, before Folake came into the picture. Tobi still could not believe that Folake, her best friend, was the reason she and Mayowa were no longer together. Folake the go-between, who Tobi had sent as an emissary to Paul in Abuja to give him letters, had stolen her man from her.
If Tobi was going to be honest, she would acknowledge that things between her and Mayowa had been rocky for months before Folake came fully into the picture.
Tobi’s friendship with Folake dated all the way back to their university days, even though they went to different schools: Tobi went to the University of Lagos (UNILAG), while Folake attended Olabisi Onabanjo University in Ogun State (OOU). Folake had met Mayowa on different occasions and was informed to all the details that best friends typically share with each other.
After graduation, Mayowa had moved to Ogun State for his youth service, while Tobi stayed in Lagos. Folake also served in Lagos. However, it was after their youth service that the strain on their relationship became obvious.
Almost immediately after completing his youth service, Mayowa had gotten a job working as an Auditor at FBN Insurance in Abuja. If the National Youth Service had made their long-distance relationship seem like a temporary thing, this new job in Abuja made it indefinite. Tobi did all she could to find a job in Abuja, all to no avail. Even the job applications she sent to companies and organizations in Lagos and other parts of the country were rejected. It seemed like the whole universe had conspired to keep them apart, but Tobi was determined to make things work with Mayowa.
She pressed on in spite of Mayowa’s non-challant attitude to the situation at hand. He called less often and blamed it on work, and Tobi, willing to believe anything took him at his word.
During that period, Folake was offered a job with a marketing firm in Abuja, which required frequent travel from Lagos to Abuja. So, she was in Lagos every other week. Tobi, who saw this as an opportunity to communicate with her passive boyfriend, began writing love letters to Mayowa.
She wrote almost every day, pouring out her heart to Mayowa, updating him on what was going on at home and telling him how much she missed him. How she was able to do this on several sheets of paper every single day, without boring herself was amazing. But with all the free time she had on her hands, coupled with the fact that she expressed herself better on paper, it was effortless.
So Tobi wrote, and Folake delivered these handwritten epistles to Mayowa whenever she was in Abuja. Sometimes Mayowa wrote back, and other times, he was ‘too busy’ to reply. But, he always managed to tell Folake to say hello to Tobi.
It was around this time that Folake told Tobi that she was seeing a guy called Jide. And that was all she told Tobi. No amount of persuading and begging for more details could make Folake part with more information on this mystery man.
“This guy sha … I will meet him one day.” That was what Tobi always ended those sessions with whenever Jide’s name was mentioned.
The strangest thing was that she finally met him, a few days shy of the 6-month mark of Mayowa’s relocation to Abuja. During the Eid-el-Fitr holiday, when Mayowa finally got a few days off from work, he came to Lagos. Tobi was of course, excited and had prepared in advance to see him. She had wanted to throw him a mini-party and cook for him, but he had coldly turned down her offer when she told him over the phone.
They had agreed to meet at Tantalizers for lunch, with Mayowa refusing every attempt of Tobi to come and visit him at his house. She had actually tried to visit but he was not at home. Or at least, that was what the gateman told her.
Tobi was the first to arrive at the restaurant, and she waited for almost an hour past the time they had agreed to meet. Mayowa eventually showed up and apologized for keeping her waiting. And then, without even sitting down, he gave her a one-sentence break-up speech.
“I’m not feeling this anymore and I think we should go our separate ways.”
Tobi asked him over and over again for an explanation, wanting to know what was going on. The only response Mayowa gave her was “I met someone.” He left Tobi standing there and went back to his car, supposedly to fetch the “someone.” He returned less than two minutes later, with Folake in his arm.
Tobi almost fainted. The rest was a blur, but she remembered Folake saying she did not plan to hurt Tobi, and Mayowa telling Folake to stop being apologetic for their relationship. That was the last time she laid eyes on both of them.
Later, she received an invitation card from Folake, asking for her presence at her wedding. Beforehand, she had sent a text message begging Tobi to attend her bridal shower. She really had the gut!
Tobi had ignored that text, just like she had ignored all of Folake’s calls, texts, emails and other efforts at reconciliation. Now, it was the day before the bridal shower, and Tobi was at home battling serious depression. As she slipped in and out of a period of despair, she thought up different ways to pay Folake back for her betrayal.
“I am sure there is a special place in hell for best friends who steal their friends’ boyfriends. You’ll go there soon enough,” Tobi muttered to herself. Ironically, she did not extend the same ill wishes to Mayowa who was at the center of the whole affair. (Love has blindfolded her eyes)
Just then, someone knocked on the door, prematurely halting her unforgiving thoughts.
Who was it? Checkout in the next episode.
– To Be Continued –