“Ngozi! Ngozi come here! I want to talk to you!”
I had passed by quietly, saying a polite “Good Evening”, my “good home training” had taught me as part of the culture, to respect elders , especially one’s landlord and his friends.
The landlord and some of his buddies were outside, enjoying cold club beer and rum, the alcohol was definitely taking toll, and in the words of A$AP Rocky, they were “lit”…for sure.
One of the men, who had previously been to the compound, decided to yell at me to join them. And I didn’t say ask, I said he yelled at me to join them.
I told him that I would join them later, fearing that an outright “no” might turn an already drunk man to an aggressive hulk.
This man was big, about 6’3,and he had previously mentioned on his first visit to the compound that he was an ex-ECOMOG soldier during Sierra Leone’s war . That night, our landlord had been in high spirits and encouraged his tenants (more like subtly demanded) that we all join him and some visitors outside for drinks.I didn’t mind, there was nothing much to do,and there was some nice fried chicken too. This old soldier found out I was from Sierra Leone and recounted stories about his time in my country-his talk basically constituted of all the relationships with women he had during his time there.
And here he was again.
After I told him that I would not be able to join them then,
I went inside the house and started warming up my dinner. This old soldier entered the house.
“Ngozi, Ngozi please let me talk to you”.
“No, go outside”
“I said I want to talk to you!”
I quickly took my food from the microwave and retreated to my room. I keyed the door. I was shaking slightly. So I had to lock my bedroom door, in a house that we pay rent for,I felt uncomfortable sitting in the living room,because of the drunken antics of my landlord’s friend.
In fact, speaking of landlords, I’ve observed it’s kind of a thing to pay rent to someone, but still have them show up outside your bedroom door,no,not just the main door o, bedroom door, demanding that you join them for events (e.g drinks with their friends, church at 9:00am,etc)…or is it just this landlord?
I tried to look for the landlord this morning and explain to him that I did not appreciate the behavior of his friend, but I couldn’t find him. I’m worried that I’ll get the same old response that seems rampant here “Don’t worry, just relax”.
Whenever I hear this, I actually do the opposite, I worry a lot and my muscles tense, because I’ve learned that whenever this phrase is uttered, there’s always a catastrophic mess( also crassly known “a major fnck up”) ahead.
Moving from this house might be a temporary solution ,especially in terms of safety,but I know this would unfortunately not be the last encounter I have with drunken men who demand my attention and time. Mtchew!