Monday, 30 January 2012

White Rose (True Story) Pt3

White Rose (true story)




Whew!                :-D

He continued-

“…it was a white rose in a cone-shaped giftwrap with dots and lines of pink and purple, respectively. I was sure the reasons she bowed her head were to suppress her ego, build up courage, and not meet my eyes amidst her dialogue. I later found out I was right.”

“I was so taken aback that the only thing I could do was… hold the rose. Firmly with my palsy hand.

 My white rose. Our rose. And said “thanks”. It ended up for the better… Much better actually that I hadn’t said more than that. A part of me wanted to tell her, that because of her antics I ended up getting 1st class service and a lil flirtation, but I didn’t want her to read into it as post-defeat backlash. So I just left it at that… for now that is…” 

I smirked and shook my head- a gesture symbolizing “That’s vengeful Umar for you!”

He goes on to say- “…at that very moment she was so relieved and had her guilt lifted, that she consequently lit my face up as she rose with a smile; and my spirits with her mesmerizing perfume that smelt as if she’d just put it on even though we had been on a 11hrs flight.”

I inhaled deeply. I tend to do that when my mind wonders as it wanders too much. I think it was my subconscious trying to go back into (past) fantasy and take a whiff of Aisha. Well… just her perfume.

“I won’t lie to you man… I spent the rest of the day immersed in waking thoughts about the tits and bits of our encounter after we had lodged into the hotel. You'd find me cautiously fondling with that white plant, which I've now separated from its encasement. I got really annoyed at her dad for refusing Chairman’s invite to stay in the same place with us, because he had a discount there and the place is top notch.”

My left eye was doing the imagining/daydreaming and shoe-putting- “if I was there I would….”

Right eye was widest open and trying to accept the reality of things on ground as they were- Leukemia. Aaysha. Aisha. Window seat. White rose.

My multitasking (daydreaming and listening) was interrupted by a wonted and obnoxious knock.

The tall, uproarious, goofy, yet humble bulgy-eyed Industrial Chemist (in-the-making). It was ‘Bunz’- his roommate.

He stood there with his two hands on his stomach, with the middle fingers touching each other right at his belly button signifying the letter ‘H’ for Hunger. It’s mime thing we do- campus blues. He’d barged in with his voracious appetite that needed quelling. Believe it or not, he actually did his IT (Industrial attachement/internship) at Mr.Biggs (fastfood joint). Imagine that? Lol.

I stared, shook my head, then pointed (food), inhaled, and hissed (he'd just let an army of mosquitoes in).

“My hospital ordeal was as follows- 6 days of tests, about 2 days for the procedure, and 2 weeks for the convalescence- the doctor dictating to me as Chairman nodded away. My thoughts were ‘by then my fantasy coquette would certainly be gone gone gone!’ Because there was no way I could ask Chairman point-blank questions about the friend he’d met. Nope. Not just yet. I needed tact, patience, and had to work my way towards it. But most importantly- Prayers.”

I nodded in agreement with every word he said, especially the last one. I was at the apex of my spiritual journey at that time you see. So solace usually came through solitude, meditation, and prayers.

“For the most part, I was ‘lucky’! Got them prayers answered…they came for dinner one night!”
“…I happened to be overdressed for the occasion – spent my pocket money at a nearby boutique. The dinner wasn’t all that…”

In my mind- ‘Well… I won't say I’m not disappointed. But go on.’

“…I was uneasy. Not talking much. It was one of those dinners that made you lose your appetite and the effects won’t wear off till lunch the next day. Oh yeah! It was all about Chairman and the General. The only time I was mentioned was when my medical history was being discussed as if I was a case in a medical journal and not present at the table! Imagine?!”

He shook his head. I laughed.

“The seating arrangement didn’t offer much in terms of line-of-sight if you know what I mean. But I did get to see her in that flawless ‘Abaya’ that beckoned my now numb imagination, as she went to get a salad bar and some hors d’oeuvres. You should’ve seen me trying to stare with tact.” *laughs*

One thing did come out of it though- Got most my questions answered in one sentence.”




They were there for holidays and we’re going to rendezvous with his wife who was in Spain for a family visit.

Oh yeah! You heard me right. His wife…. Was in fact… a true true bona fide aboveboard pedigree S-P-A-N-I-A-R-D.


My mind- ‘That lucky…. Ba..Man!!’

“I was like no wonder! Haba!! This kinda hair. Skin complexion, chin, brows, her lips, those hazelnut eyes…. Yarinya sai kace aljana!? (Girl was like a Jinn!?) *laughs*

“Trust me ma guy… right in that moment of discovery I was sure my white blood count went up up up!”

If he still had one of those blood test he would’ve ‘proved’ it to me. He had this tendency to exaggerate, as in really really really exaggerate, as I would find out later on in my relationship with him.

I was entranced and then envious of the General for such a ‘conquest’. I had to stop Umar right there and then and have him extinguish this curiousity-induced anguish I now suffer from.

Tsaya Mallam! Spanish kace fa!? (Hold it Mallam! You just said Spanish!?) How?!?”

(*Mallam is a prefix used in the Northern part of Nigeria and nearby countries to denote respect. In this context there was an undertone of exclamation to it.)

“It’s true! They met when he was a MILOB there. You know they usually get posted out for foreign missions and courses. They would stay abroad for a period of 6 months, if you are an attaché; or one year, if you are a MILOB (Military Observer).”

“And…?!” Me thinking out loudly. It couldn’t be that easy…. Right?

He would later learn how her mom left her Latin homeland, came to Nigeria, got married, learnt Hausa, converted to Islam ALL in the name of friendship, bonds, compatibility, and mostly- LOVE.

Choi!! I know by now this all sounds made up… but trust me…. It isn’t. I am telling it as I remember.

And if you know me you’d know I’ve inherited good memory genes (may the Almighty bless our parents' souls both alive and deceased). They don’t fade that easily, especially if they make SUCH neural connections in my dome. It’s been 9 years now!? :-o


They left for Nigeria but not before visiting Umar in the hospital and witnessing him hopped with drugs. That was his sorry state after having gone through a life-saving procedure, which even had medical students coming all the way from the States and Europe to witness.

In his hazy state he could’ve sworn he saw her shedding a pearly translucent tear and her sis hiding behind her as they stood by his now pallid, orgone-less, and motionless frame. He’d lost the fire they saw in him earlier before.

Wouldn’t you? If you had a 14hour operation with over 30 spectators, 6 participants, and even a cameraman!?

After he started recovering he’d hear his dad occasionally receiving phone calls from the General and saying that the kids are relaying their hi’s and condolences to Umar. The dad would pass the message accordingly. But never once did he speak to them… I mean HER on the phone. It didn’t matter to him, because he was confident that if he had a personal line (perhaps cellphone) they would somehow connect. He was confident like that. *smh*

At this point I was thinking in my head that if I were him that would make me heal and recover faster like a man with a mission, a blank cheque, and a ticking time bomb that had no display.


Kaduna- Naija on mind.

I was right. Again!? (I know I know- it’s either we had a lot in common with this guy or I really do have an overactive imagination with knack for hitting the bull’s-eye)

He said the two weeks recovery time earlier estimated by the doctor ended up being cut down to 10days. He responded remarkably well to medication and therapy. And all the final post-surgery tests concluded my friend was fit be to 'Ebony' Romeo.

A thing I forgot to ask him was…

What did he do with the white rose?

Their rose.

The rose.

Did his dad see it and ask questions?

Did he cherish and nourish it?

Put it in flawless water vase at the hotel?

Give instructions and threats and rewards to anyone that would be able to keep it alive like that doctors have for him through the Almighty’s Hand?

Did he?

Did he?

I know I would.

I would bring it back with me and it would be part of my opening act and line when I meet my Spanish mulatto minx/belle. Romanticism at its peak. *daydreaming*

Well it’s late for that now isn’t it.

He was sent home with a mission, a big grin, hordes of instructions, 2 plastic bags (medicines & injections), and 4 envelopes (of different sizes) containing medical reports, prescriptions, and test results to ease with customs and immigration I presume, since then there was no TSA yet- post 9/11 days.

He confessed to sleeping half the night at the hotel eager to hear the wakeup call from the reception desk. So he’d leap into KLM’s coach bus and set his sights towards the left wing of the massive blue bird.

THE window seat.

He told me he’d done something so ‘unlike’ him, as if he was ever gonna be the same the same anyway. Well… not after such an encounter he wouldn’t.

He’d been amongst the first few to board the plane and bolted straight for the red-letter window seat. It was such that Chairman was even worried but his sudden surge of energy. That he had to check up on him and enquire about his stamina, biopsy points, and scars (he had a laser surgery) almost three times.

 He was more than alright. He was on a quest.

Full of hopes.


And schemes.

All the while peering down the sparsely lit nightly skies of Toronto as they soared towards- home.

 15 hours later…. He was in his quaint and spacious room that reeked of loneliness, neglect, and precipitous sanitation. Of course that was not until after having passed the hurdles laid from the gate, to the court yard, and into Hajiya’s (his mother) parlor- maternal love and scrutiny, siblings' rowdiness, close friends and neighbours, even house helps.

He is a really good person, so of course they would miss him and worry.

His worry however was somethingelse entirely.

And his miss was a Miss.        :-)

He slothfully dropped his Wrangler leather jacket and sunk into reverie.



Sunday, 29 January 2012

White Rose (True Story) Pt2

White Rose (true story)



“A convenient scenario for her that’s what happened! Right about the time I was playing Devil’s-Advocate-meets-Sirus-The-Virus in my head… the door to the lavatory clicked EMPTY and a man approached us, obviously wondering who on earth had a look of a pissed off lion staring at his two daughters.”

He inquired what the problem was and the lil sis blurted “I told her not to sit there, it’s not her seat!”

The father just gave her a familiar and disappointed look, before he could say a word and give me tactless victory the ‘convenient’ part came- I felt a familiar hand on my shoulder then the voice- “UMAR!?”

Soon as Chairman and the man’s eye met- I saw grins and laughter lines form in a second. THEY KNEW EACH OTHER!?! WELL!!

“Ha ah! Ka ce yara sun san juna ma ashe….”

Roughly translating to… “Oh! Seems the kids know each other already…”

Then their father and mine got carried away into jests and catching up in the aisle, all the while forgetting I haven’t sat yet!

I dropped my bag knowingly on their fathers feet about the same time the daughters greeted my dad, which seemed to work because right then he went- “young lady apologise to this man and give him his seat this instant!” *in a military voice*

Nothing less of a Major General.

“I was mid way unzipping a smile and smirk when Chairman whispered”-

“kaih haba… me a kujera kuma? (“Oh no! What’s in a seat?”)

 “Umar can sit anywhere; no problem.”


"I'D ‘LOST’!!!"

At this point I laughed out… cuz knowing what I’d heard then about his father being a very judicious and morally bound man- he said few words. But meant them all the way.

Kinda felt pity for him. Because I have had this habit of putting myself in peoples shoes as long as I’ve been able to remember. I knew that if I was him I wouldn’t sit in the aisle seat, would wait till the parents went to their 1st class seats, the curtains got drawn, then go as far away and outta sight from them, I would resent her for being that hot, witty lipped, making a fool of me in front her lil sis, all while holding a 17kg bag for 10mins and eventually LOOSING. Yeah I would do that.

Funny enough… he did the same thing! Well not exact same thing. He sat in the aisle chair in the middle section till the parents went ahead. Then called a stewardess and had her help him with his luggage and whispered something in her ear. Then disappeared from Aisha and Yasmeen’s sight.

Of course Aisha was curious about his whereabouts and her sister’s look made her wipe off that smirk of victory she had put on earlier. But what really humbled her to the rumble, was when she asked the stewardess where he was what he’d said to her. She found out he was in fact sick. And that he wanted a seat where he could actually sleep throughout the whole flight without being bothered to shift/move a lil for other passengers to go in and out all the time or worst of all have a person's butt in your face every other time (well... that's one of my dislikes), etc.

She felt terrible! But not as terrible as Umar would have her feeling had he had his way.




Umar was a patient one when it came to boarding a vehicle. Like me, that was one instance he liked being last; which was okay with his Chairman. It wasn’t their 1st trip together after all, so he knew they would meet at the terminal.

As he made his way out, the hostess bade him farewell, asked him ‘hordes’ of questions (that’s how he put it) ranging from his health status quo, the flight, its food and the lil arrangement she made him. She’d gotten him the ‘backseat-of-the limo’ to lay and stretch.

Being an airline policy that a minimum of 6 seats were reserved for the crew besides the fold-up seats they had, it wasn’t much of a hassle for her to please her ebony Adonis. Well at least that’s what Umar called himself (then).

In not so many words he implied she’d hit on him by doing her job WELL and showing some humanity?! Of course I let it slide with a smirk. After all it did seem pretty convincing when she even gave him a blanket as a souvenir. :-)

He got down and into the shuttle bus where there was no more than 11 people and no sight of that… that… that… GURL *said with a growl*

To his surprise and dismay then surprise all over again, soon as he stepped into the Arrivals he saw her scooted in a submissive and somber pose holding onto something glisseny and cone-shaped. 

He thought it was some type of ‘girl-feed’ and ‘simply’ looked the other way.

It was then he saw his dad who told him to sit there and have the porters load up their luggage before he comes out of the loo.

While midair trying to land his tired bum on the alloy chairs he was met by the most immersing cynosure for a face he’d ever seen, but the problem was he did see it more than once, actually. First at Abuja airport. Second in the cabin. Only now it was somethingelse. Aisha was now Aphrodite.

If he had been walking- he would definitely miss a step. Thank god!

She charged at him with that look, that pose, that comport that sprung wells of poetry in his earlier clouded and grumbling mind. She got there just in time to scoot right beside him as he landed holding what he might have now thought was a weapon (if he was me i.e.).

It wasn’t.

It was a rose!


In mind (again), I’m like- “get outta here!”

It was a pure white rose like none he’d ever seen, still breathing its last breaths, holding in it this mulatto’s words and a promise to live on forever if only water would manifest. She wrapped it in a cone shaped giftwrap that only God knows where she got it from because in his peripheral he couldn’t see any gift shop.

This was what she did

She bowed her head just right enough and murmured-

“I’m very sorry for what I did, it was childish, I ‘kinda’ embarrassed you, and certainly inconvenienced you a lot more than I intended/hoped to. Please accept this flower as a symbol of peace and my candid apology.”

 I, personally, had my mouth opened. What about Umar you wonder?

Well… suffice to say my guy was awestricken. Rapt. His virtual jaw dropped. Got temporally visually-impaired. Heart pounded like a mallet against his sternum. Pushing all the blood towards his face- nigga blush.

He was a mess!

It was the last thing he’d expected. Hell…! It was the last thing I expected too. (window seat, mulatto, white rose, what next?)

At this point of the storytelling he smiled a familiar smile that had hidden vestiges of mementos in it. Then sipped the now cold tea he had by the desk as the screensaver kept juxtaposing the words SIRUS THE VIRUS (his nick name).

I was now on my stomach with a curled pillow under my chest and face pointed right at him!

He smacked his lips and continued.

Right before he said a word, deep down inside me, I was silently praying regarding a past event being told present.

This was my prayer-“ I HOPE HOPE HOPE HOPE AND HOPE UMAR DIDN’T fuck up and do something in tune with his traits of effrontery.”

Well folks… I’d have you know…



Saturday, 28 January 2012

White Rose (True story)

White Rose (true story)

Amongst the very 1st time my hardcore persona moistened was… when I got comfy with Umar who at the time happened to be my neighbor for over 8months but I NEVER got a good look at his face talkless of chit chat (story for another day).

What had happened was (you’re supposed to smile at that)… we got tight in a nick of time- better late than never right? (Even though cliché, I would still say, people misunderstand me. Scratch that- this is not about me)

That was when I ‘noticed’ he had relationship issues. Being me my stalwart self (brother’s keeper if you may), I had his back.

That included cooling his Vesuvian temper.

Massaging his massive, yet lanky, ego.

But most importantly- giving him access to “MY ORACLE”.

It was book at the time I would jot down poems of various themes, deep content, philosophical stuff and Xaru (a neologism for profound and effulgent thoughts), which all could be easily edited into mind-grabbing-reading-me-again-show-off-to-your-friends-and-probably-forward sms.

Don’t judge me! My playlist consisted of Donell Jones, Enrique, Soluna , Joe, etc and HELLO I am a sarcastic romantic aren’t I?

Even my cousin hated me because of that book- I didn’t allow him access. Period! Yeah yeah. I had my reasons. He wasn’t in any serious resulting-yielding relationship that needed salvaging and besides its MINE I should get to patent, copyright, trademark and limit access right?! #defensive

Anyway… I noticed that on many occasions- in fact all the times I could remember. He would start typing “MY DEAR AAYSHA”.

One day I finally ask him…
“Why do you do that? “
“Why do you always have to write her name in every sms? In fact why do you spell her name that way?!?”

He sighs, clicks on the little X in the docker (exiting FreeCell), and hits stop on MusicMatch ® which was ironically lulling Spanish vibes, then he says-

“She wasn’t the first! *pauses*
My first true love was also Aisha.”

I swallowed then muttered
“What happened?”
Before I could finish the last sentence he said those dreadful paragraphs in one word- “Leukemia!”

My face sauntered downwards at a Matrix pace dragging my earlier curious and raunchy brows along with it. Then I ‘thought’ I felt something swallow ‘something’ in my chest. I was dreading a perfect love story- melancholic melodrama.

The last thing I needed  was to ‘feel’. I was Mr.Spiderman. Mr.Shades. Stone-boy. Ice. Sidro. 911. A bunch of aliases and tags portraying my reputation, if you may, owing to the external persona I had.

But in reality I really was rock solid then and very very introversive and isolated- anti-social. Crazy you may say and wonder how can a person listen to the kinda crappy music I did, write poetry in red lighting, learn Spanish so dogmatically, not play or follow any fanatic sport and still remain unattached, unknown, unnoticed (so I thought), and mostly unyielding to like, lust, and limerence. But guess what? I did pull it off and with such Sprezzatura.

But that day; that word, loosened up a lot more than my chest cavity.

Soon as he said Leukemia- it was my mind that was tormenting me with its rapid visualizations…

I looked towards the computer monitor one more time and he goes-

“We were supposed to be married my now…”

I simply nodded nudging him to- either or.

My gesture and hopes were realized as he quenched my now ravenous curiosity…

“…we first met at the airport in Abuja… my dad and I were going to Canada for his check up and my procedure.” (He had a liver problem that sapped him out and made him loose a whole academic year and introduced him to a terrible bathroom ritual- those terrible vitamin k injections)

“…I saw her in terminal. Or rather just glanced towards her direction and our eyes met and you know me, I just looked away as if she was leper (that was something we shared- smugness, IDC attitude, self-denial etc)

But manhhhh… I must confess- she FINE!!!”

“Oh really, how fine?”


“Bottom line- she was a half-caste!”

“Kaih!!?No way! You’re kidding right?”

“Nah man. I kid you not when it comes to my Aisha…”
 (at this point I felt something something again)

“So… what about her dad?”
Trying to deviate from the negative.

“Ah! That’s the catch ai. He’s Chairman’s really good friend. A General in the army- you know chairman and his people. Many at times we at home would be wondering if he’s AI (Army Intelligence) or something.”

Chairman was what they call their dad. A huge set man with very few words.

“Did you know them (her and her family) prior?”

“I don’t get it?”

“I thought you said saw her for the 1st time in the terminal?”

“Yeah! It was just that one ‘glance’ mostly owing to my state of mind with the whole trip. Wasn’t really down with it- bad timing with my health clock if you know what I mean.”

I nodded.

“But where the curtains came down was in the airplane, after we boarded. You know I love window seats…” (in my mind I’m like me too- are u kidding me? Seems like we do have a lot in common with this dude that’s nearly a decade older than me)

“…so that’s why I personally saw to it that even if it was in the cargo bay that I got window seats. Chairman’s guy arranged everything and assured me, as always, I got mid-section window seats just by the wings.”

I now finally lean back because things were getting interesting… almost fictional.

“I was confidently strutting toward 17A when I saw the very same toffee coloured girl in MY SEAT!?!”

“…she was with her younger sister, Yasmeen who was seated in 17B, the middle one. Meaning I had the aisle seat. *HISS*  I just cleared my throat and when they turned I put it in her face- BOARDING PASS.

The lil sis just gave her the I-told-you-so look, but my lady didn’t go down without a fight. In fact she didn’t even go down after the fight. She just said- “that’s nice I have one too! Wanna see?”

I was SO pissed and fuming… that I started stuttering my way with the following-

“S-ssso www-whatt the hell!!?!!”

“At least if you cc-could read well enough yy-yyou would have noticed that your seat sss-sssays 17C which is THIS aaaand 17A which-chch is MINE!!”

(remember, he had a temper which in most cases has the host stammering too)
She gleamed her big brown eyes and with half a smile said “so you can read? Big deal!”

“I swear at that point I didn’t know which of the caveman tactics to pull on her, was I to act 'civil' and raise a super alarm till an air marshal, hostesses, the Pilot and co-pilot came and got her not only outta the seat but the freaking airport as well.”

“What happened then?” I muttered.


Tuesday, 24 January 2012

a mime’s rhyme

If mimes could rhyme
They would make the deaf hear chimes

A mime did rhyme
Made the deaf pity the blind

Cuz all the words in time
Wouldn't have SUCH bind

Like these jingles ringing in this here eyes.

If mimes could rhyme
They'd intertwine
What IS and ISN'T
And pass it off as divine

By skidding and smudging the invisible divide
Signing in cosines
Doth one design so fine!

The threshold broken.
Orgone reborn.

Prayer of the deaf- *ironic silence*

A mime just rhymed.

To see a sound
And feel a rhythm
Surely would astound.
Behold! The gift of the mute raconteur…
Bless the soul of a mime that rhymes for every (poetic) handicap

© I A Saeed 2012