He didn’t have a car when we started dating. I didn’t have a problem. True love doesn’t cost a thing. We managed the best way we could. If there was a place the two of us had to go, we either picked a taxi or trotro. Whichever one would take us there safely, we used it. That was our situation until he got a new job and was promised a car loan. He told me, “The loan comes without interest. Plus, if I get the car, I will qualify for fuel and maintenance allowance. I think it’s a good deal. I will take it.” Honestly, I didn’t like the idea. I told him, “Is it by force to take the loan for a car? Can’t you use it to buy something else apart from a car?”
He answered, “Listen to the name of the facility. ‘Car loan.’ It’s a loan you take to buy a car and nothing else.” From the way he answered me, I realized his mind was already made up. I didn’t ask any further questions and I didn’t try to change his mind. He started talking about cars. We would be in traffic and he’ll point a car to me and say, “What do you think about that car? I would look good in it, right?” I will nod. He’ll ask me, “Or you have another car in mind?” I’m not a lover of cars. I don’t even know the brand names. In my world, a car is anything that has four tires. If you put a key in and it moves, it’s a car. I told him, “Any car would do as far as it makes you happy.”
It was a Saturday evening. I’d finished eating and was about to go and take a shower when he called. He said, “I’m in front of your house.” I said, “Come in? Do you have to tell me before you come?” He said, “You don’t understand. Come out and meet me. Your boy is no longer a boy.” The phone was on my ears when I stepped outside. I looked around and he wasn’t there. I said, “I’m out. Where are you.” He said, “You see you can’t see me?” Turn left. Walk to the black car on the pavement. Knock and enter. That’s your boy.” I screamed, “Yaaaay” and rushed toward the car. I pulled the handle. It was locked. He said, “Slow down. Don’t break the handle.”
He got out, walk to the passenger side, and opened the door for me. He said, “Now my queen, you can enter.” I sat in, rested my back on the seat, and took a deep breath. I said, “It smells nice in here.” He said, “That’s my car.”
The pride in his voice was different. He walked differently. It looked like he had springs under his soles. His soles didn’t fully touch the ground. My boy had a car. He said, “Sit in and let me take you for a ride.” I said, “Let me bathe and come. Today we will sleep inside this black machine.” He said, “Don’t bother. Only for today. Next time if you don’t bath, I won’t allow you to get in.” He turned on the ignition and moved away. I was so happy for him. And you could see he was also happy for himself. For the next one hour, he gave me a test drive. He brought me back to my house and said goodbye to me.
His conversations changed. Everything was about his car. You can talk to him for about a minute and he’ll mention “My car” ten times. I noticed it and tried different ways to bring his mind to it. He didn’t mind. Everything was about his car; “Can we meet this evening after work?” “No, I don’t think so. I will take the car to DVLA. I might not come early.” How about Saturday?” “Hmmm, I wouldn’t like to drive on Saturday. The engine has to rest.” We could be talking about food and he would find a way to bring his car in. That didn’t hurt like the way he sought to order me around whenever I’m with him in the car.
We went out one evening. When I got out of the car, I accidentally slammed the door harder than I should. He screamed from the inside, “Hey, what is wrong with you? Do you want to break the door? Do you know how much it cost to repair a car door?�� I said, “Sorry, I didn’t mean to slam it. The door slipped out of my hand.” He said nasally, “It’s not your fault. You’ve been taking trotro all your life so you’ve learned to close car doors just like the mate closes the trotro gate.” It really pained me. I said, “I heard what you said and it’s disrespectful. I demand an apology.” He said, “I wanted you to hear that’s why I said it. You think I’m scared of you?” He never apologized. All night I didn’t talk to him. When he drove me home and I was getting out of the car he said, “Leave the door open. Don’t close it. I will close it myself. Don’t come and tear off my car door.”
I just walked away without looking back. I was so hurt I didn’t know what to do. “This boy paaa what does he take me for? Does he know the kind of cars I’ve been in before? If I considered cars before dating him, does he think I will date a guy like him?” Things like these happen in a loving relationship. We can’t hold on to it and make our hearts continuously bitter. We can only forgive and move on so I forgave him though he didn’t apologize.
The car changed him. He became pompous and walked with his shoulders up as if he was too big to live in this world with us. He visited a friend’s house one afternoon. He told me, “Wait for me in the car I would be back very soon.” Thirty minutes later he wasn’t back so I reclined the seat, put my legs on the dashboard so I can relax my back. He came out with his friend. Immediately he saw me he rushed to the car and screamed, “Put your dirty feet down. Don’t you know I just polished my dashboard? Do you put your legs on a dashboard when you’re in a trotro?” His friend cupped his mouth in his palm to hide the bursting laughter on his face. I felt so embarrassed I wanted to disappear from the car.
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When his friend left and he moved the car, I started giving him my mind. I said, “You can’t embarrass me in front of your friend just because I put my leg on your dashboard. Where’s the dirt you complained about? And let me tell you, had it not been home training that has clipped my wings, I would be riding in cars bigger than this. Do you know the cars I’ve sat in? You think trotro is the only car I’ve sat in? You must be sick if you think that low of me.” It became give and take. He didn’t spare me but I also ensured I wasn’t overpowered. When we got to the main street he said, “Get down and go for those bigger cars you’ve been bragging about.” I got down and picked a taxi home.
When I got home I sent him a text, “If you dare come here again in that miserable car of yours, you’ll see what I will do to you. Marry that car. It’s obvious you love it more than anything in this world.” He responded, “Miserable car? Have you bought a car before?” I texted back, “Had it not been the loan, would you have been able to buy a car?” He said, Take a loan and buy some. I’m waiting.”
We didn’t talk for days. Over a week later he texted, “I’m sorry.” I left him on blue tick. He texted again, “You have to also accept your part of the blame. You went too far.” I didn’t text back. He called and pick. I left the phone on the floor and kept watching my movies. He talked for over fifteen minutes and dropped the line. He called again and I did the same thing to him until he stopped calling. I don’t know what will make me go back to him. Maybe he has to sell that car and drop his newly gained pride before I would consider him. Until then, I will be in my trotro. He should also stick to his car.