Kindly check out the first part of this story before continuing.
My name is Zara and I like living as simply and as straight forward as possible. I hardly have the time to deal with complicated lifestyles, and I expect everyone to be able to at least, respect themselves and other people’s choices.
In taking up the opportunity of helping Ptem Company build their client base, I was looking forward to linking up with a lot of professionals and to expanding my network of friends in the process. I however, did not expect that anyone would as much as verbally despise me for my style, especially, not a high ranking professional. You can thus, imagine my shock when Zite gave me such a ‘rude welcome’ to the company. At first I thought it was an expensive joke, and was willing to let it slide, and just casually remind him not to run sarcastic comments on non-friends, but when I learnt he was serious, I decided not to become friends with him. So, I tried avoiding speaking with him on our first business trip together.
But since the client we were to meet with was out of town, Zite and I had an unplanned, interesting full day together.
‘So, you also feel less concerned about your appearance when you meet with your clients?’ Zite started with so much sarcasm, and since having a good morning was important to me, I ignored him and continued checking through stuff on my phone, until the car (that we journeyed in) jerked and my phone slid to the floor, and then, he helped me pick it up.
‘Thank you’ I smiled, and continued with the phone.
‘Won’t you answer my question?’ he continued.
‘I really do not consider that a question, but for serenity, I thought I advised that you come along with pretty girls so that you wouldn’t need to be stuck with my face?’ I responded. I meant to shut him up entirely. I however, realized that Zite had a different kind of interesting to him. A positive kind.
‘I remember. The flamboyant types that I could lust after… and you called me a pervert.’ He accused.
‘Well… since it was that important to you…’ I shrugged.
‘Yeah, right. Thanks for your kind intervention’ he laughed., and I could only but smile in return.
‘You see, I was also trying to help’ he continued.
‘Yeah, right…’ It was my turn to laugh, and he joined me.
As we laughed, I realized that he wasn’t totally a bad person, but we had just started off on the wrong foot.
‘Well, I take it that we owe each other an apology’ I cajoled.
Taking the lead, he apologized immediately. So, I stretched forth a hand of friendship.
‘I’m Chizaram Ekwulobia’ I offered.
‘Nwanne m nwanyi!’ he grinned.
‘I’m Chiziterem Onuoha’ he added.
‘So, where exactly are you from?’ he continued.
To think that I never imagined that Zite could be Igbo baffled me. Maybe I didn’t even want him to be Igbo. But it’s funny how life insists on poking fun at people, readjusting them to uncomfortable realities.
‘I’m waiting’ he nudged into my thoughts.
‘Well, let’s just say that we are from Ptem.’ I winked.
‘Alright… we will eventually know’ he smiled. And as we shook hands in friendship, I learnt that first impressions shouldn’t be our only base for judging people.
Nwanne m nwanyi: My sister