Short Stories, Tale Africa

City of Love (5)

 

By Emmeline Bisiikwa, Uganda

 

As part of my new life, I decided to take up outdoor hobbies so I could feel better about myself as well as meet new people. I took up jogging twice a week, gym twice a week and swimming twice a week. It’s on one of these excursions that I met SK. He was a business man and liked the finer things in life.

He invited me to join him and his friends for jogging and working out at the gym and from there we hit it off. He was calm and collected, as well as mature. That was important for me at the time, as he grounded me. I wanted to be around someone who knew what he wanted.

SK kept checking on me and encouraging me to keep my fitness schedule. In fact he picked me up from the office or house sometimes so we could go together. We got to talk about everything and nothing, after all, he said he wanted to know everything there was to know about me before we did anything.

My job took me to different towns decorating for clients and sometimes I would be gone as much as a week, two weeks or a month for work. He kept asking me to come check on him over the weekends as he said he missed me. Anytime I needed to buy something or find something, he would say, “Let me take you.” If for some reason I went without him, he always queried why I didn’t wait for him.

SK became a friend to talk to and the more I got to know, the more I started missing him when we couldn’t talk. He spoke what was on his mind and never beat about the bush. There was a catch though, he hated questions. And I loved them. I could go all day asking about this and that and he would just say don’t ask me, ask someone else.

Eventually, he started pushing me to take our relationship to the next step. He asked me to go sleepover at his place one weekend. I was panicking at this point. Usually, taking things physical was the root of my relationship problems or so I thought. It is when things turned sour with Ricky and countless others before him. Was I ready to let SK in?

I felt like I didn’t know him well enough and still wasn’t sure what his intentions were. The few times we had been alone, he had been a gentleman. He never touched me beyond a hug and often times asked where I was and passed by to say hi even if for 5 minutes.

I had to think of a way to trust him, or not expect anything from him. Question was, could I handle it? Was my heart ready for a potential disappointment again?

Come that Friday evening I decided to go on a date with him and see how it would go. Depending on how well he answered my questions, I would decide if I was ready to take that next step.

He picked me up at 5pm and helped me run some errands. After that, we went to the gym and worked out for an hour. The night ended with dinner and he spoke to me about work, the new town and whether I was happy.

He held my hand and looked into my eyes. I could barely remember the questions I was hell bent on asking him. After dinner he asked, “Vicky, are you coming home with me?”

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