Posted in Uncategorized

Author’s Note and A BIG Thank You

“Tomorrow, is the first blank page of a 365 page book. Write a good one.”
Brad Paisley

Hiyaaa, lovelies!!! We are already well into the new year and I’m so glad to find you present this year. Indeed, God is faithful. This is just a post to share the inspiration behind the Seventy Times Seven series, to share a few lessons and experiences that happened in 2016 and to say a big Thank you for sticking around and eating the meals prepared on the blog. This post is dedicated to you, my ah-mazing readers. It is also dedicated to Franklin Badu Jnr. of Citifm. Your birthday is on 13th January and it has come early for you this year, I just can’t wait…heheheee!

At this point in our lives, I’m sure most of us have written down some resolutions and even if you haven’t written it down I’m sure you have some ideas and plans of what you want done by the end of this year. Just know that no matter what you shouldn’t give up on your dreams for dreams are forever. You were given those dreams for a purpose so don’t relent.

2016 was an amazing year – a mixture of good, crazy, sadness, challenges and a lot of laughter and I want to share a few lessons and experiences.

  1. Prayer works and words are powerful!

There are times when you pray and you feel God isn’t just listening but He really is. I attended a focus group discussion on mobile phones and their usage on campus and I remember walking with my roomie and sister, Naomi. I told her that I pray that I get the Icy Cup for one week prize. Uhuh! I love food, don’t act so surprised. Everyone needs food, abi? She thought I was acting silly because I said it jovially but honestly, I was dead serious. I wanted that prize. A week of being supplied with the awesome fresh yogurt to go with a bunch of pastries sounded like heaven to me. So I really prayed and when we played the game of picking the paper and finding out what was on the paper, I shrieked out. There, on the paper, was the one week supply of Icy Cup! This may sound like a small testimony; there have been other times God has answered my seemingly “huge” requests but I want you to know that his answers aren’t always yes, sometimes it’s no, sometimes it’s wait. Just know that He has good plans for you.

 

  1. People are important

I’ve learnt that in as much as we want to be independent and have time for ourselves and our own preparations towards our successes, people are very important. Sacrificing your time for people to help them is what matters. I wish I had spent more time on people last year, though I did a bit. I’m gradually learning that it’s people who are going to celebrate with you, it’s people who you can call for advice, it’s people, you can act silly with, it’s people who annoy you. Not the inanimate objects of books, movies, research and experiments but the presence of people. I’m so thankful to God for all the people that have come my way, because out of them, I’ve made life-long friends and family, I’ve learnt to make friends out of “enemies” and I’ve learnt to keep people.

img-20170101-wa0024

_mg_4707

Moving from just success to significance is important. Ask yourself, what can I do with what I have to help people? And when you do, that’s when the feeling of fulfilment sets in and it’s an amazing feeling I tell you.

 

  1. Have the courage to start

To me, courage is staying, sticking and learning from your failures. It’s not giving up and walking away. 2016 taught me to start and to do just that.

  • Blogging

I remember I made a firm decision to start a blog. I had already been writing and cooking up stories for as long as I could remember but I felt starting a blog would help me share my stories, experiences and also give the opportunity for my readers and I to interact.

2016-06-27_03-05-26

I was super excited when I published my first blog post and was exploring all the other features WordPress had to offer. This decision of blogging was inspired when I was doing my attachment at Citifm in 2015 during the long vacation. Working as an online journalist at citifmonline made me fall in love with the whole blogging and website thing. And oh, getting to meet Akua of http://www.akuawrites.wordpress.com and interacting with her got me into the whole idea of blogging.

I was exposed to a lot of blogging and writing and of course, there is still more to learn! Currently, the hottest thing on the blog is the Seventy Times Seven series. If you haven’t read it, my friend, what are you waiting for? Just check out the previous posts and you will find the episodes there. This is where to start: https://selassiespeaksblog.wordpress.com/2016/09/17/seventy-times-seven-i/

Starting with a series on the blog was one of the most challenging things I did last year. It meant I had to be disciplined and consistent. Initially, I hadn’t thought for Seventy Times Seven to become a series at all. I had just written the first episode and I felt it will just go down well as a “suspense-ful” short story so that readers would be left to figure it all out but I’m thankful my readers didn’t let me sleep. You all pushed me to continue the story, to come out every week with episode after episode.

Some of you called, some of you messaged me, some of you got angry when you felt I was being mean by not telling it all yet and it was your encouragement that pushed me to finish it. Thank You and I’m so glad that the series has affected your lives one way or the other. Honestly, I was a bit sceptical about posting the first episode when I had finished it because I was wondering what people would think about the sensitive issue I had written; but I’m glad I did not succumb to my worries. I would’ve been killing your dreams and mine too.

 

What influenced the title for the series was the part of the Bible where Jesus was asked by one of his disciples that “How many times must we forgive?” and he answered, “Seventy times seven times.”

Matthew 18:21-22

21 Then came Peter to him, and said, Lord, how oft shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? till seven times?

22 Jesus saith unto him, I say not unto thee, Until seven times: but, Until seventy times seven.

To be candid, we’ve all done some wrong at some points in our lives. We all need to be forgiven. Unforgiveness is a fox that lurks in most of our lives. Most people, especially Christians are still bitter because they cannot let go of that person who wronged them and they cannot forgive themselves.

This new year, I am going to tell the hard stories, I’m going to bring to light the things in our society that are going on unnoticed, I’m going share our stories; our hurts, our storms and our victories, I’m going to tell the story of both the hunter and the “huntered”, my voice is going to be louder – our stories are going to be heard now more than ever! I’m going to share the shades of blue I see in my paintings so that the light of hope in our society can be seen and felt and I’m not going to hold back. Ever!

I’m so glad we did this! I’m so pleased I have found a family and a network of bloggers and friends over here. Thank you all so much for your comments, your encouragement, your criticisms, for sharing the episodes and posts on the various social media platforms and for your love. I just love you too!

  • Sedesel Publications

Last year, I also had the opportunity to work with my Dad. We wanted to start a publishing house and we did! The Publishing firm’s name is Sedesel Publications and it’s registered and recognized and we are gradually building a team. We mainly publish stories (fiction & non-fiction) and Christian literature. We also offer services like editing, story writing, transcribing, designing of books, brochure, logos, calendars and advertising.

logosedesel

Last year, there was progress in this young company because we were able to launch the first novel written by a very seasoned and experienced Grandpa, Mr. Ernest Branttie who just wanted to share the story he had written with the world. It was held in a wonderful ceremony at the Institute of Local Government, Opposite ARS, Madina Estate in Accra, Ghana.

launch

The books are doing really well now. For some copies you can contact: 02635907779 or you can buy the novel online on Amazon: https://www.amazon.com.au/Angel-without-Ernest-Emmanuel-Branttie-ebook/dp/B01K7TO8TC

So if you’ve got that story to share or you’ve got that story you’ve already written gathering dust on the shelf, you can contact us on 0263507779/0501368890 and we will work with you to make it a masterpiece. Don’t wait too long to share your story; the world needs it now.  You can also email us at sedeselpublications@gmail.com or at bubbleseditor@gmail.com

Go follow Sedesel on Facebook: Sedesel

 

  1. The famous four-letter word (LOVE)
  • Family

I’ve come to believe that it’s not a big nicely decorated house that makes a home, it’s not the walls, neither is it the chambers in the house, it’s the people that make a house a home; it’s the smiles, cries, pain, tears and laughter that we share together that makes a family. It’s the silent communication of a stare and touch that is understood by people who go through what you go through. I’m mighty glad for my family and their support. And for the new families I’ve made in school, at church, on social media and especially, on WordPress. No matter what we’ll continue to eat our mangoes, we’ll continue to live our lives because we have each other.

IMG_20170101_084528.jpg2016-08-12_21-17-55

 

5. Say it and do it!

hearts

Just tell that person, that family member, that friend that you love them. Don’t wait until it’s too late, help until it’s too late; don’t wait to give that hug, say that kind word, do that good deed, until it’s too late.

This year, I hope to explore more, to be adventurous (the good kind of adventure, lool, before you start thinking far), to know God more, to help out more, to make more friends and meet people, to tell people’s stories and not forgetting that they matter whiles at it, and to go out to places I’ve never been to before. What about you???

Finally, I’ll just leave you with the Bible scripture my mother always leaves with me:Seek God first and His righteousness and all other things shall be added unto you.

Love You!!!

Bisous, love

Sela

Posted in Writing

Seventy times Seven X

Woohoo! It’s the final episode of the Seventy times Seven series  and I want to thank you for going on this ride with me. It hasn’t been an easy one with a few bumps and sometimes when my characters just wouldn’t speak to me but I’m so glad you were with me through it all. You were amazing! I wish all of my readers a happy and prosperous new year! God has been faithful indeed. This post is dedicated to Mawufemor, Nhyira, Cecelia, Naomi, Nana Yaw and Emmanuel and to all my other awesome readers. Hope you enjoy the last of this series and do tell me what you think so far. Has the series touched you in any way? What lessons have you learnt? What were your favourite words, phrases or sentences in the series? All experiences and comments are welcome on the blog. Do share, like and comment. I just love to hear from you! Let’s go rapid!

Bisous, ❤

Sela

She stared at the wooden door. It was deep brown and was carved with decorative lines and patterns. It was indeed a beautiful door but she wasn’t staring at the door. No, her mind was faraway – she was wondering what to do, wondering what she should say.

She was at her uncle Joojo’s office and his secretary had just given her permission to enter but she couldn’t help but hesitate. It had been three weeks since she had told Irene everything in an effort to cause a rift between her and her husband but she soon realised with Damien’s help that she had rather caused the rift in her life and not anyone else’s. She remembered the preacher’s words on that Sunday at church.

“Why do you think forgiveness is such an important word to Jesus? His disciples asked him, ‘Teacher, how many times must we forgive our neighbour?’  and he answered, ‘seventy times seven times.’

“Why, are you the only person who has been wronged? Just think of the many times you have wronged someone yourself; spreading false news about someone around, hurting people with your words. You think once you didn’t use a knife you aren’t a murderer? You think once your hand never touched a gun, you haven’t killed before? Just because you touched that sister or brother you haven’t tainted their purity because you haven’t slept with him or her?

She needed more than ever to work on herself and learn to forget. And she had to do this.

She knocked on the door once and entered. There he was sitting by his desk wearing a pensive look. One could tell that the past few weeks had worked its toll on him. She would understand if he told her to get lost right there but seeing her, Joojo knew she had not come to continue her battle with him.

She walked towards him and to her, they were her first steps of courage and freedom.

“I’m so sorry, Uncle Joojo, for telling Irene and most importantly for not forgiving you,” she apologised, “I’m sorry for not letting go of the past.”

“I understand, Padi, to just feel that the past never existed is a difficult thing to do and I’m very sorry for what I did to you when you were young. It was very wrong of me, I’m so sorry I did. I should have been the one to protect you, not the one who harmed you,” he said, his voice shaky.

“Damien told me everything about you and how much you struggled. I know you aren’t proud of what you did but I’m glad that God changed you. I really do forgive you and I’ll keep forgiving you because God has made me understand that forgiveness is freedom and my responsibility as His child,” she continued, “He has healed me of the past and now I’m free.”

“Thank you so much, Padiki,” he replied with a grateful smile, “I promise to be a very good uncle.”

“And I promise to be a very good niece,” and they laughed. It felt good to laugh together again.

Just then, Irene entered the room, holding a basketful of lunch for her husband. Even though she was surprised to see Padiki in her husband’s office, she looked as beautiful as always and at that moment, Joojo was truly grateful that he had found a gem. She had forgiven him so easily and never brought up the matter again. Over the past few weeks, she had been helping him not to worry so much. Together, they had prayed that Padiki would find it in her heart to forgive him.

On seeing her, Padiki rushed to her side and apologised to her. For the pain and hurt she had caused her and their marriage and for every bitter word she had uttered.

“Don’t worry, Padiki, I’ve already forgiven you.  Circumstances always push us to do some things, or say some things that we may later regret but that doesn’t close off all opportunities and chances for us to change,” she said, “It is easy to forgive when you are aware that you aren’t perfect yourself and that there are some things that you may have done to someone or God, but He’s still able to forgive our sins.”

“I’m not hurt from the things that you told me about Joojo anymore, but I’m rather proud of what he has become now. All that happened, happened for a reason, to teach all of us and cause us to grow.”

And at that moment, Padiki realised how wise Irene was and she admired her support of her husband. She was a real strong woman and she seriously needed to work on herself in that area.

“Thank you so much, Irene,” Padiki said as she hugged her and she turned around to hug her uncle Joojo. It had been long since she had felt truly free. Today she was crying but it was the last time she was going to cry over her past. There were many seasons under the sun, but she decided that no matter what, she was going to laugh at the days to come.

She hugged them again so tightly before she was able to wipe away her tears and finally left for her home.

When she got home, she hurriedly called Damien to tell him the good news, “God did it, Damien.”

“Yes He sure did, Joojo called to tell me what happened in his office today. He is very grateful. It wasn’t so hard, was it?”

“Of course it was at the beginning but after I let go, I felt how easy it was and how free and peaceful I felt and I thank God so much.”

“Glad to hear that,” Damien said on the other side of the line. His heart was at peace to hear the news about Padiki and Joojo.

“So what’s your plan for today?” she asked playfully flying off a tangent.

“Will probably head out to a certain pharmacy and take a certain lady away for an outing.”

“An outing?”

“Yes, an outing whether she likes it or not. So she better be at the pharmacy by 6, no dulling kraa.

“What if she doesn’t want to go out to work this evening?”

“Then I would come and meet her in her house and take her for that outing.”

“Nothing stops you eh?”

“Nothing Padi, you should’ve learnt that by now,” he said, “so be ready.”

“Yo,” Padiki laughed. She didn’t have it in her to argue with him this evening. This evening, she wanted to bask in the light and in the peace she was feeling.

*

They walked along the beach under the night sky. Today, the celestial bodies shone very brightly and the moon was in a competition with them as it struggled to shine off the sun’s light. The sea was also calmer today and Damien took it as a sign. He had lived near the sea most of his life and knew how stormy, scary and peaceful, calm it could be. A living thing of contradictions and he had often wondered why people referred to it as a woman. Maybe, because it was beautiful and deep and so vast. Or perhaps the way it could suddenly change its mood. But tonight, Damien’s eyes were on one particular woman.

It is a beautiful evening, Padiki thought as she walked hand in hand with Damien. They stopped suddenly to feel their feet in the sea sand being washed by the water.

Damien had grown quiet after they had indulged in a pleasurable confection of ice cream. This evening he wanted to pop the question again but his mind went ahead of itself and reminded him of the day he had proposed to Padiki, acting like a defence mechanism to discourage him from saying those words again to her. Although he was wounded that day, he still wondered what her answer would be now, especially now that Joojo had been forgiven and everything seemed to be fine.

Padiki ate the last of her ice cream biscuit, making as much noise as she could to annoy him. And that was another thing he liked about her. She was herself when she was around him, and even more so now that things between them had become transparent.

“Why have you become quiet? What things are rolling around in that head of yours?” she asked, playfully punching his shoulder.

He wanted to scream, he wanted to shout, he wanted to let it all out, but instead, he smiled so calmly like the sea and held her hands, “Padiki…”

Immediately he did that, she knew what he was about to ask her. He could see a little fear in her eyes though.

“Padiki, I know it’s too early for you for me to ask you this, but…I haven’t changed my mind about you. I’ve really fallen in love with you and everything that is you. I know it’s a bit too much to ask, particularly at this time and I know you need some time to work on yourself to get to know God more and more and to become the woman He wants you to be,” he said, his voice solemn and his eyes sincere.

“Uh-” she began.

“You don’t have to say anything now, dear… I’m willing to wait for all of that. I’m willing to help you through all of that, Padiki, I really do love you and I pray that someday we will be at the altar making all our vows to each other.”

She was speechless and as she stared into the eyes of the man who had helped her fight her storms. She knew that she now had the courage to stand on her toes to expose herself to several challenges along the road, with the hope that although the storms may come, they couldn’t carry her away. She was very grateful to God for bringing him into her life.

In the end, she managed to speak, giving permission for her heart to burst, “Thank you Damien, thank you so much. I’ll help you too.” There was nothing more she could say, they both understood.

And when they hugged, holding each other tightly, two hearts beating as one, it was both a prayer and a promise.

Posted in Writing

Seventy times Seven IX : Sticks and Stones

Great weekend!!! Hope you are all doing well, my awesome readers. KNUST buddies, hope the exams has been good so far. We are giving no way to trails oh! So learn wai and to all my other readers and virtual friends, hope your weekend has been LITT (too much Suits is influencing me…hehehe). And the good news is, Episode nine is here!  

Today’s episode is dedicated to Azoteyine  Sally who celebrated her birthday this week. Hope it was all bliss and blast. It is also dedicated to Tsotsoo and Efo Courage, thanks guys for all the support.

The coming week is going to be a special, hectic week, because that is when Ghana decides on who becomes the next president. Some would be excited, some would be anxious but the ones who wouldn’t sleep are the journalists who would be gathering data with all their senses awake. With all prayers on deck, all hands clasped, may the best man for Ghana win.

Enjoy reading this episode and tell me what you think. Really do, I love to hear from you. Thank you so much for sticking with me .

Bisous, ❤

Sela

 

“What? Tell me about it. I’ve got all the time.”

Joojo seemed to pull himself together to gather some courage as he began his story, “It began when I was in SHS. I was a student filled with determination and hope and all fired up to start secondary school in my first choice school. I was doing so well and later became the General Secretary of the Scripture Union. But those values were compromised when my friend introduced me to porn. It started innocently at first, I mean I knew all about porn, I knew what I was watching but it was actually my first time.

“At first, I was disgusted by the scenes I saw on the television but then I realised that evening when I went to my dorm I couldn’t shake the scenes off, they kept playing over and over again in my mind. I just couldn’t. After some time, I went back with the boys to watch some more. I regret ever doing that…because it began to rule my dreams and thoughts. My mind became a battlefield of some sort and it always left me exhausted. My life in SU and church conflicted with my struggle with porn and it left me exhausted. Living life on the fence was confusing and uncomfortable. I could talk to a whole student congregation about purity when I wasn’t pure myself. I was preaching when I wasn’t practicing it.

“I couldn’t just look at a lady without undressing her…and I began to masturbate. To me masturbation was safe because I could avoid sleeping with someone and avoid the risk of contracting sexually transmitted diseases altogether. So I just stuck to masturbation…but I was wrong. I knew I was committing a sin against my body. I tried to stop…I really did. Every new year I would resolve to change to stop but I would always break the rules before the year is in full bloom. I prayed for God’s help but anytime I did that it seemed I went back to being worse. It was like that in secondary school. Masturbation wasn’t as safe as I thought it was for me. It rather built in me a desire to have sex.

“So when one Saturday morning, I was the only one at home and saw my niece coming to the house as usual I took that chance. I lured her with candy and I am so sorry I did! I mean I knew she was just a little girl but at that time in my eyes all I could think about was satiating that need in me.

“I began by feeding her with porn so that she got used to the idea. I remember her saying, ‘Uncle, that is not cartoon, I want to watch cartoon!’ and I remember my selfish self, telling her to watch it, turning her head to the direction of the TV.

‘If you watch, I’ll give you toffee,’ I had said.

“Anytime I did that to her, I always felt an angel in tears at the back of me. I felt so guilty so when I finally completed SHS and left the country to go and study I was greatly relieved. I was happy I could hide from my troubles, or so I thought. Though it seemed I was stopping because I didn’t have my friends around to influence me, I battled sleep and torments when I began school there. And with the internet I could access porn at any time. It was very bad.

“One Sunday I found myself in church and at that point I knew I needed to be free. I decided to give my life to Christ. I told the pastor the struggles I was going through and he gave a profound advice to make a conscious effort to stop porn and anything that will spark sexual desire at so wrong a time. I remember he gave this scripture from Songs of Solomon that do not awaken love…

“I closed all the porn sites. Broke all the porn CDs and burnt all the magazines that were lying around in my room. That day, as I stood by the fire whose flames licked my past hungrily I felt so new- like I had begun a totally new book in my life. I felt the presence of God in my life like never before and I began to go to church regularly. I enjoyed that part of my life. I was so at peace and worked so hard on myself to become the man that God wanted me to be. Of course, God helped me to overcome.

“But I still felt guilty anytime I thought of my niece. So to remove the guilt, I started bringing her gifts anytime I came down home. She never gave any indication that she remembered and so I never asked her to forgive me. I thought it was best to stay away from her and never bring the past up. I didn’t know that then she was figuring out what I had done to her. That day at the wedding showed that Padi was all grown up and very angry with me. I asked her to forgive me, but she wouldn’t.”

“Hmmm…perhaps that’s why she has never been in a relationship before,” Damien added, “And that’s why she didn’t want to have anything to do with me.”

“Yes, I guess so. She doesn’t trust men because of me. That’s when I learnt that I was thankful God had forgiven me but I had not forgiven myself. I’m sorry for the wrong I did to her. I don’t know how she’s going to forgive me. I’ve really hurt her sooooo bad. I can’t bear to think what she must have gone through all these years. The realization that she had traded something so valuable for a piece of toffee; the inability to have let anyone into her life, I’m just feeling terrible for her and for myself right now. I’m supposed to have been the uncle; I should have been her protector not one who would devour her youth and I should have been the one she listened to. I spread the doors open to her heaven too early; too soon. I shouldn’t have but I’m so sorry and I have changed. You know I have.

“Could you just talk to her for me? Tell her to forgive me? I wouldn’t be peaceful with her unforgiveness holding me down like that. Please tell her.”

“It would have been good to stay angry with you or say you deserve this, Joojo for doing this to your niece but I’ll really be wasting my time doing that. Everyone deserves more than a second chance,” Damien patted his friend’s back. “I will try. I understand her now and I understand you too. Just give Irene time to be by herself and for Padiki, leave her to me, k?”

“Ok,” Joojo sniffled, “Thanks man.” He was so exhausted from all this and he wished it could end.

star

Padiki sat in her room when she heard the bell ring. Who could it be? She thought as she grabbed a pink t-shirt and put it on hurriedly. She didn’t mind that her hair was in a mess. She was going to tell the person to get lost. She wanted to be alone.

She got to the door, and saw that it was Damien.

“What in the world are you doing here?”

“I’m here to see you, isn’t that obvious?” He asked, “Let me in, Padiki.”

“No, I don’t want you in.”

“Please.”

“Fine if you will be done very soon.”

Damien gave her a smile as if he had something only he knew about.

“What’s up?” she asked as she folded her arms wearing a say-what-you-want-and-get-lost look.

He took her hands in his and said, looking into her eyes, “I know, Padiki, I know all about what you’re going through and why you are going through it.”

Her eyes grew big and said, “Uncle Joojo told you?”

“Yes he did, he told me everything.”

“I really don’t like him,” Padiki said. And Damien could see that scared little girl in her all over again.

“And I understand that your dislike is bordering on hate right now.”

“Yes.”

They sat on the stairs of the porch. The moon and stars shone ever so brightly in the sky as if they weren’t aware of the storm that gathered in Padiki’s heart.

“But you know you have to let him go right?” he asked, “You can’t keep on hating him forever.”

“I’m trying to but I realize I just can’t.” she said, “I can’t erase all those memories. It’s just hard.”

“I know how you feel. I remember back when I was doing my masters, I got a great business idea that I shared with a very good friend of mine. In fact, he was my friend since childhood and I saw him as my brother- as my family. He was on board with the idea and so we prepared and started the business project. All of a sudden in the middle of everything, he just began to falsely accuse me of certain things. And that’s when he began to hide the aspects of the business from me. I later found out that he was using the business money to fund some other work he had begun. I was so angry, hurt and betrayed.

“It was very hard to forgive him…but I soon learned to let it go. I had to in order to move on. Forgiving someone won’t make you less of a human being. It rather sets you free from yourself and sets free the love of God you are holding back.

“I know it is difficult to forget it but just try. You cannot do it all alone. Ask God for help and let your mind go back to the times when you wronged someone knowingly or unknowingly. The things you might have said to someone. You know, I don’t believe that statement, ‘sticks and stones may break my bones but words never hurt me’. Because words do hurt and memories do remind us of how we have been wronged. Please just don’t think about how much he has wronged you but forgive him because God forgave you. God is greater than our hearts and once He has overcome we shall also overcome.”

“Ok, I’ll try,” Padiki said and suddenly smiled, “I didn’t know you were a preacher oh.”

Damien laughed, shaking his head, “No I’m not but when the Spirit moves, there’s no stopping it. You just do what He asks you to and the wonderful thing is, He gives you the power to do it.”

“Good, because right now, I feel lighter.”

“But tell me? Is that why you pushed me away?” He questioned.

“Yes, I really didn’t want anything to do with Joojo’s friends. I thought they were the same as him but knowing you has told me that you are nothing like him.”

“And you have to realize that you knowing me too should tell you that your uncle has changed. He’s not the same helpless selfish teenager who took advantage of you. He’s a Christian who wants to please God in everything he does. We all have pasts you know?”

“Eheh? I’m so curious right now. What did you do too?”

“Curiosity killed the cat.”

“Yeah but it never killed me.”

“Ok, I promise to tell you only if you promise not to push me away again, you hear?” he asked good naturedly.

“I promise.” And that’s when she really smiled at him without thinking of anything Joojo. It actually felt good.

“But before that, do you have any food in there, I’m starving.”

Eii, you are present when food is near.”

“Ohh it’s your punishment for making me talk too much. All this talking has made me hungry.” He asked as he rubbed his tummy, “So what do you have in the kitchen today?”

“Banku and fresh fish soup.”

Chaii,, my timing was right! I can’t wait.”

“Yes, I can’t wait to hear your story too, don’t think I’ve forgotten,” she laughed and she led the way into the house.

 

Posted in Uncategorized

Seventy Times Seven VIII

“Somebody’s knocking at your door,” the choir sang at church service, “somebody’s knocking at your door. Oh sinner, why don’t you answer? Somebody’s knocking at your door.”

It was a cold Sunday morning and outside it drizzled lightly. This Sunday, Padiki found herself at church service. It had been quite long since she had attended church because she had always felt like a fish out of water anytime she came. All the songs they had sang and all the prayer topics they had prayed about so far all seemed to be directed at her issues. Even when the pastor had taken his stand on the pulpit to preach, he seemed to be staring somewhat right at her and this made her feel very uncomfortable.

“I’m going to continue the little foxes series and today, our focus is on forgiveness. Now what is forgiveness? Forgiveness is letting go of the wrong that someone has done to you and the willingness and effort to do it. And it is unfortunate that in our world today, forgiveness lurks within our hearts and especially within the hearts of Christians. Unforgiveness seems self-righteous and justifiable because someone wronged you and you must make the person feel guilty for hurting you. Unforgiveness is one of the little things that hinder us from getting closer to God and hinder us from enjoying all the blessings he has made available to us.

“A lot of us Christians can’t have what we can have because of unforgiveness – we are still holding on to the past; to the wrongs people have done to us; blaming all our misfortunes on them and holding on to our regrets. The Bible says that, He is able to forgive us and cleanse us from all unrighteousness. Even at the cross, when all we did was persecute Him, Jesus said, ‘Father, forgive them for they do not know what they are doing.’

“Why do you think forgiveness is such an important word to Jesus? His disciples asked him, ‘Teacher, how many times must we forgive our neighbour?’  and he answered, ‘seventy times seven times.’ You are wondering why you should forgive others who have done things to hurt you, especially when they knew that what they did would hurt you but they did it anyway? Wouldn’t that absolve them from guilt? Why should you let them off the hook like that?

“Can you be able to look at the person again and not remember the wrong he or she did to you? Can you simply erase the sheets and wipe the slates clean when that person comes to mind? Unforgiveness is just like anger. You harbour it until it later turns into hatred.

“Forgiveness is good; not just for the one who wronged you but also for your own spiritual well-being. Unforgiveness fills you with bitterness, anger and a desire for revenge and you will never be happy in that state of mind.

“Why, are you the only person who has been wronged? Just think of the many times you have wronged someone yourself; spreading false news about someone around, hurting people with your words. You think once you didn’t use a knife you aren’t a murderer? You think once your hand never touched a gun, you haven’t killed before? Just because you touched that sister or brother you haven’t tainted their purity because you haven’t slept with him or her?

“Today, God is calling you to forgive because it is this unforgiveness that is causing the huge barrier between you and Him. He can’t answer your prayers because you approach Him with your pride and selfishness that causes you to not forgive. He said in Matthew 6: 14-15 that if you forgive men when they sin against you, your Heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins.

“If there is anyone you can’t let go, please come to the altar, if there’s anyone who has wronged you, come before Him with all humility and let the Holy Spirit help you. It is wisdom to let the Holy Spirit help you because it is in your weakness that God shows himself strong. He’s calling you.”

As Padiki listened, she began to feel moved to go before the altar but she didn’t. Her heart still felt hardened towards Uncle Joojo. How could he do this to a little girl; taking advantage of her ignorance and body and intentionally doing what he did? No, she wasn’t going to give him the satisfaction of her forgiveness. She decided she was going to see Irene right after church and tell her everything!

star

“Hello Irene, I need to see you, where are you?” Padiki spoke hurriedly into the phone. She had no time for pleasantries.

“I’m at home,” she replied, “I hope nothing is wrong?”

“I need to speak to you about something privately, is Uncle Joojo around?”

“No, he had to stay back at church for some meetings,” she asked again, concerned, “Hope nothing is wrong?”

“I’ll tell you when I see you,” she said and she hung up right away. She stepped on the accelerator and drove towards Dansoman before she changed her mind.

What could she possibly want to tell me? Irene wondered as she stared at the dead phone in her hand.

star

Irene didn’t have to wait long for in an hour, Padiki was already seated on the couch in the hall. She was a little nervous as she carried the glass of orange juice from the kitchen to the young lady.

When the young lady made no move to take the drink offered her, she asked, “Oh so Padiki, what brings you here?”

“I have something to tell you Irene, about your husband, my uncle,” Padiki began. She felt she needed to let it all out.

“What about him –” and that was when her phone began to ring. It was her husband.

“Excuse me, let me take this call.” She left with the phone to the kitchen.

“Joojo, Padiki is here in our house saying she has something to tell me about you,” Irene spoke,“And it better not be a bad surprise!”

“What? In our house? I’m coming there right away.”

“Well, no need to come if you have nothing to hide, later, Jo.” She hang up, ignoring his protests and headed back to the hall.

“Yes, you wanted to say something about Joojo.”

“He’s not what you think he is, Irene,” Padiki continued, “He’s very bad – a paedophile in the worst form.”

“What nonsense are you spewing, Padiki, my husband is not like that.”

“Oh he is, I’ve experienced that side of him many times when I was young,” Padiki said bitterly, ignoring the sickened expression Irene now wore on her face.

“Irene, he used me when I was five years old and at that time, I didn’t even know what Uncle Joojo had been doing to me. I looked on as he had his way with me before he went to hide abroad. As I grew up and got to know what had happened to me, I knew I had lost something precious because I had a weakness for toffees and an uncle who used it to have me, not once but several times.” She continued spitefully, “I have become bitter and I can’t forgive him – I just can’t. I needed to tell you this so that you would know how wicked your husband can be. They say that a thief is always a thief and is also a liar and to me, a paedophile is always a paedophile. Just be warned.”

Now Padiki had tears running down her cheeks as Irene stared silently at her. Irene now understood why Joojo had never mentioned his niece to her before, why all those calls had been deliberately missed because he knew who it was. She understood why often, he felt so far away as if he was thinking so much about something.

“I – I- don’t know what to say. This is all a shock to me,” Irene said, choking on every word. The tears forming in her eyes threatened to cascade. Although Irene was sorry for her and couldn’t imagine all the pain she had gone through, she began to feel angry towards her.

“Eheh? But tell me, what did you hope to achieve by telling me? So you told me this so that what? I divorce him or what, so that you will feel satisfied? You think that what he did was so grievous that he can’t be forgiven? Aren’t you ashamed of yourself for not being able to let this go for all these years? So you come here to tell me this with the intent to destroy our marriage?”

Irene continued bitterly, “You are selfish, Padiki, yes, that’s what you are! So self-conscious and conceited that you didn’t think I would be hurt by all of this? You think you are hurting us but you are hurting yourself. Please, could you leave my house. I want you out now!”

Padiki was taken aback that she was rather angry with her for revealing the truth. She stood up silently to leave the house but not before she said, “Fine! I am leaving. I hope you have a happy marriage with your husband.”

She saw the crushed look on Irene’s face and felt like a murderer – no less like Joojo.

star

Joojo wished Damien would get out of his car and leave him alone but with the way Joojo had grabbed his coat and asked permission to leave the meeting at church, Damen was worried. And when Damien was worried about something, nothing could convince him that all was fine until he saw it with his eyes.

When Joojo got to the house and Irene didn’t come to meet him with a hug and kiss as she usually did in the hall, he knew he was in deep trouble. The house which usually would have been filled with some clean country gospel, was quiet and somewhat sorrowful. But the silence was deafening as he made his way to the hall with Damien following closely behind him.

He saw Irene sitting on the couch, crying and his heart went out to her and for their marriage.

“Irene-”

“Why didn’t you tell me? We promised to tell each other everything! Why didn’t you?” she asked, her voice breaking in sobs.

“I’m sorry, Irene, so so sorry that you had to find out this way for all these years we have been together. But I couldn’t tell you because I was afraid your respect for me would decrease. I was afraid you wouldn’t accept me with this kind of past. Yes, I did that to Padiki when she was little and yes, I told her to forgive me, but she wouldn’t.”

Damien watched on in surprise wondering what Joojo could have done to Padiki.

“But I just don’t get it, all this time you two couldn’t work this out?” Irene asked, sniffling.

“Yes, I thought she had forgotten about the whole incident when I left to go to college abroad. I thought as she grew the memories would have been erased and she would just remember me as her sweet uncle,” Joojo continued.

“But how could you think that she would forget? She said that the first time you slept with her, she felt she had lost something very valuable and that feeling never left her. It seemed what you did to her those years ago, have made her a really bitter person, Joojo. Padiki has really suffered; I could tell from her crying and her voice that she is terribly hurt.”

“WHAT!!!” Damien couldn’t believe his ears he tried to restrain himself from hitting Joojo. Right now, it was between Joojo and Irene.

“To tell you the truth, I regretted all that I did to her, I still do. I hate myself for doing that to her but I have changed. You know that I have, Irene. You know how I was before I gave my life to Christ. You know what I used to do and you know I don’t do them anymore.” Joojo looked at anywhere but their faces, his eyes empty.

“But why did you? You definitely knew what you were doing was wrong. You were, what? About 18 years and had just completed senior high. What drove you to do that dastardly thing? I just can’t believe you!”

Joojo was so ashamed and devastated, he covered his face with his hands. “I was done wrong too. I am so sorry, Irene, please forgive me.”

“Well, she’s the one holding you with chains and she isn’t setting you free,” Irene said, “And I forgive you, Joojo but I need some time alone, Joojo.”

And she left for the bedroom, whimpering.

“This is all so unbelievable, now I understand why she hates you so much and would even say no to my proposal just because I mentioned your name,” Damien said.

“I’m so sorry, man, I’m so sorry for not telling you the truth when I had so many opportunities to tell you.”

“But- but-what could drive you to use your niece in that way? Don’t tell me it is the devil or your weakness, give me all the details!”

“Someone did wrong to me too.”

“What? Tell me about it. I’ve got all the time.”

 

Hiya!!! How are you, awesome readers? Hope your weekend has tickled you pink in so many ways. 😀 Today brings you episode 8 of the Seventy Times Seven series on #SolaceSaturdays. This week’s post is dedicated to Nadia Baye of SOS Hermann Gmeiner College, Nana Yaw (KNUST) of Kontrast Images and Honourable Bassey Ediomo of Central University. Love you guys. Don’t forget to like, comment and share. I love hearing from you, you know I do! ❤

Bisous, 😘😍💕

Sela

 

 

Posted in Writing

Seventy times Seven VII

 

Hiiii guys, it’s a #SolaceSaturday 😁🙌 (Yayyyyyy) and we are back to the Seventy times seven series. Hope your weekend has been good so far and hope you are fine for the most part. 😃 Some of you thought I was being mean when last week I didn’t post the continuation of the series. Well… The midsemesters were in and everyone had to find his or her nose in a book. 😋 To all my KNUST friends, hope you killed the papers in the mid-semester exams; we thank God for bringing it to a successful end. 👏👍 This week’s post is dedicated to my friend, Rejoice. May your dad’s total individuality forever remain in your heart.

It’s episode 7!!! And we are going on steadily with Seventy times Seven. Take a ride with me today with #SolaceSaturdays.

Bisous, Sela ❤

 

“Hey boo, are you ready?”

Padiki smiled when she heard his voice on the phone. It was Damien and he sounded unusually chirpier this morning perhaps because he had managed to convince her to go out with him. It had been almost two months since he came to her shop faking a heart ache that couldn’t be cured.

“I’m not your boo; we have not got to that stage yet,” she said teasingly.

“I know but I’m glad you said ‘yet’,” he said, “It gives me hope!”

“Hahahaa, I retract the ‘yet’ from my statement then.”

“Don’t, I’ll be there in fifteen minutes.”

“Fifteen minutes?!” Padiki screamed, “Are you sure you aren’t already at the gate? Because I know you paa…Professional stalker.”

He laughed. “Ohh I so wish but the traffic is holding me up.”

“Ok, see you soon then, laters,” she said before she hang up.

“That was him wasn’t it?” Adobea, her neighbour and friend who had come to help her get ready for the outing asked.

“Yes, and don’t you dare ask me one of your crazy questions!” she warned her good- naturedly.

“Oh you know I sure will even if you shoot me with your looks to kill,” she said, “So you love him, eh?”

“No I don’t.”

“You know, I shouldn’t have asked you since the answer is written all over your face,” she continued, “I saw the call bring out one of those rare smiles of yours, I’m sure if you were fair, you would be blushing red by now. Thank God for melanin which hides all your pent up lovey-dovey feelings!”

“Adobea, just find me a dress and don’t let me die from these ridiculous ideas of yours.”

“Ok fine o,” she said, “But seriously Padi, why do you always have to hold guys with a ten-foot pole. You have male friends but when any one of them tries to get closer to you, you hold them back. Why?”

“Well, it’s because I don’t trust those species with personal things.”

“You don’t trust, or you are scared?”

“What does it matter?”

“You know sometimes I wonder who broke you,” she continued, “I know it wasn’t your father because he was a very good man and didn’t do anything for you to distrust men so much. You need fixing, my friend.”

“Hahahaaa, you are right about that. I need fixing – fixing in time for my outing with Damien.”

“Just call it a date and be free.”

“It’s not a date but an outing,” she said, “now let’s get back to the dresses and makeup, shall we?”

“Yoo, I sure can’t wait for you to fall head over heels.”

“Then you will wait long papaa.”

star

As Damien managed to escape the traffic and got on to Padiki’s street, he realized that perhaps he really did have heart ache. He began to experience heart burns and cardiac arrhythmia all at the same time. He was mighty nervous – the butterflies had invaded his stomach and were giving him the worst form of torture all because he had decided to tell her today- to tell her how he felt about her. He had decided that he had better do it fast. In the last two months they had got closer as friends. They got to know each other well although, he could sense that Padiki was holding a part of herself away from him and he knew that it was a major part of herself.

He had always seen the hints of sadness in her laughter. Yes, he had paid attention that much because he was falling in love with her. Sometimes he felt she felt the same way and other times, she looked ready to bolt if he ever uttered those words. She was a mysterious oxymoron and he wished she could lay bare all her secrets to him.

He played back the conversation he had had with Joojo, her uncle. They had met at the Breakfast Bar one early morning, a few weeks before and Damien was glad he had seen him first. Joojo was in a pensive mood, lost to the world as he sipped his cappuccino alone.

“Hey my guy why you dey mourn so? Why someone die?” Damien asked as he came up to his friend.

“Ohh naa, too many thoughts o.”

“You sure everybody fine, mommy, poppy and wifey?”

“Ah I say everybody fine and everything fine, no one die.”

“We thank God oo.” He sat with him and ordered a cup of coffee.

“It’s good I found you here, I need to talk to you about something.” Damien asked, “Your niece, is she going out with somebody?”

“No no one I know of,” he replied, “why do you ask?”

“Well…I’m falling in love with her.”

“Waow, I’m proud of you, that’s the best news I’ve heard this entire week,” he said with an honest smile but Damien felt it was almost sarcastic.

However, Joojo was relieved by the news because he felt Damien’s presence in Padiki’s life would get her off his back.

“I really want to do this right that’s why I came to tell you first and perhaps seek your permission, since you are her uncle.”

“Oh go right ahead, I know you will take good care of her, distracting her with your charming self and care so I give you my blessing, bro.” Joojo looked genuinely happy for him. “So when are you going to tell her.”

“I’ve not decided yet, I’m kind of scared she would run away if I tell her. Already she doesn’t want me to come close.”

“What do you mean?”

“Well that niece of yours is a tough nut to crack. She’s always smiling and seems to give off herself freely but I often feel like she’s hiding something – something that makes her very sad.”

“Has she told you anything?”

“No, just that sometimes she seems to hate you, I can’t forget that day at the wedding where you guys had argued.”

“Oh she just hates my over-protectiveness,” Joojo lied, “Don’t worry, she’s probably playing hard to get.”

“I really doubt that but well…sooner or later I will find out. I didn’t read those mystery novels for nothing.”

“Well, you are right about Padiki being a hard nut to crack just make sure she doesn’t aggravate your heart burns but rather douses that fire in you.” Joojo teased.

“Oh so now, you are onto me, eh?”

“It’s been awhile since I got you love-struck like this, let me enjoy the moment,” he continued, “Let’s talk about lighter matters rather than your imminent heartbreak.”

And they left the restaurant together, laughing and joking like old times.

star

Damien rang the bell at the gate when he got to the front of Padiki’s mother’s bungalow.

“Coming!” he heard Padiki’s voice screaming as she made her way to the gate. She opened it and that’s when his heart completely stopped. She was so beautiful in a simple blue dress, low heeled shoes and light make up. The smile she wore was Damien’s undoing.

“Looking very beautiful, dear Padiki,” he said as he took her hand.

“Thank you,” she said, stifling a giggle, “You don’t look too bad yourself.”

“Oh and that was supposed to be a compliment?”

“Yhup, I rarely give compliments, take it as it is,” she later conceded, “But you are fresh oh, it is now that I’m seeing it.”

“Your nose wai!” He smiled; he enjoyed this banter they had. He really hoped she would say yes to him not just to the evening.

“Where are we going? You know you never told me.”

“Oh keep quiet and wait and just enjoy the ride in this sleek car of mine,” he said, “You want me to tell you the surprise. You like spoiling shows.”

“Oh come on, I need to know so that I can tell Adobea that I’m safe.” She laughed.

“You are safe with me, Padiki,” as he uttered those words he caught her eyes and they seemed to be staring into each other’s for a long moment. But Padiki took her eyes off, afraid of what she might reveal.

As they neared the National Theatre, Padiki couldn’t contain her excitement.

“Wooooh, is it what I’m thinking?” she asked with glee, “The stage play everyone has been talking about, the one that has been hyped like something?”

“Yes it is!”

“OOOOOOoooh, I’ve been looking forward to this for weeks, the ticket is just too expensive!” she exclaimed, “Oh you have made my day.”

She reached out for a hug. “Thank you so much, Damien, thank you.”

“You are always welcome, Padiki.” Damien’s happiness and gladness was a 100 points on the scale right now. The beginning to a great evening. He felt the hope as he climbed up the stairs with her to watch the stage play.

star

“Oh my God, it was hilarious! I really enjoyed it, thank you so much, like I can’t stop thanking you,” she said over her chicken wings and peppered sauce, “The way I had meant that stage play, eh.” They were at the Shish Tasties, a restaurant that had gained popularity for its wonderful tasty chicken, fries, shawarma as well as Chinese food.

“Ah you aren’t welcome kraa,” Damien smiled as he watched her take a wing. He knew he had to tell her soon but he had to set the tone for the moment.

“Would you like some more drink?” he asked her.

“Yes, that will be very nice.”

She caught Damien staring at her. He looked somewhat nervous and collected at the same time.

“You aren’t eating; you are picking at your food and staring,” she said.

“Yes I am,” he said as he continued to stare at her unashamedly, “That’s because there’s something more interesting to feast my eyes on rather than the food.”

And they had that moment again when they were lost in each other’s gaze.

“Padiki,” her name rolled off his tongue, “There’s something I need to tell you.”

“Ok?” Padiki had an idea of what he was about to say but she was afraid he would say it.

He took his hands in hers. “Padiki, I’ve fallen in love with you. I loved getting to know you and being friends these past two months but now I want you to go out with me – you know, as my beloved?”

Padiki was speechless as she listened to his earnest words and gazed into his eyes that showed so much love and care and she knew she didn’t deserve him.

“…uh…”

“Padiki, give me an answer, ‘yes’ or ‘no’.”

“Damien, I must confess that I really like you too, and I guess you could say that I’m halfway to falling head over heels for you or perhaps I’m already there. I really cherish our friendship and all and wish I could also say yes but…I’m just not prepared. There are major things going on in my life right now- I just don’t – I just find it hard to trust, I’m sorry.”

“But honestly, what is holding you back? Are you engaged with someone else I don’t know about?”

“No, actually I’ve never been in a relationship of that kind before.”

Damien was surprised. “Never?”

“Never.”

“But I don’t understand, just tell me what is holding you back?” he asked, “What happened to you? You seem to be close and yet so far with me often. You tell me all the things that happened to you, but I feel that there’s this major part of yourself that you are holding back from me. Your uncle Joojo gave me the permission to go out with you-”

“Wait, you mean you asked Uncle Joojo, so that what?” Padiki said, putting her cutlery back down. She was annoyed. “Why? Does he have the rights to choose who I go out with and who I don’t go out with? If you wanted to ask, why didn’t you come and ask my mother?”

“I figured he was like a big brother to you, so I just needed to let him know before he found out,” Damien treaded cautiously. He knew he had sparked a flame that was going to become a fire pretty soon.

“Ohhhh, I see,” Padiki said, “And what did he say?”

“He was really happy for me – for us.”

“Oh you have done the most noble thing, by telling dear Uncle Joojo who is oh so good to give us his blessing,” Padiki said sarcastically.

“Padiki, you seem to hate him so much,” Damien said, “What has he done to you?”

“It’s none of your business, Damien, it never was so stop poking your nose to where it doesn’t belong!”

“I hope whatever he did to you, you can forgive him. Nobody is perfect; we are all striving towards perfection,” Damien counselled, “Unforgiveness is a thief – it steals your joy and happiness and discourages you from taking any opportunity that would lead you into a life of greatness. Whatever he has done to you, just let it go.”

She stood up abruptly as she took her hand bag,“You know, I’ve suddenly lost my appetite. You don’t have to worry about taking me home, I can find my way from here.”

And she left- just like that without even glancing back at Damien; she just walked on until she was out the door. Damien was left all alone chiding himself for bringing up Joojo’s name in the conversation. She seemed to have this deep-seated hatred for Joojo. He hated even more that the evening had ended this way. That night, all he could do was pray for her.

 

 

Posted in Uncategorized

100 things I’m thankful for and that makes me happy

Mood: My joy definitely up ten notches! Super excited!

Heyylo Loves, my weekend has been a rush of adrenaline and spontaneity so far! Mainly because it was getting close to my birthday and I had some people already wishing me in advance (lol) and I couldn’t get around to posting anything because my weekend was full. I spent a lot of the weekend out of the room; I got to go out with my roomie, Nao to watch Uncle Ebo Whyte’s, ‘Sankofa’ stage play and I had so much fun and laughter. Shout outs to the General Manager at Focus fm for the free tickets; we are truly grateful and thanks Nao for giving me an early birthday present. Shout outs to Nana Yaw of Kontrast Images for taking the wonderful featured image up there. You can contact Kontrast Images to cover all your occasions and events and you can be sure that it will be done professionally!

Today is my birthday and mehn, aren’t I excited! I’m dripping from the cloud nines and seventh heavens with all your wishes. It is an undeniable fact that God is very faithful and He still remains faithful. As I celebrate my birthday, I’m so thankful for how far the Lord has brought me and how far He has brought us.

I know lots of you were expecting the next episode of Seventy Times Seven yesterday but to compensate you, I’ve compiled a list of 100 things that make me happy mixed with things that I am thankful for. I guess this would help break down the impersonal and virtual walls surrounding us. So here goes…

 

100 things I’m thankful for and that make me happy

  1. Spending time with God
  2. Bible Scriptures
  3. Annoying early morning texts that crack me up.
  4. Spending time with my friends. Nao, Osborn, Cerlaum, Mawufemor,Thelma, Lois, Eddie, Otaaa, Edem, Zee, Tsotsoo and othersPhotoGrid_1468677534254
  5. Mawufemor Kudalor! ❤
  6. My roomies; Nao and Zee when we tease and worry one another.
  7. Chocolate in all its forms
  8. The sound of the acoustic guitar
  9. Red velvet cake
  10. Beta malt and Vita milk
  11. My family
  12. Cold weather
  13. Going to watch Uncle Ebo Whyte stage plays
  14. Singing together with my brothers
  15. Dancing crazy
  16. Clean rooms with unusual designs
  17. Bright smiles, bright eyes and a smart mouth
  18. Babies! They are so cute!
  19. Road trips with good crazy company
  20. Cerlaum, especially when he says CRAZY stuff
  21. Walking through a library or a bookshop
  22. Reading
  23. Writing
  24. Attending TRATECH at the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) museum
  25. Art; especially abstract art
  26. Watching my Dad eat mangoes
  27. Night phone calls with the people I love
  28. Holding hands and hugs
  29. Listening to my mother pray
  30. Music! Very good music (I especially love Gospel artistes like Hillsong, Mali Music, Kari Jobe, Amanda Cook, Passion, K.B., Britt Nicole, Planetshakers, etc and jazz.)
  31. Old buildings and tourist sites
  32. Mountains and beautiful sunsets
  33. The smell of pancakes on a Sunday evening
  34. Momoni frying in palm oil
  35. Taking selfies and pictures_mg_4693
  36. My Publishing Studies department family_MG_4728.jpg
  37. Preparing abom (kontomire/spinach) with yam and plantain for my family.
  38. Sompa and Kodjo
  39. Staying at Kwa Maritane
  40. Traveling
  41. Watching Suits, Scandal, Grey’s Anatomy. Oh and Jenifa
  42. Confident guys who know what they want and have a good sense of humour
  43. Sneakers and Heels!
  44. Worrying people when I’m in the mood (which I am, almost always)
  45. Love listening to ridiculous stories
  46. Talking with grandparents or any other older folk, as well as children
  47. Awesome photographers
  48. Horse riding
  49. Going to church
  50. Anything with African print
  51. Poems
  52. Spontaneous gifts, calls and time from people
  53. Shirts with very ridiculous quotes
  54. Quiet dawns, noisy mornings. (I love)
  55. Smiling2016-05-27_09.29.25.jpg
  56. FOOOOOOD (Oh yeah, I’m a certified foodie, although it doesn’t show)
  57. Sleek cars
  58. Fufu and light soup with chicken; any day, anytimefufu
  59. Being with chatty people
  60. Meeting new people
  61. Walking in Osu
  62. National parks everywhere
  63. A very good heavy breakfast
  64. Fireworks
  65. When I see a rainbow
  66. Eating jelly candy
  67. Listening to heartbeats
  68. Surprising people I care about
  69. Trees
  70. Wool blankets
  71. When I receive notifications that someone has liked, commented or shared my blog posts
  72. Random outings
  73. The scent of freshly cut grass
  74. The feel of unusual materials or fabrics
  75. When I’m able to achieve a goal on a particular day
  76. Dress –check    Beauty – check    Brains – check  = Jessica Pearson
  77. Attend church
  78. Pizza
  79. Praying
  80. Ice cream
  81. Sharing something I wrote or that happened to me
  82. When I get a new song – especially a song that reminds me of a person or moments that I don’t want to forget.
  83. Beads
  84. My brother’s voice when he sings
  85. Getting silly captions with Roland
  86. Chatting with K.O.
  87. When I become a case study and I’m being analysed (by my annoying friends…hehehee I love them)love
  88. The languages, French and Spanish
  89. Banku and Okro soup with crabs                           banku
  90. Staying in (sometimes!)
  91. Trying out new foods
  92. Honest conversations
  93. Challenging people
  94. Fresh air
  95. Helping others out
  96. Daydreaming
  97. Beaches
  98. Thoughtful gifts
  99. Cooking new foods
  100. When I share the Word of God with others
Posted in Writing

Seventy Times Seven VI

“Hello, stalker.”

Padiki looked into the eyes of Damien giving him a stern look. He was looking very casual, in jeans trousers, a blue tartan shirt, some sneakers and a cap. And he wore a sheepish grin.

“My God, what are you doing here?” she asked, “Have you been following me?” She knew that was rude of her but she was in no mood for this little game they were playing.

“Yes I have,” Damien looked annoyed, “Especially when you started ignoring my calls.”

He had been calling and texting her since the wedding and she had only picked up once.

“Gosh, can’t you see a lady when she’s not interested in you?”

“And who said I’m looking for a lady who is interested in me?” Damien asked.

“I’m sorry, I can’t have anything to do with people who are best friends with my uncle, so please leave my shop unless you are really sick.”

“But I am sick of heartache,” he teased, “The only cure you could give me is to stop ignoring me.”

“Oh please-”

“I’m serious, Padiki,” Damien added, “I want to be a friend.”

“Friend?” That made Padiki laugh.

“Yes friend.”

“Ok that’s possible,” she smiled. One at a distance.

“But why don’t you want to associate with friends of your uncle. I mean, is not like we have some sort of diseases.” He asked, “Why are you so angry anytime Joojo is mentioned. What did he do to you?”

“It’s none of your business.” He ignored the sudden change in her mood from hot to icy.

But it had become Damien’s business ever since the day he set eyes on her. He wanted to know. He knew where she had gone to that morning. If she wasn’t going to tell him herself, he was going to ask Joojo himself.

“Ok my friend, you must be hungry. Could you come out with me to get some lunch?”

“Ok, sure, let me just get my purse.” She smiled at him. Damien would cherish that moment forever.

star

It was evening in the wonderful city of Accra, and in the busy community of Ashalley Botwe. Light was everywhere; it was one of the towns that never slept but the Dadson household was getting ready for bed. It had been a long difficult week and Joojo had hardy had time for his wife. With work at the office, coupled with Padiki’s incessant calls which he continued to ignore, the stress was killing him. He hated the fact that at every turn she had to remind him of what he had done.

He needed a cold shower.

“Ooh where are you going Joojo?” His wife, who had just entered the bedroom said.

“Going to take a cold shower.”

“Ok dear,” she said, “Don’t keep me waiting.” And Joojo could hear the smiles she was giving in the dark. That was Irene, she just loved to joke. That was one of the things he loved about her. She made him happy and always knew what things to say to make him calm or smile. He was sure he would never regret getting married to her but the presence of Padiki made him doubt lately. He didn’t want Irene to find out how imperfect he was; what he had done those days when he was a child. But he wondered how long he was going to keep this up.

He needed a cold shower. He needed those cold droplets that would make him forget his problems temporarily so that he could think normally.

He stepped into the bathroom, and sought solace in the comforting embrace of chilled running water.

In the bedroom, Irene lay in the darkness. It had been long since she had had him all to herself. Every day, they both went their separate ways to work and by the time they both came home, all of them were exhausted. Irene was a teacher at the Christian International School and a club coordinator of the Girl Guides club. She loved her job but sometimes you get tired of doing what you love.

She could hear the water coming down in the shower and Joojo’s phone began to ring and blink in the darkness. Irene picked up the phone and saw the number. It was saved as Unknown and it had the number written below it. It looked like the same number that Joojo had been ignoring these past few weeks.

It was as if the person calling always wanted to spoil moments between her and her husband. The person- whoever that was usually called at odd hours when she should be having quiet moments with her husband. She wondered if she should pick it. And then a message came in.

You better pick up else…you know what will happen!

It was a threat and it looked like Joojo knew who that person was. She was about to put it down when that same number began to call again. She swiped the screen to answer.

“Hello?”

No one answered.

“Hello, who is this?” she asked and she still got no answer but she could hear the person breathing.

“You know it’s very rude not to respond,” she said, “Who are you? If you don’t tell me who you are, you better stop bothering us. Stop bothering my husband and never call again. Do you hear me?”

And after she hang up but she was more disturbed than angry. Who was that?

“Honey, who were you talking to?” Joojo asked, closing the bathroom door behind him.

“I answered your phone,” she said, “The number was saved as unknown. And when I spoke to the person the person didn’t respond.”

Joojo went quiet before her.

“Who was that, Joojo?”

“I know you know that person,” she said. “I’ve noticed that you are always ignoring calls from this particular number you saved as unknown. You never pick it. Who is that, Joojo? Just tell me.”

“Oh it was some wrong number that keeps calling. I picked up once and told the person to never call again but he doesn’t listen. I suppose he thinks I’m his long lost brother or something.”

Joojo couldn’t believe how easily the lie fell from his lips.

“C’mon, it’s nothing to worry about. Let’s get back to bed.” He pulled away the covers and got into bed.

“Hmm ok, but it was very creepy, the person didn’t answer any of my questions and kept breathing into the phone.”

“Eiii, you watch too many crime and murder movies,” he teased, “They’re working in your head right now.”

“Ooooh I will so get you!” Irene screamed as she reached playfully for her pillow and hit him with it, “Take that.”

Very soon, they were lost in their own world of pillow fight. Later that evening, as he lay in his bed, hugging his wife, he asked:

“Irene, no matter what happens, nothing will pull us apart, right?”

“Nothing will pull us apart, Jo.” She said sleepily.

He knew Padiki was more than a problem now; he could see in her eyes that she just wanted to destroy his marriage. He was afraid of what Irene might think of him if she knew what he had done. He was afraid of not being forgiven. He was scared that if the past came out, it was going to pull his family apart.

 

Heylo loves ❤ Weekends are fun, aren’t they? Especially when you have a wonderful story “Seventy Times Seven, episode 6” to get back to. I’ve noticed that most of you want the series to come quickly because the suspense is ‘killing’ you but remember my loves, Patience is a virtue. My whole weeks are filled with school and projects so the weekends are the only times I can post the next episodes. Come on board and join the ride to #SolaceSaturdays. Hope you enjoy today’s post. Don’t forget to like, share and comment. Would love to hear from you.

Bisous,

Sela

Posted in Writing

Seventy Times Seven V

Joojo looked up from the bundle of papers before him at the person at the door. Immediately the comfort he had felt just a few minutes ago, vanished. Beads of perspiration formed on his forehead and he looked ready to explode or rather, ready to vanish.

The lady at the door was dressed provocatively. She wore a beige dress that stuck to her like a second skin. It highlighted her sinful curves. She was what a nutritionist would call a balanced diet; well-endowed in all the right places. This made him very aware that she was no longer the sweet little girl; she was hurt and angry – more dangerous and all woman.

Ever since the wedding night, she had been calling him, disrupting the moments with his wife and making the honeymoon an unbearable one. He was thankful Irene hadn’t noticed the calls he was ignoring and the fact that he had saved her number as Unknown. These past few weeks hadn’t been easy at all with the foreboding feeling he had since he set eyes on his niece at the wedding. He was sure his receptionist was wondering what kind of person had come to see him, especially when he had just married a few weeks ago.

“You’ve been ignoring my calls.”

“What in the world are you doing here, Padiki!” Joojo lashed out at the lady standing in front of him.

“I’m here to visit my dear uncle, can’t I just visit him?”

He looked at her for a few minutes and saw the unbridled anger in her eyes. He wished that he had never touched her.

It had been a long time since that period in his life.

“What is it you want, Padiki?”

“No, it’s not about what I want, it’s about what you want,” she said, “I know you want this body again. You liked the little me, now that I’m big I’m sure you’ll like me even better.”

She went around to touch his chest. Her perfume wafting into his senses.

“Are you seriously flirting with me?”

“What does it look like I am doing?”

“Can’t you see that I’m now married?”

“Well, the fact that you were touching a little girl didn’t stop you then, now that you have a piece of metal around your ring finger, I don’t think it will stop you now.”

He sighed, moving her hands away gently. “I’m sorry Padiki, I’m terribly sorry for the wrong I did to you. Can’t you just forgive me?”

“You think forgiveness is that easy? You think what you did to me doesn’t still haunt me?” she laughed wickedly, “Stop dillydallying and do what you so wish. I’m here alone with you, do it and let me go my way.”

“Padiki, you might not believe it but I’m a Christian now.”

“So what? You are just using that to cover up your deeds. I’m a Christian too.”

“Please, don’t do this.”

“Whatever, Joojo, no respect for you now,” she spat, “I’ll be damned to see you so happy in your marriage and not do anything about it. Your dearie wifey must hear about this, Uncle Joojo.” She drawled out.

“Hear about what?” A voice from the door asked. They both turned to see Irene at the door. She was dressed in a flowery sun dress and she held a basket in her hands. It looked like she had come to have lunch with him.

“Oh nothing in particular, my dear,” Joojo said, “It’s a surprise! You wouldn’t want to know, that would spoil the fun.”

“Oh nice, I loooooove surprises,” Irene squealed and then she hugged Padiki. Padiki noticed that she was still in that ‘honeymoon’ mood of hers. She wished she could pull her out of the seventh heaven and cloud nine she was in.

“And Padiki was just leaving,” Joojo said motioning for his wife to take the seat in front of him.

“Oh why?”

“She has something pressing to attend to.”

“Ok, goodbye Padiki dear.” And she turned away from her, getting herself busy with taking the food out.

Joojo told her to leave with his eyes and she turned to leave his office. But not before she winked at him seductively. She swayed her hips as she went out the door with a loud bang.

star

“Woah! That was loud,” Irene said, looking at her husband, “What’s wrong with her?”

“I don’t know, dear.”

“I hope you haven’t annoyed your niece in any way, Joo Baby,” she said as she dished out the food.

“No, I guess she didn’t realize how loudly she closed the door,” Joojo said. “Hmm, the food smells delicious.”

Irene noticed his weak attempt to fly off to a tangent but conceded. “It’s your favourite today, fufu with aponkye nkrankra.”

“Waow, I love you, dear.”

“Yeah you only love me more when I can fill that stomach of yours,” Irene laughed.

“No, you know that is not the reason,” he smiled and for a moment he forgot about Padiki’s threats. “But of course, food would always be a factor.”

However, Irene hadn’t missed the way he scratched his head and avoided her gaze. Come to think of it, these past few weeks had been wonderful, but not as wonderful as she had imagined it. Irene felt the distance between them ever since their wedding. She also wondered about those numerous calls he never seemed to answer.

What was he hiding from her? She only hoped he would tell her before someone else did. She hated to be the last one to know about things.

star

Aaaah, this guy kraa, what does he want from me, eh? Padiki was annoyed. She was staring at her blinking shrilling phone as she sat in her car. She should have blocked his number a long time ago. Better still, she shouldn’t have given him her number when he asked for it.

There were weightier matters in her life than flowers and flattery and the whole love shebang. She quickly threw her phone back into her bag and sped off to the Asure House where her pharmacy was located.

Her pharmacy. That was one thing she was really proud of. Getting the license and the place had been no mean feat at 24 years for a lady like her. She had one worker, Linda who was helping her out with it.

“Oh Madam, you are in,” Linda said when she saw her come in, “Welcome.”

And she stood up to help her with her bags.

“Madam, you are looking nice today papaaa.”

Padiki smiled in spite of herself, “Thank you. Have there been a lot of sales this morning?”

“Not so much. But two people came to ask about the eye cream. It was a prescription from the Vision Clinic down the street. But it seems we are out of stock on that drug.”

“Oh ok, then I would have to get some supplied on Friday.”

She sat behind the counter to reply some messages on Whatsapp. The doors of the pharmacy opened some minutes later.

“Good afternoon sir, you’re welcome,” Linda stood up to see the customer.

“Thank you.”

“What drug do you need?”

“I haven’t been well lately. I’m having headaches and I have been feeling nauseous. I can’t seem to concentrate on anything. My mind seems to have taken a vacation and my heart rate is very high. I’ve never felt this kind of pain in my entire life. I need a drug that could cure heartache.”

“Heartache? I’m sorry, Mister, but I don’t think-”

“Stop Linda,” Padiki stood up.

She knew the customer. She couldn’t believe he was here in her shop.

“Hello, stalker.”

Wonderful weekend, Amazing Readers. Hope the weekend has been a tide ride. I’m in your weekend like meat in pie 😛 ; bringing you your favourite series, Seventy Times Seven, episode 5. This week’s post is dedicated to Mawufemor, hope you aren’t having too many fufu and waakye dreams out there (#hehehee 😉 ) and to my wonderful friends, family and readers, Cerlaum, Sharon (Aseye), Emmanuel, Efo Courage, Ofo, Tims, Prosper, Ledlum, Sammy, Sally, Akrofi, Enactus KNUST, Joshua, and the Publishing Studies Department (I could go on and on!) Oh and the entire IPC youth and to all my virtual friends, bloggers and readers who I don’t know personally but who still take the time to read the posts and comment, Blessings for all your support! Hope you enjoy today’s post. And if you haven’t read the previous episodes, do read them. Don’t forget to like, share and comment. Your feedback means a lot to me. Let’s go rapid!

Bisous, ❤

Sela.

Posted in Writing

Seventy times Seven IV

His eyes followed uncle and niece, watching the various emotions passing their faces. Only one thing was the same; Padiki was wearing a condescending smile that never wavered.

Her face was just full of contradictions. The smile that went against the hurt and anger in her beautiful eyes. And he hated the look of unbridled regret on Padiki’s face. That really confirmed his decision to make it one of his life’s goals to make her smile.

He also saw the pleading look Joojo wore. They seemed to lash out at each other. Joojo tried to reach out for her again and again and each time, she yanked her arm away from him.

“Don’t touch me!” he heard Padiki saying, “You think because you have touched me before, you can touch me even now. Get your filthy hands away from me!”

“Don’t do this, you are only going to hurt yourself, you’re going to hurt us.”

She laughed out loud wickedly and Damien almost didn’t recognize her. She walked away from him in a huff and run blindly into Damien.

It was almost a hug but she quickly withdrew herself, “Sorry.”

“Hello sweet Padiki, what’s wrong, why are you so angry?” he asked her.

“Please don’t make me laugh in French, who told you that I’m angry, in fact I’ve never been happy in my entire life,” she said in a sweet voice and he almost believed her. “And for the record, it’s none of your business! You don’t know me, I don’t know you from Adam,” she added icily.

How she could switch from one emotion to another so fast was beyond Damien. And that even increased his curiosity. He saw Joojo still standing at the place where he and Padiki had been fighting. Joojo turned away, walking away but he never missed the frustration that crossed his friend’s face.

What in the world is going on between the two of them? He asked himself, what did they do to each other?

“Ok fine, it’s none of my business but where are you off to now?” he asked Padiki, “You seem so ready to leave the reception.”

“Yes, I need to leave. I have to prepare for work tomorrow.”

“Oh ok, where are you working at?”

“I’m working at the Asure House as a pharmacist,” she answered yawning.

“Oh nice, and she dabbles in chemicals too, that explains it,”

She laughed, “explains what?”

“I’m keeping that locked,” he smiled, “So what else are you into?”

“That’s for me to know and you to find out,” she winked. “I’ve got to go, it was nice meeting you, Damien.”

“Oh wait before you go, I opened the book of Numbers and I didn’t find your number there, could you give it to me to make this book complete?”

Padiki couldn’t believe her ears, she laughed so hard that tears began to fall from her eyes. “Oh my God, that’s the lowest method to get a lady’s number. I can’t believe you at all in this modern day and age, this world is becoming funnier by the moment.”

“Oh why, I’d do anything to get your number.” He smiled sheepishly.

“Fine, because it’s the cheesiest thing I’ve ever heard I’ll give it to you.”

After she gave it to him, he went away smiling. But he didn’t forget what he had heard.

“You think because you have touched me before, you can touch me even now. Get your filthy hands away from me!”

Now, what did that mean? He wondered.

star

After Padiki informed her mother that she was going ahead to the house, she left the partying company and went to her car.

The nerve of that man! I just can’t believe he had the guts to say that to me to even let those fingers of his to touch me. Her mind replayed the words she and dear Uncle Joojo had exchanged.

The encounter just made her hate him more. He had said she should forgive him, as if that would make her grow a new hymen – as if it was by force that she should. What even annoyed her was how he kept throwing the Bible in her face. And the way he had told her to stay away from Damien because he wasn’t good for her. It was enough to let her know that Joojo was never sorry for what he had done. She had been his unforgettable rehearsals.

There was no way she could let this go. She was going to be the avenger for herself. His marriage was the perfect opportunity to show the Dadsons that marriage wasn’t as sweet as the red velvet cake. That the truth and the past can rear their ugly heads in the present.

She was so sorry for Damien, the tall dark guy who made her laugh. She was sorry that she couldn’t entertain him at this crucial point in her life especially when he looked like he was interested in her. She was messed up too much for a relationship of any kind. She wasn’t ready to give her heart to anyone because they will do the same thing uncle Joojo did. They will strangle it, and then step and stomp over it and act like they never knew what you had given them.

That lonely night when she got home, she didn’t get out of the car until an hour was up. The rains fell like God’s tears, lashing her car in the gloom. It heightened the state she was in and it seemed she was the only sad one in the world. She cried behind the wheel. The rain outside couldn’t be compared with what was going on inside her. In her heart, it rained cats and dogs.

 

Heylo amazing readers, hope your weekend is swell and hope you are fine for the most part. 😜Take a ride with today’s post and don’t forget to like, share and comment on the Seventy Times Seven series. Tell me what you think about the story so far and contribute to the plot. Let’s do this. Love you!

Bisous, 😍😘💕

Sela

Posted in Writing

Seventy times Seven III

The wedding reception was going on steadily, and Padiki’s malicious reverie was broken when her mother called to her as she made her way to her daughter.

“Padiki dear, come and help us serve the cake,” Mrs. Nettey called. Seeing them together, one could see how much Padiki was a doppelganger of her mother. They both had a dark chocolate complexion, both were tall and when they smiled, you would notice a dimple each on the left cheek.

Padiki put down the wine glass. “Ok, mum.”

“Are you enjoying yourself?” Mama asked as they walked over to the trays full of sliced red velvet goodness.

“Yeah, it’s ok,” And Padiki gave her one of her brightest smiles.

As Padiki went round with her tray, serving people with the sumptuous cake, she felt someone staring at her. You know that moment when you think you are alone but feel like you are being followed or someone is always watching you, that’s how she felt.

She looked in the way of the new Dadson couple and saw Joojo quickly take his eyes off her. Now, what in the world are you staring at, she wondered. She fought the urge to stare back and let him know that she had caught him staring.

She continued to feel the same pair of eyes following her movements as she served the last of the guests. She took the empty tray and was about to put it down when one of the women asked her to take more of the cake to the bride and groom’s table.

“Umm, ok.” The woman didn’t even wait for her to decline and put the tray in her hands.

Padiki put herself together and walked with her head held high to the table. Irene, beautiful as ever, was laughing at something Joojo’s father was showing her. She had a brief glance of the picture. It was little Joojo with his mouth and shirt was smeared with food.

“That’s how he was ever since he was a little boy,” Padiki heard her grandfather talking when she got to them, “Joojo really loves eating, there’s no way he would ever go without eating something, and he eats in large proportions too.”

Irene looked at Joojo and laughed loudly at him, “So it’s true you are a certified foodie, I knew you love food but not this much.”

“He sure is, so please be forewarned and be prepared,” Padiki’s grandmother put in.

“I don’t eat that much nowadays, so Irene please don’t listen to them.”

“Oh Padiki, it’s good that you are here,” her grandmother said when she caught sight of her. “Doesn’t this uncle of yours have an appetite?”

“Yes, dear Uncle Joojo eats very much, so much,” Padiki said, deliberately stressing on the ‘much’.

Joojo stared at her as if seeing her for the first time. He looked uncomfortable; his eyes darting everywhere and anywhere but her. His face told the story of how the food he had in his mouth had suddenly changed to sand and stones. He broke out in a sweat under her gaze and they both seemed to have a silent battle of their own that no one understood or noticed. Joojo was pleading with her in his eyes but Padiki could only see the mixture of shame and desire lurking in the depths of his phosphenes.

Yieee, what kind of man have I married?” Irene cried in mock devastation.

Hmm, you have no idea. Not the slightest idea. He does more than eating, Padiki wanted to blurt out but kept her mouth shut.

Instead, she asked, “More cake anyone?”

“Sure,” Irene beamed at her, “How are you doing?”

“I am fine.”

“Oh Irene, have you met Joojo’s niece, Padiki?”

“No, Joojo never mentioned a niece to me, and my, is she pretty.” Irene stared accusingly at Joojo. She turned and smiled at Padiki, “So nice to meet you. Joojo hasn’t ever mentioned a niece before but I’m so glad to meet you. Hope you are enjoying this little reception of mine.”

“Yes I am.” Padiki couldn’t help but smile with the other woman. Her smile was infectious and she exuded happiness and energy.

“This cake is everything!” Irene beamed as she took a slice from the tray and bit into it, “Thank you.”

“Welcome.” Irene was a nice person, she decided as she walked away from the table, she was more than enough and Joojo didn’t deserve her. She wished she could let the struggling cats out of the bag. Later, the couple were called to the dance floor. After, the usual delighted fans they received from the crowd, other people came to join them to dance.

Padiki set the tray down and looked for a drink. She needed something to calm her mass of nerves. She poured herself some wine and sipped as she continued to observe, her eyes stared, unseeing – lost in the maze of her thoughts.

star

As soon as he had set eyes on the lady in the black and cream dress, he was intrigued. He had been watching her when she moved around, serving people their slices of the cake. He noticed how beautiful her smile was but he also noticed some sadness about it.

He caught her eyes; amused, possessed brown eyes meet sad, lost eyes that seemed to be staring right through him as if he was part of the air. He also noticed that she stole a lot of glances at the newly wedded couple. At that moment, nothing mattered to him. He just wanted to make her laugh.

“I’m sure you are as sweet as the wedding cake,” a voice said. It was a smooth baritone. Padiki looked up, staring into the brown friendly eyes of a young handsome man looking suave in a deep blue suit. She held back her gasp, startled that she had not noticed him coming. One thing she noticed about him was how much he towered over her and how long and thick his eyelashes were.

She looked awestruck by him for some few minutes until a thought seemed to cross her mind, changing that awestruck face to one of boredom. Her eyes warned him to back off but those depths just seemed to be calling him to pull her out from her tunnel of sadness.

For the first time, he was lost as he stared down at her. He didn’t know what pick up line to use to start the conversation and she looked ready to throw the angry liquid she was holding on him.

She looked away from his intense gaze before she could no longer hide away her anguish from this handsome stranger. Losing this silly staring game was a better choice.

“You lost,” he said, smiling at her as he stood close beside her. In spite of herself, she smiled back.

“I’m Damien, and you are?”

“Padiki,” she said as she gradually welcomed the distraction. She needed something to focus on other than the troubled stares dear uncle Joojo was giving her.

“Padiki, the beautiful Ga lady, nice to meet you,” Damien smiled as he took her hands in hers.

“Nice to meet you too,” Padiki smiled back.

“How do you know the couple?”

“I’m actually related to the groom, he’s my uncle,” she revealed.

“Really? That old boy Joojo never mentioned a beautiful niece,” he laughed.

So typical of that coward, she thought but never opened her mouth.

“Oh great, so glad to meet you. Joojo is a good friend of mine. We met at college in the States.”

“That’s nice to know.” Oh good, no friend of Joojo’s a friend of mine.

“So why are you standing by yourself, and not joining the party,” Damien said, “Come on and let’s dance.”

“No, I don’t really feel like it.” And she really didn’t. She felt terrible and disdainful. He looked like a very cool person; someone she would have loved to call a friend but being uncle Joojo’s friend just reduced him to a distraction.

Damien would have continued to persuade Padiki if he hadn’t seen Joojo make his way towards them.

“Hey my guy, congratulations again,” Damien hugged his friend, “Your wife is the bomb, bro but I didn’t know you had a similar bombshell in your family.”

Joojo stared at Padiki for a minute and turned to Damien.

“I know, I should’ve told you all about my family members,” Joojo said sarcastically as he punched Damien’s shoulder playfully.

“Yeah bro, especially about this lady here, you didn’t do well kraa.”

“Anyway, I need to steal my wonderful niece for a few minutes, hope you don’t mind?”

“Steal away but bring her back,” Damien joked. But when Damien looked at uncle and niece who stared each other down, he could feel the tension that had just invaded the camaraderie. Joojo made to take Padiki’s hand but Padiki pulled back sending a silent but harsh leave me the hell alone.

Joojo tried again, this time gripping her arm and practically dragging her away a few meters away from the dancing party but not away from Damien’s curious gaze.

His eyes followed uncle and niece, watching the various emotions passing their faces. Only one thing was the same; Padiki was wearing a condescending smile that never wavered.