The time was 3:20pm, sweating profusely, I stepped into the most beautiful lobby I had ever seen, with exquisitely clean wall to floor glasses, marbled tiles, huge split A.Cs that oozed out mortuary standard chill, artificial flowers neatly arranged in every corner and a beautiful receptionist whose smile was actually genuine. Walking up to her and quickly glancing at her name tag, I said, “Good afternoon Hauwa, I’m here for the interview slated for this afternoon”, “What time is your interview? “she asked me, “3:45pm”, I replied, “your name?” “Kiki Banjo”.
Seeing other applicants, I felt like I looked out of place, how did it happen that there weren’t any buses today of all days? After jumping and fighting for buses from my bus stop on the mainland down to the interview on the island, my neatly pressed shirt was already wrinkled, sticking out from the edges with a huge sweat stain on the armpit. I quickly tucked in, smiled with no connection to my heart at my opponents and scanned the lobby for where I could sit.
The exact moment I spotted an empty seat with a bag on it, the same time it’s owner looked up to me and stared, taking that as my cue, I walked up to her muttered my greetings and sat down. Immediately my entire being felt all the tension leave my body maybe I have the chair to be grateful for.
“What time is your interview? My name is Kiki, what is yours?” I needed a friend at that moment, someone I could talk to to pass away time, she seemed like the kind of girl I could vibe with, besides every other person looked liked they want to stab me in the face for adding to their competition, “What’s my own? Shey all of us are looking for this money together ni, nobody should put sand sand in my garri o, I thought to myself whilst staring down at one guy who didn’t make any efforts to hide his hatred”.
“Zoey, my name is Zoey Umeh and my interview is for 3:30pm”, those words jolted me right out of my mini fight and I turned to actually look at her, she had the most beautiful voice I had ever heard and trust me I have heard a lot for a girl my age. For some seconds I was lost for words and just kept staring at her, “Zo-e-y”, she repeated, nodding my head furiously, I replied, “Yes, yes I heard you, it’s just your voice sounds like stainless steel clapping together, you have a very beautiful voice you know that? Anyone ever told you that?”, “Thank you” she replied blushing, “I get this a lot, this type of compliments” she further explained.
Snapping out of the trance this daughter of Delilah wanted to trap me into, I quickly introduced myself whilst she listened. But then she said she needed to get back to prepping and I let her be. Going though my little jottings, I calmed myself down and waited expectantly to hear my name being called. Zoey and the guy who had already slaughtered me in his head got called minutes before me as expected and I being the last to arrive, waited an extra 10 minutes before I went in for my interview.