As days grew into weeks, the concern of whether she’s not going to marry started to live rent-free in Lola’s head. Barely every fortnight, Mrs. Ifelaja would call Lola to gossip about one thing or the other with her, which usually tolls towards one of her friends or Lola’s peers getting married sooner or later.
The worries of men getting intimidated by the mere fact that she’s independent get to her sometimes that she leaves her car at home to then board a cab to and from work.
Lola soon became lean due to stress and the worries she’s been battling lately.
Luckily, it was just about time for her to go on a two-week leave, and the thoughts of how she was going to spend the eighteen days extended break was just one of the excitement she couldn’t get over with.
Night soon fell and it was already Friday, her last day at work before going on her leave. She reported at the office earlier than usual, so she could assemble all the necessary files she needed to prepare for Maryan who was going to stand in for her, while she was away.
She stumbled on Craig, a young fine man who had shown up for a presentation that was booked for the next hour. Lola almost screamed out her lungs when she saw him out of fear because he was all muscular, huge, and of course unfamiliar.
Craig soon noticed Lola’s fear and was quick to help calm her nerves by introducing himself, and then exchanging pleasantries with her. Lola quickly hurried to her office to put herself together. She started ruminating over what had happened, and she asked herself if this was the first port of call. She giggled and muttered to herself. “It’s just one of those moments. It will pass,” she reassured herself and returned half-minded to what she was doing. She spent most of the day thinking about the incident that had occurred in the early hours of the day.
On her way back home, she thought of attending church the following Sunday just to make up for the time she’s been away.
At 7:15 Lola was set to move when her mom’s call came in. She felt disturbed and assumed her mom had called to remind her of problems yet again. She ignored the call and resorted to returning the call after church. She joined the Sunday service just when it was about time for the choristers to lead in the praise and worship session. As she got in, the usher directed her to where she would sit.
She soon noticed the arrangement and the celebration aura the auditorium emitted and was so curious that she was forced to ask the person seated next to her, all for her to be told it›sa service meant to commemorate and encourage women›s empowerment.
She applauded the organizers of the event and lamented how society has downplayed the role and essence of women in society.
The keynote speakers at the event dealt properly with the topics assigned to them, which were centered on diverse areas women have been met with discrimination, and somewhat boxed up in society.
One of the speakers had spoken extensively dissecting the concept of feminism, as the term stirs so much controversy and disruption, especially due to the many misconceptions about it.
The speaker defined feminism to mean the demand for women to be respected and given proper credit for their efforts as much as men. She relied on several of her experiences and instances where women are often faced with discrimination. For example, she mentioned that in the medical profession, male medical practitioners are paid way higher than female medical practitioners for the same area of specialization.
The speaker then concluded by admitting that some embittered women go about polluting the term, and this is a norm as there are always “bad eggs” in any human gathering. She also advocated the inclusion of women in politics and policymaking processes, drawing interference from developed countries where women are frontiers in several sectors, and even as country leaders.
Lola felt happy about how things had gone in during the service, hoping that more women and even men will lend their voices to combating the social menace.
She returned her mom’s call as soon as she got back home, all for an unfamiliar voice to answer the phone, asking are you “Lola Ifelaja?” The question sent cold down her bone marrow that she stuttered in response.
“Yes, I am. I am Lola Ifelaja.”
She responded. And quickly asked, “please who are you, and why are you answering the call for my mom?” We continue next week…
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