The yellow 2016 Toyota Camry sits calmly but loudly in the car park announcing the fact that her energetic and ‘well meaning’ aunt is visiting. Anita enters the house quietly. She shuts the door gently and tries to sneak out through the door leading to the staircase that would enable her get to her room unnoticed. She intends to avoid Aunt Elizabeth at all cost. Her mom is right there in the anteroom and her voice betrays some enthusiasm and relief as she halts her daughter’s steps. Busted!
ANITA’S MOM: Hello darling. Welcome! You are just in time. Your aunt has been lamenting not meeting you at home.
AUNT LIZZY: Oh perfect! My baby is home. Where is she? I heard you had a client. How did it go? These people should not stress you for me. Come, come my dear. Turn around. Let me look at you. Come and sit with me. Let’s talk. You are the one I came to visit.
Anita has not gotten a word in. Her aunt is in charge already. She allows herself to be pulled into a bear hug while listening to her aunt go on and on. She knows that this is a beautiful introduction to the compulsory topic that would be discussed shortly. She looks back only to realize that her mom has disappeared. No help there. She will have to fight this battle on her own.
AUNT LIZZY: My daughter, how are you doing? Why are you so quiet?
ANITA: (smiling now) I am great Aunt, business is growing. All in all, everything is okay. Your necklace is lovely Mommy. It goes with your scarf. I want!!
AUNT LIZZY: Of course, I am your mommy now because you want my necklace. When next you come to see me, it’s yours. I still have to wear it to an event later today before I get home.
ANITA: Thank you Ma. How is brother Ede and his eh…wife?
AUNT LIZZY: They are fine! When are you bringing a husband for us so your cousins can also ask after you and your husband!
ANITA: I walked into that trap all by myself!
AUNT LIZZY: Forget the trap! I was definitely going to ask about that. You know that I have to remind you young ladies now that we are waiting to carry your babies. These days, all you children know is work or growing a business. You are not interested in these important matters. So yes, I have made it my duty to be your reminder or alarm clock. Take your pick.
ANITA: But aunt, we cannot take a break from life to look for a spouse. When he comes, he comes. Me, I plan to make plenty money to take care of those babies that you want to carry. I need to be able to send them to good schools and give them the best. So I am working and having fun. When their daddy comes and stays in the picture, you will definitely be amongst the first to know.
AUNT LIZZY: How about that tall, dark and handsome young man I saw with you the other day. Hope he is still in the picture dear.
ANITA: No way! I had to break up with him. He had a nasty temper. He was always yelling at waiters when we were out. He actually almost beat up a driver during one of our outings.
AUNT LIZZY: As long as he didn’t hit you. This info you are giving me is even one sided; he must have been trying to get them to offer better services. He was just taking care of you.
ANITA: Please Ma, don’t defend him. One day he even threw my phone at the wall just because he saw a picture of me with a friend from church. It was a disaster waiting to happen. You trust your baby! I ran!
AUNT LIZZY: You will not find a man like this. You are too picky! This one argues too much, this one may be a wife beater and that one does not chew with his mouth closed. You need to drop this attitude so you can settle down darling.
ANITA: Aunt, this marriage matter is serious business. It’s for life. All of you will celebrate with me and go back to your homes. You are not going to be there with us when the chips get down. I know you say these things because you care about us but respectfully mommy, not everybody can handle this matter when it is brought up as often as you all bring it up. Sometimes, the discussion tears us down and makes us feel sad. Plus some of us may be going through bad break ups. Phew! Once the man comes, you will definitely be amongst the first to know!
AUNT LIZZY: Don’t run away. Come here! Wait! My best friend’s son just came to spend a week with his mom. You should meet him.
ANITA: I bought sweet moi moi when I was coming, l want to put one in a plate for you. I know that that’s your favorite way to eat beans.
AUNT LIZZY: Bring the food here. It will not stop me from this matchmaking business. In fact, let me call his mom!
Whats your view on societal pressures to get married at a certain age?
Lets chat in the comment section!!