Our next stop was at Cape Coast. We didn’t waste time there as we continued our journey east towards the city of Accra.
Back in Abdijan, i had left some of my belongings behind. Unfortunately i had the hotel keycard with me. I wasn’t going to risk my life because of such things as my bag or cloths or hotel keycard, everything would take care of itself in time.
We got to the STC park in Tudu near the Accra main Lorry park. It was a familiar area. As soon as the bus stopped, i switched on my phone and read the messages from Isabella. She said she had called many times and didn’t know where i was or what had happened to me.
I had opened my wallet and brought out my Ghana simcard card, then put it in my phone and checked the airtime balance. There wasn’t enough, therefore i approached an Hausa man who sold hot tea and recharge card. It was still early. Our bus had arrived in Accra a few minutes to 7am. It was a Journey that could have taken 8 hours if not for the numerous check points and the delay at Elubo. The delay at the Elubo border between Ghana and Ivory coast was the worst I had ever witnessed. The authorities demanded for money from us even after we presented our international passports and the yellow vaccination cards.
I had purchased a recharge card in Tudu and called Isabella. She had answered the call with a little apprehension until she found out that the strange number was from me. She had demanded to know where i was and why i had disappeared from the St. Paul Cathedral the Way i did.
I told her that i spotted an enemy of mine who could have killed me if i didn’t run.
She said she had seen what happened at the Cathedral but was too stunned to believe that i could have jumped on someone the way i did.
Eventually she asked when i would be in Nigeria so that she could start coming.
”I will let you know when i get to Nigeria” i had said and hung up.
There was an early morning fast food joint at the STC park which was specially built there to serve early morning travelers. I went inside there and checked the remainder of my money.
I had $715 left plus another CFA55,000. After a quick breakfast, i went out and changed the CFA to dollars. I got another $115 which totalled my money to $830. It was still a whole lot of money, as a result, i decided to spend another two days in Ghana so that people would have returned to Lagos from Christmas before i went back. I changed some money into Cedis and got GHC400,000. I took a taxi and went to the neighbourhood where i had found Chinelo Jessica when she ran away with my phone and money.
As expected, the very hotel where they operated was still quiet since it was very early.
I got down from the cab and paid him off.
The hotel was as it was the last time i saw it. I walked to the reception and met the receptionist half asleep on his desk. A tap on the wooden partition woke him up.
”I need a room for two nights” i said. He got up and shoved the price list towards me. The
Cheapest room i saw there was about GHC118,000, which loosely translated to about $13. One US Dollar at that time was about GHC9,075.
I paid in Cedis and went upstairs.
After my bath, i went into the city and bought a boxer, a face cap, a T shirt and a pair of Jean Khaki short pants. I returned to the hotel and slept for the rest of the day.
By 6pm, the loud music at the hotel bar had started booming. It woke me up properly. I got up, wore the new cloths and sat on the chair looking out of the window. I wanted to go down but i needed the darkness to come out first. At about 7:30pm, i went down to the bar. I covered my face with the peak of my cap and walked to a semi dark corner where i could view the entire ground properly.
I sat down and tried calling the old number of Chinelo, it wasn’t connecting. I bought a bottle of Guinness Stout and sipped it slowly while looking out.
It was getting to about 10pm before i saw her. She had changed a little bit from the last time we met. She had plaited a different hairstyle which had made her look taller. I watched as she discussed with a man and when it seemed that the price bargaining didn’t go well, she went to a corner and sat down.
I quickly finished my drink and went to her through the back. They were two girls there sitting side by side. I pulled a chair up and sat beside Chinelo. She looked at me but didn’t recognize who i was until i said.
”How much did you bought that phone i took from you”
She looked at me again and recognized my voice.
”What are you doing here Zuby” she asked quickly and stood up.
It was a delicate situation and i needed to be very careful.
”Sit down, you have paid for what you did to me. You don’t have to fear anything. I asked how much you bought that phone i took from you” i said again.
She sat down and said nothing. Her friend asked her if i was the guy she told her about.
”I am going to give you the money for the phone before i leave Accra tomorrow night but i need you to cheer up first” i said.
”You are very wicked. In fact you are not a man. I cried for you for many days. I have told my God to revenge what you did to me” she said.
It was funny hearing what she said. How could she ask God to punish me? Did she not even see what she did as very bad or was she among the type that believed a man should never harm a woman no matter what the circumstances or situation was. Chinelo stole my phone and money and here was she trying to involve God. Was God that obedient to sinners to the extent of answering their silly prayers?
”Its Ok, Nelo my sister. I felt bad after i thought about what i did to you and that is why i came here. I am just coming back from Ivory Coast and i want to spend a day or two with you. Are you interested or do i find another person” i asked.
She looked at her friend who shook her head for her to reject my proposal.
”I don’t know. You can go and get another person if you want” she said and looked away.
She was undecided.
” In everyone’s life, at some time, our
inner fire goes out. It is then burst
into flame by an encounter with
another human being. We should all
be thankful for those people who
rekindle the inner spirit.”