“Yes i speak English” the man said.
“How much Krona do i get for a hundred Euros” i asked.
“One Euro is 9.1 Krona” He said.
It was exactly what was written on the board behind him. I believed him because the other rates were also written there.
“I need a change for €6000” i said as i brought out the money and handed it to the manager who was behind a cage.
He counted 54600 Krona and handed it to me. I needed nobody to remind me that it was a big amount of money to the students and even to me.
We all walked outside the Station to a bus stop.
“Beautiful ladies, i need a good restaurant and bar where i can have a nice meal. You are all welcome to join me. It seemed this Country is very bright and cool” I said with a smile. A quick look on their faces revealed that they were all hungry.
None of them seemed to know any good restaurant or perhaps, they didn’t know a restaurant where 54000 Krona was supposed to be spent.
“We can find one down at the shopping mall” One said while pointing to our right hand down the road. I nodded as we all walked and chatted about nothing until we got to the largest shopping mall i had seen in Europe so far.
We entered and found a restaurant on the second floor. An escalator had taken us up there after locating their signpost on the ground floor.
We entered and sat down in a round table of four seats. The remaining two of us; I and another girl who didn’t fit in into the four-seat table sat in another table near the main one. The girl who sat with me was the one who started the conversation with me at the hotel. Nature eventually separated us.
Right there on our table was the food and drinks menu. I picked it and quickly scanned the prices down first. The costliet in the list of foods was about Kr41. A quick calculation told me that it was less than €5. I looked at the girls on the other table and asked them to make their choices. The look on their faces revealed that they were confident enough to demand without fear of whether i could be able to pay or not; they had seen money with me.
“This foods are all written in Swedish, which one of them is rice?” i asked the girl sitting opposite me.
She laughed and pointed to number 1, then she pointed at number 9 as the sauce by which i was expected to eat the rice with.
Damn! They were all going to make atleast two choices each. It meant that each one of them was going to take atleast Kr110 from my pocket including the drinks. Kr110 multiplied by 6 people was still Kr660 which i quickly calculated and discovered that everything was still less than €80. That was good because i had hoped that i would spend atleast €200 for them. Things were cheaper and better in Sweden. The people were not living on the edge like the western Europeans.
After making our requests, i demanded for two bottles of wine at Kr11 each and kept one on each table.
“Sorry that i didn’t ask for your name earlier” i said to the girl opposite me. I knew the other girls overheard what I said but it was time to talk.
“I am Katherine Jacobsen” she said.
“How old are you?” i asked.
“I am 17” she answered with a smile.
Damn! An underage.
Not that i never did a girl her age but we were in Europe where the government authorities frowned on things like that. Those little rats were known to be so good at kiss and tell. It was still them who will go to the authorities and claimed that you had sex with them against their wishes. The raw truth remained that the authorities would take their words against yours. They would claim that you got them drunk with alcohol filled wines and take them to bed while they were intoxicated. They would then charge you with more than two offences including feeding alcohol to teenagers and raping them. No lawyer would want to associate with a black immigrant first time visitor who was charged for rape. I would be doomed because the CCTV cameras at the restaurant definitely captured us. There were live witnesses as well.
I didn’t regret buying them the foods but i felt i should have known their ages before buying the wines. Swedish people were known for some awkward laws that protected one criminal against another. Forinsntance in Sweden, law stated that if two people had sex, the person who goes to prison was the person who bought the sex while the one who sold sex would be allowed to leave free of charge. Sweden was a Country where i had decided to be very careful when dealing with women but it seemed that i forgot that rule when i met the five girls.
Right there at the table, i decided that immediately after the food, we will go our separate ways. I was in a new Country with different laws and i was expected to know the laws. I didn’t know the age by which teenagers were allowed to drink alcohol in Sweden. I knew that 18 was fine in most European countries but i needed to be careful.
I was half scared through the food and drinks until we finished. I had felt that the police could show up on our table and demand for our identities; they would then find out that the girls were not 18 Years yet and according to the most European laws, they would ignore the girls and arrest me.
As soon as we finished our drinks and food, we walked outside and walked all the way back to our hotel. On our way back to the hotel, they asked me about the place i said i came from. Initially i was very annoyed that they knew nothing about Africa but i eventually knew that they were not being taught about Africa in their schools. Their brochures never covered individuals like Nnamdi Azikiwe, Obafemi Awolowo, Kwame Nkrumah, Robert Mugabe and Murmar Ghaddafi while our own brochures down in Africa covered even football players from their regions.
I opened my door, went inside and closed it.
It was already dark when the knock came to my door. I didn’t ask who it was since half of my mind had wished that Kathy would show up alone.
Perhaps it was that will power that brought her because when i opened my door, it was Kathy Jacobsen.
“So I shall let the readers answer this question for themselves: who is the happier man, he who has braved the storm of life and lived or he who has stayed securely on shore and merely existed?”