January 1, 2006: The new year was welcomed with bangs from every corner of the planet.
I held Jenny tightly from the back as we stood on the window looking out into the beautiful lighted sky of Braga Portugal. Without looking at the clock, one could have easily told when it was 12am. The bangs had increased from once in a minute to 200 times in a second.
We had decided to stay indoors and watch the show rather than gong out. I had wondered what was the essence and importance of the new year bangs and had not come up with any tangible reason. I had told Jenny that we were not going to shoot Knockouts and she had agreed. Although she had a stake in me as a lover but she also knew that the stake was allocated to her some hours ago; It was a very young stake that could break easily. She avoided arguing with my decisions. I didn’t like it but I believed that allowing her the freedom to argue out every topic would corrupt her.
*Sometimes we have to assume the control of affairs on our own especially when we know better than the people among us. Despite being the man of the house, I was also 6 years older than Jennifer. I had been to Europe long before her. From my observations, I was far more intelligent and brilliant. But still her opinion was required while making certain decisions, especially the ones that concerned her directly*
As the bangs faded away with time, we discussed our plans when the day broke. She suggested staying inside. I Joked about going back to the cathedral to get married. She laughed hard and long.
We finally agreed to go to the city center and walk around until we get tired. Then maybe, a new plan will come up. We stole kisses occasionally and I wished the conditions were better.
It would have been the perfect New year but when I recalled the dangers ahead, my joy was cut short. When we got tired of looking outside, we went to the bed and kissed each other to sleep.
About 8am, the woman of the house had decided that we cook at home rather than eating outside. I didn’t argue it. It was her right and I knew my boundaries as well. Despite being the boss, it would be bad to deny her genuine wishes.
We walked down to the Immaculate Conception avenue and bought a chicken, green unripped plantiain and ingredients. As usual, I bought a bottle of JaggerMeister sweet brandy from the Morrocan shop, not too hot at 28% alc.volume.
Most of the shops were closed as we walked back to our apartment.
Somehow, I had a feeling that our Braga tour was coming to an end. I still didn’t know how to make my move back to Lisbon if I decided to go for the backdoor permit. It would have been very easy for me but Jenny was there. The chances of being spotted in Lisbon was greater with Jenny coming along. People knew her more than me in Lisbon. I could easily sneak in and out of Lisbon without her but I was never going to leave her behind in Braga.
I played a silly children’s game called ‘Snake’ with my phone while she cooked in the kitchen. She would occasionally come to steal a kiss and laughed back into the kitchen. She was the perfect wife, the type I dreamt of when I was younger but the problem of being a fugitive was there.
She finished cooking and we ate. It was delicious as usual. I didn’t know if it was Jenny,s making or because chickens generally makes cooking taste good. I mentally gave her the credit anyway. Love can move mountains and love was blind.
There was nothing else to do, so we laid around, fvcked on the sofa, played cards until it was mid afternoon.
I opened my bags and brought out my whole money. A cetain €13000 euro was still intact. Jenny still had €750 with her, There was another €3400 left from my own money. We still had over €17000 with us and that was enough big money in every currency in the World.
We went downstairs and hired a cab. We asked the driver to take us to the river we crossed on our way to Apulia a day before.
We got there and bought a ferry ticket. We joined numerous tourists and entered a ferry boat. It took us around the city slowly. There was a man at the front end who explained to us the names of every important place we passed. He explained the histories and other vital information about the places. It was fun and a time killer, exactly what I wanted. Breakable Bottles were not allowed in the boat, we were served beer with plastic cups.
We later returned to the spot where we started.
We joined tourist bus and drove around the city center where the river did not cover. We passed Estadio Municipal do Braga, the home of SC Braga football club. I usually noticed every stadium because I loved football and I was a Manchester United fan. We visited the national Pene park where the water falls many meters from the rock.
We visited the Praca de Republica where the giant water fountain was located. We visited the Garden of Santa bar where we alighted and had a few drinks. Then we went home and packed our bags. We are traveling South the next day.
I had decided to take a shot at the Permit Francis had told me about. Portugal was getting dangerous.
A saying in Igboland said that ” It is only a tree that heard it was going to be killed and still stood where it was”