Sunday, 25 August 2013

Old School or Blackberry Style

Love has never been as easy as it has become. Today, all it takes to get the attention and possibly the affection of a girl is just her phone number or BB pin. Everyday,
this scene plays out in different ways across the world. They say it is modernization.
   Amaka, an undergraduate was on her way to a shop when a boy stopped her. As a matter-of-fact he asked for her love. "You are such an angel, "he enthused. As soon as she told him her name, he quickly asked for her phone number. She obliged him.

     That same evening he called her and they had a long passionate chat. By the end of that day, she was already contemplating giving him a chance in her life. "The next day, we had lunch together at a fast food joint close to my end," she said.

     By the next weekend, her new found love wanted her to pay him a visit, 'to know where he was staying.' And well,  Amaka did. Within a few weeks, the couple was inseperable. They practically went everywhere together. And most evenings, people said they would see them buying suya together while their love blazed for all to see.

   A year later when Amaka had accomodation problem, her boyfriend recommended that she moved in with him. " I didn't need to think about it. It is something I always  wanted to do. So, I moved in with pleasure."
   That is how easy it is to get into a relationship these days. Well, it wasn't that easy for many older people who still remember how hard they fought to get the affection of their spouses.

  Oladele was just a little over 20 when he sighted the woman he wanted to marry. The period was more than a decade  before Nigeria's independence.  As an electrical engineer, he was doing a job for the Water Corporation somewhere on the Lagos Island.
    "One morning, as I was going to work, I saw these two teenage girls. I later found out that they were sisters. They were going to school in the same bus that I was travelling in. The girls were so beautiful together. Almost instantly, I started liking one of them. But I could not approach her because those days, a young man cannot talk to a girl just like that.

    So, I nursed my feelings for her for more than two years. But I kept seeing them in the bus almost every morning. The thing that attracted me so much to them was that they were so respectful. Each morning, when we met at the bus, they would greet me. Then, I would just throw them a smile. Even when my job with the water house expired, I would still take a bus at least once a week to make sure that I didn't lose a sight of them. To get close to the girls, I would even pay their transport fares."

  However, something happened that was to change the course of everything in their lives. Dele got a contract that took him out of Lagos for about six months. By the time he returned, he could not find the object of his attention at the bus! That was when he made up his mind to mind to find and keep the girl.

     Luckily, he found the younger sister with whom he had also become acquainted. "When  I inquired of the other girl, she told me that her sister and completed her secondary school. And that she was assisting their mother in her shop. So, I trailed them to their house.

 "When I got there, I dilligently became friends with a boy in their neighbourhood. The girl happened to be his cousin. Through him, I was able to see her. But then, you cannot be seen standing with a girl on the road like it happens today. Your parents will get to know and you would be dealth with.

   "So, we met at night at a corner close to their house. When I told her my intentions for her, she just laughed. Well, I wanted to marry her straight away. But she was adamant. She could not believe  me.  She wanted to know why I didn't come straight to their house to see her parents instead of meeting her up at night.
But I just wanted to be sure that she would accept my proposal. " Even though she made a very fine argument that night, I still remember that she could not bring herself to look me straight in the face.

  She kept looking down and playing with her fingers. She was that shy. And  that alone further  attracted her to me. Yet after that first meeting, my girl refused to see me again for months without end."

    Dele had little education, so he managed to put his feeling into  the written word. Then he sent her the letter, but he did not get any replies. He wrote several others letters and was almost losing hope of ever seeing the girl again when she replied him. The only content of her letter that he still remembers was her invitation to come and see her parents. He was so elated!

    Today, Dele and this wife of his have seen more than 50 years of life together. They have seen even their great grand children.
Looking back, this man cannot understand what has become of this generation. " You won't see that while we were growing up.
You work to have the hand of a girl in marriage. And until you are married, you are not allowed to touch the girl. And the girls themselves know that it was a dishonor. So, they will not even let you come close."

    While Pa Oladele finds it hard to grasp how the virtues his generation held dear have all crumbled, Amaka (earlier mentioned) does not understand why she should pretend about her feelings. "What I can say is that I feel that it is just proper for me to let a guy know if I know if I like him too. I don't see any reason I should pretend about it at all.
Though I appreciate the fact that a lot have changed since the times of our mothers, but there is really nothing one can do about it,"

     Well, one of the prominent features of dating in the past was love letter. But that is one thing that has given way to other forms of modern communication. Many older ones still  remember some of the letters they either sent or received while dating their sweethearts. But today, dating their sweethearts. But today, dating is all about phone call, text messages, emails, pinging, and even sexting.

    Meanwhile, in an article by Brett and Kate Mckay entitled: 30 Days to a Better Man, one of the things the couple recommended was for a man to write a love letter on Day 28. While they agreed that "Love letters were definitely more popular in the pas," they still believed that love letters "have special properties that no modern form of communication can duplicate. It is something tangible that we can touch and hold and can even pass on to others and they are preserved and cherished in a way that text message or email never will be.

    "The letters you can give your wife or girlfriend are testaments in the history of your love. They constitute a record of your relationship that she will hold onto for the rest of her life (unless of course you break her heart and then the letters will give her the satisfaction of having something to burn or line the bird cage with.)

   "Your love doesn't have to be far away for you to write a letter to her. A love letter is appropraite even when you are sleeping alongside your special someone every night. It is a chance to express your feeling in a more ardent way than you do on a day to day basis.

 A woman cannot hear too many times that she is beautiful and that you love her. They will never get sick of it. They want  to know that you still feel the same way you felt when you first met."

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