Tribute: My Landlady And I – A True Life Story

Tribute: My Landlady And I – A True Life Story

The piece you are about to read, is a true life story spiced with creativity to make it interesting, entertaining and memorable. Enjoy as you read.

Here is a true life account of my experience with Lady Roseline Ebunoluwa Olorunfemi. Her dear friend, Mr. Olorunfemi introduced me to her in the mid-80s. How long will he be staying she queried. I cut in and said Nine (9) months Ma. She helped me with my luggage and showed me to the guest room.

Tribute to my motherWhile the negotiation ensued between her and her friend, I stole several looks at Lady Rose, she was a beauty to behold. Her kind of beauty is not one you find every day; she qualifies for the African queen described by Nigeria music sensation Tuface Idibia in his song AFRICAN QUEEN. Her dark skin glimmers. My eyes coined the adjective “Duduyemi” to describe her.

After her friend’s departure, she confirmed to me that she was not charging me a dime for the accommodation. In her words, it is my pleasure to have you under my roof.

Lady Rose, was exceptionally hospitable, I am yet to experience the kind of hospitality she showed me. I had hardly settled when she rushed into the kitchen, peeled a half tuber of yam, sliced them into small pieces, washed them and put them in pot. As the yam boiled on the gas cooker, she showed me to the bathroom.

While having my shower, I heard a sound synonymous to mortar and pestle, I mused in my heart; I hope Lady Rose is not pounding yam by herself. I do not expect a queen like her to put herself through all that stress.

Knowing that I was whole heartedly welcomed by my host, I felt at home naturally. After my bath, I freshened up and wore a causal look in a blue shirt and black jean trouser. I heard a soft knock at my door, who is there, I queried? The response I got was, “Your food is ready”. I was not expecting her to prepare my meals, after providing me with such comfortable accommodation. I will be asking too much to be a pest on her for nine months.

The aroma of her soup hit me on my nose, this left me salivating. Ma, don’t worry about food, you should not have put yourself through all that stress for my sake. You should have waited for me to pound the yam. Her face was lit with smiles, her silence spoke these words, “it’s my pleasure”.

pounded yamI took my place at the dining table, the sight of the food was one to behold – you find such on the banquets for nobles. My bowels emptied themselves. I ate with patience; I did not want to finish the food in a hurry. The soup was made from waterleaf and ugwu leaves, spiced with stocked fish, dry fish and other assorted meat. The soup reminded me of the menus I read about Calabar soups at “heaven bookshop”.

At nightfall, I retired to my room; I spent the rest of the night admiring the architectural master piece of its interior. Everything was just perfect, the paintings, the furniture, beddings e.t.c

On the wall hung a photo of Lady Rose and Mr. Olorunfemi. Another was one of her, Mr. Olorunfemi and two beautiful kids. She later introduced them as Ayodeji and Oluwatoyin.

Mr. Olorunfemi who introduced me to her was always checking on me, asking after my wellbeing and confirms if I am of good conduct. He worked with Nigeria Agricultural and Cooperative Bank, now Bank of Agriculture (BOA). His office was not so far away, I guess this afforded him the opportunity to visit her during his break hours.

As the months rolled by, I thought what will become of me at the end of nine months. I did not want to believe I will forgo the enjoyment that characterized my present accommodation. Food, light, water…. Just name it.

At the end of nine months, it was time to leave my accommodation; the thought of it saddened me. I worked up a plan. On the 16th of April 198?…., I locked myself up in my room. Madam rose screamed at my name but I did not respond to her call. She screamed help!!! at the top of her voice, this coincided with Mr. Olorunfemis visit. After she briefed him what was happening, he hurried to his car and drove off.

Tribute to my motherIn a short while, he was back with a Man wearing white clothes and 3 other women who I later learnt to be Doctor and nurses. The doctor and the others wore a finger like material on their hands. I watched all that transpired while peeping through the key hole. They were determined to force the door open.

The man in white was their lead; he shouted the word PUSH!!! Whenever he did, I felt a heavy force trying to pull down the door to my room. In the bid to have a clearer view of what was happening, I decided to peep through the opening between the door and the floor. Unfortunately, the Man in white was also nursing the same thought with me.

As soon as I put my head to the ground, our eyes meet; he quickly grabbed me by the head. The opening was just enough to force me out of my room. I could not hold back my tears, the tears took their source from two thoughts. The first, “is this how to pay mama Rose for her kindness?” The other, “I have to wake to the reality of self-survival”.

The doctor gently pulled me by the head, afterwards he held me in his arms like a warrior who had just overcame his enemy. He walked up to my host and presented me to her. The looks in her eyes were those of gratitude, excitement, joy and love. They seem to mean, “Thank God he is safe and alive”. Her screams, tears had made way for smiles that characterized her person.

Tribute to my motherHaving seen the look in her eyes, my fears melted away. She held me in her arms and feed me with pure milk which I was later taught in biology to be COLOSTRUM. The End – See how kind my Landlady was.

I dedicate this writing to the memory of my mother, Mrs. Remilekun Ebunoluwa Olorunfemi. 2013 makes it 10 years she departed this world. I have other creative writings inspired by her. I will put them together to create an online memorial for her.

Ten years ago, we grieved about your physical absence from us. We wore heavy hearts, teary eyes and sullen faces to register our displeasure with death.

Ten years on, we celebrate your life. A life best described by one word, “SELFLESS”. You came into our lives and showed us love. You loved and loved until it hurt. Many times, we wondered if you ever had time for yourself; you dedicated much time making others happy.

You are our definition of a virtuous woman, the good thing God blessed our lives with. You were the fruitful vine from which Ayodeji, Oluwatoyin and Oloruntobiloba sprang.

Your few but affirmative words continue to make huge imparts in our lives as they did in the lives of all those who crossed your path.

The memories we share evokes thankful hearts. We recognize your impart in our present lives and so reiterate, “To live in our hearts, is not to die”. Remilekun, Ebunoluwa Olorunfemi LIVES ON!!!

May the souls of the faithful departed through the mercy of God, rest in peace. Amen

Continue to rest in the bossom of the Lord.
Fondly remembered by: Husband A.M Olorunfemi, Children, friends and relatives.


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