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“What’s your view about romantic affairs in the workplace?” The interviewer asked him
“It’s wrong to allow personal affairs affect one’s efficiency at work. But after work, can one really help who he falls in love with?” Gideon asked rhetorically.
The interviewer didn’t flinch. Not even a move of eyebrow or a smile to give her away. He wasn’t so sure about the answer he gave.
Seconds of silence passed, she asked “Do you have other commitments that may require your time or attention while at work?”
“None that can’t be shifted till after work or attended to during official break hours.”
“Can you drive?”
“Yes ma’am…” As an afterthought, he added “with experience of eight years.”
“I have zero tolerance towards it, I don’t drink.”
“Any wife and kids?”
“None for now”
Gideon wondered if the woman had at all read his Resume.
“I play the guitar once a while, reading and writing mostly. I like cars etc.”
Her eyes lit up instantly, “Let’s talk cars.” It was obvious she loved cars. “My husband can’t get enough of cars…” she talked excitedly as though all along she was waiting for a change in the subject.
“Well, I like to think of the engines”
“Nice, He just got us a car”
“Model” He asked
“Toyota Venza limited 2015”
“Wow… the colour?” Gideon asked, hoping he was not being too forward.
“It came in magenta” she hissed. “I wonder who did that to the poor baby.”
Gideon laughed. “You are funny ma’am, so what colours would you prefer?”
Dreamy eyed, she said “Well for a start, “Black, sleek black or Blue Royal. He painted it already.”
“That’s nice to hear.”
“So what’s your dream car?”
“Hum… tough call. Well, a hybrid electric vehicle like Range Rover Sport 2018.”
“You definitely know what you want. Modern sophistication with class.” She smiled and glanced at her wristwatch, he looked across the room at the wall clock he sighted when he entered the conference room. The time was fifteen minutes to twelve.
Still smiling, she looked up and said “You should hear from us pretty soon. By the way it was fun talking cars.”
“Same here, ma’am.” He received the hand she extended for a handshake.
“You may take your leave” She scribbled into her notepad.
Two weeks and counting, all Gideon had left was the pleasant memory of his unpredictable interview at Soeron Capital International LTD.
Omolabake Ibikunle-Pearse, sole heiress of the famous Ibikunle-Pearse fortune grew up having her way. Whatever she wanted, she got. No one could do anything about that. It was one of the pros of being the only child of Business tycoon and Billionaire extraordinary, Otunba K.K.K. Ibikunke-Pearse.
Perhaps that explained why Omorinsola was not having a hard time comprehending was how her friend had changed drivers at least four times. And that, within the space of sixteen months! Even for the HR, her friend’s behavior was frustrating and causing some stir.
Stanley, she complained wanted to be his own boss. Omolabake said, he didn’t listen to her when she asked him not to take certain routes. Of Mr. AZ, she said did not have much intelligent conversation up his sleeves.
“What’s with these returnees from America and their uncanny demand for attention?” Morinsola rolled her eyes as she uncovered the bottle of Mountain dew. “Could Omolabake be suffering from Entitlement syndrome.”
She smiled at the obvious fact. “Omolabake is naive. The labour market wasn’t smiling.” She gulped in her fizzy drink and smiled at her friend across the table “ Omolabake, if you knew the labour market, you won’t be like this”
“Yeah, right! Tell me, don’t they get paid for doing their job?”
Morinsola smiled. “No point arguing with you girl” she thought.
“So what exactly do you want, Labake?” she asked
“Well, someone exciting enough. If I will spend a lot of time in the car which I do then I need to be a haven, my haven. Someone who speaks English, please. Who is sane enough to churn out ideas, my car must be bubbling with intelligent discussions, the person should at least, have an idea about ideas. It is my space” she chatted.
Morinsola rolled her eyes
“I see! So what exactly do you want from me?” Morinsola asked this time, the creasing on her brows couldn’t be missed.
“I want you to specifically do the job and not the Directorate of Transportation assigning me a driver?”
An “Oh” silently escaped Morinsola’s lips. As reality dawned in she burst into laughter. “I see”
“You can help, right? I am sure I can count on you, Morin” Omolabake threw her friend an air kiss.
“Let me think about it” Morinsola shook her head as she tried to eat her cold tuna sandwich.
Gideon sat at his table meditating on the words he had typed his on his blog. He enjoyed the midnight light; the power distribution company chose to be loyal at odd hours. His jotter lay by his side full of illegible doodles.
“Hey Mike! How was your day?” Gideon asked not looking up. As Michael hung the shirt he had just ironed into the wardrobe.
“Was ok… I made a friend, seems cool” he sat on the brown settee adjacent the table Gideon sat.
“Am all ears”
He tugged his tie. Michael liked to prepare his ties along with his shirts. So he’d knot them on Sunday evening and place each on the preferred shirt. “Well, she is the secretary to the Deputy Director. She is fun to be with and pretty intelligent”
“Oh, be careful though… office romance is not you’re the next on your agenda” Gideon warned.
“Nah, don’t get so worked up! There is absolutely nothing to worry yourself about something”
“So guess what?”
“You have a date?”
“Yes, I do!”
“Who is she?”
“Well, the company has asked me to come for discussion tomorrow… If I will take their offer.”
“Guy, take it oo… which discussion again” Michael hissed
“Hum, we’ll see”
“You welcome Mr.Onah”
The secretary to the Human Relations Officer called up to him and said “You may go in. The HR will see you now” He stood up and straightened his tie
“Good morning ma’am”
“Yes, you welcome. Do have your seat”
Gideon silently surveyed the desk. It had a customized mug, a Samsung tablet and a Laptop Computer. She stepped away from the shelf from which she pulled out a file. He scanned the room; there was a vase of fresh flowers. The Television was on but mute. Her office kind of matched her personality. Calm and straight to the point. He couldn’t place a finger on it, It was as though you only saw what she wanted to be seen. All seemed perfect, with nothing was out of place.
She had on a lemon floral dress and rose-rimmed cat-eye spectacles.
“Mr. Gideon, I called you here in person to relate this news to you.” She paused. “I specifically chose not to have a text message sent to you.
“Ok…” That’s a good sign right? He thought
“You see, the job of the Brand Communication Strategist you applied for has been given to a more qualified person..”
“Thank you ma, I understand.” He smiled
She “However, I feel I can tell you this. There is an opening.”
“Ok…” what had hard have I done to find such favour as this Gideon wondered.
“Humm… We need a Driver…” She said bluntly
Gideon gulped in air, he was taken aback. As what she said sank in, he found his lips rounding to voice out an amused “Oh.”
She continued “And you have all it takes, actually you are… quite… overqualified” she stammered.
“Would you consider it? Bearing in mind that there could be another job opening soon and you will be at an advantage to reapply into the company”
“Ok” was all he could say.
“So, what do you say?” She smiled
Surprising himself, he asked “How long do I have to think about it?”
She looked at her watch. “You have till 9am tomorrow morning. Then I’d have to put out an advert.”
“Ok… thank you ma.”
He stood up to leave. He shook her hand and walked out in a daze.
“So,” who is that guy that almost had me fall me down just outside your office?” Omolabake shook head as she took her seat. “Some guy in the wine tie ran into me on the corridor just adjacent your door.” She placed their lunch on the table. Theirs was a routine. Lunch time was their time.
“That dude is probably your driver” Morinsola made a face
“Nice…” Omolabake opened her salad and poured it on her rice.
“I felt really sad breaking the news to him. I mean his pride must have been hurt”
“Please, please, please, Mother Nature. Is it by force, won’t he be paid?” She hissed
“Ok o… what happened to your heart? She paused. “Wait, what up with Felix?”
Omolabake dropped the spoon that was midway into her mouth “Kini gan, will you let me eat in peace?”
“Someone’s in a mood…” Morinsola frowned “When were you going to tell me?”
So you could do what, beg him for me? Labake hissed
Morinsola stood up. “We will have this conversation when your senses return. It seems they left with him.” She walked away, leaving her favourite Tuna salad.
Omolabake hissed. It annoyed her so much her friend could read her like a book.
Words and Meaning
Kini gan: What exactly is it?
Thanks for reading… Stay tuned!