Dear Augusta,

I will see you again tomorrow in church. The thought of it makes me feel like fifty bolts of lightning. I try every Sunday to keep my eyes away. Sometimes, I did. Sometimes, I did not. I don’t admit to anything. I just know you are the only coloured object on a landscape of black and white as far as Sunday is concerned. And you haven’t helped matters at all. You absolutely haven’t. You take a sitting position that makes it very convenient and very effortless and very unintentional for my neck to seek you out in the midst of over a hundred human heads. Sometimes, I think you do it on purpose. And during Sunday School lessons, you always have a contribution to make. Your lesson is not made if you do not throw a jab at me, killing me inside. The whole class always has a good laugh when you do that, and I will just nod and smile. I always tell myself I will not sit with that class the following Sunday. Who am I deceiving? Of course, I’m right there again, just behind you (or anywhere that makes stealing glances at you a whole lot easier than having to gaze).

You once showed me a book on marital relationship tips for females, I nodded and smiled. You are surely equipping yourself, I thought to myself. You offered to help me get the male version of the book. I nodded again. You went on to talk about the author and the vision behind the writing of the book (I have a better vision about… never mind). I was beginning to wonder if I was just imagining things or you were indeed teasing me. You are playful, so it is hard to tell. So tomorrow, I will just sit in my corner and enjoy the view that is you. And by the way, your make-up last Sunday was really nice. I liked (or loved) it. Yes. It looked good on you. It actually went well with your dress, which was elegant too. The dress ends right on your knees when you stand. Your legs should have a monument named after them. Did I look at you that much? Goodness me! Well, it was just a compliment. We all get it all the time. Why shouldn’t you? (As if I will open my mouth and say it to you tomorrow)

The day you said you loved my shirt and tie, I gave my signatory gesture – a nod. And a smile the size of a mustard seed, so you won’t think my head swelled. But inside, I felt like I just ‘Grand-slammed’ Novak Djokovic and Roger Federer combined. In my head, I even called your attention to my new haircut…..loveletters2 - DEAR AUGUSTA

As I lay here in my single-room apartment, I’m wondering what you are doing right now. I’m wondering if you will get to church tomorrow before me so that you can tease me as usual (not that I’m an habitual late-goer)….. I remember the day we had a funny argument about who got to church first. Eventually, I remarked that you probably get late to work (I wonder what you look like in office wear). Off you went about not lightly regarding workplace ethics, one of which is punctuality. I just looked on, lost in my thoughts (of you, of course), until you tapped me. You asked what I was thinking about. I said I was thinking about how much I also regard workplace ethics. Blatant lie. You gave me that inquiring look as if you didn’t believe me. A deacon came along at that moment and commented on our standing together, saying it is good for singles to meet and rub minds and all. This will help the church to grow, he added and walked away after a word of blessing. You obviously had goose bumps at what he said. It was all over you. Me?  I must have blacked out with my eyes wide open! I remember a particular word he used – interact. I remember because you said it when he left. And the way you said it, I will not forget. As for rubbing minds, it is not a bad idea if it involves rubbing bodies (Okay, I’m backsliding. Let me turn around). You excused yourself to go find your mum, then you turned and reminded me of the singles programme coming up at a sister church. I nodded. I haven’t forgotten, I answered.

How you got my number, you never told me. All I know is you popped up on my Whatsapp one day and made me guess who you are for almost fifteen minutes. I would have given up and deleted the chat, but you continually teased me. When I finally found out it was you, I put down my phone and was afraid to touch it. I just stared at it while your messages poured in. When I eventually took up the phone, you had scolded me for ‘running away’. And what came to my mind instantly was Stylplus’ song ‘Run Away’. I apologized and replied that I went to pee (lied again). You replied ‘LOL’. I replied ‘LOOL’. You replied ‘LOOOL’. I replied again ‘’LOOOOL’. The laughter that I wouldn’t allow in your presence started coming out. No acting cool this time. I’m allowed to be me for once. My Banky-W type-of-head neighbour was beside me all this while. He said ‘look at the way you are doing because of a girl’. I ignored him. The same way I have tried to ignore you and ignore whatever is going on in my head and ignore us (can you see what I’m saying? Who said there is a ‘us’ in the first place?)

I will see you tomorrow in church. You will look radiant than before, I know. And I know why. Yes, I do. You told me yourself. I have your gift. I hope you will like it. Please do. Happy birthday in advance.

Your friend,



Akolawole Ishola
Akolawole Ishola

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