THE LIVE-IN IN-LAW

E no get wetin this my “single” eye no go see. I just dey waka. There is an “owambe” every weekend. I will know that I am late to the party when my male friends start getting married. Lol.  It’s as if I am doing pre-marriage inspection and so far, the only perfect ones are on the pages of Instagram.

In these parts, it is common to have one or more family members living with the couple. Some people have come up with the pros and cons of this arrangement but that is the subject of another post. (Or you can knock yourselves out in the comment section below).

So after you have crossed the line to become Mrs, how do you deal with the live-in In-law? We know that all fingers are not equal and that there is no parallel universe where the older sibling gets his “act” together before the younger one.

If you marry the younger, all-acts-together sibling, your situation is already complicated. If that older sibling in this situation does not have the right attitude, well…. It’s a tricky situation for ladies in a society where the man is the Commander-in-chief.

One of my best friends sister, who recently got married took delivery of some fabrics for my friend (Ozioma) and I. she had promised to introduce us to her tailor who does not derive joy from disappointing people. I was excited because Ozioma and I planned to kill it at our next “aso ebi” event. I kept harassing her;

Ozzy, when are we going to collect our material from your sister now?

So last week Saturday, we headed for Gbagada where her sister lives. We got to the house before her sister who was stuck in traffic and we met her older brother-in-law and a young lady in the living room. We exchanged pleasantries and Ozzy and I retreated to the balcony to wait for her sister and avoid the awkwardness in the living room.

My dear CC’s the home video that played out afterwards ehn…ozzy’s sister (Nneka) came in shortly after. We saw her from the balcony and went to meet her at the door to help with her bags. She rushed past us to greet her brother-in-law and the guest (who by the way, had all sorts of drinks present in the house laid out in front of her. I thought she came with her villagers).

After greeting her In-law and his guest she turned her attention to us and we were ushered into the third bedroom that sort of doubles as a store for all those coolers and manual blenders that she got as wedding gifts. She showed us the fabrics and we ventured into our phones to compare styles that we had screen grabbed from Asoebi Bella on Instagram.

About 20 minutes later, we had settled on styles and were set to leave for the tailor’s place which was just three streets away from the house. I was looking forward to the stroll to take back all the fresh air that the room/store had taken from me. We could not go into her “matrimonial” bedroom, the guest bedroom was for her brother-in-law who was also occupying the living room.

As we were heading out, Nneka dashed into the kitchen where she forgot her purse and her brother-in-law followed almost five seconds later. When Nneka had not come out of the kitchen after about five minutes, Ozzy and I exchanged worried looks;

No be purse she go collect?

So we angled towards the kitchen door to find out what was cooking. 

Brother in law: But you just came back.

Nneka: Brother, it is just three streets away. I would introduce them to the tailor and come back

Brother-in-law: can’t you just describe the place? Is Ozioma new to this area? Why must you go with them?

Nneka: there is food in the freezer. I would soon be back. Ten minutes tops.

Brother-in-law: (opens freezer). Ngwa look inside. Do you see Oha soup anywhere? This is how you will be starving my brother. Thank God I am here if not, nobody will believe it.

Nneka: Brother…

Brother-in-law: You have gone out two times today. Now you want to parade the streets when there is no food at home….

I backed away from the kitchen door and Ozioma knocked and went in. From the crack at the back, I could see her sister visibly embarrassed or should I say distraught, trying not to yell at her brother-in-law

Ozioma: sister, we are leaving o. someone from the office just called. We will come and see the tailor tomorrow.

Nneka: ehn ehn? Alright. See you tomorrow. Kene (greet) your friend for me o!

As we walked out of the house, I stole a glance at the brother-in-law’s guest blissfully watching E! news and smiling at “familiar” faces.

She no sabi cook? Shior

Ozioma and I drove in silence back to the Island. We were thinking about an alternative tailor and how much more we were going to pay for express sewing.

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