When Alex told me he loved me and wanted to start a life with me, I looked at his finger first. I couldn’t believe a man like him wouldn’t have a wife or a girlfriend. He looked well taken care of and behind every man that looks that way, there’s a woman. I asked him, “Tell me the truth, don’t you have a woman in your life? A woman who helps to put you together?” He laughed at my question. He told me the last woman he had was two years ago. “After her, I decided to take my time so I don’t go through the pain the last one took me through.”
I looked into his eyes, I said, “Eiii you that. Two years without a woman and you look good like that? So you mean for two years no woman has come closer?” He answered, “Of course, a woman has come closer and that woman has always been my mom.”
We laughed. He told me he was serious about his proposal. I told him I will believe him only if I meet his mother. We laughed again and by the time the laughter disappeared from our lips, I was in love. I didn’t accept his proposal immediately. I needed time to study this man to know what makes him look well cared for if there was no woman involved.
It was at a three-day program that we met. The program was held in Accra and I attended the program from Kumasi. According to him, he had been eyeing me since the beginning of the program. He proposed a day before the program came to an end. I told him I was from Kumasi and he told me he was from Accra. I asked him, “How can a love like this work? See the distance.” He said, “Kumasi to Accra is just thirty-five minutes when you take a flight. Love can work. Depending on your weekend, we can see each other every weekend.”
I got to Kumasi before I said yes to his proposal. The weekend after I said yes, he travelled to Kumasi to visit me. I’m living with my mom and my junior sister so when he came around, I introduced him to them. I called him a friend but the way they looked at us, they didn’t believe we were just friends. He spent the whole weekend in a hotel nearby. I went to see him and that day we had our first sex. The next morning, I came home with him. We stayed until the evening before he went back to his hotel. He left early Sunday morning and told me, “The next visit would be you coming to Accra.”
I work on Saturdays so it was difficult for me to travel to see him in Accra but one weekend, I faked sickness and use the opportunity to travel to Accra to see him. He bought my flight ticket and when the plane flew over the clouds, I felt like I was flying on the wings of love to the man I love. It was my first time going that far up. Before that, the farthest I’d travelled vertically was when I jumped. Jumping takes you off the ground but it doesn’t land you on the cloud. I got to Accra and he picked me up from the airport. I couldn’t shut up about the experience in the air until I got home with him.
I looked at the house he took me to and asked, “You own this place? I mean this is where you live all by yourself?” The floor tiles were dazzling, the kitchen looked stainless, the curtains looked like they were keeping secrets, and the bathroom looked well polished like a maid spent all day keeping it in shape. A two-bedroom house in Cantonment surrounded by a wall and flowers. “You must be paying a fortune for this kind of place,” I said. He answered, “Luckily, I’m not the one paying for it. It’s a company house.”
I looked up at the skies and thanked my God for bringing a man like that my way but the house looked empty. Some portion of the house was occupied by eco. You speak and your voice speaks back to you. It lacked presence and identification. It was like a house waiting for its real owner who had travelled abroad. I started asking questions and he had an answer to every question. He concluded, “It was when this house was given to me that I realized I needed a woman in my life. I’m glad you’ve identified where you can make it better. It’s yours, do what you want to do with it.”
We spent the weekend together and everything was bliss. When my mom called, I gave him the phone to speak to my mom and he did. The conversation was lighter and lasted for over five minutes. I loved the connection between them already and started waiting for my own moment to build a connection with his mom. His mother wasn’t living in Accra. He told me she was living somewhere behind Ho and we could go there when there’s a holiday.
My job didn’t allow me to see him every weekend like I wanted to but nothing changed between us. We would be on the phone for the whole day and at night we’ll text until our eyes grew heavy and we fell asleep.
For over two months I didn’t see him. We had dated for over nine months but I’d been to his place only three times. He had been to Kumasi often until he started talking about busy schedules on weekends. Any time we talked, his question was, “So when are you coming to Accra? Are you choosing your work over me? Is that how things are going to go when we get married?” One day he spoke to my mom on the phone and told her that I had not been visiting him because of my job. My mom assured him that she would talk to me to visit as soon as possible.
It was becoming harder, getting someone to replace me on Saturdays and it was the reason I couldn’t visit as often as I wanted. When I finally got someone to replace me, I decided to pay him a surprise visit. One Friday evening after work, I bought a bus ticket and set off to Accra. I got to Accra around 9pm. I hopped into a taxi to Cantonment, where his house was. The lights were on when I got there. I did the sign of the cross, thanking God that he was home. I pressed the bell and waited patiently for him to come out and see me. I pressed the bell three times and he didn’t come out. Before the next pressing of the bell, a guy came from the adjacent house. He looked at me and my bag and asked, “Do you have a reservation?”
I was surprised yet managed to smile. I told h
im, “I’m here to see my boyfriend. This is his house.” He looked at me as though he wasn’t sure of what he heard. “Your boyfriend lives here?” He looked over the wall into the house to check if someone was in. He told me, “No one lives here. This is Airbnb. We don’t even have an occupant this weekend.” To be honest, that was my first time hearing of Airbnb so I didn’t know what it meant until he explained further.
I picked up my phone and called Alex. He excitedly answered the phone. I told him, “Please come out. I’m at your door.” “At my door? Where?” He asked me. I responded, “Where else? I’m here but someone here is telling me it’s an Airbnb apartment. I don’t know what that means please come for me.”
We hang up the call and that was the last time I heard of Alex. I called his number throughout the night and he wasn’t picking up until his phone went off. The guy said, “Madam, it looks like he lied to you. He’s not coming because he doesn’t own this place.” I told him, “But I’ve been here three times. This is where we stayed. He told me it was his official residence.” The guy smiled while looking piteously at me. He said, “It’s an Airbnb. What it means is, anyone could use it for as long as they want. It’s a furnished residence for short stays.”
The guy walked me to the street and showed me a nearby guesthouse where I spent the night. I was hoping to wake up the next morning to realize it was all a dream but it never happened. I woke up the next morning and started calling again. His phone was on but immediately after I started calling, it went off. All my messages to him on Whatsapp went unanswered. I travelled over four hours to surprise my man but I ended up being surprised. The hardest part of the heartbreak was what I was going to tell my mom. She was in love with him too and it looked like her heart would also break if she hears the news.
I got home and started digging. He told me he wasn’t a fan of social media so when we were together, I never bothered to check him out there. Honestly, I’m also not a heavy user of social media. I’m on Facebook but I go there because of Silent Beads. I’m on TikTok too but I’m there as a consumer and not a contributor. I searched for him on Facebook with the name I knew but I didn’t see him there. I tried the name he had used on his Whatsapp and I still didn’t see him. I didn’t believe he wasn’t there so I used a friend’s account and there he was, a complete family man. From what I saw, he had been married for nine years with three kids. I wasn’t surprised but my heart broke all the same. I texted him with my friend’s account and that too was blocked a day later.
The next time I texted him through another friend’s account, I told him, “I leave you to God to judge you. I won’t pursue you and I won’t try to hurt you back but trust me, you’ll get your reward here on earth before you die.” He blocked my friend too.
I’m not yet fully healed. My mom doesn’t know the story because I’m too ashamed to tell her. My sister too. I’m sharing my story here as part of the healing process and also warn ladies to look out for such things. They won’t take you to a hotel because you’ll suspect them. They’ll take you to Airbnb and pretend it’s their house. Just be careful.