Will Fortune Ever Smile? (1)

Sad-ManDaniel Majiyagbe had been jobless for the past three years. He knew what poverty really meant. He was so poor it seemed church rats were even richer than him. His wife, Toun, was the one taking care of the family expenses. Something happened that particular Saturday morning that made Daniel regret his existence.

In life, when you are poor, your wife becomes your husband, particularly when she is the breadwinner. His wife went to have her bath and he was busy warming the pot of soup for his breakfast.

He was about bringing down the pot of soup from the stove when the pot suddenly slipped from his hands and the soup spilled on to the bare floor.

“God Almighty, I am in big trouble,” he screamed. “Why must this happen to me?” he asked himself.
At that very minute, he started sweating, panting and gasping for breath. What would he tell his wife when she was through with her bath? This was a new pot of soup that cost his wife some thousands of naira to prepare.

Just as he was still lamenting and pondering over what had just happened, Toun came out of the bathroom and saw her pot of soup spilled on the floor, with her husband standing mouth-agape, looking at the stew with disbelief.

“What nonsense is this, Daniel?” she hollered in obvious annoyance. “You upturned my pot of soup on the bare floor, you crazy and stupid man? I will show you pepper and the venom of my spleen today!”

She grabbed the long steel stew spoon and hit her husband on the head with it. Daniel screamed in bitter pains as he touched his bloodstained head. He thought the assault was over, but he guessed wrong.

Like lightning, Toun angrily grabbed the empty pot of soup, and again hit his head with it. The unlucky man became dizzy with terrifying pains. He fell down and gasped for breath, thinking of the agony that was his lot.
Toun, a tall and robust woman, was a trader and owned two shops, where she sold children clothes and shoes.
Daniel was a dark-skinned handsome man, who was about six feet tall and worked with Shotem Engineering Company in Lagos before he was retrenched about three years ago, and that was the beginning of his travails.

His wife, who was before then humble, kind and unassuming, suddenly changed for the worse. She showed him what living in hell was all about.

She had been the one paying the house rent and other bills after he lost his job and this fact didn’t go down well with her. She always complained and nagged, as buried his head in shame.

Although Daniel had been struggling day and night to get himself another job, but fortune was yet to smile on him.
That Saturday morning, it was thundering and raining heavily. Toun called her husband and told him point blank that she had had enough and he must leave the house and move out to any destination he chose.

“Please, Toun, don’t do this to me…” Daniel begged his adamant wife. “Don’t leave me in the lurch, please for the sake of our children. I believe God will do it…”

He was in painful tears as he packed his clothes and personal effects, as he was about to enter into the heavy rain to face an uncertain future.

“Leave this house before I call the Police to intervene,” she said sarcastically. “We can’t both live under this same roof again! When your so-called God changes your fortune for the better, you can get yourself another wife. I am totally fed up living with a jobless man,” she shouted.

“Mummy, mummy, don’t let daddy leave us and go inside the rain,” her children begged their utterly enraged mother.
The three children cried out of sympathy when they saw their father stepping out with his bag into the heavy downpour. There was nothing they could do, as their mother had made up her mind to part ways with her jobless husband.

That was how Daniel left the house in tears to begin another life filled with uncertainty.
(To be concluded next Saturday)

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