Diary Of A Shoe Lover- Episode 7 – To Have And To Hold
“These days, the new school say marriage is over rated and should not be high on anybody’s priority list or be a do or die affair. As much as I quite agree with that thought with reason, I say marriage can be a beautiful thing and I desire to get married….*sigh* From Benin to Dubai, Ivie’s nuptials were absolutely beautiful. Pure, true and natural, you could see the connection between her and Eddy. They’ve had their fair share of issues, Ai and I have had to intervene a few times in the past, but isn’t that what they say makes a solid foundation? I’m wondering if i may have found my happily ever after, but only time will tell. Anyway, party is over, time to continue life where I stopped…Good night Diary...”
We had gone to Benin 2 days before Ivie’s traditional marriage and it was fun all the way. Her mum’s sisters all showed up from abroad to be with her. There were 4 of them and she hadn’t seen them in almost 2 years. Initially when her mum died of cancer 10 years ago, they had all rallied around her and taken turns having her on holidays, but life had happened and everyone had gotten busy and in Ivie’s case, gotten older. She had a very good relationship with them but wasn’t particularly close to any of them.
Her dad tried to satisfy her with everything and in every way he knew how, but nothing could fill the vacuum of her mothers love. They had been very close especially as she was an only child. Her dad never re married but had fathered a child from a relationship he kept after her mums death. She turned out to be a very level headed child and matured to have a good head on her shoulders.
His special love for Ivie remained consistent and evident as she was an offshoot of his first love. She was spoiled for choice on everything she needed for the wedding. I had the honors of picking out all her shoes and because we couldn’t decide on some, her dad insisted we buy them all.
She looked really beautiful in her Benin Bridal attire with all the beads on her head and around her shoulders.
She eventually settled for the Manolo Blahnik Hangisi Pumps. And for the reception party, her choice of purple and gold was totally regal. All the accessories from there came from her mum’s sisters and she wore them all and even had to change shoes in between.
As her maids of honor, Ai and I alongside 2 of her cousins and her Kenyan friend, Kwanza who they went to school together, dressed up like real maidens in our knee length Ankara wrappers and beads complete with Indian flat shoes SoleDivas had ordered for us. It was really beautiful.
After the bride price payment which was strictly for family and a few friends, we moved on to the reception which also happened in the compound of her dad’s house. The DJ was the best and the live band that came after killed it. We had changed into the family Aso-Ebi, an orange and green mix of lace and gele. Nigerians sure know how to party and being the wedding of an Ex-minister’s first daughter, all the big names you could think of were there. Ivie’s dad was a really modest man and one of the few men in power that served his office dutifully without any blemish.
My mum had loaned me her Sergio Rossi sandals again and even said something about me keeping them, we’d have to re visit that issue before i get my hopes up. My parents came in on the morning of the event and left after the bride price payment as they had another function to attend in Warri, Delta State. We partied till morning and were completely fagged out.
Our next stop was Dubai. She was having a destination wedding with 60 people. 30 from each side. Ivie as flamboyant she could be, did not like to be the center of attention. Fortunately for her, she didn’t have so many friends so she didn’t have to explain many people off. Eddy was quite the socialite but was with Ivie on the choice of a quiet wedding.
Hakeem came to the rescue yet again and sent me a return ticket – business class, not like I wouldn’t have been able to buy an economy class ticket, but it would have set me back on my savings a lot. Since the yard sales, he had been monitoring my savings progress, kept me grounded and made me accountable. I was also determined to make it work and we had set a goal to buy a piece of land at the end of the year. The guy really had my back sha. I silently wished he won’t find a wife before i got married. He had come to be an anchor of some sort and i knew that when he got married, he won’t have my time as much.
Dubai was a whole different ball game. From the pre-wedding dinner, to the wedding and then the after party, it was like we were in a different world. I wasn’t looking forward to going to back to Nigeria or work, I just wanted to party forever. Her make up artist, Laide of Ara by Laide had flown in to Dubai, all expense paid. Eddy had gone all out to give Ivie her dream wedding. The Pre-wedding party was for only the bridal party which included me, Ai, Kwanza, Ivie, Eddy, his brother and 2 of his friends. We had a full 3 Course Dinner and shared lots of laughter and memories of the couple in their years of dating.
At the pre wedding dinner, he had presented her with a pair of Jimmy Choo Cinderella inspired Crystallised Pumps and asked for the honors of taking their vows together with her wearing them and becoming his princess forever after. It was so mushy and sweet and again as the town crier i am, shed a few tears.
Hakeem had come to pick Me, Aishat and Kwanza to the hotel after the dinner. I stayed back to gist with him for a while after the girls had gone in as we hadn’t seen much of each other since i came in.
“But wait o, Shalewa, how is it you still don’t have a boyfriend with all this your tear tear clothes?” He said with a smirk on his face.
I made to hit him with my purse “Just tell me you’re feeling the girl and her tear tear clothes” I said.
“Yea, maybe i am Salewa” He said, suddenly sounding serious.
“Marry me babe. Listen, i really like you. i mean we’ve been friends since forever, and lately, i haven’t been able to get you out of my head and my mind. You’re the first person i think of when i need to talk to someone. I’m really into you and i can’t hide it any longer. I know this is not your ideal proposal, i know how you dream for it to be but this is real, me talking straight from my heart, not some rehearsed movie script. I also know this is the last thing on your mind, me asking you to marry me. Take some time to think about it. I love you Salewa, i have grown to love you beyond friendship. I care about you and everything that has to do with you. I really want you to be my wife, i want to fill your closet with shoes you don’t have to get in debts for.” He paused and waited for a reaction or response
I sat there in shock, my legs turned to jelly.
He continued “I’d respect your decision if you say no, but this is exactly what i want, to be your husband, your friend, your lover and the father of our kids.”
I tried to recover after a few seconds and got down from the car. “Good night, Hakeem, thanks for the ride” I said and walked away, i didn’t wait to hear his response, if there was one. Ivie’s wedding was tomorrow and that’s why we are here. I hoped i’d have been able to get myself together before then. I acted like nothing when i got into the room i shared with the girls. Ivie was also in the same hotel and we were all going to be with her by morning for pictures and make up and all. I needed to talk to someone.
Shally Too Cute: “Hey Sissy, are you there?”
Mojisola: “Hey darling, wasup, Dinner over?”
Shally Too Cute: “Hakeem just asked me to marry him”
Mojisola: *Heart pumping emoji*, i hope you said yes”
Shally Too Cute: “Lol, I didn’t say anything, i said good night and walked away”
Mojisola: “It’s not in my place or that of anyone to tell you what to do. It will be your marriage and your forever after. Take some time to think about it. Think about your friendship with him in the past 10 years, the answer lies within you my love. May God guide your decision”
Shally Too Cute: “Thanks Sissy, see you tomorrow”
My brother and his wife were in Dubai for a friend’s wedding anniversary which happened to be on the same day as Ivie’s wedding. I went to bed after a nice warm bath and couldn’t stop thinking about Hakeem’s proposal. I didn’t sleep much and messaged my mum very early in the morning. She called to pray with me and said the same thing my Sister in law had said. I faced the day ready to party.
Our full outfit was paid for by Ivie’s dad and that added to my count of luxury shoes, the Nicholas Kirkwood sandals were spot on. Ivie looked absolutely divine in her dress. You would have expected her to go all out in some elaborate layered, embellished dress, but the simplicity of everything made her look even more divine.
From the vows to the reception and the after party, it was a roller coaster of emotions from tears to laughter and more laughter. And when i caught the bouquet at the reception, Hakeem’s eyes caught mine as he gave me a wink.