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WAITING

I look at him, he looks back at me; in another place and time we may have tried to strike a conversation. Not here, certainly not now.

I look at his shirt, it is unremarkable. His lower buttons are unable to stay united as his distended belly peeps through like a shiny calabash, he is sweating which is unusual as the weather is very cool today, I look at his feet, they are bare, and it will indeed take a lot of struggle and will power to fit them into any regular shoe.

I turn my eyes away from him; I have other more important things to worry about - like what awaits me behind those doors. Someone is coming out, I try to look at her expression, I can’t tell whether she is happy or sad, she walks past me, the smell of stale deodorant on a repeatedly worn and unwashed blouse assaults my nostrils.

I hear my name: ‘Mr. Okafor!’ the lady in the smaller room calls; I stand up, I look at him -‘my friend’ with the big belly is also trying to stand, I move quickly past him and shut the door …

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