Relationships are sweet when you receive affection. They’re sweeter when you give affection. They’re sweetest when it’s mutual. Hey, I just came up with that! You can quote me if you want. If you’re obsessed about receiving attention in a relationship, your need (read greed) will never be satisfied. Relationships thrive best when we give. Give your money, give your time and give yourself away. The results especially for guys can be incredible! Here’s my story.
Some time last year, Turi and I were in the city together. We were shopping for invitation cards for our wedding in a few months. I arrived in the card shop earlier than Turi and began making a selection. She arrived much later remarking how hard it was to find parking.
I was oblivious to the fact that Turi, in a hurry, had double-parked Raul (our car) and consequently hindered three cars from leaving the parking lot in the mall.
We took at least an hour and a half to make a selection. We passed by a beauty cosmetics shop near the mall to buy Turi a few hair products. Turi was short of cash at the till so I topped up with my own. I was left with little cash after spending my entire month’s salary on wedding vendors.
We finally decided to end the day’s activities. Turi offered to drop me home so we both headed to the parking lot. My jaw dropped.
Raul was in the way of three vehicles. Two of the three owners of the vehicles were standing beside Raul. Raul’s feet were being clamped by parking attendants in yellow coats. One of the two owners was an irate woman shouting at the top of her lungs that she was late for an important meeting. A lady was next to her trying to calm her down. She was the head of parking and security in the mall. The second owner was a man who stood with his wife and happened to be a lecturer in our Alma Mater, USIU. Our arrival only meant that we were the owners of the problematic Raul. Everyone turned to us. I whispered to Turi, “How could you park like that?” The head of parking and security stopped the attendants from clamping poor Raul. She asked if the silver Toyota NZE belonged to either of us. There was a pregnant pause as everyone waited to see the mother of the problem.
If one was to ask who was culpable between Turi and I, one would say Ernest. Turi looked so scared and innocent, I doubted they’d believe her if she said she was the one responsible. How could such a gorgeous girl do such a thing? (And believe me Waturi is gorgeous!) Turi almost identified herself as the source of the discord and the driver of the car. She took a step forward and pulled the keys from her pocket. I looked at the fuming lady and perceived that her anger would flood the parking lot that day. I looked at the head of security and knew that there would be a security case to answer. I looked at the parking attendants and knew that there was explaining to do and clamping to pay for. Before Turi could utter a word, I stepped in, grabbed the car keys from her fingers and took the blame.
“It’s my fault, “ I said, “I’m the one who parked here.”
Beloved, I discovered that the angry lady was merely testing her vocals before we arrived. She was practicing for her main act. Upon my confession, she took centre-stage and began her main performance. The decibels of insults and screams contorted the skin on my face. I was about to recover when the head of parking and security served me a bowl of her wrath. I was verbally reduced to a dot on the planet. The attendants clamped Raul and threw in their two-cents. It was the worst verbiage damage any human could endure, in my opinion. I could imagine Turi receiving it and I knew it would destroy her. I was not only fined for the chaos caused, I was also made to pay for everyone’s parking that I had delayed. The USIU lecture who was with his wife approached me after the whole ordeal was done and said something to me that I will never forget.
“I know you didn’t do it. That’s a gentleman right there.”
After the incident, I was tempted to offload every insult and damage I took onto Turi but I remembered why I took her place in the first place. I loved her and I still do. I didn’t scold Turi or raise the issue. She cried in the car the whole way unbelieving that I took her place. She also learnt an important lesson that day that I hope this account has taught you.
Love sacrifices even when it hurts.