Eketi Edima Ette: The single girl’s guide to house hunting in a Nigerian city

by Eketi Edima Ette

Are you a single girl?
Are you or have you been searching for a house?
Are you searching for that house in a metropolitan or sub-metropolitan city in Nigeria?

Then get in here! Come, let me share some helpful tips on how to be a successful house hunter. These tips are from the wealth of knowledge acquired during my house-hunting sojourn in some of our nation’s biggest cities, in the north, south, east, and west.
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As a single girl searching for a house, you cannot just wake up and say, “Oh, I need a house. I’m going to go search for one.”
Ko le werk. First, you’ve got to plan. Yes, sit down and tink eet well.
Ask yourself questions like, “Am I truly ready to have my own space? Do I have the time to check out more than one apartment? Is having my own house worth the hassle involved in getting it?” If you answered ‘YES’ to these questions, please proceed to the next sentence.

Pardon the tautology, but the first, foremost and most important thing you should acquire is the Single Girl’s House Hunting Starter Pack.
Ehn? What do you mean you’ve never heard of it? No wonder you haven’t gotten any apartment yet. It must be the reason you’re living in an apartment /compound/ yard you hate.

Your Starter Pack is very essential, because it contains few, but very important items that will help get you through these searches. Once you’ve got them, you’re good to go. They are as follows:

1. Time-Plus X-24:
This device recalibrates your mind, so you’re constantly aware that there is no such thing as house-at-first-sight. Don’t even try to deceive yourself into believing that one of the first ten apartments you’ll see will be perfect. No, my sister. Prepare yourself to view a lot of frog houses, before you find your jewel in the savannah.

2. Five packets of 500 gram Spiro-Toleranceticide and ten packets of 1000 gram Longsufferingmycin.
These two medications must be taken at the same time; two in the morning, two in the afternoon and two in the evening.

Why are they important, you ask? Let me tell you why.

This combined formula will greatly increase your mental and spiritual level of tolerance and long-suffering, two very necessary items, if you’re getting your house directly from a landlord or in some cases, from a demonic agent.
It is only spiritually and medically amplified levels of tolerance and longsuffering that will enable you to withstand some landlords and agents like the ones I’ve encountered. See examples below.

Landlord A: “My dear, will you be living here alone?” he asked, giving me several lewd looks with his dark, beady eyes.

“Yes, sir,” I replied, staring with disgust at the peeling, mildewed walls of the dilapidated bathroom.

“You know I live in the main house. My wife goes to work every morning and my children are in boarding school. When you pack in, you can be visiting me anytime you like,” he said, licking his lips, his eyes half-shut as if he couldn’t see well.

“OK, sir,” I replied, quietly walking out.
How was I so calm, you ask?

Two words: Toleranceticide and Longsufferingmycin!

*

Landlord B: “Madam, as you can see, I also live in this compound. So, I will not tolerate any late nights or male visitors.”

“Excuse me?” I asked, astounded.

“This is not a matter for discussion. You should be back by 8 p.m. every night. If you’re going to stay out later, please inform me ahead of time.”

“Oga, so, I left my parents’ house, moved to a different city, going to pay you 500,000 naira a year, so you can give me a curfew and visitation ultimatums?”

“Madam, I have two young daughters and I don’t want them to be influenced by any bad lifestyle,” he snapped, eyeing me upandan, like a piece of dirt.

I smile. “OK, sir. Peace unto you.”

I tell you, these drugs work like magic!

*
Agent C: “Madam, where do you work? How come you don’t have an office? I’ll need some proof that you’re not a….a….erhemm….”

“What kind of proof do you need?”

“Your BVN.”

“MY WHAT?”
I tell you, this one, I was beyond surprised. When I heard it, I just started laughing like a demented hyena.

“I will need your BVN, Ma. It’s the only thing that is solid proof of who you are. There’s no need to be scared—I’m a lawyer and I can’t use it for any illegality.”

“Uncle, only BVN?” I asked, smiling sweetly. “Why not dream bigger? Be like Pepsi and ask for more. While you’re at it, ask for my vagina, my future children, my father’s land, our community borehole, and the kingdom of Bakassi. I will give it all to you.”

It’s like the drugs were wearing off at that point. Not my fault. The bullshit surpassed the dosage. So, dear single woman searching for a house, increase the dosage accordingly.

3. To be continued.

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