As I mentioned earlier, I always leave home with a pepper-spray but I have never had an opportunity to use it until an opportunity presented itself last Saturday evening at Yaba market.
I was roaming from store to store when I noticed a guy following me. At first he was requesting my patronage. Later he demanded to know what exactly I came to buy so he can hook me up with the seller.
Then he started asking of my name. When I stopped to check out a seller’s item, he would stop and wait behind me like a bodyguard. When I start moving, he would follow quietly. This went on for an hour! I couldn’t buy anything. I deliberately kept going round silently so he would get tired and retreat but he refused to bulge.
“Don’t you have work? Don’t you have your market to sell? LEAVE ME ALONE!” I screamed in frustration.
My question was a rhetorical one but he surprised me by answering. He said he sells ladies tops but his market no longer matters because he is enjoying his time following me.
When I stopped in front of a seller’s wares, he handpicked clothes for me and recommended them. I remember checking out this short white dress and this dude started condemning my taste.
He said the dress is too short to be worn out by his girl and he won’t let me wear this so I don’t attract bad men.
“Who is your girl?” I asked. Knowing most people are not familiar with what pepper spray does, I told him there’s a can of tear gas in my bag and if he keeps following me, I will be forced to use it on him. I pulled out the can of pepper spray from my bag to show him. He looked at it and burst into laughter. He said so I want to spray my body perfume on him? I should go ahead so he can smell like me. He asked if I knew I was very funny. That seemed to anger me more. He kept daring me to go on and use my perfume on him.
I deliberately walked to the corner by the exit of the market where there were less people, yet close enough to the main road so I can jump into a bus to escape after I am done cooking peppersoup with his eyes. “I am not responsible for whatever happens to you!” I said, pointing the nuzzle of the pepperspray at him while he wore a smirk, silently urging me to go ahead and make do with my threats.
I said a silent prayer to God to protect me from being beaten up as I applied pressure on the nuzzle.
It was a beautiful release as my pepper spray lost its virginity of two years.
Surprisingly, he didn’t scream. He grabbed one of the clothes slung across his shoulders and began rubbing his eyes vigorously. He appeared to be in a lot of pain. I was afraid I had blinded him so I told him I am very sorry, he was the one who dared me and look what I have done to him. Then I started walking away. Surprisingly, this guy continued following me in his half blind date.
A seller in the market said, “Guy you don dey follow this girl since? He told them ‘the ajebota’ sprayed tear gas on his eyes and he’s not about to give up on me after the pain he just endured. They all started hailing him like a super hero.
I was frustrated because I had nothing left to threaten him with.
I stopped by another seller and wasted time looking through the wares of things I didn’t need so he would get bored and leave me alone. The stalker sighed. He said if money was my problem I should let him know so he can pay for me. At that moment there was a heavy quarrel somewhere in the market and I thought there was a stampede. I wanted to run away in panic. He grabbed my hand and said I am embarrassing him. “Why are you shaking because of that small noise?” He asked. “Are you not the one that almost killed me with tear gas? You tried to kill me and am I still with you yet you want to run away because of small quarrel? Can’t you see I am ready to die for you? If they fight and reach this place, I will die to protect you. I love you.” He said.
This was getting more serious than I thought. I started walking towards the exit of the market. He followed after me, demanding for my phone no. When a vehicle heading to my direction called for one last passenger, I practically flew in so he wouldn’t follow me.
Have you ever been a victim of stalking? Any scary, funny or interesting event you’d like to share? Was it from a friend, stranger or someone you dated? Did it go on for day, weeks, months or years? What happened eventually?
This is our topic for this week. firstname.lastname@example.org is the email to send your submissions to.
Have a great week.