Who Is Your Friend?
By Dr. HELEN PAUL
Many years after Secondary School, I met this old school friend on the streets of Lagos. We embraced one another and exchanged pleasantries. We chatted passionately and reminisced on our school days amidst joy and laughter. I’m sure you all can imagine how excited we were that day. But that feeling of adrenaline would soon be cut short by bad mannerism.
During our conversation, she said she would love to be at the AY Show with me. She said two of her friends will also come with her. That shouldn’t be a problem, I responded. I initially spoke to Bros AY to give me three complimentary tickets for them, and he said no problem, but I later changed my mind and decided to buy the tickets from my purse. I considered that Bros AY had spent several millions putting the show together, so bothering him for free tickets won’t be ideal. Besides, my mother was also coming with some of her friends, so I decided to buy all the tickets online.
All the tickets I bought, including the ones I gave to my mother and her friends, were Economy. Three of the Economy Tickets were given to my old friend. I even went ahead to secure front seats for all of them.
I welcomed my mother and her friends, as well as my old friend and her friends to the show and personally ushered them to the front seats, made sure they were comfortable before going to the backstage where other performing artistes were seated.
A few minutes after the show commenced, I realized that my friend was no longer on her seat. Her friends too. So I promptly called her on the phone. I had wanted to check if they’re fine and enjoying the show. She told me they had left. I asked why. She angrily said “how can you buy Economy tickets for us? Why not VIP, VVIP or something…”. She insisted that buying her and her friends Economy tickets was an insult! Noticing the rage in her voice, I simply told her I’m sorry.
Meanwhile, my mother was celebrated by her friends for bringing them to the show, irrespective of their ticket class. Many days after the show, they kept thanking her over and over again. True friends are meant to stand by you, irrespective of your status or class.
A few years later, I met the same friend in America. She has just been disappointed by a friend who was supposed to be her host, so she was stranded. She therefore inquired if she can stay in my place, but I reminded her that my crib in America is a low budget one, similar to the AY Show Economy ticket she wasted. “You’re a big girl, and I don’t want to insult your personality by bringing you to my low class crib…” I told her.
Well, I gave her some dollars so she can stay in an hotel pending the time her friend will show up. I later heard her friend never showed up, and she had no choice than come back to Nigeria.
Did I do anything wrong?