One hot Saturday in July, Alice called to tell me that she had arrived with her man and his cousin at Tanoso, a town which was a few kilometers from Sunyani. I directed them to the SSNIT building and told them to wait there for me patiently. It took me fifteen minutes to drive there in my VW Golf car. I was dressed for the occasion. I would not let the chance to meet my Mike once again pass me by. When I got there, to my surprise, there was no one who bore the semblance of Alice or her man. I called her phone several times and she told me the other car they were coming with had developed a fault and that she was helping the guys tow the car to the nearest service station. She promised to get there within the next twenty minutes. I would not let anything ruin my day, I assured my self.
Twenty minutes later, a bright red SUV drove gently and stopped in front of the SSNIT building, opposite where my car was parked. I could see a woman in the driver’s seat. Her features were as that of Alice. My heart missed a beat. We both got out of our cars simultaneously. She smiled. It was her! We walked towards each other and embraced like old friends. I just kept praying she would not notice how I trembled. I led the way to my new apartment in Berlin. She admired my place and said she would like to stay there forever. I smiled and thanked her for her flattery. She went on to tell me of the accident that had nearly occurred when the car of her husband’s cousin had a flat tire on the highway. She then paused to call and confirm if they had been able to fix the car. They had, and were treating themselves to some nice drinks at the Berlin Inn. My heart started galloping. That place was very close to my house. Was it nature drawing Mike and I together again? But he is married! My transparent self gave me away as I battled with myself. Alice noticed and asked whether I was alright. I told her I was just worried for the guys. She smiled and her cheerful self assured me all will be fine. She suggested we join the guys for some drinks before eating the meal I had prepared for them. I agreed but trembled inside. I forced a smile.
Alice offered to drive us there in my golf. She was a good driver and had a good sense of direction too. When we got to the Inn, another SUV, a black one this time could be spotted amongst the many cars parked outside the Inn’s short fence. Alice opened her arms to embrace a man who was dressed in a polo shirt and jeans with grease on his trousers. As the man approached us, I felt weak in the knees. I held onto the car’s bonnet for support.
But something caught my eye when the man, her husband, drew closer. It was something I had failed to notice in the picture. He had part of his left incisor chipped off! Mike never had that. His teeth were ‘whole’, if I should put it that way. I sighed and it was so loud the love birds stopped hugging and stared at me. I managed a fake laugh and told them I had had enough of the display of affection. They all laughed and Alice introduced us. His name was Mark Addo. Mike, Mark…where did the difference lie? My!! Such coincidence! But how could someone possibly look so much like another person and actually bear the same surname and same letter forename? So many thoughts ran through my mind. I would ask Mark later if he knew any Mike.