We all know Nollywood and romance go hand-in-hand with each other. In the spirit of Valentine’s — yep, it’s more of a week than a day at this point — we caught up with some of our favourite Nollywood men dem to get the gist on their best and worst Valentine’s Day experiences. Awww, the things we do for love.
Daniel Etim Effiong — Superstar, Castle & Castle
My worst Valentine’s happens to be my very first Valentine’s as well. I used to live in Benin at the time and I was so young and clueless. LOL. My cousins had raised some money for me to celebrate Valentine’s Day, so I called up this girl and asked her out. I didn’t have a car at the time, so we both had to jump on a bike to the fast-food restaurant I was taking her to. On getting there, I asked her to order anything she wanted, even though deep down I was praying I could afford whatever she ended up selecting. Anyway, after paying for her order, I didn’t have any money left for myself to eat, so I just told her it’ll be fun to “sit and watch her eat”. Mehn, I sweated throughout that date!
So this year, because I didn’t have a lot of time off my set, I came into town on the 12th and made plans with someone who helped organise a surprise Valentine’s Day getaway for me and my wife. We had to do it on the 13th because I had to leave town again on the 14th.
She was surprised when I took her to get pampered at a beach house that already had a masseuse and chef on standby. I also took her out on a boat ride to Radisson Blu for the second half of my plan. There, we had a room filled with roses and balloons and I remember her telling me she had never experienced Valentine’s Day like this before, which means my plan totally worked. It’s my best Valentine’s Day because I got to plan something special for her and everything actually worked out fine. Oh, by the way, she got me a new laptop as well, so she had a memorable experience while I got a new work machine. Love it!
Jammal Ibrahim — The Delivery Boy, The Lost Okoroshi
I don’t think I’ve ever had a bad Valentine’s Day experience because, hey, I’m a lover and a giver, so It’s always been great for me.
The best Valentine’s Day I’ve ever had was probably one I celebrated when I was a teenager in secondary school. I remember my mum giving me a box of chocolates, some flowers and a book with my face on it saying, “My son, my number one man, my Valentine.” It’s still my favourite Valentine’s Day memory because my mum is my first love.
Michael Ejoor — Aberrations, Unbroken
This was a long time ago and even though I wasn’t an actor at the time, I used to get invited to sing at events and things like that. So on this fateful Valentine’s Day, I was invited to perform at TerraKulture, but I cancelled my performance because of love and went home to make the day special for the lady I was dating. I cooked, got rose petals, candles, little boxes with gifts in them, chocolate and all of that good stuff. She came in and was so surprised by everything. We had a wonderful time together, but shit hit the fan when, later that night, her phone just started buzzing with lots of messages. This was the BlackBerry era so it was just pinging and popping up and down. I saw a message that looked funny and then I did the one thing you should never do: I snooped. I realised that she had been taking me for a fool and seeing other people. The worst part, I didn’t know how to confront her because I was also wrong for invading her privacy.
The next morning, I sha told her what I saw. We broke up and she carried all her gifts and left. That was also my first serious Valentine’s Day.
I was seeing this girl back when I lived in the UK and even after the breakfast of the last time, I went ahead to do my rose petals-and-candles move again. I hadn’t really said “I love you” yet, so I bought her this teddy bear from Build-A-Bear, a place where you can actually create a teddy bear of your own. I did this thing where I recorded myself saying, “I love you” into a part of the bear, so anytime she pressed its arm, she’d hear me saying it to her. It was a perfect Valentine’s Day because I was deeply in love at the time. We had so much fun together and it’s a Valentine’s Day I’ll never forget. Even though we didn’t work out in the end, she was one of my best relationships.
Chris Okagbue — Sanitation Day, Ije Love
I can’t really say I’ve had any experience that was so bad that it could be called my worst. Most of them were just mid because I was once in a relationship in which Valentine’s Day never happened for us because we would always have an argument or something the day before to jinx it. That sort of affected other relationships that followed because I was never really into the whole Valentine’s Day thing.
I’ll pick my Valentine’s Day from 2019. I was seeing this girl at the time — sadly, we’re no longer together — and we had such a good time that day. Because I hadn’t done anything special in a long time, I took time out for three days just to plan a beautiful day for us. We had a beautiful private dinner, there was a trumpeter to serenade us and lovely deserts as well. It was a fun night.