Reality Someone Somewhere

GUMBOOTS IN THE OFFICE

It is so damn cold in Nairob! I just had to say. Call it the Kenyan winter. So you guys should be seeing snowflakes dropping here as you read. I’m not used to this kind of atmospheric insult . I am not the kind who mourns for the rains when there is too much sun. I’m for vice versa. Probably in time to come I’ll be able to appreciate the cold especially in the morning. My fellow wanaumes I don’t have to shout what I mean.
I am seated at GPO bus stop as I write this. I had to look for something that would make me forget about the rude weather. Gazing at vehicle traffic and human traffic doesn’t do me any good in this state. I end up wondering how some people just never seem to feel cold. Is there a mental switch I could use too? See this, I am not wearing pairs of socks, well because the shoes I am in – need no socks. Don’t roll your eyes, some of you didn’t know that’s part of fashion. The cold going through the naked space between my khaki trousers and shoes torture my entire body from the very moment I sat here. I am at the brink of shivering in a tantrum format yet I see mjangos with nude feet from the knees all the way down. How do you wear short skirts and doll shoes or heels in this kind of weather?
Ah anyway, that is not where I am driving at. This weather is the kind of weather that was reigning in the city when something interesting happened to someone as narrated by the sweetheart of his life. (Hehe). At the end of it all, I will that this turns out to be an expression of how much I value him. 
I look upto to this mjango and take after him in a number of ways. It is okay to say that he is ever serious. That’s true. (By the way, I’m laughing as I right this. So you better loosen up too.) But I think I have been around him enough to know the weight of fun and humour that lives inside him. Though when you see him laugh, please find out what he is laughing about and I bet it will turn out to be funny as hell. People say I have a serious face too. But unlike him, I laugh to almost anything. Ask for someone committed to what he does and I’ll show you this ol’ man. I keep wondering where I can harvest such a great debris of zeal in life to work hard. If you think I’m hard working (fingers crossed) then I do not owe it to myself. 
He is the best driver in my world. I feel sorry for myself though, that I haven’t learnt how to spin the wheel yet. Shocking? Disappointing? Disgraceful? Yea. I don’t know why but I believe I can drive, it’s just that I haven’t sat to confirm that yet. That is unrealistic to mortal man I know. 
I have a thing for spic and span, neat and tidy that I borrowed from him to always look presentable. I even get a hair cut like his. Not so long ago, I accompanied him to the barber. From then I knew what it means to be loyal to one barber. I sat on the barber chair after him and I told the barber, “Weka kama yake.” And of course he was like, “Say no more.” Before he left he remembered I was still there and then he told the barber, “By the way huyu ni kijana yangu.” I saw the barber smile through the mirror while inspecting my head, “Eeh ndio naona.” 




In the company of my aunts, you hear them say, “Eh na skuizi si umetoshana na daddy. Hata sasa mnafanana.”  I joke and say, “Huoni sasa nimekuwa baba yake?” You know I have this beard that never parts ways with my chin. My barber is usually under strict instructions not to touch them until I give the allowance to have them trimmed. Some haters call them the roots of my teeth. Eti my unshaved beard is a sample of other places in my anatomy. Really people? (Rolling eyes. Slay queens help me there. I know y’all tuned in ayye!) And my mum never stops with, “Si unyoe hio ndevu. Ukae kama journalist.” I only give her a look with the corner of my eyes that says, ” I see what you trying to do there.” But this mjango of mine doesn’t have a beard. Okay he shaves them as often as some friend of mine changes cutex on her nails. That’s meant to be a compliment. 
This mjango you should know who he is by now. I live to make him proud. I have seen him sacrifice alot.
I’ve always known him as a man who makes no errors. When I see him, I see perfect. That is not to say that sometimes some petty things do not escape his active mind. And when they do, they are the best stories ever. 
Like this one that his sweets told me about yesterday in the evening. 
I had a towel hanging on my neck. I decided to pass by the kitchen to dispatch another token of mummy and mummy’s boy stories. Forget the comedians on TV who lie to us about how they made it, mums are the best comedians. Their humorous stories turn out to have moral lessons behind them. In fact she uses Kikamba too. The latest one was from a saying, ‘Kweene kuyitaw’a kithoi.’ Hehe. In her words it means, ‘In the olden days ata skuizi ushango githeri is cooked in a pot. Huwa inatokea ikiwa na supu yake. So ukienda kwa wenyewe, whether invited or not, ukipewa githeri bila hio supu yake, kula bila hiyo supu ata kama unapenda githeri ikiwa na supu. It’s called broth in English and kithoi in kikamba. Ukipewa githeri ikiwa na supu na hupendi, kula ikiwa na supu.”
In the kitchen,
Mum, a friend of mine in school amefika shule akapata alisahau keys za room home.” 


“Oh noo.” She says in pity. 
Being a mother, she feels for everyone. She even tells me, “Ukiona mtoto huko shule anakulia hapo mahali mnaita ‘mess’ ju ni cheap na hana pesa, usimchekelee. Watoto huko university huwa wanateseka na njaa sana.” Mark you chakula ya mess si mzuri saaana my friend.

“Umejua aje amesahau key?”
She asks.
Si he has just called me to ask whether I was around as well. He could spend the night in my room or something.” 
Shaking her head, “Lakini si zitatumwa tu na bus?”

“Eeh. Atazipata tu.”
Then my mushenee kicks in again, “Mimi nakumbuka kuna siku nikiwa primary, schools had opened na si unajua nilikuwa boarding. Nilienda na viatu za home. Kufika napata sina viatu za shule.” Laughing, “You guys had to bring for me my shoes.”
I expected her to laugh. Something escaped her ear while I was narrating as she was pondering ugali at the same time. She calls ugali ‘uganga’ by the way. Nothing to do with ‘witchcraft’ though. We just let her try to speak sheng too. (My brothers and I.) Sometimes she gets them right. And parents in case you didn’t know, we like it when you try to speak sheng or even when you actually speak sheng. We really do. That is besides the fact that sometimes you will sound funny. Like my dad one time, “Victor!” 
“Eeh?”
Buda ni nini? Kuna mtu ameniita buda. Anamaanisha nini?”


So back to my mum. She asks, “Ati umesema ulienda shule na nini? Viatu gani?”


“Si viatu tu za kawaida.” 



“Ooh,” She starts to laugh and doesn’t stop for quite sometime. I almost thought my humorous story was that good. But it wasn’t about my story. 
She caught her breath and began, “Unajua nimedhani ulisema gumboots ju siku mojaaa,” Chuckles again. I had now started to get interested. “Kulikuwa na weather kama hii. Kunanyesha leo kesho hakunyeshi, hivo hivo for a few days. Sasa tukitoka na daddy asubuhi kuenda kazini, alikuwa anavaa gumboots na anapack viatu. Sijui ni kama alikuwa anaziweka hapo chini kwa passenger seat mahali me hukaa. Always very neat and clean, well packed. So one day, I think kwa sababu ya hio kunyesha on and off daddy ikakuwa kawaida kwake. Hio siku hakukunyesha. Lakini as usual alivaa gumboots na akapack viatu tukaenda. All the way mpaka town pale Serena, daddy drove while in gumboots. Those days tulikuwa tunafika hapo ananiwachia gari na yeye anapanda matatu ya ten bob mpaka Hurlingham.” She laughs again for so long yet I’m eager to hear what happened. I was even holding my boisterous laughter for the end of the story. 
“Sasa daddy akashuka hivo tu na gumboots, mimi nikakuja side ya driver nikaenda. Ata mimi sikuwa nakumbuka he was to change shoes. I drove off and upon reaching the office I go to a hidden room somewhere to catch some sleep, read my Bible and pray as I wait for 8 o’clock,” I already know where the story is headed and so I begin releasing my chain of laughter. The imagery from all that is just funny. 
She continued, “Kumbe,” laughs, “daddy alipanda matatu akafika kwa ofisi bila kugundua alikuwa amevaa gumboots. Looking like a farmer. Sijui nikama alikuja kugundulia kwa ofisi,” She breaks into tears laughing, “That he was wearing gumboots!”


In the middle of my laughter, “How couldn’t he have realised?” 

“Ata sijui, na imagine alikuwa ametuck in trouser ndani ya gumboots.” 



I stump the floor in laughter.
She continues, “So as soon as aligundua tu hivi, akachukua funguo ya gari ya ofisi akadrive akakuja mpaka upper hill kwa ofisi zetu. Kufika, amesimama kwa parking amenitafutaaaa akanikosa. Simu sishiki. Aki he was very stranded.”

“Wah! I can imagine. Anaona gari ndo hii na viatu ndani na hawezi chukua ju hana key.”
I giggle.

“Yaah! So bahati nzuri kuna kijana huwa anaclean ofisi. Alimwona akamtuma aniite. Kijana luckily he knew the karoom. Nikaskia ameniita akiniambia kuna mtu ananingoja kwa parking. Mimi nikashangaa ni nani huyo. Kufika napata ni daddy amesimama ata haongei. Niliona tu hizo gumboots nikacheka nikijua what he wanted.”
She releases the winding set of laughter as she wipes her eyes. 
I was busy massaging my ribs.
That was my best part. Like I am, this main man of our house is a perfectionist. So I could get why he even couldn’t say anything at that time. Anything but, “Wapi funguo?”
Leaving for the bathroom, “Weh? Hio ni story na nusu. Sitawahi sahau.”




She giggles, “And that is our baba.”
 
That is how much we cherish our ol’ man. I wrote this to win your smile for the week. 

2 comments

Susan Nusu May 3, 2018 at 8:12 am

amazing story??”baba yao”??

Reply
TheMjangoSeries May 7, 2018 at 9:27 pm

?? Ehee

Reply

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