This is a true story, but I’d like to tell it anonymously. I would like to protect identities (and fragile egos). If you ever speak of it, you didn’t read it here.
Are you on Facebook? Try joining Kilimani Mums – the group. It’s harder than joining the infamous Illuminati. You need connections, and strong referrals. I can’t tell how many admins run the hallowed page, but my request got rejected a few times. Persistence pays, though, and I got in. It felt so good I had a mind to make it an entry on my CV.
At first, I was laid back. Learn the trade, first. Do not outgrow your master. I used to read through – who’s seeing who. Who’s cheating, and who’s none the wiser. Saucy stories.
After a while I started offering my two-cents worth on what’s trending. I couldn’t help it, but I often infused a heavy dose of sarcasm in my acerbic comebacks. I used to bruise a lot of egos with my blunt opinions. I got kicked out in a fortnight. Someone even called me on my cell.
Caller: Hello, my name is Clara, is this Baks wa M’Muthamia?
Me: Depends on who wants to know, and why… (A couple of mobile loan apps call me now and then).
Caller: Am an admin at Kilimani Mums and I’ve received a lot of complaints about you.
Me: What? No, am a cool guy. I haven’t inappropriately hit on anyone, have I?
Caller: Don’t be a smart ass. Got anything to say before I block you?
Me: Is this on record?
*call disconnects. *gets blocked.
Okay. I got back to my usual bland groups – Political groups, Pig farming groups.
The same night, I get a message in my inbox, from a Teresa Clint. (Don’t search it, mate. It’s a fake name). It was an emotional message ranting on the military-grade rules used by the admins on Kilimani Mums. Teresa, as in my case, had been ejected from the group, and it had hit her hard.
Teresa: I’ve been a loyal Kilimani Mums fan for close to three years.
Me: Damn, that’s a lot of years to see go up in smoke.
She was in clear pain, so I didn’t ask what exactly she had lost.
Anyways, as with all ladies in distress, it wore off after a while. Regular ladies just need a listening ear to get off emotional baggage. We soon ran out of bad stuff to say about the group, or its admins. We started talking about each other. You know, just the regular things – what you like, where you work, do you enjoy occasional, one-night stands? Just kidding.
We got pretty close. Soon we started talking of dinner dates. And, road trips.
One day, Teresa calls and asks to meet. What the hell, no harm in that. She asks to pick me up in her car. (Oh, she has a car?) I lived off Thika Road, and sent her a location pin off Roy Sambu. Soon, I see a silver Toyota Crown crawling by, lights flashing – the signal.
She ain’t driving. A guy roughly her age is driving, and Teresa says it’s her cousin. She’s riding shotgun, and I sit in the back. I thought we’d have a few drinks in a pub and I suggest a few pubs on the stretch to KU. She, however, says they’re content with just a drive on the highway – they have half-full Jameson’s whisky bottle on the console beside the driver. She hands me a plastic tumbler, and I dig in.
We drive all the way to Thika Town, and turn around.
Just general talk, whisky and some soft rock on the stereo. They drop me back at Roy Sambu. She lives in Greenfields. (Never been).
We do this two more times. Same cousin driving. Same whisky. Ok, different route. We did the Southern Bypass from Thika Road to Cabanas.
A few days to Christmas, she asks me to visit her. In her house. Well, online relationships indeed do come of age. Asks me to hail a cab. I almost did a few selfies in my Taxify, to Greenfields.
I arrive at a gated compound, and get received by a smiling lady, who just says she’s the house help. (She smiles a lot, I guess it’s her job’s description). She pays off the cab. Escorts me to the house. It’s a modest, middle-class bungalow with a small garden, then the lobby.
Am Kenyan, so I leave my shoes at the lobby. The house has bush-green, wall to wall carpeting. The lady holds my hand, and leads me straight to the bedroom.
I see Teresa propped up on pillows on a huge bed, working on something on her laptop. She’s dressed in matching tracksuits and gym shoes. I join her, in bed. The house help brings us dinner on trays, and some whisky and ice. She keeps coming and going, so its general talk. Teresa doesn’t move much. After taking away the trays, the house help announces she’s going to bed.
We make out, in the modest first-time way. I attempt to take off her gym shoes – but she politely declines. I reckon it’s the first time, so I do not push it.
I suggest it’s time for me to leave. It was getting close to midnight. She says ok, and hails Taxify for me. After a few minutes, the cab guy calls from the main gate. Teresa says she won’t see me off, but I can leave and the maid will lock up. I find it weird, but I don’t say nothing.
At the door, I call out to her that I can’t see the maid. She’s probably asleep. Doors in Greenfields have an inner mesh door, then the iron outer door. Teresa says not to worry, she’ll handle it – just go on, babe, call me when you get home.
I walk down the drive way from the house, to join the main road to the main gate. I can’t resist looking back before I make the turn, and I still can see down the hall way to her bedroom door – through the mesh door. There’s not much light at the end of the driveway.
I see Teresa coming out of her bedroom, in a wheelchair, wheeling herself down the hallway to come lock up the door.
She cannot spot me, the light in the house is brighter than the light in the driveway. I walk on, towards the gate.
Suddenly, it makes sense. The long drives. The bedroom meets. Gym shoes in bed.
But then, why hide that from me? Where was the wheelchair? Folded up and stacked under the bed? Is it a temporary disability she’s hoping to recover from in time?
Am still searching for answers.
(Images used by consent of owner, unrelated)