A Trip To Dar

Ngemz’s voice sounded like he was in a state of panic. It was scary listening to the recorded phone conversation he had with Vin. He sounded terrified. And high. Very high. All Nguis have been with Ngemz in his absolute inebriated state and it was unanimously agreed that he had been high on something else apart from alcohol during that phone conversation. There must have been something else Ngemz had taken. The worst Ngemz does is blackout when he can no longer bear his high.

Remember him and Vin are the crown kings of blacking out the most times while drunk. Vin’s is special however because it comes with some kind of possession where he can no longer take charge of his own body. ‘Zombie mode’ we call it. He can unceremoniously storm out and walk aimlessly and sometimes even interact with people but remember nothing the next day. He once left OJ at a parking lot after they had drinks and were meant to leave together. The zombie attack possessed him as he reversed his car while poor OJ was helping him watch the rear from outside. After maneuvering, he engaged the drive gear and sped off. He couldn’t remember if he was in the company of anyone. OJ was forced to Nduthify himself home. He must have felt hurt, but that’s what makes the story even funnier.

For Ngemz, that was not the case. He sounded paranoid. Like someone who needed urgent help. He was using Gaceri’s phone, the lass behind our Ngui’s trip to Dar. Ngemz was whispering and sounded like he had locked himself somewhere he couldn’t be heard while he used the phone. There was some background music from afar. His speech wasn’t coherent and he swallowed some words. He sounded as if he could break down the next second. He tried to call Vin the first time then the concerned Vin called him back and recorded the conversation that he would later share with the group. The Dar story is a mysterious tale most of us have never understood to date. It was a dark moment.

I met Gaceri slightly over a year ago. Ngemz introduced me to her in a club and we were later enjoying a sensual dance together that brought out some carnal desires. She hadn’t already hit it off with Ngemz. She lived in Dar and was around for a short visit of some sort. She was beautiful and her spoken Swahili was impeccable. She could also give a brother a good grinding on the dance floor. As we sat for a breather and to wet our throats, a Nameless song kept playing in my head where he goes like, ‘Niko na mupango, mupango iko kwako, mupango iko kwako.’ Little did I know that the Onyancha in Ngemz had even a bigger and elaborate mupango than mine.

The second and last time I met her was when they came to crash at my place for a night. At that point they already had a thing going on. My earlier thoughts and mupangos diminished in thin air. She was now a no-go-zone in bro code lingo. We enjoyed ourselves that night. I, however, noticed that she didn’t drink much. Her specialty was the Mary Jane. She could constantly blow on that sensi and still be in her best behavior. I remember thinking to myself, ‘huyu ni mkora.’

Ngemz confided in a few people about his trip to Dar. I was one of them. He mentioned of a prospective business that he wanted to chase. ‘Was Ngemz that in love that he wanted to relocate?’ I thought. He kept assuring me that he was not planning to stay there for long, probably a few days and he would be back. It was hard to believe. Days turned into weeks and weeks turned into months. Ngemz was a Tanzanian.

I remember one day thinking I had missed the nigga (no homo – if I fail to add that phrase a stubborn Ngui by the name Githae will be all up in my case. Haya Githae I hope umefurahi). I was with Sithe in a pub in Langata where we decided to video chat him and know how he was fairing on in the land of Maghufuli. He looked happy. He was sitting outdoors in a verandah in shorts and a vest plus a party cup stood next to him. With all the smiles he was expressing, there was no way the party cup could have harboured tea. Such a typical Ngui. It was a great moment to see that he was doing fine. The reception became unclear so we salud and hang up.

In the recording, Ngemz kept accusing Vin of having an affair with Gacheri.

Buda unawezaje nifanyia hivyo?

Nini Ngemz? Sikuelewi.

Wewe na Gacheri mshawai kuwa na kitu?

Eish, Ngemz, sare mandukulu men. Hizo vitu zinakufuck.

Apana. Si story na ndukulu. Yani unaweza nifanyia hivyo?

Wewe Ngemz unasound ni kama hauko sawa. Uko Dar wapi?

Mimi niko poa. Nataka tu uniambie ukweli.

By the way Ngemz, unachizi.

The back and forth went on and on. Vin was accused of traveling to Dar and having an affair with Gaceri. He even pointed out dates that Gaceri was constantly out of the house allegedly going out to meet Vin in undisclosed places. Moreover, Ngemz also accused Vin of being Gaceri’s baby daddy, whose son according to Ngemz is also called Vin. You can’t make this stuff up.

There was tension among the Nguis. Ngemz was immediately removed from the Whatsapp group and a discussion ensued.

Githae: Huyu boy anachizi

Laku: Gaceri ni nani?

Gaks: Boss, tusongeni Dar tukasaidie boy wetu

Mwits: Manze si Sub yangu inakaa fiti *sends photo of his Subaru at the car wash*

Me: Mwits huwezi kuwa serious. Hapa tunajaribu kuona vile tutasaidia boy wetu wewe unafkiria tu gari?

Mwits: Wachana na mimi wewe huna niado

Me: *Middle finger*

Vin: Watu, tuchape hio lap ya Dar next week. Huyu msee anafaa kutoka huko.

Frodo: *Sends 30 similar photos back to back of an event that happened 2 weeks ago then goes offline for a month*

OJ: Nani anajua mse anaweza nifanyia job ya bulk printing tao?

Lehb: Government printer

Vil: *Laughing emoji*

Ricci: Tomz where are you?

Tomz: Job lakini natoka in the next 17 minutes

Lehb: *Sends a bizarre porn video*

Kimya: Friends, I have an urgent appeal. Can someone send me 500 I will refund by next week

Virus: Kazi kwisha. Vin tupatane Mojos nitanunua vodka na nyama

Gaks: Ata mimi nipatie 20 minutes nakam

Virus: Nikona 500

Well, it’s not exactly the tension you may expect but you get the picture. Most people in the group live their own fantasy worlds in their heads but the Ngemz’s issue was rife in the general sense. A character like Sithe is the introvert of the group. Reads everything but remains mum.

Ngemz called me later on in the day. I received the call in haste because of how delicate the issue was.

Mwas.

Niaje Ngemz?

Kwanini hujakuwa ukinitafuta?

Sielewi.

Hunipigiangi simu na unajua kule tumetoka.

Ngemz unasound different.

Unataka kusema nini?

Mimi nasema tu unasound different.

Mwas mimi nachizi. Zile vitu nimekuja kujua. Chungana na watu sana.

Ngemz wewe rudi Kenya kwanza. Sijui unafanya nini huko.

Nakam. On Wednesday.

Sawa.

Ngemz sounded so different. He was needy and paranoid. At some point, it even started creeping on me. I was with Vin the weekend he was being accused of traveling to Dar to see Gaceri. I started thinking of the possibility that maybe he could have been pretending to go home after the night out and detour hurriedly to the airport to catch a flight to Dar. Yes, paranoia was slowly creeping in.

Eventually, Ngemz came back safe and sound. We all met him and tried to get him off deep thoughts. The Dar story is a subject nobody dares talk about. Nobody has ever dared to coerce him into confessing what exactly had transpired while he was there – except me. Because I am never scared of delving into any topic no matter how sensitive. It almost always ends up in a heated argument, but that never stops me from continually pursuing it. They don’t call me Mwaki Flames for nothing.

For now, at least we’re glad Ngemz is okay. The original Ngemz is back. Aren’t we all glad he is? He doesn’t sound like he would be willing to go back to that place. As for me, I know I am not willing to visit Dar any time soon.

So Virus, how were you buying drinks and nyama with 500 again?

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Lehb & Vill

Vill has 3 kids – all girls. They are the most adorable little minions you have ever seen. Another one is in the oven. We can only guess Vill’s anticipation. He is one proud father. He, however, may also be drained sometimes from dealing with a lot of estrogen. He is looking for a teammate. Someone he will chill together with in years to come and discuss inheritance issues and the need to get away from all the mood swings. They may probably have beers while at it. Let’s wait and see. I am sure his fingers are crossed.

Lehb is a laid back chap. Never loud unless under the influence. He is a graphic designer – a completely different reality to everyone else’s. Aren’t all creatives? He has battled what seemed to be an alcohol addiction and is on the road to recovery. Or so I hope. We have never known whether it was an addiction or an onslaught of stress and depression. What matters is he is fine now.

The striking thing about Vill is his complete transformation over the years. Vill was never a family man. He had zero traces of that trait in him. Vill was dangerous. A story is told of a certain year he is said to have bedded girls in their hundreds. It is not a myth. He was the baller, the cool guy, the ladies’ man, and the undercover lover man. It is believed that if you randomly throw a stone within the CBD it will likely land on a photographer, a makeup artist or one of Vill’s exes. Vill was fire.

Lehb had the money. It was never a dull moment with him. Being within the radius of 5 meters from Lehb meant you lacked nothing. Food, alcohol and exotic women were the order of the day. Through Lehb I have met several rare breeds of the most beautiful Somali and Ethiopian women. I want to go to Ethiopia but that’s for another day. Lehb was the king.

Vill was the personification of egocentrism at its best. He must have spent close to an hour every day admiring himself in the mirror. He must have made the 911 call at some point.

Hello 911 emergency, there’s a handsome guy in my house. Oh!  Wait a second cancel that, it’s only me. (If you know you know)

I always guilt trip Vill of a certain incident that happened way back when we were younger while he was at his prime. He called for a sleepover for the boys at his place which I tagged along together with Laku. How I was part of it is a mystery to date. How was I sharing space with this celebrity? He ordered fried chicken in the middle of the night and devoured the entire thing right before our eyes. I couldn’t believe it. I was starving.

I kept remembering my mum offering me food before I left the house and how I refused because ‘Nitajisort na maboys.’ When he was full with a few remaining pieces on his plate he gave his cat. I have never wished to be a feline as much as I did at that night. The cat was busy chewing and licking as I swallowed on its behalf. I hated him at that moment. ‘Who does he think he is? How was he raised?’ I pondered. But it was Vill. He cared less what people thought. He was a superstar.

Lehb always had some flashy Bluetooth headphones on. He probably used them to shut the world outside him. According to his lifestyle, he was what we could comfortably call rich. There was once a major catfight at his house which eventually culminated to the breaking of his 55-inch screen TV. It was the most hilarious fight. Laku and Vin were present and all we could hear in the video which they took as they cheered on the hair-pulling, name-calling and the cloth-tearing ‘entertainers’ was ‘Wacha waheshimiane.’ They smashed the TV and Lehb had it replaced the next morning. Brand new. I can’t take less than a month to recover from the loss of a phone but that’s beside the point.

Lehb’s lifestyle was the envy of everyone. We could randomly visit him and find him with a Somali beauty petting each other on the couch. When you fetched a glass of water in the kitchen you’d find an Ethiopian goddess cooking. When you walked into the master bedroom you’d find a Rwandese girl blacked out. I bet he did a better job than the African Union. He was feeding and taking care of our African sisters. Well, obviously it was a favour which they needed to return.  For sure they indeed paid in kind, especially with Lehb’s natural blessings acquired by virtue of being a Luhya, he didn’t break a sweat in matters coitus. Mkwala is what we call him.

Lehb was always in the company of women. He would take 3 cabs while going out, all full, and he would be the only guy. He was also the sole sponsor for every need and want. Club Hypnotica in Westlands knew Lehb very well. It is also where most of his money was being channeled. Laku once broke a sheesha bong while with him and what he could remember the owner ordering after they were reported was, ‘Clean up and replace it. These ones are heavy spenders.’ This is Laku’s narration that no one could dispute its truthfulness despite him being chief plagiarizer because we knew what Lehb was capable of. He was a high roller.

Vill almost never repeated shoes after wearing them. I doubt if he ever washed a pair of shoes at his prime. Dusty shoes were enough reason to go shoe shopping. Maybe he stressed out and cried when he saw all his 60 pairs dusty. He would probably ask God why bad things happen to good people. Maybe he told God to take away his poverty that made him have dusty shoes. He would probably see malnourished children in refugee camps on TV with the usual fly on their face walking freely on their mouths without shooing them away and feel like he was going through the same; he had dusty shoes. By the way, I need to know if the fly is usually contracted to be part of the production.

As life would have it, Lehb lost his job. Vill’s stardom dimmed. They both weren’t where they were. Vill got married and became laid back. He wasn’t doing badly, but he wasn’t that narcissistic twat anymore. Lehb’s story was uglier. He lost the things he owned. The pain of losing everything wasn’t as bad as losing his ‘friends.’ He became desperate. He took to the bottle. He was on a constant high. He lost weight and rarely bathed. He couldn’t keep a job. He was downtrodden. Vill started having babies and changed his circle. He was focused and more down to earth. His was a complete transformation.

Lehb is slowly getting back on his feet. He looks cleaner and healthier. He has been counseled and is set to bounce back. He desires to rebuild his life. We joke about his previous life. We laugh at how his phone went silent after his downfall. The exotic beauties are probably somewhere chopping someone else’s money and affirming them of their loyalty. Money makes these slay queens cook and clean. Ask Lehb he will tell you.

The point is, God has His own ways to reach out to someone. Some of His methods may seem unfair to the mortal human mind. Whatever lessons God is teaching Lehb and Vill is upon themselves to seek Him and find out. However, what I know is that years back I never would have thought that a day would come when I would call these gentlemen my friends. We would never have sat down and had a conversation over anything. The game has changed over time from hate and envy to a meaningful friendship. Everyone has their season.

One last thing, Lehb, don’t give up the fight, you’re almost there.

 

Who Took My Subie?

I was woken up by a phone call at an unusually early morning. I was never the type that puts their phone on silent while I slumbered. No way! Anything could have happened in the middle of the night and I felt that I might just be the solution someone needed while in distress at those ungodly hours. That was until I started working night shifts that needed me to be asleep during the day.

I would receive useless phone calls from some people who had nothing better to do. An example of such a person is JD, my ninja from childhood. He would call me at around 9am while I had just entered the house a mere 2 hours before and would go like:

‘Buuuuuda, unakumbuka ule ngingi wa Umojen tulikuwa na yeye Bible study alikuwa kingbeat kuruka?’

‘Mgani JD,’ I would ask half asleep.

‘Ule mwenye alitukulisha lap ya Umo akiwa na ma upato zimeisha side moja?’

‘Lucy?’

‘Yesssaya Lucy! Manze nimepatana na yeye ka base flani ka true hapa mnita, si ameoga manze!’

‘JD, nadoz nimekuwa waks usiku, si nikuchapie nikirauka?’

‘Haina mambo wee kaokote. Lakini jua amenilenga sijui anajiskia juu ameiva sai?’

‘Tutabonga JD,’ I hang up.

It was after such phone calls that I decided that I would never answer any call while I slept after work. I don’t care if Obama wanted to meet me or my all-time crush, Rihanna, (sigh) was looking for me (wait, for Riri I would reconsider).

I told myself that there were enough people that could save someone during the day and that everyone should just chill and spare me the agony. I also felt that it was unfair that I never called anyone past midnight because I am SENSITIVE to their sleep needs. I should probably call JD someday at 2am to ask him for my shoes that I lent him 12 years ago while we went for the Smirnoff Experience at Carnivore…hmmm.

Back to the phone call. I lazily turned to my back and started searching for the phone blindly under the pillow. I found it and tried to see who it was with my left eye as my right one remained shut.

‘Gaks! Why was he calling at this time?’ I thought. My head was throbbing painfully from the previous night’s sherehe. We had met as a small section of the Nguis at Scratch Bar along Moi Avenue but I had one too many which prompted me to leave earlier in stealth mode before anyone could notice my disappearing act – Houdini we like to call it.

You see, with the Nguis, you never announce your departure from the bar. That is straight up killing yourself. You will find yourself having drunk your entire night’s equivalent of alcohol before bidding the last person farewell. Nguis don’t like the word kwaheri. If you are not strong willed you will say your kwaheris for 2 hours and find yourself leaving together with the skwaaa early in the morning. Dangerous fellows these.

So I remember among the skwaaa leaving Gaks behind as I tip-toed my way out and into an Uber just outside Avenida Lounge. Could there be something wrong?

‘Sema Gaks.’

‘Wee niaje fucker? (his bromance word). Keja ya Mwits inakuanga wapi?’

I was confused. I could hear the sound of an engine running in the background. He had a slur, which meant that he had a fair share of vodka in his system.

‘Si Mwits anaishi Kile hapo Oloitoktok Road kwanini?’

A suddenly heard a loud bang as if he had slapped the hood of a car.

‘Najua! Nataka uniambie wapi exactly!’

At this point I was scared. You see, Gaks works in the security sector and is a trained personnel. As if God had not had enough with him, He then made him a Kisii. A deep one from the maize plantations of Nyaribari Chache. He has the accumulated anger levels of 3 mature bulls from Boni Khalwale’s compound. Gaks can get angry. At this point I sat up on my bed after gathering the seriousness in this Kisii boy’s voice.

‘Kutoka kwa roundabout una enda kama 1 kilometre alafu unapanda ramp flani iko on the right side of the road opposite Lion’s Lair.’ (Don’t you dare go looking for Mwit’s house after reading this you weirdo)

‘Okay wacha niitafute.’

‘Kwani nini mb…’ and the phone was disconnected before I could finish.

Why would Gaks go looking for Mwits at his place at such an hour? And what car did he have with him since he didn’t own one? I kept asking myself these questions.

Since my sleep had already been taken away, I decided to check my Whatsapp with the hope of gathering what this was about. The Ngui chat was exploding with Mwit’s messages. I had 123 messages in total. A bulk of them from Mwits written in caps. He was breathing fire and brimstones. His last message at 3:48am was ‘HII UBESHTE WACHA IKAE.

I was excited! I felt goosebumps all over my body. You see, when Mwits reaches such levels, I know it’s about to get entertaining. And since it has always been my responsibility to try and get Mwits mad, I sat in preparation for a ride. ‘All this fury? And it wasn’t my doing? This should be interesting,’ I thought.

I scrolled through the messages to try and get a scoop of the happenings that led to this melee. So Gaks and Mwits were left as the last men standing the night before at Scratch. A female companion joined them. They were having a good time until Gaks started having his slurs and couldn’t contain his high. He needed a power nap because going home before the party ends to him is a punishable offence before the law – his law.

Mwits gladly offered him his car keys for his souped up blue Subaru with a muffled exhaust as loud as mari mari hawkers from Eastlando. He is the typical cheers baba guy minus the English. Let’s call him sheers mbaba. The car was parked outside Rumours Club.

Mwits and Gaks have always been sworn arch enemies in matters females. None of them wishes the other well in their hanyaring escapades. Each always ready to kata mguu of the other. So for Mwits, the retreating of one of his most stubborn hyena was a plus for him. Onyi would call him Onyancha, but that’s a story for another day.

Tired and worn out, Gaks retreated to the car to reinvigorate himself. Mwits was left in the club with the unspecified female specie who was slowly luring herself into his charm traps. Just to mention a few, his skills include over smiling even in conversations that smiles are not needed, biting his lower lip in the hope that he could look like LL Cool J and a sorry attempt at dancing with his 2 left feet. It is important to note that he utilizes these non-verbal techniques with the hope of covering up the fact that he is grammatically challenged.

Back to the story. So while Mwits knew Gaks napped, he enjoyed his moment with Lady X the entire time. As fate would have it, they had secured a spot on the balcony where they could see Moi Avenue beneath them. Everything went on well until Mwits heard the loud backfire sounds similar to the ones on his Subaru. As he got curious and peeked through the balcony, Gaks was firing away the Subaru to an unknown destination.

The last thing Lady X heard from Mwits was a loud ‘What the Fuck???’ as he rushed through the exit in the hope of stopping Gaks in his tracks. It was too late. Gaks must have been in the 5th gear along Kenyatta Avenue heading to Uhuru Highway.

Mwits couldn’t believe it. He has never given anyone an opportunity to drive his car. I suppose he called an Uber and went home, carless. I would assume he was drafting his Whatsapp messages enroute to his place inside the Uber. His shift key must have been double tapped to ensure that we read his messages clear enough. The Uber driver may have been trying to initiate small talk but would get no response. He would probably try the usual, ‘na hii serikali inafinyilia mwananchi wa kawaida sana.’ The driver would maybe decide to mind his own business after a lull in conversation. The only noise heard was probably the sound of Whatsapp delivery messages. The only kufinyiliwa Mwits could have been thinking about at the moment was his Subaru’s accelerator along Jogoo Road enroute Poi at Maringo.

‘I have never told you guys,’ one of his messages read, ‘I have a gun inside the car that I never show you people.’ That’s the part I almost choked at while laughing. That was so typical of Mwits. Trying to threaten us. He was also drunk so I doubt he was in his senses while he wrote that. For Gaks, it was a win for him. It was either he goes with the girl or no one does. Quite a bright chap that.

Let’s just say that was the end of anyone displaying their car keys near the drunk Gaks. He eventually found his place and the 2 were posting photos during the day together as they shared a vodka at Mwit’s place. It must have been a long night for Mwits, but he seemed as if he had pulled it through. I don’t know if Gaks played around with the ‘gun’ if he actually did found it. That is a mystery we shall never know.

As for Mwits, deep down, I know he would love the opportunity to give Gaks a good and well calculated hard punch on his face and then toast to a night of drama.

The Skwaaa!

Tomz is the group’s midget. He is also among the oldest. He is a weird drunk who likes balancing bottles in a club in an attempt to re-enact the story of the Tower of Babel. He fails miserably in most occasions with shattered glasses in the end and is forced to pay extra for his not-so-magician-like acts. He is also a critical thinker, a trait that most times works against him while inebriated because some basic sense eludes him (I know he will kill me for this). He always asserts his authority with me because of our age difference – typical short man syndrome. I know our next conversation will go something like:

‘Mtoi!’

‘Sema Tomz’

‘Naona unaongea vibaya pale kwa blog na nilikuona ukiwa na makamasi’

‘Pole Tomz’

‘But job fiti unafanya’ (Stretches his small hands for a handshake)

Gaks is Ngui’s fighter and protector. He is fairly tall. When together with Tomz they look like Pinky and the Brain. Don’t be fooled however because these 2 are a powerhouse when together, and drunk.

I was once called to go and check on their whereabouts somewhere in Donholm after it was alleged that they had caused some trouble and were held up in a cell. They seemed so timid while inside. They were also hangovered. I asked them what they had done and they said that someone called the cops on them for no apparent reason. It was a story that was quite hard to believe.

I later gained access to CCTV footage that had captured them in a standoff at a fuel station where Gaks held a stone the size of a human head wanting to deconstruct some taxi driver while Tomz was on the other side flipping karate kicks with his short legs. Those 2 are not to be trusted.

Gaks has this gangsta face that always confuses him as a constantly angry chap. He would have that look while talking to girls that would make them confused. He would lock a stare at a female, point her with his mammoth hands in a stance that would suggest that he was ready to slap the living lights out of her the next second, and then say to her, ‘mresh si unakaa fiti men!’ It’s usually the most confusing moment for all girls.

Laku is the group’s comedian. It is never a dull moment with him. The problem is that he forgets when you tell him a joke which he later tells as his own (even to you). He customizes it and makes sure he is part of the joke. You would listen to him narrating your story like, ‘manze kuna beshte yangu flani…’ and you would sit there thinking, ‘he forgot I told him this.’ It’s almost always fabricated. We have chosen to understand him with all his plagiarism. A section of Nguis call him John Woo after the famous movie producer who came up with the slow motion in action movies. Lies I tell you.

Lehb is another weird character. He is the skinniest and has the most outrageous jokes. His jokes can give an average person a migraine. You could be having a wonderful day, easy going and stress free until you decide to open the Ngui Whatsapp group to find Lehb’s jokes. You will switch off your mobile data, throw your phone and seek professional psychological help. Lehb is also terrible dancer. He would do the Shoki dance and people would want to rush to him to offer help thinking that he is epileptic. His uncoordinated shaking looks like a typical Legio Maria praise session. He is also crowned the Windizzle king in the group.

Onyi is the group’s Pinocchio. He would tell you that the sun rose on the east but you would need to step out and confirm for yourself. A huge chunk of his childhood was spent watching Michael Jackson songs that he is able to mimic with precision. He once did the dance in a club that sent his shoe flying high to the ceiling almost breaking the neon lights. He is constantly in suits due to his nature of work but has the most unsuit-like personality. It’s never a dull moment with Onyi.

Then there’s Mwits. He is the most light-skinned of the group that makes him think he is white. As the saying goes ‘huwezi pewa kila kitu,’ Mwits and English are 2 worlds apart. He laughs at women’s jokes told in English even when they are not funny because he wouldn’t know how to respond in the same language. He is the typical loud Subaru guy who would save his car before his family (He will kill me for this). His cockiness has never allowed him to visit me because we don’t have a designated parking in our apartments (okay ploti). He also plays trap music in his car to try and fool people into thinking that he is in his twenties.

These characters (and others to be unveiled in sequels) are part of the Skwaaa. This should have been the first post to introduce the Nguis, but I make my own rules in this space. Nguis are a close-knit family. They are the boys you could depend on (sometimes not) but they would still hang around your life. Fate had it that we would meet and be as we are. We don’t have much of an option but to be there for each other.

We have shared numerous escapades with these humans that I will be sharing with the world. They give me so much life. I would want my kids to know that I had a Skwaaa and that it’s important to have a Skwaaa of people that you share something with and trust.

Ladies and gentlemen of the interwebs, this is the beginning of the K9 chronicles, as told by me.

 

 

 

A K9 Almost Hitched

Sithe slowly lifts his double tot-filled whiskey glass towards me followed by his signature tilting of the head and a smirk on his face. That is his common non-verbal for calling a shot.

“Salut!”

“Salut!” 

I down the vodka with haste after clinking our glasses. I could barely breathe because the strong vapours stung my oesophagus. My mouth was ajar as I reached out for the mineral water in a bid to cool off the steam that was accumulating on my throat.

The thing about Sithe is that no discussion can ever be held without alcohol. It didn’t matter the day or time. I remember the phone call we had that morning asking him to meet up because I needed to talk to him about something.

“So unaonaje ka link up ma baaden?” I asked.

“Si ka Windizzle?” he suggested.

We got used to adding the suffix ‘-izzle’ to names from way back when the coolest thing to say was ‘for shizzle ma nizzle,’ which is Negro for ‘for sure my nigga.’ With that said, you can easily guess my age with accuracy.

So let me tell you about Winds. It should be oldest pub in Buruburu. Winds is a joint you would meet the most outstanding characters in the entire Eastlands area. It is the kind of place you would see friends drinking together, disagreeing, exchange blows and eventually go home together bruised and happy. The most interesting thing is that it always has revelers no matter the time or day. ‘Winds imerogwa,’ people say.

I had guessed that Sithe would suggest we meet here. It was also in my head but I wanted it to come from him. Within 2 hours we were at our usual poorly lit corner by old multicoloured bulbs covered in not-so-fancy sisal lamp shades that were evenly distributed along the aging ceiling. I can bet the shades were purchased from a hawker at Mutindwa for not more than 300 bob. I know because I own similar shades but that is not our focus for today.

“So, design?” he asks.

I should warn you in advance that we bear an inside lingo as Nguis. Someone asking ‘design?’ with a shrill in their voice is asking a question that ranges from ‘How are you?’ ‘Are you okay?’ ‘Where are you?’ ‘Who are you with?’ ‘What’s your plan?’ ‘Are you buyng drinks?’ ‘Can we hook up?’ ‘What do you mean?’ ‘Who are you with?’ ‘Do you have money?’ ‘Are you hungry?’ ‘Who is she?’ ‘Did you smash her?’ ‘Do you like her?’ ‘Would you elaborate?’ The list is endless. You just need to place the most appropriate meaning at the moment and carry on.

Sithe was asking me what was going on. I sat there staring at the Smirnoff mzinga deep in thought. I wondered why I had called him. I had a slight feeling of regret after I remembered that Sithe was not the person I needed at the moment.

You see, Sithe is never emotional with his judgements. He assesses situations objectively before giving out his opinion over something. That was not exactly what I was looking for that day. At times I would rant over someone and Sithe would be like, ‘lakini pia wewe uko na ufala.’ Why are we friends again?

‘I am thinking of settling down,’ I start.

‘Ehe?’

‘Ehe nini?’

‘Umeamua?’

I don’t like seeing that stupid smile on his face. I hate it because I know what it means. This is a smile that is coming from someone who literally knows me inside and out. So when I see that damn smile, I think to myself, ‘I should be doing something wrong.’

‘Sasa unacheka nini?’

‘Nah fam, I am happy for you. If that’s what you feel like, go for it.’

That’s Sithe for you. Always giving the safest answers. He would never be caught on the wrong because of something he said. Complete opposite of me. My mouth is (in)famous for exacerbating situations (I always wanted to use that word).

It’s then I realized that that was exactly what I wanted to hear. I possibly knew that was what Sithe would say, but his saying it made all the difference. I knew exactly what I was looking for and I found it.

By then the vodka was halfway done. Heavy drinkers we are. Sithe left to buy cigarettes at the entrance from Ndauo. He has had that business from when I was a teenager and still doesn’t seem to have any prospects of leaving.

As I was left by the table alone, my thoughts started racing. It has been a whole 5 years since I was in a serious relationship. ‘My experience should be enough by now,’ I thought to myself. I had wallowed deep into situationships which I badly needed to liberate myself from. It was time.

Sithe comes back while on a phone conversation.

‘Niko na Mzae ka Windizzle but tunaweza come through. Haya sawa basi.’

It was Vin. He was at Kisima which is a walking distance from where we were and wanted us to join him. We quickly did shots and finished the whole bottle. Within no time we were headed to Buruburu Complex to join Vin.

I tried my best to hide the thoughts running through my head the entire time I was with Sithe. I was anxious about what the Nguis would make of this turn around decision that I was about to make in my life.

I know the likes of Vin, Onyi, Laku, Mwits and Ville would approve of my decision since they are married. But I was sure they would reiterate the same thing they drill in us singles every time the topic of marriage came up, ‘hii kitu si rahisi.’ (this thing is not easy)

I had already mastered a certain beam smile Vin put up whenever the topic came up. It was the kind that said, ‘you have absolutely no idea what this thing is about.’ I cared less. I felt ready and to me that was the most important thing to me.

Kisima was packed. Vin was loud and happy to see us. That was a sure sign that he was on the verge of blacking out. Only him and Ngemz held the title of napping in almost all joints we have visited in Kenya. It is always a pleasure meeting a fellow Ngui.

I ordered a mzinga and immediately stepped out to make a phone call. I needed a visa from Lady S since Ngui affairs hardly end before the A.M. It was a new and blossoming relationship and I didn’t want to mess up this time.

We toasted. A Ngui is about to get hitched.