I don’t know why January has turned into that clingy ex. It has drained all my energy and money. If money is indeed an aphrodisiac my girlfriend would be as wet as the Sahara during the harmattan. Only I don’t have a girlfriend and I’ve never been to the Sahara.
But let me put things into perspective. I am at a point where my wallet and I both have one thing in common – we aren’t getting any. It has been a rough month. So one fine evening my phone lights up. It hasn’t done this of late. Maybe people are on to me with my asshole ways. It’s an old pal – back in town. He wants to paint the town blue. I know the phrase is red but I am getting free alcohol so I am not correcting him. It’s a date.
I do not want to look like I just robbed a bank in the middle of January. I also do not want to send the wrong impression to damsels. You could be sitting looking all suave until a mama comes over and asks you to buy a drink. I do not want to be that guy that looks helplessly at his friend and whispers a faint “Itakuwaje? Utamshikia ama?” So the usual faded jeans, black coca-cola t-shirt and that Guinness cap that has an opener did it for me. I looked like I had stepped out of Mwalimu Andrew’s closet. Everything was set.
The club wasn’t too crowded. Again it was the middle of January. Blue Subaru owners were indoors after spending a hefty amount on Jameson and an even absurd amount on fuel over the December holidays. The now falling fuel prices will come as a reprieve to those who own those turbo charged contraptions that seem to irk some columnist.
But the club wasn’t sparse either. There were couples canoodled in corners whispering sweet nothings into each other’s ears. There was the occasional drunken girl that was gyrating her hips with a glass of wine in hand as she beckoned to some unknown stranger. Her girls would cheer her own – girls’ night out maybe. Then there were the lonely guys at the bar counter sipping on some on expensive whiskey in a crystal glass with some ice. They call this neat on the rocks. Maybe it’s because for a man to actually sit alone and sip on some whiskey they really have to be on the rocks. I don’t know.
The waitress comes and asks what we will be having. I wait for my friend – let’s call him T. As an unwritten rule you wait for the buyer to gesture at you to make an order, make an order for you or ask you what you will have. He does the latter – I am elated. Quickly I ask for a Bavaria and a cold coke. The waitress leaves. They all sashay when they do. Must be something about the tightness of their skirts.
The conversation oscillates through politics, the economy, women and sports. We talked about how political ambitions in this country need to be financially backed – I joked how romantic relationships needed the same backing. We laughed. As a rule – you keep the host entertained. Things got boring and we needed some Friday night thrill. So it was agreed that we would go into the dredges of the cities scum. These are areas where thugs come to qualm the burning urges in their throats with cold frothy liquids served in plastic senator branded tumblers.
We made our way through the city streets dodging water puddles, swerving around drunk youth and jumping over the occasional passed out bloke. The entrance to the joint wasn’t anything writing home about. It had a small umbrella like canopy above it and the words M-pesa pierced the rather dark side walk. The stairs looked daunting. Indeed the way up was long and treacherous. The walls had hands. Every once in a while my arm would be grabbed. However they were gentle. Every often they’d whisper
I don’t think they meant shower though, must be the heavy accent they had. They just wanted to talk. We finally take our seat and I decide that this is the perfect time to go empty the can. Again the walls grabbed at me until one successfully pulled me to the side. Again it whispered
I was drunk. I entertained the thought. I asked what they wanted to talk about. The reply was curt.
I didn’t know exactly what ‘ningepewa poa’ the price or the shot. I declined. She seemed amused. She insinuated that the liquor there was shitty. It wasn’t even cold. The only reason I must have been there was for her. She was confident. I hated to burst her bubble. I explained that I did not have any money. She said she saw I had a friend. Maybe she thought he would foot the bill. Again, I hated to disappoint her. She looked at me and smacked her lips in a manner you only see on these Nigerian films. She walked away. Sashaying. Maybe showing me what I had missed out on. I felt like an asshole. Actually I am. You do not go into a petrol station and ask for flour.