NOTE: This post has come in late but nonetheless enjoy
Whoever came up with African timing should see Kenyans awaiting the train. They would drown in shame, and disbelief. Almost all of them show up in time; others on time. No one wants to miss the magical experience that is the SGR. Cars , nduthis ,taxis and buses stream in in extreme fashion as wanderlust and other travel enthuasists await to begin their journey.
One man really catches my eye. He’s glued to his newspaper catching up on the latest. His spectacles are upon the nose. You know how old people like to place their reading aids –yes that way now. His beard is well trimmed – he resembles Will Smith. Then magically, he takes off his shoes and boom, he’s in happy socks. Black, grey and red spots. Am aghast– Kambas are amazed at anything colorful. He minds no one’s business and keeps glued to the newspaper. From his bag, he fishes out a glass ( yes, a man fetches a glass from his bag) and pours himself a Black Currant and gulps it all in one mouthful. He half fills and lets it rest on the waiting lounge cabro floor. He is that cool.
To cap it off, mister lays across all the seats in his compartment and is again engrossed to his newspaper. Talk of being care free and minding your own business. Forget dancing like there is no music, this one is dancing like there is no music and nobody is watching. When I grow up, I want to be this carefree.
I take a moment to look at the horizon, the blue sea, lush bushes, tall palm trees and damn it is gorgeous. All of a sudden, my concentration is overtaken by a beautiful lass. Those lasses that Sauti Sol talk about in their songs- Melanin, Afrikan Star, Girl Next Door, Isabella, Lazizi all come into mind. She sits beside me. Her eyes are milk white with a tinge of brown cocoa. Something about her lips, luscious , pouty and wet with red lipstick makes me want to say hi. And I bluff about it. But then my dad wouldn’t be proud if he heard I was afraid of saying hi to them beautiful species. So I do. Anyway it is always kind and respectful to say hi to your neighbors. She has a voice that clearly matches her outright beauty. Warm, receptive and a bit raspy. She would give most TV sirens a run for their money.
Am typing this from the Miritini SGR Terminus. My stay in Mombasa has come to a halt. Or pause. I don’t know which. The lecturers have decided to strike for two years and I miss home . Mombasa has all of a sudden become a boring den for me. It is just then that I realize how much those lectures add to being fun in Mombasa. It’s time to rethink what value am adding to myself with university education. Brokeness is also setting in- and there is nothing worse for a man other than that. Ask any , he will answer in the affirmative.
Just then The Big Show walks past me .Not the actual wrestler. But boy, he exactly resembles him- a well groomed beard , huge stature and a receding baldline. Only that he is not in those Big Show pants. He is in shorts- huge basketball shorts and a well-pressed check shirt. And Maasai slippers. He’s clutching a mini-bag (by his stature). I want to ask if he can sign an autograph for me; but then I don’t want to be smacked without a wrestling ring with all these people watching. Not to say the least nor a trademark slap to my otherwise young and fragile chest.
There are the usual photogens. It’s not a worthwhile journey if no one is taking pictures. Funny poses, tickly smiles and grins all charactarise most photos. Later they will be plastered all over Instagram with similarly outright captions and hashtags #takemeback #tbt #sgrtings and we will laugh and like. Plus they will look a bit different: filters and edits are a norm and necessity if not compulsory.
Just then the buzzer comes in from the speakers and our train has arrived. I gesture to my neighbor you remember her) and guess what she’s headed to the same coach as me.
It’s going to be a memorable trip to Nairobi. Maybe one day I’ll write a composition about it with the tittle ‘THE DAY I’LL NEVER FORGET.’ And my teacher of English will be a proud one.