Anyway, the year now is 19 naite 8. We are still in premary. Moi is still the president because, I hear, he says people like Raila and Kibaki don’t know anything about politics but Moi is a proffesor in that discipline. I ask the Man Beater why akina Kibaki have not gone to pursue that degree; he tells me that is Moi’s propaganda. I ask him what propaganda is, and consequently earn myself an assignment to look up a word in the dictionary! Arrgh!! Wish I was a modern day kid, I’d tell Man Beater to ‘kuwa mpole’
Anyway, teachers have gone on strike because they want Moi to pay them more money but Moi has said he is broke. I don’t understand; this same Moi gave 100k cash to Kyeni Girls on his way to Meru live live tukiangalia. Just because of singing for him. Our headmaster said we have to go to school because ours is an academy school and our teachers are paid by Father Kibariki, not Moi. But while we were in class at around 10, teachers of public schools came singing war songs and waving twigs; our teachers fled like babies. So we had to go home, even before having our usual bread (with bleband) and cocoa. Today was my serving day. Now we are also on strike.
Anyway, I have just discovered a stash of unused KANU campaign posters in my aunt’s cupboard and guess what? They are plain at the back. Now it is to draw to draw. On one I’ll draw cars, the other one a big picha of Bruce Lee, another people playing football etc.
Anyway, that can wait, right now I have to go out and play football. Yesterday we scored 14 goals and we conceded 14; so today we start 0-0.
Anyway, you know our field, don’t you? We play on the road, when people pass we stop play and let them pass. Respect is a great and painfully instilled virtue in this village.
In the rare event that a vehicle passes by, we immediately abandon our game and run after it with intention of gùcurîra, also known as kùrìa cuma/ngunju or kudandia tu kama mat in Swahili. (The resumption of this match will be marked by an argument over the scoreline)
By the way, we dandia any and every type of vehicle/car, but we are oft in luck because the vehicles that come around are either pick up trucks delivering cement or lorries delivering sand or construction blocks. Hardcore is brought by Ox-carts; those are of little interest, we just let pass.
Anyway, today Nyaga has had a face me matatu bring cement to his home. Nyaga works at the home of PS, who from time to time allows him to use one of his many vehicles for personal errands. As you will guess, PS used to work for the ministry as a PS. He did not return home even after that; rumour has it Moi gave him another job. He comes on Friday and leaves on Sunday.
Anyway, we have adjourned our game so we can dandia Nyaga’s matatu. And here it comes. As the ritual goes, we let it pass as we feign walking in the opposite direction, before turning and giving a mad chase.
Being the fastest of the crew, I am the first to catch up. Others come after me. One or two do not get space or they fail to catch up; those ones we will ridicule later.
Now to the problem, we only gùcurìra within the village. It would be taboo to get to the main road. But this matatu is too fast we can’t jump off. Two, I think I have seen the Man Beater somewhere on his way home; I think our eyes locked for our split second.
Ng’e says the matatu will slow down at the junction joining the main road, but I can’t wait that long. What if it doesn’t and it keeps picking up speed and takes us to God-knows-where?
I have to jump! Like now! Like right now! Like I. Have. Jumped.
Anyway, like always, I mistimed my jump, and my landing. I will have to work on that. My palms and knees are bruised. Those I can bear, but my trousers are torn too! How will I explain that?
Anyway, a man has to face his fears; mine is The Man Beater. So I head home. My defence is one of the obvious two: 1. Silence 2. It wasn’t me….Not that it matters at all, there is only one verdict in the Man Beater’s court:…….
That was then, and that’s #TBT.