If you live away from the island (Mombasa) you can attest to the fact that the traffic snarl up that’s constantly at the Kibarani cause way is a pain in the patella. A pain in the derriere quite literally because you sit in a matatu for close to an hour or two, a trip that one would ordinarily take one 15-20min drive. Sitting in a matatu until you bum goes numb, you barely feel it. At times the traffic builds up from the Changamwe round about all up to Makupa, a not so pleasant sight, and if you are native here you know all too well that this is the only root allowed to use by public transport. The other is strictly for Port business, unless you’re keen on exporting or importing stuff like the recent Ivory you have no business using that road. Avoid it like a plague.
At first I didn’t give a hoot about it (traffic), so immediately I got at the stage at the end of the day I’d wait for the first matatu that would arrive and leave, but afterwards I digressed, my patience grew thin and I stopped. Because waiting for a matatu during those traffic hours was like waiting for rain in a drought season they became scarce like a hens teeth, one could literally count them. They were not enough to ferry all of us across the border. This was a complete contrast to our Tudor counterparts, their Matatus would come rushing down stage at top speed, blaring loud music and hooting announcing their presence. If you have seen Tudor matatus you can to the fact that these are the crème de la crème. Tudor a matatus are the shiznit, well done. You would look at these matatu and just fancy living in Tudor. All with fancy lights decor crisscrossing the matatu from the outside, well done interior sealing boards with neat LCD screens on each passengers seat. And there seats, seats so posh you’d take along for a date.
So on this one Wednesday evening I arrive at the stage I noticed the traffic was back again, huge crowds still building up. People adamant to get home because of the exorbitant fares. I join in the wait, maneuver my way through the crowd and get to ancient old posta pole. I lean on it and take out my phone and start fiddling through Facebook looking for (at) people. Going through my timeline I stumble a post it reads “European Film Festival” an event that would be going down at Alliance Francaise I presume. I am curious so I fiddle an read on, the event was actually ongoing as we speak and we’ll be running for the next coming weeks, showcasing movies from 7-9 o’clock perfect timing. Without a thought of I tilt my compass back and now I’m headed to Alliance whilst still reading the post reading on I stumble on the entrance fee. It reads FREE in bold, the magic word that spoke “rudisha” to my legs and in no time, I was sitting down at Alliance enjoying a movie.
The movie was nice just like any other movie but I’m not here to talk about the movie. Something happened that night that has left me thinking. What if? After the movie
So I’m heading back to the stage Fontanella I spot small crowd now and I take this deep sigh of relief because I know it’s a sign that God is still on the driver’s seat (no pun) and that the traffic will be over very soon if not now. As I am approaching the crowd out of nowhere a lady covered in snazzy dark purple buibui passes in front of me. She’s covered from head to toe leaving space across her eyes. She has on a pair of reading glasses, she walks past me head tilted to my directions and sniggers. I spot a distant smile behind her buibui covering, and without giving a second thought about it I smile back. Smiles are infectious people; bear with me I had to. She signals me to stop and I do. I look at her and think this is probably damsel in distress. Maybe she mistook this road to the Ferry road and now she’s in conundrum as to why she can’t see the Indian Ocean. Maybe she wanted to go across the border to Mtongwe (just like me). Maybe she wanted to meet one fisherman from Ferry. Maybe just maybe she wanted to take a dip in the Ocean. Maybe she wanted to do all that but from the conversation that ensued after it was clear that she wanted to do something or rather someone, and I was completely daft as a brush to notice that I was being hit on, being hit on by a hooker. Well I’m not going to act all puritan here and
“Uko smart leo!”
Not blowing my trumpet though, but I had on this long sleeved purple shirt of course that made me look dapper.
“Unaenda wapi?” (Where are you going?)
She cut me shot.
“Unaenda Changamwe?” (Are you going to Changamwe?)
She says that and I’m left thinking wait this is must be one of those con-ladies that give you a brief about your entire past and how you should leave your earthly belongings with them and go stand at a pole of their choice (where you don’t see them) and without looking back stamp severally before turning around and you realizing they made away with your earthly belongings too late. My friend Kim should sit you done for that episode, you will die of mirth. Back to
“Ama unakaa kule Magongo?” (Or you stay in Magongo?)
I nod in agreement and think maybe she wants to send me to someone I know, or one famous lad whose fame spans across the town and surely I must know him.
When she was asking me all these I my mind was just waiting for the sentence “Siunisaidie nifike Ferry” (Could you assist me get to Ferry) but little did I know those words wouldn’t even find their way in the conversations.
“Lakini bado mna jam, hutafika sahiizi.” (But there’s still traffic you won’t get there soon.)
“Twende tukanywe soda nawe kisha baadaye tuangalie mambo mengine” (Lets go get soda and later on (h)look on to other stuff)
These words that could send a phallus-ed fella on heat checking in the next lodging for a night of flesh meeting flesh. Irregardless those words echoed for while in my mind here I am stuck with no sign of Matatus from anywhere and a willing young damsel ready to escort me to her sanctum for a night where we would cajole for an hour or two or the next half. It’s until then that an attack, that flat-lined my obscured vision, put me right back on track. I tell her no, thanks for the offer but I have a car packed just close to Samba Electronics. She looks at me and nods, in agreement I presume.
If only she knew this was just a mere Intern.