Mark Twain once said that, “There is a charm about the forbidden that makes it unspeakably desirable.” I wonder what made him utter those words, to whom and to what end.
It’s a beautiful, sunny Saturday here in Kisumu. I got out of bed at nine this morning because like the past five days, my sleep patterns have been affecting my writing so much so that it seems like whatever I write every day at 2 A.M., does not add to the book I’ve been working on. I wonder, what would you do with content that’s irrelevant to your purpose? If we were having this conversation three years ago, I would have deleted them. I have since come to appreciate my scraps of writing by neatly filing them in a blue box file under my bed. They gather dust every week.
I took time to run a few errands for my mom and this saw me walk into Choppies ( formerly known as Ukwala, Format and so on) to get a copy of today’s newspaper, 2 litres of Fanta Passion (because I’m all about Fanta) and 500ml of Vanilla Ice-Cream.
So, there I am making my way around the supermarket and this girl walks up to me and smiles. She’s in those ombre braids, since I can’t explain that stuff, let me look up an image on Google and share it…just give me a second, okay, wait…something like this:
She begins “Hey, how are you? It’s great to finally meet you.”
“Hi, it’s nice to meet you too, are we friends on facebook?”
“No, we are not, but I liked your page and I always read your blog? You’re so funny, like how do you do it? Do you just sit and start typing and then click send? I’ve always wanted to have a blog of my own but you know lectures and campo and stuff. So, what are you working on?”
“I’m mostly working on myself. I am taking time to get the next book going so keep up with me on the blog and I’ll let you know when it’s ready.”
“It’s Ushanga right? I love the picture of the maasai bracelet! Wait, why did you like choose that for a cover? I also noticed your covers look more simple like hazina a lot going on. I love that. I also loved your other books like ile ya Leila and Max, tell me was that about you? Kwanza 21 days! Wait, was Zora also you, because those books were too real to be just stories, hebu tell me!”
“What do you think?”
“I don’t know if I am right or wrong, but I have a feeling that Leila was you, but Zora was partly you. Listen, I got my friends to read them and we’ve been talking about you ever since, they won’t believe that I met you. Look, is it okay if we took a selfie? I promise I will only send it to my friends on whatsapp.”
We moved to the next aisle because there was no way I was going to take a selfie near the pampers aisle, who knows, the picture might find its way to one of my aunt’s streams and then I’d be getting calls like “to nyakwara biro chieng’ mane? To dhok?”
We took a selfie and she gave a quick hug and disappeared as fast as she’d appeared. I know she’ll get to read this and think, “why did you have to post this?” Truth is, meeting you lovely reader was something I prayed to the gods of literature would never happen, and as usual, the gods laughed and made it happen.
I walked back to the freezers and added another tab of Vanilla ice-cream because now I had a reason to get concerned about my writing and that meant dealing with what I’ve been avoiding for the past two weeks.
Have you ever had tea in a cone?
I did, two hours ago, but the tea had to be cold so as not to melt the cone…now I’m nursing a toothache!
Listening to: Illuminate by Shawn Mendes