This a mix of careless whispers, stories retold, and a tirade here and there. You grew up with your breathtaking ideal man in mind, you probably fantasized he would come riding on a white horse, adorned in a royal tiara, athletic stature and with exceptional eloquence to match the imperial look. Picture perfect couple, you imagined. What less after growing up on soap operas with drop dead Alejandros and Brunos…But this is Kenya! This is just a slight touch of the reality on the ground verses your secret vanity fantasies, where you thought you’d find love, and where you found it: what you thought your relationship would be like, and what it turned out to be.
That campus boy! You were Snow white girl before meeting him, accustomed to dates, real dates, flowers, teddy bears and chocolates… But now you have a different blend of a boy… It possibly started after class, or at a mutual friend’s party, or after worship. He walked you to your comfy campus room. Later called you for a movie on his laptop and ampex woofers at his stuffy room, (but you keep saying it’s above average for a boy’s room)…gave you some black coffee and mandazi. What you were not aware is that this was going to be your type of dates for forever. Instead of greeting you with flowers, he brought you two oranges, one partly unripe! And through disappointment, you managed to sham a smile, and appreciate this overwhelming gesture. ‘Aiwa, you remembered today is our special date, aaawww’. Instead of going for picnics and weekend getaways, you got used to walking around campus, holding hands. On a very good day, you probably landed on a loooong walk to the nearest dam, or the nearby dry waterfall. To sugarcoat it, you told your buddies that you had gone site seeing with your man, no, with your boo. He introduced you as “ndio huyu bibi” to his friends, and you actually thought it sounded cool! You learned how to cook for two, and got to understand that a date was not about being in a fancy restaurant, it was the quality of time you spend together, in the filthy campus room, listening to riddims. You learned how to live in tomorrow, oh well; he promised you heaven on earth to be implemented once you got married. He promised you a mine of refined jewellery, ad hoc satisfaction of your shoe fetish, shopping sprees, a big wedding, a condominium right after campus, and a refined airey house, holidays every now and then… Happiness and riches all in the future. But now, the man’s tune is ‘Money in the bank, we live by saving’. Bluntly put, don’t think it’s going to change, if he can’t spoil you within his means now, oh how much less it will be when there are bills need to be paid…so forget it! Forget your dreamy holidays and gifts! Cling to your fairy tale, hang in there.
Second reality love story. Instead of stealing the show with your church choir dance moves at the pub, you opted to sit and watch over your friends’ drinks. So you sat and watched, unconsciously nodding to the beats or pretending to be busy on your not so expensive Samsung touch screen. Then Carly Rae Jepsen’s hit song played …‘Hey I just met, and this is crazy, but here’s my number…’suddenly you started singing along!…. And from the blues, HE joined you…and you both sang along. Over the years you have embraced the fact that ‘love’ can be found anywhere, even in pubs. So why not? Through your tipsy eyes, he looked more or less like William Levy, and through your squinted eyes, he looked like Chris Brown, only that he was short, and a little fat and coal. But he had some faint eloquence, he gave the impression that he was gentle, he seemed to have potential, a wealth of potential… Later, you told the girls about this man, and your story had million and ones buts, trying too hard to defend why he somehow fitted the profile for a suitor, your suitor… “But he’s nice! But he has potential! But he is kinda handsome. Out of fifty qualities in your list of ideals, he scored a whooping five! And you decided to give it a try. This time, a date! You dressed to electrify. But he asked to meet you in an abysmal downtown restaurant. These are the dates you never talk about you know. You perhaps lied to your waiting girl friends that he took you to ‘The clarion’ or Java. And for months, you juggle with mediocrity, but the relationship is doing just fine, your fairy tale untold. He tells you he likes you because you are real, you appreciate fifty shillings cocktails while standing, for lack of seats in the joints you have your dates, (cocktail dates in some ramshackle joint, with dirty blenders placed on a stool.) He loves you because you are not interested in his money, I’m not sure he has it to spend on women though. He loves you for you your simple self, a quality apparently lacking in the modern woman! SMH