There is this story spinning in my head. I have tried to write it down but the words have simply refused to trickle down to my fingers. It’s frustrating because — in my head — it’s a good story which will be even better on paper. For the past one week, I have written around 16 intros to this story and then folded the papers into balls and dust-binned them. Yet it’s a beautiful story. A story with an adorable face. A story with sensual eyes, forever with a sting of tears in them. It speaks to me, this story. Its voice is as soft as a falling leaf. Naturally, this story is a woman. A woman who will make you toss in bed the whole night imagining every erotic scenario she and you can be in, even when you know she is out of your reach… just like Amara.
The two doors of the elevator swung open. Standing right at the corner of the elevator, dressed in a long-sleeved white top, a black tight and swanky black heels, was this glowing woman. Her black handbag dangled from her curled elbow. And her powerful perfume stood right next to her. She threw me a quick glance, wanted to smile (I could tell) but she instead looked away like she hadn’t noticed my cute beard.
She did unsettle me, I must confess. My heart beat at a record 97 times a minute and I resolved not to say the first thing that came to mind. Because more often than not, especially when confronted with kick-ass boobs like the ones on her chest, defying gravity and showing age the middle finger, I always say the wrong thing. Not a bad thing, just the wrong thing. So I swallowed hard and silently whispered to my male instincts to remain calm. The ride up was pregnant with silence. We both shifted all our weight to one foot and then the other until when the elevator came to a halt at 8th floor. I realized then that I had missed my floor — the fourth floor. I couldn’t even remember if I had pressed the fourth-floor button or not. We stepped out, me cursing under my breath.
“I am sorry, did you say something?” she turned to look at me and a wave of confusion wiped my face. I wasn’t sure what to say and I thought in my moment of hesitation she would walk away but she did not. She simply stood there, clutching to her handbag and looking at me like I was homeless.
“I must have been talking to myself,” I said knowing how weird that sounded, “Mbanacho, by the way,” I extended her a handshake and I was relieved she did not ignore me because you greet women in this city and they stare at you like you have a weave on your head. Or putting on a jamper with “EXPLICIT CONTENT, PARENTAL GUIDANCE ADVISED,” written on its front. I have seen guys in those jampers by the way and I have wondered if they are are maybe trying to tell us something about their profession and we are simply not paying attention, or they are a result of Mathare Hospital guards receiving a bribe.
“Amara,” she said.
At that point, it was expected that we will head to our respective ways but no one was actually moving. I wanted to ask her what she did for a living then I remembered how I do not like answering that question myself. Plus I believe you should only ask someone what they do for a living if you want to offer them a job, you know, should they turn out to be just living, and not doing anything to live. Unfortunately, Amara here did not subscribe to my thinking so she asked what I did for a living. Kind off.
“So your office is somewhere in this building?”
“Sure,” I pointed to our office door, 4 floors down.
“Oh, A PR firm, right?”
“You do not look like you do PR.”
And she was right. I was in a khaki, a tucked in shirt folded a millionth time to my upper arm, and loafers without socks. Plus my head hadn’t been to a barber shop for ages since I was still coming to terms with the horrifying WhatsApp text from my barber which stated, among other things, that she loved me! Okay, What the hell? Whatever happened to never mixing business with pleasure? I know I always say a few niceties to her but that is only to make her feel good and work on my beard vizuri, and also stop her from frothing at the mouth when I don’t leave a hefty tip behind. Not because I am in love with you, Salome. Jesus!
“Actually, I am a copywriter.”
“Oh, you don’t look like a writer either.”
“I know right? People actually say that I look more of a movie star.” Okay, I did not say that but whatever I said, ladies and gentlemen, surely earned me her number which I saved in my beard because I do not trust phones anymore, and even if I trust my phone, I can’t trust all the Nairobians in the CBD, that would be foolish.
“Mind if I buy you a drink later today?”
She regarded that question for a while. And that was the longest second of my life. For all I cared, a corruption case could have been brought to court and prosecuted to a conclusion in that split of a second as I waited for her answer.
“Not that I mind, the problem is I am married.” For the first time, I noticed she had a ring on her finger. And I was crushed. But she looked too young to be married and I had to resist the urge to ask her if it was an arranged married and if she needed me to alert FIDA or whatever NGO that is rescuing girls from such barbaric acts.
“Too bad then,” I said, clearly disappointed.
“But if you promise to be a good boy, we might catch a drink. Just one.”
Oh, and just in case you missed it, girls, also have dirty minds. Yes, I had only asked her out for a drink, not to sire with her two bouncing baby boys.
“I will be a good boy,” I said in a mumble. A few minutes later and I was walking down the stairs to sign in. But that day I turned out to be very unproductive. I thought about Amara the whole of that day and, to be honest, it did not feel good wasting the day off thinking about someone’s wife. Plus I have had this personal rule to never, ever, lay a married woman. Is Amara going to be an exception? I shuddered to think she would be.
5:30 O’clock and I was out of the office. I wanted to pretend Amara never happened but my fingers on their own volition, I swear, dialed her number. Her voice was so soft in my ears it felt like she was blowing a gentle breeze in my ear.
“Still in the office?” I asked.
“I am standing right outside the building.”
“Right, will be there in a few.”
This time, she hugged me when I showed up. I have never felt breasts so tender pressed against my chest. Suddenly it felt like we had known each other since Moses and the Burning bush era. And Amara was a full package, I tell you. Her hips were in full play and I loved the way her ass insisted on being on its own, hence dragging behind her. I wanted us to take a taxi to town (We were in Parklands) but then I figured such special treatments will start giving her ideas that I was never going to be a good boy, so like everyone else, we took a mat to town and later walked to Heritage Grill next to Tuskys Pioneer, my home, my base. The love I have for that place only comes second to that I have for my mother (Also, I think it is so shameful that I can drag my mother into such a story. Pole, mama).
It is nowhere near weekend so we both avoid booze like county governments avoid accountability. Up to that point, Amara had not mentioned her husband even once. We sip our coffee as she tells me about her job. Working with this Bureau representing Artists in terms of organizing events for them to perform. A long complicated story which I chose not to pay attention to because that would be a waste of my limited attention, especially since I had boobs to ogle at.
But the evening went out cool. Amara was such a joy to hang around with. Which was obvious since she introduced herself using her second name and not her first name. That should tell you something.
Darkness was closing in. From where we sat, we could see Nairobians hurriedly walking to their bus terminals. The street light threw off the duvets, yawned and lit the city. Amara’s eyes continued to glow, reminding me of that beautiful story refusing to leave my head and at the same time refusing to be written down. Stubborn, just like the beauty of this woman. I think of her husband and how he would react should he know his woman was seating next to this man with bad intentions tattooed all over his body. If he was an AP, I knew what he would do, he would simply come and shoot the hell out of us. I looked at Amara and wondered if she was thinking the same. But she was calm. Unsettling kind of calm.
She looked to me like a woman oblivious to the power she possessed thanks to her beauty. Or maybe she knew, simply playing cool. Looking at her I really couldn’t tell whether she had a kid or not. Somehow it would have been nice to know but I wasn’t sure I wanted to ask her. Plus I couldn’t really guess because the only thing I am good at in guessing is whether a woman is wearing a magic bra or not.
“By the way, what’s his name?”
“Ah- ah- Uhm…”
“You do not know your husband’s name?”
“No. I did not know he will be walking in here right at this moment.”
To Be Continued…