I saw an Avocado tree back in the village sagging with ripe avocados. It was standing next to the river, this avocado tree. Okay, it’s not like it has since moved to Roysambu, so allow me to correct that sentence and say it stands next to the river. After I walked past it, I remembered how the city avocadoes walk in heels with cool backpacks because they have been elevated to levels they don’t deserve, so I went back for a second look. The innocent avocadoes looked abandoned because no one in my village goes to bed thinking about avocados. They were hanging there on that healthy tree, begging for attention. I wondered what they would say if they knew how big of a deal they are back here in Nairobi. I wondered if there’s an avocado up there that listens to the news and has since discovered they could be moved to Nairobi without being separated from their mother, the tree. I imagined this avocado, young and visionary, whispering to her brother, also young but unbothered, about this relocation possibility.
“We’ll be better off in the city. I hear over there Avocados are the real slay queens.”
“I wonder what you’ve been smoking lately,” her brother, Wafula, would retort. “You set foot in that city with this your curve and you’ll be eaten alive.”
“But at least I will be eaten with a knife. You know, go out with dignity. Other than waiting for my imminent fall into this useless river.”
“Assuming we could go to the city, how would that happen? Because I might not be a fan of taking a bath, but I just don’t see myself fighting for space in that old, rusty, and rickety canter that’s always ferrying our likes to the city. I am allergic to tetanus, you know.”
“Says a boy who has had on the same pair of shorts since the year began. Anyway, we don’t have to be ferried with that canter. I hear there’s a man, a governor, who knows just how to move things that nature created.”
“Actually, it’s Waititu. If he can move rivers, si he can move the damn tree to some posh estate in Nairobi?”
“Don’t tell me you take that man seriously.”
“Surprisingly, I do. Besides, aren’t we also on Riparian land?”
“Go to sleep, Nekesa, of late you’ve been sounding like you have nothing between your ears.”
“And that ‘powerful’ man Waititi—“
“Waititu. He couldn’t save his wife when she was arrested. He had to beg another man, Sonko, to release her for him.”
“I assumed you were about to make a point with this your Waititu’s wife arrest story.”
“Oh, I was.”
“The point, goddammit!”
Point is; those avocadoes could have a different life in this city. They are unlucky to be in the wrong place at the right time. I have a friend who can’t stop talking about avocados and I wish she knew just how much I don’t care for avocados. Or bananas. But mostly avocados. But that doesn’t mean Avocados won’t continue slaying. They will continue to slay whether I like it or not and my gut tells me if Waititu did his magic and moved that tree to Nairobi, the grabbing struggle that will ensue from Nairobians would lead to a police case because someone would be trampled on to death, and, in my village, you will know how serious something is when it leads to a police case. I mean, death is regrettable, but it is not the death that is feared, it is the police case.
When someone in my village tells you “THIS IS NOW A POLICE CASE!” My brother, run.
Speaking of which, there was this woman down there who was notorious for declaring every situation a POLICE CASE! She was feared because she knew all the police officers in the village by name and all she did was cause trouble and wait for a reaction from you before declaring it A Police Case. The next thing you know uniformed men will descend in your compound asking if you are Wambilianga Wafula.
She would step on your toe and say, “Sorry, your toe is too small I didn’t see it.”
“But you saw me?”
“I am asking you.”
“Look, be careful. I don’t like it when people step on my toe.”
“But I said sorry, what did you want me to do, kneel for you? Jesus! Your wife is always telling people how your nini is too small but I have never seen you harassing her the way you are harassing me!”
“My wife is always telling people what?”
“You heard me the first time. And the way your toe is small I have no doubt your wife is telling the truth.”
“Be careful, woman!”
“Or what, you’ll beat me? Go ahead then, beat me!” She would press her chest on yours and when you push her, she would fly all the way, wailing how you have killed her. “This is a POLICE CASE!” She’ll announce.
“I barely touched you!”
“Tell that to the police!”
Haha. The police will show up and you will cool your heels and tiny toe in jail till your family members part with something small. It was called, “Kutafuta gorogoro!” That is, when times are hard, people do anything and everything for compensation and you need to be smart when dealing with the kind. So when this particular woman stepped on your toe and said your nini is too tiny she couldn’t see it even with a thousand microscopes, you walked away polepole to avoid escalating this issue into a Police Case.
Phew, I am not sure what to write anymore, so I am out. Oh, also, buy my book, yawa. Send 1000 bob to 0702300676 and email your location to firstname.lastname@example.org so we can organize for delivery.