MWALIMU ANDREW: Valentine’s gift lands me in trouble

Saturday February 20 2016

“You think I don’t know where you were and with

“You think I don’t know where you were and with who today?” she asked. “I have read everything here,” she said. “And the SMSs are still coming.” ILLUSTRATION| JOHN NYAGAH 

By MWALIMU ANDREW
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A few weeks into my new school, sources closer to the source told me how some enemies of development in the staffroom were saying that I favoured Xtash over them.

And who wouldn’t favour Xtash? In fact, given her beauty and brains (she scored a strong C- during her KCSE after repeating), any man would have problems explaining to God why

they favoured El Nino or Electina over Xtash.

To cool things down, two weeks ago, I sent her an SMS telling her that I will be tough on her in school. “I don’t like what other teachers are thinking about us, nitajifanya mkali

kwako kidogo,” I wrote.

“Shauri yao, wameze wembe, follow you heart.” she responded. She sent me many other SMSs telling me that we had not seen each other for so long a time and she was quite happy

that we were now teaching in the same school. “Because of you, I look forward to going to school every day. Dear, let us not waste this golden opportunity that God has presented to us.”

I would be lying to say that this disappointed me. If anything, it was music to my ears. But with the enemies of development around and remembering that Matiang’i was still in

charge, I was keen to keep my job as Dean of this school.

The other Friday, Xtash asked me if we could meet on Sunday. I pretended that I would be busy, but the truth was that I was looking forward to meeting her as I had nothing else to

do now that I no longer go to church.

We agreed to meet far away, at Teacher’s Tavern in our county headquarters. I left home late last Sunday morning, arriving at TT, as we commonly call the popular joint, just before

noon.

I was hungry and therefore ordered for half-a-kilo of matumbo-ugali and Stoney madiaba which I attacked head-on.  Being a weekend, there weren’t teachers at the TT, or else

I would not have accepted to meet at the place.

Xtash had not arrived by the time I finished my food. I therefore ordered for a second Stoney madiaba that I took leisurely as I waited for her. She arrived at around 2pm; looking great as always, in a short red dress, and red high heels.

“I am sorry, I had to go to church first,” she said as she took her seat. “My mother would not have let me leave if I didn’t go to church first.” I asked her if she was hungry upon

which I called the waiters. “Nipe chips na Fanta baridi,” she said.

 “Na wewe haukuli? Come on Dre, eat something. Or you will just look at me?” she asked when she saw me order nothing. I also thought it would be a bad picture for her to be eating

while I just looked at her, so I also ordered chips so as to give her moral support as she took her lunch.

“Nimeshiba, nikupe hii?” she said after she had taken just half the chips. I pretended that I was satisfied too, but a few minutes later, I took her chips as well. It was turning out to be

a very good outing for me! From Teacher Tavern we went to the park just a few metres away and sat on one of the benches for some time.

ESCORT HER

It was around 6pm when we boarded Mwisho wa Lami bound matatu. By the time we alighted, it was getting dark. I escorted Xtash to her gate.

We hugged as we said goodbye, and she gave me something in my hand as we parted ways. I briskly walked home, feeling some sense of guilty satisfaction, just like a cat that had

taken a jug-full of stolen milk.

When I got to the house, it looked a little different than I had left it, although I couldn’t tell exactly why it looked so.

Even the bedroom looked more organised and fresher than normal. I immediately opened what Xtash had given me. In there were two pairs of socks, and a card written on it “Happy

Valentines my one and only!” I was so happy that she had done this to me, but felt embarrassed that I had not bought her any gift.

 Not because I didn’t want but because I had not remembered that it was Valentine’s Day. I sent her a text wishing her a “Happy Valentine’s”, apologising for not having brought her

any gift but promising to “revenge” as soon as possible.

She responded immediately. “Seeing you ad spending the day with you was enough for me, Thank for the lunch and everything we did today. Xoxo.”

I heard some noises outside followed by a knock on the door. I quickly put the gift from Xtash under the bed, the phone in one of my Kaunda suits and went to open the door.

It was Fiolina, the laugh of my life. With her was Caro, my small sister. I gladly welcomed them and I sat with Caro in the sitting room, as Fiolina went to the bedroom.

I had not seen Caro for such a long time and we talked for some time. She then joined Fiolina in the kitchen and they made supper. After supper, I escorted Caro to my mother’s

house. When I returned, my warm water was ready and I went to take a bath. After my bath, I joined Fiolina in the bedroom. She was crying when I got there and I couldn’t

understand why.

“You are back with Xtash again?” she asked, tears rolling down her cheeks.

“No,” I said with a straight face. “The last time I saw that Xtash was in 2013. I have never seen her again and I even do not know where she is”

“I am not a fool Dre,” she said. “I have full affidavit on what you have been doing with Xtash. What is this?” she said, showing me the two pairs of socks that Xtash had given me earlier that evening.

“I can explain that…”  I said.

“Explain,” she said even before I could manufacture a convincing story.  “These were given to me by a colleague at school. His name is Fred...” I said.

 “Even this?” she said, showing me the card. I was speechless. Just then, I received a text message on my phone. The phone did not ring from my Kaunda suit pocket where I had left it. It was in Fiolina’s pocket. She took it out and read the SMS.

“You think I don’t know where you were and with who today?” she asked. “I have read everything here,” she said. “And the SMSs are still coming.”

“It is not what you are thinking,” I said lamely, thin sweat rolling down my cheeks.

“I must take this affidavit to your bosses and to school,” she said. “Everyone must know what you are doing.” Aware of the risks of her reporting me, I decided to admit everything and apologise to her.

“Ni shetani aliniingia,” I said. She cooled down especially after I reminded her that I needed the job to continue paying her fees at Mosoriot. We talked some more before finally sleeping.

For obvious reasons, we woke up late next Monday morning. She had come for fees and I had some money which I gave her. I saw her off at Mwisho was Lami busstop then went to school. I haven’t spoken to Xtash ever since.