Under a government which imprisons any unjustly, the true place for a just man is also a prison – Henry David Thoreau
Everything was spontaneous, though subconsciously pre-thought. On most Fridays, when we did not have enough money to rave, we would go either to Polo’s or Boss’ house. Money was a determining factor as we had just completed high school and none of us had a job. It was Polo’s house because her mom lived somewhere in this planet where so as to go to that place, a Kenyan would need something called a visa and something else called a passport plus other documentation. I do not know why it was Boss’ house but rumour has it that….OK, the rumour involves some secrets in the family and if Boss reads them here, he will be arrested for murder while I will be buried a few days later. (I atleast want him present at my funeral). The most preferred place was at Polo’s because it was in a posh area, the mats to that place operate 247 (Economic resources were limited and instead of wasting money on cabs, that money could be used to uplift the economy in another sector e.g buying more intoxicating drinks etc) etc.
I am not supposed to disclose what we did at Polo’s mainly because that might land us behind bars again. Most of the things we did were legal anyway (listening to loud music had not yet been outlawed) and those that were illegal did not involve children (a la M.J)…….which reminds me that all of us had only utmost two documents issued by the state (a birth certificate and the KCPE certificate) so technically, without IDs, we were all children. On this particular day, Polo’s neighbour came to warn us that we were too noisy. She had done that everytime we were at Polo’s, and the warning always involved her threatening us that she was the wife of the Nairobi CID Boss (not the other Boss I talked about earlier). There were valid reasons for us to dispute that CID Boss theory namely her kids were still toddlers while she did not look anything above 32. You would expect the CID Boss’ wife to be with grown up kids and not so young. Polo had told us on many a times that he had seen a GK-plated Land Rover on numerous accounts while there was that rumour that she was the fourth (or fifth) wife (and her second born was not even the CID’s child. This is what made the rumour closer to fact than fiction.)
Right about the time when everyone is intoxicated and Maa Nigga has started formulating several theories about Galileo, the leaning tower of Pisa and other useless facts that can make you fail your exams because they occupy too much RAM on your brain, the door was flung open and there before us were the guys entitled by the state to harass all citizens (law and non-law abiding). Crucially is that they had missed the only illegal activity we had done that night by an hour and we did not hesitate getting on to the mariamu just incase they decided to search the house and evidence/a remainder/a surprise package of what had just been ingested is discovered. (The surprise package happened when one of us intended to kill the others by hidding part of the thing that we normally ingest so that when everyone feels wasted, he can unleash it.)
In no time, we found ourselves in (a surprisingly) clean and empty Buruburu Police Station cell. At first, I thought it was all a dream and so would you had you been in that position. A clean empty police station is something that existed just before dinosaurs and everything else extinct. The other guys that we found at the station kept asking us what we were in for and by the look of their voices, they seemed scared and later very concerned when we told them we had done nothing. The guards were also scared of us, it seemed, and it is like they had been trained on saying just one phrase, “Nyinyi hamna bahati!” None of us was harassed, and in all honesty, we thought that this was the effect of the thing we had ingested.
As usual, I am normally the first person to sober up/come back to my senses because my IQ is just 6 points short of Hitler, Einstein and Newton combined (then raised to the power of a third). I think Maa Nigga was talking about Alexander Graham when that einstein moment came. I should have mentioned that, since this all looked like a dream or the effects of something or both, we decided to play along and see the worst that could happen if we continued from where we left off, but now at the police station. Polo was busy singing in his bad voice some Toni Braxton song, Maa Nigga was telling his tales of how he helped who come up with what invention, the others were laughing at Maa Nigga (because they thought he was more intoxicated than them) while I was trying to prove to myself that everything (the guards being afraid of seven young boys who considered themselves to be men, a clean empty cell just for us etc) was not a dream. That is when I had the Einstein moment.
“Let us call one of the guards, and ask him to call our parents,” I interrupted Maa Nigga.
“Ngoja nimalize story,” he chipped.
Then there was silence for three plus one and a half seconds (maybe more) as everyone seemed to consider the genius statement I had made. I on the other hand swam in the glory of making Maa Nigga (finally) shut up and think about what I had said. I waited for the first response, and even noticed Polo had stopped singing. Just when I was going to say something less intelligent, (I think I would have begun by saying “Guys we have been here for two hours now and no one knows where we are”), there was a thunderous laborious laughter that lasted a whole minute from everyone. Then the self proclaimed Jiggah/Jay-Z/Hover tried to put some sense into me.
“rnk, hatujashikwa. Hizi ni effects za *&%$! Unadhani wapi utapata jela safi hivi?”
He had a point that was dead on arrival. I had pinched myself a million times and on each time, felt pain. This had to be real, even though I had been waiting for something to go wrong to prove it. After arguing for sometime, I realised that I could not win the argument with them, so I decided to call one of the guards and ask him if he could call our parents without the support of the other six useless boys. (actually, he will only have to call my parents).
“Afande!” I shouted, amid laughter from the rest of the crew. A timid looking guard came.
“Nini Mbaya?” He asked. I searched for the harshness in his tone but I could find none. It was more of pity than of fear. Everyone else was quiet.
“Tafadhali nisaidie simu nipigie mzazi” I said.
Hardly had I finished saying this than the guard took off saying, “Sitaki kumwaga unga!” That was enough to convince us we were in a pot of hot soup, the pot was still on the fire and someone was still adding more firewood to the fire!
Note: The above is a work of fiction and any reference to a person or place that resembles a real person or place is purely coincidental.
Quote – You know you are all grown up when you congratulate your friend now that she is pregnant instead of asking, “
issht! what the hell happened?” – Switcheeks
As my mentor did for me sometime back, I would (also) like to officially welcome Yiembo and beenduta, who are new to the world of blogging. You can find their work at Dyiembo’s Blog and Bee illustrated respectively.