May she live

= 1473

On Fridays I usually go down to the National Museum for some writing nourishment with other writers at the Writers Guild. Over time, I have developed this obsession of attending their meetings. I bully people and things around, I talk too much, I joke a lot and learn much. That is me, getting comfortable in crowds. Before, I could become uneasy with crowds. I was raised an indoor kid and learnt to be by myself- read books, sleep, watch movies or even play computer games. This saw me become inactive when placed in groups. Unlearning this habit was a giant task. I am still trying to be an extrovert. I am not that bad as of now.

You see, it is mostly on Fridays that I get to find myself in town. The other days my back is pinned down on not so necessary stuff. But working on this stuff keeps me on my feet. It keeps me busy, wakes me up every morning at 7.30. And gets me home at around 8. It gives me reason to belong, and also travel. It makes me feel good about myself.

I look forward to Fridays because of three reasons.  I get to meet some people I like. Some hug me, others don’t.  Secondly, I get to see the outside world and know how fast I need to adjust to also move swiftly. Finally, I get to pass by Sabina Joy.

This is my favorite part because I have a friend who works there who hooks me up with free space and a drink. Soft drink for that matter. That has to sink because alcohol and I will never be friends. Here, I can grab an ass, a boob, and look at young and hot hookers do shit. The scene is elevating. I unwind in one way or another before I head home 30 minutes later. I always set the alarm because past 30 minutes my brain moves to the balls, when in there I can’t control it- I’ll have to eat some ass. I don’t work to go and spend my money on hookers- unless it is one for the night when the dry spell has reached ocean bottom. A man can be excused for that.

Going to Sabina Joy depends on who I spend my time with on Friday evening. If it is Yvonne, well and good. If it is Joy, the better because there is no room for me to think otherwise- same bus, same hood. So I usually ask either of them if they’re loose to hang out a bit after we retire from the National Museum.

This is my third year going to Sabina Joy. I am always loyal when I start doing things. That is the kind of guy I am. Being choosy comes along if you’re someone who respects loyalty. You go to the same barber for years, buy from the same mathee all the time. All your stuff comes from particular places. You tend to love few and specific people. You select few things that you love and keep doing them through and through.

Going to Writers Guild is one of those things. So is going to Sabina Joy. My friend, Omosh, introduced me to this place. Then, it was really shambolic and shady. A lot has changed with Sabina Joy nowadays. It is a place to get a classy hooker if you need one. I don’t want to lie that I ate my first floozy there, but it was one of the first few places that had nice bitches. I am judging this with the amount of exposure I have.

On another note now, life slips so fast like a note in one’s butt pocket. One minute it is right there, the following minute it is just gone. Sometimes it moves like wind, and sometimes like light and darkness. You only realize that it slipped too late. There are times when there is nothing you can do because, you just humble down at its feet and hope that it will be clement.

For a few days now I’ve been in a state of loss. Inside me feels deprived and grieved. Feelings with no name have strafed me leaving me an empty wreck. Often, I find myself operating on a blank mind. Going to work is always one thing I always look forward to. Unfortunately, I usually get there slothful. My whole day is consumed with vacuity and slumber. If you’ve never believed the saying that says a person who sleeps a lot is a sad person, then you need to learn some truth about that from me. Sadness has inundated me for the last few days.

Elsie got sick. Not just sick but terribly sick. And her mom kept sending me these disturbing images of swellings on Elsie’s face.

Ever had of a disease called mumps? Mumps is a contagious viral infection that is most common in children between five and 15 years of age.  Mumps is most recognisable by the painful swellings located at the side of the face under the ears (the parotid glands), giving a person with mumps a distinctive ‘hamster face’ appearance.

As always, Elsie mom becomes worried like shit when Elsie gets sick. She can call severally, even at midnight repeating the same thing she just told me hours ago. Her freaking syndrome sometimes annoys me. I think I am getting used to it because when Elsie is involved it doesn’t bother me much.

These images keep popping up in my dreams. I see them in my dreams. Elsie’s face usually looks at me with this unimaginable despondency. Hapless and restless because the swellings are painful.

There is this one time her mom handed over the phone to her so that we can talk. I’ve never heard such a dire voice, especially from a kid. So weak and unpleasant it was that it literary shocked me. I am one of those men who cry easily. My eyes swelled with painful tears and there I was crying like I did 20 years ago. She could not even pronounce words quite well.

I took time to dig deeply on this ailment that is eating her on the internet. I discovered that it comes along due to lack of some immunization. I had to really jog my mind back, to understand whether we missed the bit or what because Elsie was born and grew partly in Kenya. That shit scared me.

Then I found this bit of information that almost made me throw myself in a pit.

Mumps is caused by the mumps virus, which belongs to a family of viruses known as ‘paramyxoviruses’. It’s spread by close contact or by coughing and sneezing. Paramyxoviruses are a common source of infection, particularly in children.

When you get mumps, the virus moves from your respiratory tract (your nose, mouth and throat) into your parotid glands, where it begins to reproduce. This causes inflammation and swelling of the glands.

The virus can also enter your cerebrospinal fluid (CSF), which is the fluid that surrounds and protects your brain and spine. Once the virus has entered the CSF, it can spread to other parts of your body, such as your brain, pancreas, testes (in boys and men) and ovaries (in girls and women).

When I saw that it is spread through close contact, it occurred to me that maybe someone from her school might have infected her. Have you ever thought of going to your kid’s school and finding that bastard kid who’s causing your kid misery and blow their brains off? I feel the same.

Being a prayerful man, I have been praying a lot hoping that she recovers. When a cheery person lies in bed and a word can’t leave their mouths, you usually feel sad because truly you know that they’re suffering big time.

But these images are even worse. I wake up every morning a confused fellah with very red eyes due to disturbed sleep and scary dreams.

I know my story is scrambled today. Tastes like a piece of broken promise? But don’t we all feel down sometimes that you can’t even construct a paragraph? You know men cannot multitask, so I have tried living in my present pain and writing.

If there is a favour I am requesting from you today, it is a prayer favour. That when you sleep today, throw your flip flops way under your bed so that when you wake up tomorrow, you’ve to kneel to get them. As you kneel, say a little prayer for Elsie. Ask God to cast that hamster face off her. That He may give her peace and heal her. Because one day, she might also return a favour. We thrive not only because of our prayers and those of our mothers but also by those of others who pray for us even without us knowing.

If that is not too much, I beg to leave.


Mzangila Snr

Where shall we go, we who wander in this wasteland in search of better selves?




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