WELCOME TO THE WORLD BOY.
I am sitting on a wooden chair in some dump joint in Kona mbaya. Not the one that Inspekta Mwala operates in during his frantic efforts to search for criminals and indicte them. No. It is a different Corner, with a C at the start.
Corner is sandwiched between Naivasha Road and Ngong Road. And its nice suburb, growing so fast and booming with business, especially mechanics. It is automatic to find eateries and drinking joints here.
Every time your car breakes, you want to imagine that Corner can fix all your problems due to its numeruous garages and Jaluo mechs; men who have skin and tone that commands an ailing car into a nice road hugging warthog again once they place their experienced arms on it. It is another place where you can find stuff where you find nowhere else in Kenya.
It being along Ngong Road, the snaky tar that leads to the sub urban leafy suburbs of Karen, means a lot of class stuff. It has decent furniture, especially seats that take your ass in, in gulps so that you imagine that it is being massaged like a baby’s butt. They make all kinds, from arm chairs, office stuff to lounge chairs.
It is here you also find nice drinking joints, really spacious and cool. There is nothing as nerve-calming as a strong drink in a calm and cool joint. It helps you drown your baggage with the least effort, unlike those shaddy and crowded joints that make you sweat, become uncomfortable and send you skin itching. The worst thing is that when you sweat you start reeking of if and for self conscious people like me will feel offended.
By now the sun is up there, glaring at people’s head as they jostle to various places. I am on a break from my own thoughts and also my small job. In front of me is just a bottle of cold Delmonte, though the stuff tastes so pale and boring. Inside I am going through my own exorcisms, which can be widely misinterpreted. To add on that, I am vaguely blank and lost in a world of having a better drink. This thought sends me to town. I forgot to say that in Corner you can’t find string drinks like whiskey. I don’t know of any drink with style like whisky, and so I take a ride to town just to get a double whiskey.
Whiskey is a drink of sophistication. Every man should know this. It is not a drink that you pour down the throat like water, hell no; it is sipped. You sip whisky because it is for sophisticated men. Please, you sip whiskey. Hope you got that.
It is time to man up and class up. There are many ways to drink whiskey. First off, it’s important to note that whiskey is not meant for chugging. Whiskey is intended to be leisurely sipped. This isn’t some frat party. The goal is to enjoy the varying flavor profiles of the whiskey, not blacking out and pissing your pants. Remember, you’re a sophisticated individual now. I am glad I repeated that once more.
For the men who have no idea what whiskey is, let me tear down this for you. Whiskey is like a household name; it is in variety. We have Scotch (if its not from Scotland, count it no scotch). You might have heard names of drinks like Johnnie Walker,Glenmorangie and Highland Park. These are all Scotch types. Unless you know what you really want, just call it Scotch. But a man of style calls out loudly to the waiter- Johny Walker 1963 right without fumbling with words.
Then The Irish Whiskey malted in Ireland. The likes of Jameson,Bushmills and Tullamore Dew get circumcised here. I bet you didn’t know Ireland does big in drink industry. Can’t say much, I know you know of Jameson, right?
Rye of Canada coins in, manufactured in charred oak barrels and distilled to an ABV of less than 80%. I just know of Bulleit. Haven’t tased it yet, wish I were a senior Sommelior, or even just a Somelior.
You have heard of Bourbon, even if you don’t drink. It is my personal favourite. bourbon can only be considered bourbon if it’s made in the United States, primarily Kentucky. America. Fuck yeah. The Americas can’t be left behind you know. Don’t know much but I strongly recommend Maker’s Mark and Knob Creek.
All these taste so great, but what about TENNESSEE WHISKEY?! I give thanks to Jacky Daniels, the main producer of this whisky. Damn.
Additionally, of course, Tennessee whiskey can only be considered Tennessee whiskeyif it was made in Tennessee. However, other than that, Tennessee Whiskey and Bourbon are the same thing! I recommend Jacky Daniels brand for you.
That is all you need to know about whiskey. Though there is a lot that defines such fine drinks, like aging, barrels and amount of ABV, whiskey still remains whiskey, a drink that covers you with style, and uplifts your spirit.
It is a drink that Mark Twain and Earnest Hemingway (the greatest writers) used whenever they sat down to write. It is believed that it draws humongous ideas from heaven and elevates your way of presentation, in a way that only satan can’t find joy in it.
I am one of those guys that believe that if I take another drink other than whiskey my hair will grow backwards and I will have a kipara. So when I show up at the counter of a bar and the barman tells me that there aint whiskey, or they don’t sell it, I get irritated, and can just ask for water and imagine it from a whiskey point of view, sip it away casually, so long as the secret remains between me and the barman.
I got in town at around six thirty in the evening. Sometimes I look at people boarding buses to town at around 7 pm and wonder what their agenda is about when they go opposite way. It is then I understood some of them crave to have a good drink which can only be available in town.
At my usual joint, I got two fingers of Whiskey. By the way people have no idea what two fingers of a drink means. Let me teach you. Get your glass and hold it while placed on the table. The width covered from the table and the end of your two fingers is what we call two fingers of something. That was easy, yeah?
So I am seated trying to figure out what else to have. Not even this Sauvignon Blanc thing or Amarula can move my heart because I am not a drinker. I don’t consider whiskey anywhere near to alcohol; at least it doesn’t give me nausea to make me hold the tables like a wicked donkey that has broken down, seeking the direction to the toilet.
I look across the room with a sore eye and realize I might be the only lion that is enjoying a glass of water when others are furiously arresting bottles, with little mercy on their intestines. Next to me on the counter there is a guy with a moustache that seemed to suffer from the stunt growth of his whiskers. He looked very much well endowed with cash, as he drunk the most expensive drink in that room (Dom. Romane Conti 1997), unconcerned of what others were doing. I damn envied his ass for being that nasty rich. I felt like moving closer and being sympathetic, humbling myself and meekly asking him how come he drinks from bottles that I don’t drink from.
It was during the process that my phone beeped, at around 10 pm on Saturday evening. My focus shifted to it as I took it on my hands to check out. It was a text that read
Baby Calvin is born.
And that was it. Just a simple text, consisting of four words. But with a lot of meaning. It carried with it a new life. It came with it a lot of jubilation. From the way it was well constructed and written by a right hand that smiled, it signified that the originator of that message was more than happy. It was a symbol of a life of a new born that brought a lot of joy to people.
I didn’t know how to react. As a man you don’t just react so fast to situations, not unless they are crucial circumstances that need to be addressed immediately. A man takes his time to internalize the words, think of more than just a baby and decide what to write back. Not like a girl who will reply like 100 messages to her friends telling them that so and so has conceived, and then send a congrats text to the mother last.
Girls are like media. They will broadcast information like they are paid to do it. And you will start receiving congrats and visitors, all people you don’t know. It is not so bad, but not so good either. I mean she has just delivered. Give her some time to spend lovely moments with her kid. You will have yours too.
I ogled at the text for quite a while. It was from my cuzo named Caesar. I had expected his wife to deliver two weeks later as she had told me. I was surprised but got happier with time.
I felt like texting back a text that will read something like, welcome to fatherhood buddy. But again I thought for a second time. I couldn’t find the correct words to write. We don’t care as guys. So I wrote, congrats buddy. And that was it.
Men don’t need long texts, as if you are writing a composition to be read by an old teacher with an ugly smile, and with glasses hanging from the tip of her nose, looking and marking it from 200m away because she suffers from long sightedness.
Finally we had to welcome him to fatherhood. It was amazing how after only four hours a man could change from Caesar to Baba Calvin. Caesar no longer has meaning. Baba Calvin now reigns. What a title.
What even made me think lowly of myself is that he had a male first born. It made me rethink. I mean who doesn’t want a male first born. A man to protect his family and sister so that no silly punk gets to her pants without paying dowry first. A boy is a sign of heredity. He is a sign of a strong family.
I imagined of Elsie and how soon she will grow and leave me and mom. How she will bid me bye and get married to a chap of his dreams. She won’t regret leaving his father to a foreign man she will have known for just a few months, trust him with all herself and make herself vulnerable to him. And I will be left alone.
That boy thing really hit me. I think I need a boy too. A man I can call my own. Someone I can draw a chair, sit down and have a manly chat with when he is grown. A man to carry the mantle of the Mzangilas years down the line. He shall be called Russell Mzangila Jr.
That news needed a celebration. Only that my favorite drink was unavailable. So I decided to grab something else that is not alcoholic to get me somewhere where I can roast some meat and have fun on the grill.
By 1 am I was going home, singing circumcision songs. It is the next stage that awaited Baby Calvin. And I prayed that he doesn’t grow so fast. The world out here, oh boy! The world out here is a sick hyena, miserable and upside down. Hope you are prepared to face it strongly. You need that extra energy. So make it happen boy. Eat well and gym a lot.
We want you to make us proud. Don’t be like other boys we have brought up and lost direction so that it made us feel like lesser parents and guardians. We want you to be a man to carry on the beacon of Chweya’s family. Only then can we be proud to call you son. Only then can we sit down with you and have a manly chat.
Baba Calvin welcome to this club of fathers. I can now sit down and enjoy a conversation about our kids. We can now talk of responsibilities and women and money and school, and other shit that is dad related.
We love you Calvin.
Cheers to Calvin’s parents.