Landlord Drama – A short Story31st May, 2019
Am I the only one whose body shudders on certain dates? Mine is normally the 6th. And it’s not because of superstition or whatever but that date was cursed for me na mwenye aliiroga alipotea tu hivyo. I remember it like it was a month ago because it really was. That memory stays fresh in my mind kama Kachumbari ya wale wasee wa pasua. Big up to those guys, I don’t know how you do it but props!
On the said date I picked up a pencil to fiddle with as I waited to get into a presentation. Usually I don’t use my phone before a meeting like that because butterflies in the stomach are an actual thing. So to calm myself I fiddle with something and today it was a pencil. I had received several reminders from the caretaker nimWozzap kale ka-slip ka rent. But you know how these things go, right? Ah, nikilipa, nitampatia jioni. Ukifika; hayuko. Ukitoka asubuhi unasahau. Life tu. Plus I was really not trying to use my phone remember?
I didn’t open his Wozzap messages because blue ticks would have given me away and no one like snitches. After jazaing my phone with over 20 Wozzap notifications, he resolve to blowing up my phone with calls upon calls. It was getting worryingly a lot! At some point I went to the loo to trace my morning steps nikumbuke kama nilizima pasi.
I finally picked up and he said, “Mama amesema tutoe vitu zako na kumeanza kunyesha so nilikuwa nataka kujua unataka kuzipata wapi?” My procrastination had caught up with me and Mama was not playing. I’ve never been evicted. In fact, my mindset is that an evictee is a defaulter, a criminal or the estate drunk. I was none and I had to prove it. I panicked. Ordered a nduthi to go and try to pay cash-cash with a little ‘hardship’ fee on top. The bank was packed so I wasn’t working with a lot of options here.
Small small pale Ngong road, tukaguzana na mat and another saloon car. It was posh – the model and type don’t escape me: I’ve just never known them. Within the madness of trying to prove who was at fault, I got a little carried away. My blood was boiling because someone hurled, “Hawa watu wa nduthi!” and we really weren’t at fault whatsoever.
I quickly remembered I could be homeless. We hopped back on that nduthi and made a beeline to our mission. When I got there, it was already raining and I could see some of my stuff. A souvenir here, a cup there – traces of the cruelty of the life the landlady had handed me. Oh and the caretaker as well. A friend of my enemy is my enemy. He was an accomplice.
I knocked at the landlady’s ready to pay my rent and demand justice like I normally do pale Twitter. I reached into my pocket. Either my hand had gone numb because of the cold; or all the money was gone. Either way – there were heavy overtones of nothingness. I could hear her approach the door so I ducked. I had no case and no evidence of intent.
So tukapanda nduthi tena kukimbia kwa ATM. If you are like me (also, I use this phrase when I’m trying to normalize something completely berserk), you use ONE ATM. Tukaenda tao – I know. The Mexican standoff between ‘Kajo’ and nduthis was already in play. My nduthi guy claimed his pay akaniwachanisha hapo GPO na mvua. I didn’t hate him. I, too, was tired of myself. I walked in the rain like those melanin kings from music videos from the mid 2000s.
Nikakutana na ma-obe wametoka jam session, I suppose. Tukachokozana. Wakaniibia. Wakaniacha. I lost my whole bag to them. I walked back to Ngong Road. The details of how nililala kwa caretaker will follow on a later date.
I had to take the next two days getting my life back on track. Aibu ni vile I had to move back into my own ka-flat. I can still hear my neighbors laughing with their eyes.
When I got back to work, I told the tales of my hardship and suffering to my deskie… anaitwa Sospeter. He told me to find another storo kuambia mkubwa. It is, apparently, common knowledge that KCBae has this thingy called Express ATM. It allows you to deposit cash into another KCB account or card instantly – hakuna cha 3 – 5 business days. By Jove, this information would have come in handy then!
And to think, hizi shida zote zilianza na mimi kuchezacheza na pencil 😫
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