Of Kenyan Men, Their Big, Flashy Cars and Small Egos

So he drove by past me in his German machine, at neck speed. Yes he did! He slowed down just to see if possibly I would flag him down to ask for a lift, but hell no there's no way I'm going back into that cycle again. I'm getting ahead of myself, let me go back to when I first got acquainted to this German machine. It was a particularly cold morning in early December 2014. Here I was new to what has become my dream home, but also the start of a loudly boring life. Things would change momentarily when I met Michael and his sleek Mercedes E230 CGI.




There I was in the drabbest of outfits I could scrunch up from my closet that morning. I had just moved in that Sunday and was up out of the house by 5.30 a.m on Monday morning headed to work. The move was hasty, it practically dried up my pockets and so how I looked was the least of my concerns.

Commuting that first day was horrible, I had to wait for nearly 45 minutes to get a matatu and once I did getting stuck in traffic was just what I didn't need that morning. As if things couldn't get worse, that evening going back home I took the wrong matatu and proceeded to light about a 15-minute walking distance from home.

Since I was still new to the area, I didn't know this and ended up walking an obscenely long distance back towards the CBD hoping to find a matatu along the way. I forget to mention, it was raining donkeys and horses.

I tried flagging down cars as I was getting more and more drenched in rain as my frail umbrella was flipped around by the raging winds that accompanied the pounding rain. No one would stop, I can't blame them I probably wouldn't either.

Tears started streaming down my face, I started laughing at some point and just pitied the hell out of my poor decision in moving to a beautiful neighborhood with an ugly access to public transportation. I soon got a matatu, ended up dredging through mud and lived to tell my pitiful tale to friends and family who told me to move.

I didn't move, the second morning was no better than the first having to dredge through mud and once again face commuter struggles. However, I somehow got used to it and by the 3rd week I'd pretty much adapted to my new home and the transport situation.

So on a particularly cold Monday morning, I was walking the distance from the neighborhood to the road to grab a matatu to work. Just as I was getting out of the gate, a gorgeous sleek Mercedes was cruising from the residents parking area towards the gate. I gave a glance, but proceeded to pound the pavement on my way to the road.

I was out of the main gate when the gorgeous royal blue German machine pulled up beside me. The window to the passenger side, where I was standing, rolled up. "Where are you headed?" Michael asked. I didn't have any thoughts or inclinations towards him then, being that he was the one driving this sleek car and had stopped to offer me a lift.

So there I was inside this magnificent car, yes I do have a fetish for luxury cars (a story for another post). I was awkward, just as I am with new people that I've just met. He did most of the talking and I was happy that he wasn't one of those quiet types. We did introductions and turned out he is a manager at one of the country's top-ranking banks. He didn't tell me whether he was married or not, a question he had asked me and it never occurred to me to ask the same. However, upon a visit to his house I was able to establish that he was single or dating a lady who was rarely around. I am getting too far into the story.

Back to the first encounter, the conversation went well. I did raise my eyebrows a couple of times when he kept telling me about his friend "who is dating a married man and is afraid that the wife knows." He would then go on to tell me how women nowadays are very ruthless and they could turn to violence against the other woman. He also asked me about his friend "she is a doctor by profession, but gave up the practice when she got married and is now a housewife." I couldn't help but think that he sure did have a lot of friends, female friends.

We soon got to where he was dropping me off, a short distance away from work. He had offered to drive me all the way to work, I declined. I wouldn't have given him my number, by then I honestly didn't have any inclinations at all towards Michael. He was just a chatty, metrosexual, successful man who had saved me a chunk of fare that morning. "Why don't you give me your number, I could be dropping you. It's after all on my way to work." He said. Why not, I thought as I took his number and he took mine. I said goodbye and was out of the majestic car on my way to work. Not a thought about Michael or his gorgeous German machine until I got out of work.

I was getting a matatu to my next matatu which would link me up to where I could get one home, A hassle, but it saved me the stress of being stuck in the traffic headed to the CBD. When I got to the bus stop where I get matatus headed home, it was a bit of a wait but finally a bus came along and I got in. My phone rings and its Michael, he says he's just about to pass by where I told him I take the matatus am I around there? I tell him I am, but I've already gotten in a bus.

He sends me 'updates' every few minutes about where he is, I think waiting for me to suggest that I should alight somewhere along the way and meet up with him. I didn't and soon I was home preparing for the next work day. Then a call comes through from Michael, he asks if I got back home and that I should go see him - a line he became infamous for in our conversations. I politely declined and said I would see him the next morning.

Next morning I wake up 5 a.m and by 5.30 a.m I am out of the house. I meet up with Micahel and it's a more or less pleasant trip to the 'drop off point.' So he gives me lifts that whole week, except for Thursday, when I just needed a breather from him and took public transport. All this while he has already flirted with me, invited me over to his house severally and I had to sit through the gropping in his car - well I was warming up to him and so I didn't entirely mind it.

2 weeks after knowing him, 1 week of giving me lifts before I took leave from work, I finally took up his invitation and visited him. I get in the house and I'm impressed, for a single man (perceivably single) he had an immaculate house with impeccable taste in furniture. There I was in his kitchen making him chapatis and ndegu. The man had a thing for chapati and ndegu, he had asked me severally if I could cook and cook that precisely. I thought why not, I like cooking anyway and so I cooked him a meal. He would come to the kitchen give me hugs from behind and nibble on my neck.

It was uncomfortable for me, at this point, I hadn't really gotten into 'Michael's box.' However, I welcomed the thought of eventually starting to like this man. He was in every sense the eligible bachelor most women would kill for. He had a sarcastic sense of humor, which was borderline rude. At that point, I just took it at face value and didn't think much about it. The meal was ready and he served both of us. How gentlemanly I thought, and after dinner, he proceeded to clear out our dishes. Wow, this man was scoring high on the 'boyfriend potential list.'

He was one of those that would talk about 'our future' and jokingly ask whether I had told my sister or friends about him. Yes, it had just been 2 weeks of meeting this man. Let me spare you the details, but one thing led to another and we tripped and fell in his bed.

Weeks go by and he keeps sending the occasional 'pleasantry messages' as well as invitations to cook for him! At that point I had hit it and moved on and so should he have moved on. So I start thinking, maybe this guy really is serious. New Year was the last time we talked when he called to ask me to go over and cook for him. I explained that I was taking my sister to the airport, who was flying back out of the country after the Christmas vacation home. Agreement was that I would let him know when I got back. I got back at around 10 pm, texted and told him I was back. No response. I had told him I was to travel out of Nairobi for work and would be away till mid-February. The one week I was still in Nairobi, I didn't bother reaching out to him for lifts. Except for the Thursday of that week. I texted him a simple 'Hi, how are you doing.' He didn't response. I forgot about him traveled off to work and was back in a month and a half.

I never thought about Michael at all, he was long forgotten honestly. Life was boring in my new home. I didn't have friends around and my regular friends were mysteriously ever busy or just lazy to come all the way to see me - so was I to go all the way to see them. Life moved on swiftly. Towards the end of March, I decided to attend one of those estate meetings. I had seen fliers about them but never bothered to attend. I thought it would be a good place to meet and know some of my neighbors. The meeting at the estate parking lot starts late, characteristically Kenyan. So it starts up and about 15 minutes into it, Michael arrives driving his gorgeous German machine. He parks it nearby and joins the rest of us at the meeting. I ignore him and he also ignores me. It's a long, yet interesting and somewhat hilarious meeting discussing neighborhood issues. Turns out he is the appointed estate head of security. The meeting ends and people scatter off to their house. So do I.

The next Monday, I go to work as usual with nothing eventful. I wait to be added to the estate WhatsApp group that apparently exists, but I don't get added. I keep on with my lonely days, same routine work and home and work and home all over again. T

hat Thursday, I leave the house same time headed to work. Just as I get to the main gate, guess who comes rolling by in his German beaut? We catch up and he behaves like it hasn't been months since we last spoke. He is his usual sarcastic self, except for a disturbingly long phone call he has with a lady who at first I thought was his girlfriend.

"Hi babe," he says when she picks up the call. He goes on to tell her how he's been hurt by the fact that she hasn't called him in a while and then goes into askin about some carpets and shower heads he needs. He then goes back to asking her when will she officially be off the market. Turns out that she is getting married very soon. He says that he is right on time to "do whatever he wants with her" before she is officially off the market. Yes, I am sitted on the passenger car of his car silently listening to this whole conversation. He at some point put her on loud speaker since he was driving and we were approaching traffic cops.

He finishes off the almost 30-minute call with her saying he would drop by to visit her at work. He then tells me that "that's the one that got away." Before I can process that, he jumps ahead and asks me how my sister is doing and if I have told her about him "and our future together." I am out of words and simply ask comment "the things you say!" He starts getting a stream of calls from work, they clearly turn his mood and I can tell he is in a foul mood. We get to the point he normally drops me. He is on a call when I get out, I say thanks but he's already sped off. So clearly I decide that it takes a huge ball of energy to even try to deal with this man and I make the decision to move on swiftly. Is that what happens, of cause not.

There I am that Saturday, bored and trying to chat up anyone who is online on WhatsApp from my contact list. I stumble upon Michael and send a "hi." It grows into a conversation and he invites me over to his house. I go and let's just say I broke my second virginity, he got the back door and boy was it good. Who knew, I hadn't explored much, being that I hadn't dated much. Damn, that did it and there I was getting all sprung over this man I knew was simply not worth the effort at all. After that, he goes all silent on me, shock. Of cause, I don't talk to him after sending a message he doesn't reply. A month goes by and the cycle repeats itself.

I find myself this morning, after an encounter with him 2 weeks ago following silent treatment from the full grown man. Yes, I admit it I was burnt, used and dumped and any other manner of way you would put it. But just so happens, I just met another man with a German machine who has been keeping me busy. Story for another post.

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