‘You’ll like him. He’s funny and intelligent,’ Lisa said with a sweet voice.
A voice is filled with energy and radiating it like I’m craving peace and happiness in my life. Her white dress flows down her short curvy body. I can smell the coffee as she talks. My mind speaks the same language.
I give her that look. Pretending to look at my nails before I take a sip from my brown mug. She clears her throat. I carry on sipping coffee. I’ve been through the motions before with her.
I reach into my suede blue handbag to look for lotion. My hands are dried up. Just like my soul.
A) I’m alone. SOLO. Mum is planning an imaginary wedding every day. She’ll send me an invite. I want whatever she’s lighting up.
Lisa hooked me up with the last one.
I’m a little late. Traffic was a nightmare.
This place feels a little cosy with white washed walls. I can almost feel the texture of the wall because some bits stick out like the painter concentrated on putting extra strokes in certain places.
All the light makes it feel aerated and bigger than it is. The brightly coloured flower pots on each table animate it. A black & white sugar dish and salt shaker on opposite sides with flowing fonts.
He has broad shoulders and short neat hair plus squarish black-grey spectacles.
I know it’s him because he has that resigned look on his face. I have it sometimes.
Is it too early to give Lisa, thumbs up? Then again, kwionera ti kwirwo***
I’m starving. Sweet cinnamon float into the air and I imagine biting into a golden-brown pastry.
I can barely hear footsteps on the floor. As the waiters move harmoniously clearing and setting down tables. Till one drops the ball, must be a newbie but she recovers quickly. Wiping away white powder from the table into her right palm and disappears into the background.
I sit down and give him a small smile since he’s still on his phone.
I lock eyes with her eye walking towards me but before she hands it to me.
‘Lemon ginger tea and honey,’ I say maintaining eye contact with her.
She hesitantly puts the menu back and starts walking away. I’ll wait for him. If I don’t like him then I can just leave.
“Hey there,” Adam says with a confident voice and snaps me out of my daydream.
“I’m sorry, I’m late,’ I apologise because my mum raised me like that.
I extend my hand out mimicking him. It’s firm but gentle. Short, neat nails.
I’m no romantic but I don’t want to take off running for the hills.
I’m smiling at him till I lower my face and see her putting clean cutlery on the table. He ordered without me. I’m a little ticked but intrigued.
‘I know ladies like a man that leads,’ he says like he can read my mind ‘I hope you don’t mind,’ he finishes off.
I give a saccharine smile as my eyes wonders flickers from the white walls, brown bookshelf and black floors. I need to stop doing that. I have the weakest poker face. Playing with the sugar sachet in the container.
I can smell choma with onions filling up the air. Crunchy fries that are begging me to eat them and they make a noise when broken in half.
It appears right in front of me, I pull out the silver fork and it disappears.
Munching away noisily. Adam digs into it his charred juicy steak with his fork and knife. It oozes out a little, it’s a little pink in the centre. So delicate to touch. I can tell that it’s soft and sort of melts in his mouth.
I put my hands on my side, try to look calm. I look at his plate. I look the empty space in front of me. I look at him again. I see salad next to me.
He looks up, locks me with questioning eyes ‘kwani, you’re not hungry,’ he asks surprised.
‘Aaah…. Where’s the rest?’ I ask unamused.
I’m staring so hard at my wild leaves that I want them to burst into flames. The lettuce green looks a little faded and the other bits look like there unsaturated. I already know that the dressing is decent, flavour packed, creamy and pink.
‘You need to eat right. Maintain yourself,’ he says a little proudly like he’s having an epiphany. Wipes his shiny words with the back of his hand.
I’m giving that nervous smile that cloaks your tears because you don’t feel like being that girl. Alternatively, you’re speechless and you can’t rain expletives.
I’m not sure how to respond to him because Lisa said that he was a feminist in the making. A man that breathes Thomas Sankara.
‘Just like you?’ I say with a little sarcasm, trying to control my face from twitching.
‘I’m paying. Just enjoy,’ he says it like he owns a little piece of my soul, licking his lips and staring at me intensely.
I’m trying to control my intensity. I think I entered this world seeing red and I’ll always have little flashes.
‘I like your face. Your hair is kinda weird,’ he adds slowly and almost self-consciously.
I’m impressed that anything can make him look embarrassed.
‘Kinky,’ I offer the word.
I can’t really offer anything else.
kwionera ti kwirwo*** – Seeing is believing