When I recently promoted myself from being the owner of the Volkswagen Beetle to an owner of a second hand Volkswagen Passat, my intention was to emancipate myself from marital Siberia. As you very well know, the Beetle was causing Queen sleepless nights and she kept reminding me that I was embarrassing her by driving a ‘Tortoise’. I was steadily on track to the ‘promised land’ of marital nirvana when the devil raised his ugly head.
Now, I bought my way back to queenly fold at a great mental and financial cost. You see, my memorandum of understanding with her was to upgrade my vehicle status from a Tortoise. Ironically, Queen did not realise that a promotion in car status would automatically promote us to the undeserved place in the ‘dynasties’ paradise. When I tried to show her the sense, her response was predictably first and furious, “Learn to appreciate what God has blessed you with”.
Obviously, anyone with an above average intelligence quotient will tell you that I am the very exemplification of a hustler; if the hustles and bustles I go through every day to provide for Queen and the future leaders is anything to go by. But it seems that common sense is not common this side of the world.
My rude shock came last Saturday. As I drove out of Happy Valley Grills, boda boda riders who have their pick up point at the gate decided to get it off their chests. “Dynasty! Dynasty! Dynasty!” I heard. I slowed down and craned my neck out of the driver’s window in a way of telling them that I could act dangerously. But I was greatly mistaken. The fellas were spoiling for war.
“Wewe dynasty! We know you! Kwani uta doo?” chorused the riders. In the past, I have been walking around with a swagger to create the impression that I could dismember anyone who dared to cross my path. This jungle tactic could have been working in the past but times have changed. As they say, when you see a dog barking, look for its master. I knew better than to expose myself and my ‘new’ car to the fellas. I continued with my journey as if nothing had happened.
That same Saturday afternoon, I drove to the palace to deliver Queen’s stock at her Slopes Supermarket. As usual, the future leaders and Makena – our CPA (comptroller of palace affairs) and drama queen par excellence – rushed to the Passat, more interested in checking for mango juice than in helping me to offload. It is at that time that I heard Makena teach the future leaders to loudly read some graffiti inscribed on the rear screen of the Beetle.
“Dy-na-sty. We –know –you,” the boys read after Makena. This was deliberately done by Makena so as to attract Queen’s attention, which it did. As I have told you in the past, Makena always celebrates when Queen and I are incommunicado. I do not require a professor to tell me her nefarious intentions but that is a story for another day.
“What is that you are reading?” Queen asked. Genuinely surprised, I followed her to the back of the Passat. In the past, the harmless “Wash Me” inscription was common on the Beetle. This time around, it was not only offensive but also threatening. And there, the abominable graffiti, at least from Queen’s standpoint, glared for anyone who cared to read. “Dy-nasty! We know you!” Queen read. “What is this now?” she asked. “This must be the street boys,” I said.
Well, the graffiti did not spark the kind of Queenly fireworks that Makena had anticipated. This time Queen was convinced that I was not aware of the adulteration. Instead of creating a scene, she just looked at me straight on the face. “Kwani how many people use the car?” she asked me. “I have always said that the evil valley will bring some people to ruin. But it seems that some people have ears for decoration!” She then walked away, complaining about the carelessness of some people she knew who love their bottle more that they love their life.
Having miraculously escaped from Queen’s wrath, my scare now is that I do not know, though I can guess, who the master of the boda boda fellas is. This is a threat to me specifically, my old ‘new’ car and my entire family by extension. This is the reason I am desperately asking anyone who has Amin Mohamed’s personal telephone number, the chief of all DCIs, to give it to me. My life is at stake simply because I own an old ‘new’ Volkswagen Passat. I hear Amin puts such enemies of development where they belong. Kindly inbox me.
Wainaina Karanja lives in Nyandarua County. He is a teacher of English and writes stories to portray the reality of countryside life in Kenya as well as offer entertainment. [email protected]