Why I am sending cacti, not red roses, this Valentine's Day

Valentine's Day

Cactus in a flower vase and, right, red roses.

Photo credit: Fotosearch

My heart is still vibrant, but I will not sending any red roses to her this Valentine’s Day. I am sending her cacti (or cactuses if you like).

Yes, cactus, that thorny, desert plant that waves at you in the desert of northern Kenya. Ahh? Ati!

Let me tell you why I will be sending cacti to Madam Boss.

Long ago, when my heart would throb and climb real mountains, there was this girl who I imagined I could turn into a good Madam Boss. Her name was Kui Perepere. We nicknamed her Perepere because she spoke like she had some fine pebbles in the mouth. And when she spoke, it sounded like bullets warning predators that they will be shot if they tried to eat her.

But she had some assets that would make my blood flow in reverse, including some items on both side of her chicks and an important back presence.

Now, in our days, you bought buns and lots of tea to win a wench at the local tea place and that was it. They had not invented flowers. And Kui Perepere would finish all my earnings from my uncle’s coffee farm.

Then flowers came and eternal trouble for men began. So I bought her the red shrubs in the city – the only place where they sold them then –but by the time I reached her, 1,000 km away, they had wilted.

See, her birthday was in the middle of January when the gods decide to lower the sun by a few metres. I was too dumb to know why, but I never saw her again. And henceforth, I decided never to buy roses again.

In my research (Livestock, 2023) that worn a UN award, I found that the best plants to send during Valentine’s Day are cactuses. A pot of juicy cacti.

I have nothing against roses. They're pretty, fragrant, and classic. But they wilt fast. 

February is still New Year, for love’s sake! And, I am doing things differently. I will send Madam Boss cacti.

And let me tell you why.

First of all, cacti are low maintenance. They don't need daily watering to survive. Just give them some love and attention every now and then, and they'll be as happy as a prickly pear. This is perfect for me because, let’s be real, Madam Boss can be a bit forgetful when it comes to watering plants. I don’t want to be the reason why her plants in the backyard die a slow, painful death.

Secondly, cacti are tough. Just like our love, they can withstand harsh conditions. Roses are not good in global warming. So, even after our daily quarrels, the cactus will remind us that love is strong and resilient.

Thirdly, cacti are unique. Just like our love, they come in different shapes, sizes, and personalities. I will find this heart shaped cactus with less thorns.

And lastly, cacti bring a smile to your face. I told you they wave at you in the sweltering desert sun? With their quirky shapes and playful personalities, they’re sure to brighten up any room and bring a little bit of joy in life…Don’t you think so?

My only worry is that Madam Boss is a Karateka from a county near Mt Kenya. And pray, if my cacti gift doesn’t work, the least I will get this Valentine’s is a prickly response. The worst, a broken nose.

Have a great Valentine’s Day.

Do you have feedback on this article? Please e-mail: [email protected]