I reach for the notebook you wrote your name in, your email address...quench this love hunger!
When I met you at a film premiere, I knew at once this was no ordinary meeting. This was no usual introduction. Though the sky above us did not streak with lightening, the ground below us did not rumble with dark underworld forces heralding a change. But UMEME did notice and plunge us into a temporary darkness before the generator came sulkily into sputtering service. As I held your tiny, somewhat rough palm into mine, could tell, beyond the twinkling nose ring on your pert nose, this hand hold-shake would not be enough.
The guy who introduced us, a Mr. with opinions on everything usually actually worth paying attention most of the time, who has known you a long time, did not see it. But he must have sensed it. Because you started to tell us of opportunities and chances, openings you never talked about with him, at your place of work, for someone like me, that took him by surprise. Though he was equally interested, it said something that sharing a kavera of popcorns with him; you started shifting foot by foot closer to me. I know now you knew it before me that this was casual meeting before we would walk into the embracing darkness of that somewhat shabby musty hall to watch the Yogera premiere.
I’m sitting here wondering, hours later, what has come over me. Why can I not stop thinking you? This is dangerous. This is not good. I’m supposed to be done with this phase of my life. I’m not supposed to be still shaken to my core by a meeting with someone I had never heard of before, unusually for me, your email is now seared in my memory. I dare not look at your number because I know I will start those after midnight calls I have not made for years and years now. How is it that you stir me so deeply? You, whose existence, a day before I was so blissfully unaware of?
I know with absolute, frightening certainty my next moves towards including you in my life will upend all my world completely. Everything that was until this day, evening, I met you, was heading towards its predetermined course will be wrecked, thrown off course. Nothing will be the same or ever like it was before. That guy who introduced us, talked about this (but before you came, and was not talking about you), knows about altered destinies. When he was talking about how those humiliating ‘nude’ photos in a Red Pepper style tabloid, or splashed on a blog, Facebook, detour your life—and as it changes, the ‘victim’ locked down in this comedown, will always see how their life could have been so different, had those photos not come out, changed everything.
You did not say anything particularly clever, or witty-so is this lust? Here I’m scribbling away like an adolescent again. Notice that? This is the only way I can bring myself to deal with what is happening. Reduce it all to some unimportant passing fancy because I know, what other way is there? Confession? I damn near came close, and what was so jarring, you would not have been surprised. Is that why you hang back, waited until almost everyone had gone in the hall, were alone so we could talk? Really talk.
Now this is funny. You were standing on that stage, the stage Abbey Mukiibi and Patricko Mujuuka use every week for their Akandolindoli Tuesday Comedy Nights and you were waiting. You did not seem surprised at all, when I came to you in the semi darkness. I kept thinking, this is a joke, this is a joke, where’s the punch line? When you breathed my name, I have not had a thrill like that in a long time. It says something that I had my camera on me, took 200 photos on this evening, and not one of you. I will be seeing you again.