Katerina

Look how you’re making my ice cream melt with your hotness. Hotness? Heat. Heat sounds better. Look how you’re making my ice cream melt with your heat you hot human.

Katerina.

I have come to take some Wings at Chicken Inn as I come up with my new Story with Saruuussshhhh. It has been a while. I feel I’m not as good as I was. All my ideas are just generic. What was that word again? Trite. Corny. But I can’t type with Chicken sauce dripping from my fingers, so I’ll instead just buy ice-cream. If Kitengela had Java, I’d be there, sipping kahawa like a mzungu. Now, I settle for what we have. Of course we also have ArtCaffe, but please. Manenoz doesn’t pay me enough. I still don’t have anything to put down on this page. It’s blank until I see you walk in.

Katerina.

I wanna look at you baby kidogo, Katerina.

But is your name even Katerina? I don’t know. It should be. Very few other names would work for you. Abigael maybe. Natalie. Bianca. Amanda perhaps. Desiree. Ashley? Is it Ashley? I have my money on Katerina or Ashley. And you’re definitely not from Central or Eastern. You’re either Coastal or Western. Probably Moraa. Nafula. Anyango. Yeah, or you have both traditional names. I have met a lot of pretty girls with no English name. Nyambura Karanja. Siah Maina. Kamene Goro. Surprise me Katerina. What is your name?

Why are you smiling at that waiter? Why, while you could come and sit across this table of two and let me be your company for the next hour and if things go well, a lifetime. What does he have that I don’t? An apron? The Creamy inn pink and white toque? A job? I have a job too. I write. I’m good at it, I guess, or really bad but still, I write. It’s a real job. I swear. I’m even doing it right now. I’m writing about you. Your long dreadlocks. Are they real? Can I walk across the hallway and feel them? Will you let me touch them? I’m writing about the black and white bandanna covering them. I’m writing about your pink cullotes pants that have beautifully agreed with that white tumbo-cut. I’m writing about how the tumbo-cut rises a little when you raise your hands to fix the bandanna. I can see a small part of your back. Shiny healthy chocolate skin. Do you oil your back?  I’m enjoying the view. But you know who’s having a blast? That damn waiter! He’s obviously having a front row view of that beautiful flat tummy and a perfect navel. You don’t deserve Katerina you waiter man! Get back to the kitchen.

Say whatever you say, she’s my new lover. I deserve her.

What is taking you so long Katerina? What are you buying? I hope it’s not takeaway. I hope you’re staying a bit longer. Are you paying with M-pesa? Thank God Creamy Inn has a till number. If it were in the local joints, you would be sending that waiter man money directly to his account. He’d give you his number. You’d probably save it because from the look of things, he can gerrit. He would receive the money and a message with your name. “Confirmed, you have received money from Katerina Nafula, the most beautiful girl in this Ice Cream place…” Then he’d have something that I don’t. You.

He is not wrapping your juice. You’re staying. Hurrah. Now come sit next to me. Who am I kidding? One doesn’t just walk up to a table of some random weird bespectacled dude with a green laptop written on Sarush. This is Kenya my friend. People mind their own businesses. At least sit at the adjacent table. And look my way. Please. I will do anything. I promise.

You’re walking towards me. This is good. Wait. No. No. You’re going past me. No, you’re leaving through the door. Oh wait, you’re sitting outside. You have decided to sit directly outside my window. For me to look at you, I’ll have to turn. Should I? No mystery, no stealing glances. Just stare at you directly? What if our eyes meet Katerina? What if our eyes meet and none of us looks away?

I wanna look at you baby kidogo, Katerina.

At least now I can see your face from the side of my eye. Could I pretend to go wash my hands so that as I come back, I can reposition the seat to give me a better viewing angle? But I can’t leave my laptop unattended now, can I? This is Kenya bado. Ah. Maybe I should knock on the glass window to get your attention and signal you with my fingers to keep an eye on the laptop for me? Is that too much? Lemme just drop my earphones and move my chair around as if I’m stretching to reach for them. Good plan. It works. Now I can see your beautiful face. Katerina.

I am still writing your story. In my story Katerina, you knock at the glass door and get my attention. You try to signal me with your fingers and ask something that I can’t seem to understand, so you get up, slide open the glass window between us and ask excitedly, “Are you the Sarush? Like Sarush with the hundred u’s and s’s and h’s? The “First Time” guy?” And I pretend to only learn of your presence at that moment. And smile sheepishly and say, “Yes. It’s me. Hey.”

And your small eyes glow up. Your furry eyebrows rise effortlessly. And your mouth parts in excitement. You smile. You have perfect lips and incredibly white teeth. “I looooove your stories. Oh my god. Are you waiting for somebody? Can I sit?”

“Sure.”

“Well, I knew you’re from Kitengela since you keep referencing it. I just didn’t expect, you know… a hunk of a man…” Ah wait no. You don’t say that. Scratch that.

“Well, I knew you’re from Kitengela since you keep referencing it. I just didn’t expect, you know, you’re just my age. I’m your biggest fan! Did you find your crush?”

“Thank you. Hahaha.” I laugh, sheepishly of course, “I did not find her.”

“Wow, so are you working on a new story? Can your biggest fan get an exclusive?”

And obviously, the story is about you. I want you to know what I feel, so I let you read. I can see your eyes run left to right and your smile ear to ear. Your right hand is scrolling the touchpad. Your left hand hurries to cover your blush. You reach the point in my story where you’re sitting opposite me and I open my mouth to tell you all that’s on my mind. You slowly raise your eyes from the screen and you look at me in the eye and ask me softly, “If you had finished this part, would you let me read?”

I would.

I would let you read.

This is what I would have written.

Hey, I just met you, and this is crazy. I have never believed in love at first sight. Somehow I know that this is how it feels to fall helplessly in love. Without you, I feel incomplete. You are the treasure I have been waiting for. I can tell you’re the one. The embodiment of the girl of my dreams. I pray for the day when I can finally hold you in my hands and kiss you. To live long enough to see my dreams come true with you. I want us to hold hands and walk out of this place and into a future of just us two, side by side. With Jesus of course somewhere in between. And everything that you want and need, I’ll give it to you. Maybe not the world, but I’ll give you all that’s mine. Changu chetu. And our babies would be perfect. Our lives would be complete.

As I tell you these words, you look at me and watch my lips move up and down. You lean your head to one side and decide to get soaked into my vows. Do you also want to blindly walk into something that has a high likelihood of leaving you more broken than ever? Me too.

In my story, your phone rings. It’s an iPhone. Katerinas have iPhones. It’s your mum. She is waiting for you at Eastmatt. You have to leave. I want to hug you at least. I’m a bit taller than you, so, for your arms to go around my neck, you’ll have to stretch, and that tumbo-cut will be raised. I’ll touch your skin. Can I touch your skin? Good things happen when skin touches skin.

“Will I be seeing you again?”

“Yes Sarush, next week hopefully. Same place.”

You are leaving, Katerina.

Wait, is that your name? Too late. You’re gone. I pull my laptop back. There is something typed next to the original story. A name and a phone number.

But all that is just the story on my laptop. In reality, you’re still sitting outside. Sipping mango juice. Scrolling your phone. Wait, it’s an iPhone. Maybe all my guesses are right. Maybe your name is Katerina cause I still wanna look at you baby kidogo. I still want to spend my life with you. I think I have enough courage to talk to you now.

So I stand and knock on the glass window to get your attention. Our eyes meet.

*****

Hey loyal fans and visitors. I’m Sarush, a writer with manenoz and I’m glad you have made it this far. I hope you enjoyed this piece. So, October being Breast Cancer Awareness Month, I would like to call upon any writers (storytellers, scientists, you, your small sister) with articles aimed at making the world more aware of Breast Cancer and Women Empowerment in general- to contact manenoz throught the contact page and have their articles published for free.

Meanwhile, like, comment and share this story to as many people as you find comfortable and help the word go round. Feel free to also subscribe to my blog down below to get the latest stories and even information about The Manenoz Sanitary Pads Drive that is scheduled for late October. See you soon.

21 thoughts on “Katerina

  1. Hehe kazi safi. Hii story inakaa ukweli tu. 😂.
    Great job on the effort being put. Exemplary performance indeed. Kongole 👏🏽

    Like

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