You are closer to 30 than most of your peers but you still have some friends that have crossed the threshold into beer bellies and hot-headed wives. Some by a few years, others, well, not so few.
You’re at that point in life where the dust is settling. You’ve battled the uncertainties of the twenties and whether you won or not, you’re alive with scars you can brandish. Some beautiful, most ugly but you wear them with pride. These scars say “look at me, I survived. I made it. “You guy my guy si bado I am here?” and in that you are proud.
You’ve got an ego, but then again, who doesn’t? A solid career is on your back even though the pressures at work threaten to bury you alive. You’ve made acquaintances at the office and maybe one friend. Often you’ll pop in for a sundowner, watch the sun lull itself to sleep while listening to people argue as to who was the best rapper in the 90s or if Fally Ipupa is better than Ferre Gola. You’re that person now – you don’t care for the argument mainly because your knowledge on movies is as deep the potholes on state house road.
Routine has become part of everything now. You wake up when the alarm goes off. Snooze it for a few minutes, lay in bed looking at your ceiling and maybe tug the duvet a bit closer. Then you get up, drag yourself off to the balcony, maybe you smoke or maybe you don’t. Enjoy the view, if there’s any. Sometimes, it is just gray clouds hanging over the sky pregnant with anticipation to ruin your day. You brush your teeth then, go through your ones and twos, then shower. Or shower first then brush your teeth. It’s not like you’ve become a zombie but with age comes great responsibility. You show up when you say you’ll show up.
The making of your favourite local.
You probably have a car now. So leaving the house is not such a task. You loathe the coiling city traffic but even then you always take a slight detour to get a coffee, takeaway that you’ll sip while listening to a morning talk show or some geeky podcast. Because you feel dreary. But this is only on some days. There are the days the sun is out showing off. Maybe it got a new outfit or the moon shot it a good morning text. Who knows? But with the sun bright so is your mood. These are the days you’ll blast Level Up by Ciara and feel like the baddest ever.
By now you’ve learnt that not all these bright days come on a Friday. So this could be a Tuesday afternoon that feels like a Friday. It’s those days that have your pockets lined up with sunshine. They might be far apart but you live for them. On such days the day does not drag on. It’s almost as if happiness and joy is a catalyst for time. Before you know it dusk sneaks in – the clock reads 6 p.m. and you need to go home.
The Bowery Guy taking an order.
But you, you have not had enough of the day. You don’t want it to end. So you do what any other red-blooded Kenyan does. Okay, not all but most. You decide to end the day watching something that will tickle the left side of your brain. So in good ol’ fashion you pop into your car drive down Kindaruma Road right into a community of stalls. There you find The Bowery. Yes, it is an actual place. They even have an Instagram and a Facebook. The thing about it though is that its name has always intrigued you. You learn it was picked up from a stint in New York. Somewhere along Hell’s Kitchen. You think that’s smart.
You like the place. You drove here because the guys are friendly and you want some warm-hearted banter thrown around. Otherwise, normally you’d get your favorite delivered – they’re that good. You bump into a few of the guys catching a pint. They offer you some but today, that’s not why you are here. You want to grab a bottle of something you like. Maybe whisky or vodka if you’re Ugandan. Then right back into your car for the drive home.
Since you’re in a mood, a good mood – you cook. Food always tastes better when you’re feeling good.
When you’re finally settled in with a drink in your glass and a movie playing you realize just how a good day the day has been. If anything, if you were to die then you’d probably echo the sentiments of a famous Lannister (maybe minus a few words). And if you’re anything close to sentimental the day ends with the soundtracks of Ice Cube’s Good Day playing in your head.
If you live nearby and around the zone, you can order and they will deliver your favourite poison. Better, show up in your tracksuit, and get served a chilled Tusker.