Wednesday, May 18, 2016

BHANG FOREST


I do not know how many times I have ingested cannabis sativa without my consent. Though, there is this one time that I did beyond any reasonable doubt. It was on a fine Monday that was destined to be quite busy because I had several errands to run in town. I set out early; clad in a T shirt, an easy pair of chino pants, a simple pair of converse shoes and, of course, my pair of Ray Ban aviator sunglasses. The sunglasses have a long story too; let’s conserve that narrative for another day. I bet I looked expensive.
By around 2 P.M. I had accomplished half of my missions, but I still had to pick a few things from downtown and rush to another part of the busy city to pick a parcel. I did not have time to sit down and pamper my stomach. I had no idea of when the conventional "lunch time" passed. I was too busy to notice. At this point, though, hunger pangs could not let me traverse the streets in peace. I engaged in concise monologue and concluded to exit town before the rush-hour craziness begins and people start losing their minds. It was necessary that I was out of the streets before the city went into a "trance”. I was certain that I did not have time to sit in any joint for a proper meal. Despite my stomach's complaints, I encouraged myself to ‘keep walking’...no not that.
I then took a right-turn onto a very famous street and behold before me was a cute little cake shop. The cakes looked crisp, inviting, and very yummy. Good thing, black forest retails at seventy shillings around here. Well, if I fainted then rest assured the aroma from the black forest cake would have resuscitated me. That is just how much I love my black forest cake. The prices in this particular cake shop are awkwardly low, but I, nevertheless, decide to buy a piece to munch on my way as anticipated a well prepared homemade meal. The sales lady looked very vibrant, and after handing me my balance, she thanked me and crowned it all with a warm smile. How sweet!
Fast forward to 4 P.M when I was done for the day, and I was dragging my feet to board a matatu home. Meanwhile, the hunger pangs were biting harder and I could not stop thinking about the cake. A few minutes after settling in I reach out for it. The first bite tasted good. The second bite was even better. I must have been very hungry. The third bite...I could taste chilies, a funny smell, and the cake was so tough, as tough as some of those "ugali mandazis’ we used to buy and eat in lower primary. I am sorry if you missed that.
The fourth bite...I couldn’t take it anymore. I began to experience an acid influx and heartburn was closing in. The lady seated next to me started stealing glances at me and was probably imagining that I was having the time of my life. If only she knew! I am trying to keep a straight face because I would not want her to think otherwise. It is not easy for me to call it black forest at this point because honestly I didn’t know what became of it! I began to feel dizzy and nauseated. Remember, it was 4 P.M.; I had breakfast at around 7.30 A.M., I had been walking for hours and never had lunch, so I was telling myself that perhaps it was fatigue, perhaps.
The fifth bite...did I just taste salt?! At this point, I give up. I just folded back everything and stuffed it in that neat package. I so badly needed a hug. Usually, my house is about thirty minutes’ drive from town. On this particular day, though, I felt like I was travelling upcountry. Just so you know, while traveling upcountry, we have lunch stopovers. That is just how far from South Africa my hometown is. To cut the long story short, I got home safely, puked my intestines out...I still felt dizzy, though. Trust me; cheap can be expensive…sometimes. My box of ‘black forest cake’ was probably rotting itself to oblivion in some dump site in Machakos County. It will take Angel Gabriel himself, a host of other angels, and perhaps one or two miracles to convince me that half of that ‘thing’ was not laced with marijuana!


Otieno Lynn
Otieno Lynn

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