Another Christmas, another wish

Sgt Makini follows the rules on how to make a romantic proposal

In Summary

• Told he cannot 'hit it' without putting a ring on it, Makini leaps into action


Christmas is supposed to be a time of cheer, a time of good tidings when families come together to celebrate the magic of originating from common loins. A time when even cousin Mahewa (there’s one in every family), remembers there’s more to life than topping Warren Buffett’s bank balance, hops into his beloved V8, and tolerates his impoverished relatives for a few days.

But when, like me, you’re single, and for some unfathomable reason, your mother has placed on your poor head the onus of propagating an entire generation, Christmas is more torturous than death by a thousand cuts. Yes, folks. I, Sgt Makini of the lowly Jiji Ndogo Police Post, am somehow responsible for future presidents, lawyers, engineers and architects.

Ha, ha! Excuse me as I laugh out loud at the thought of anyone related to me becoming an architect. The Makinis are as artistic as Mugumo trees. Back when no one had ever heard of Tiktok or Covid or a fella called Masten Wanjala, who thrived on drinking the blood of small boys, a teacher gave us the assignment to draw our families.

“It’s truly imaginative of you to envision your family as animals in a zoo,” the awfully kind teacher said of my artistic creation, “but it’s the male lion that has a mane, not the female.”

Of course, she was referring to the creature I had labelled, “My matha.” But I digress. Another Christmas is upon us and I’m still single, despite sharing a bed with the crush of my life. However, being a hot-blooded male of dubious intentions, I was determined to visit my folks back home a changed man. A man who could be trusted with the propagation of coming generations. To this end, I took steps down the road travelled by every man who finally decides to stop making lots of women happy, and promises to make one woman absolutely miserable.

“Yeah, right,” you’re thinking. “As if Makini could be counted among such men.” You can stop laughing now. Like it or not, I’ve had my share of admirers over the years. Once, I even had a woman strip naked to get my attention. So what if she was batshit crazy? A woman’s a woman, right?

This road led me to a jeweller in Kericho, who could hardly contain his chuckles at the sight of the ring I put my finger on. “That’s one of our finest pieces,” he lied. The diamond was so small, one needed a magnifying lens to find it. Next, I got hold of a dozen fragrant red roses. Unfortunately, by the time I got to Jiji Ndogo after several hours cooped up in the mobile oven I boarded for a bus, these ended up looking sad and smelling like Dandora on garbage day. Lastly, I took a long bath, spent more time than a wannabe gigolo grooming myself. A glance in the mirror left me a tad disappointed. No soap will ever scrub fear off a man about to lose all his marbles and take a plunge into the sea of uncertainty.

I find Sophia in our single room, busy at the stove, making something that smells nothing like the gift of withered petals I hold behind my back.

“Surprise!” I yell, because that’s what one is supposed to do. She almost jumps out of her skin with “happiness” I presume, get down on one knee, whip out the ring and utter the four scariest words in any man’s jargon. “Will you marry me?”

“My mother is dying,” she says sadly. “I’m traveling home tonight.”