Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Kabale Jack and The 12 Ninja's

Jack, Jack, Jack! Let’s call him Mukiga Jack (Below). I like Mukiga Jack and just about everyone who knows him, likes him too. He is lean, jovial, witty and if you were having a party, his name would have to be a ‘must’ on the invite list.


I first came across him early in 2000 when I was in Kabale, filming a documentary - Postcard From... with Chris Eritu and Tilly Muwonge for WBS Television. The four days we spent in Kabale, Kabale Jack was part of us – volunteering to have drinks with us at Hot Loaf and Lake Bunyonyi plus taking us to a club called Earthquake where the decibels were beyond reason, it was impossible to be heard. If not, the reverberations caused by the decibels would send your drink titillating down the bar. Since then, Kabale Jack (Below with OPP) and I have been close friends – well, ‘tights’ so he would prefer to say.


Getting back, whenever I am out with Kabale Jack, I get a feeling of Déjà vu. The hairs on the back of my neck and my spine freeze at ‘defcon 5’. I become nervous and sweaty. I am also not settled and feel the need to stalk anybody standing or sitting behind me in case they represent trouble.

We were on our way home in the wee hours of the morning from a raucous kasiki in Club Silk and BJs Irish Pub in Industrial Area. It should have been a routine run-of-the mill drive to drop Kable Jack off in Bunga while I continue on to Munyonyo except, when we rounded the corner by Daily Monitor offices to drive up past Greenhill School, there was a charcoal truck parked in the middle of the road outside the school gates.


I’ve never fathomed why trucks breakdown in the middle of the road and never pull off and do the breaking down on the side or the road like cars do. Anyway, when they break down, shrubbery is usually strewn to alert oncoming traffic that ahead lies danger. Charcoal Truck Driver had not done that and had we been going any faster, we would have ploughed into it.

In his defence, Charcoal Truck Driver was very apologetic and immediately promised to lay out some branches. But Kabale Jack and I were not having any of it and reeled off a barrage of ‘threatening’ assurances. By this time, Turn Boy who was in the cabin had woken up and was also slavering for forgiveness. With hindsight, we should have let them be and gone on our way but we were on a roll.  The fear of God had been instilled into them. They were sweating and trembling. All that was left was for them to pee in their pants.

But can you imagine, Charcoal Truck Driver had the audacity to change his humble demeanour into one of defiance that, without warning, he was out of the cab and in our faces sketching for a melee! Hmm, two of us against two of them. The way I saw it, a ‘left’ from Kabale Jack would have Turn Boy kissing the tarmac while a bark from me at Charcoal Truck Driver would have him humbling and fleeing into whatever bush he could find. Except, it didn’t pan out that way.


Charcoal Truck driver let out a whistle that pierced the breaking morning and when we looked up at the truck, bodies were popping up from under the stacks of charcoal and stealthily abseiling down the side in absolute Ninja precision.

The odds had turned. Turn Boy was not going to kiss the tarmac and Charcoal Truck Driver was not going to humble himself and flee into whatever bush he could find. We on the other hand, were going to get a beating of a life time for when the 12 Ninja’s abseiled down, they were armed with metal bars and pickaxe handles. 


In this situation, one thing happens. The body goes into a complete shutdown but leaves the urge to pee and let out a good round of diarrhoea still functioning. The pee did come and had we not made a hysterical dash for the ride, there would have been a full diarrhoea discharge followed by a Mulago hospital admittance beating.

And that really would have been a very hard paper for us to explain away from a hospital bed and with limbs in plaster cast to Bride-To-Be, for later that day, I was to walk the aisle.


Pictures: Patrick Oyulu, New Vision, Internet