Thursday, October 21, 2010

Knickers In The Post

When it comes to sex matters, Ugandans like to think of themselves as being conservative. Before the current NRM government came to power in 1986, seeing a couple walk down Kampala Road and hand-in-hand would have be the talk of town. A couple kissing would evoke not only whispers but glaring stares.

But Uganda 2011 has changed. It is no big deal now. It happens everywhere and so frequently that nobody gives a hoot. But still there are other things that happen behind closed doors that people will swear never happen. In some secluded shops in Kampala, sex toys are being marketed to that discerning shopper who likes to think of themselves as being feisty in bed.

It was in 1989 and we were on a rugby trip that took us from the Midlands in England and, over the channel to France. From France we went to Germany, Holland and Belgium.

By then I did not think I was naive about sex – especially when it came to fetishes that were being practiced by our English friends. In parts of London, every inch of the phone booths is filled up with one kind of sex advert or another. They range from: ‘Big breasted blonde seeks mature man for afternoon of no-holds-barred sex’ to ‘sexy tigress wants to whip you’ for example.

Those were the adverts that I was able to stomach. But there were others that I didn’t quite understand and also found too hard to swallow. Take this advert for example: ‘Blond nurse can send you her soiled knickers’. If not that: ‘Glamour’s female banker will send you her urine.’ Each of these adverts was rounded off with an address.

My best friend at the time was the Geordie Gary Nesbitt, who came from that rather drab northern English city of Sunderland. The town was so drab, that I often wonder why Sira Kiwana, decided to make himself the only Ugandan known to have lived there.

Getting back, Geordie Gary Nesbitt and I always had this feeling that most of the adverts were some kind of scam operated by London’s notorious sex underworld. But whatever reservations we had, we felt it was a scam that was worth spending 25 pounds (sh85,000)on. One weekend and after taking down the contact address of Blond Nurse who is in a position to mail you her soiled knickers for a fee – perhaps as a way of earning extra cash seeing that at the time the nursing profession was not the best paying job in England, we did the needful and sent off our dime.

A week went by and every morning when the postman turned up, he delivered nothing but bills. Another ten days went by and again no knickers but bills. Then one Friday, the postman this time, rang the door bell to give us our mail rather than push it through the letter box as is the norm. And the reason why he rang the door bell? He had a package that could not fit through the letter box.

The nondescript brown envelope got our hearts racing. What this it? Would it be worth the 25 pounds we had spent and the nineteen or so days of waiting in anguish for? When Gary ripped open the envelope, a plastic bag – one similar to those used by the police to store crime scene evidence fell to the floor and its contents were all too evident. They were indeed knickers and on close inspection, they looked soiled – well they had a ‘browny streak’ running through them.

It was the most disgusting thing I had seen and of course I fled the room and left it to Geordie Gary to whatever it was that he did to them!

Back to my trip to Europe. , at one point we breezed into a small town called Bruges on the Holland/Dutch border. Just to give you some history, Bruges was one of those towns that had seen fierce battles between Adolf Hitler’s Nazi’s and the Allied Forces. And despite the battering that it took, it has since been rebuilt with all the scars of the war erased.

Bruges filled up with families on a Sunday. In just about every store, hypermarket, café, restaurant or store that we walked into, there was a family presence. In some cases, there were three or more generations of families – something that you do not see in Uganda.

And it was into one hypermarket that we piled and only to find it was a sex shop with more floor space than your average warehouse in Kitgum that stores grain for The World Food Programme.

The first part of the store sold the usual stuff – Playboy, Penthouse or Mayfair magazines. But the further in that you walked, the magazines got more graphic as did the titles – Hustler, Knave, Pus**y amongst others. In the far back of the warehouse were toys that would put a smile on the face of anyone into sadomasochism sex. Handcuffs, masks, chains, whips – I think you all get the drift. While all that was an eye opener, what took me aback is that the Belgians and the Dutch from just across the border are pretty much open when it comes to sex. Adults don’t shop for sex toys alone. They take along their great grandparents, young sons and daughters, sons and daughters’ in-laws, uncles and aunts!

Like I did, am sure that many of you would have fled the warehouse for it was almost as sordid as seeing your average Ugandan Christian and well to-do family deciding not to go to Lido beach over the Easter weekend but down into the seedy depths of Bwaise to watch kimansulo! But if anybody wants the address of Blonde Nurse – you know the one with the dirty underwear, just holler, txt or send me an E-mail for I Googled it up the other day.

Knickers In The Post

When it comes to sex matters, Ugandans like to think of themselves as being conservative. Before the current NRM government came to power in 1986, seeing a couple walk down Kampala Road and hand-in-hand would have be the talk of town. A couple kissing would evoke not only whispers but glaring stares.

But Uganda 2011 has changed. It is no big deal now. It happens everywhere and so frequently that nobody gives a hoot. But still there are other things that happen behind closed doors that people will swear never happen. In some secluded shops in Kampala, sex toys are being marketed to that discerning shopper who likes to think of themselves as being feisty in bed.

It was in 1989 and we were on a rugby trip that took us from the Midlands in England and, over the channel to France. From France we went to Germany, Holland and Belgium.

By then I did not think I was naive about sex – especially when it came to fetishes that were being practiced by our English friends. In parts of London, every inch of the phone booths is filled up with one kind of sex advert or another. They range from: ‘Big breasted blonde seeks mature man for afternoon of no-holds-barred sex’ to ‘sexy tigress wants to whip you’ for example.

Those were the adverts that I was able to stomach. But there were others that I didn’t quite understand and also found too hard to swallow. Take this advert for example: ‘Blond nurse can send you her soiled knickers’. If not that: ‘Glamour’s female banker will send you her urine.’ Each of these adverts was rounded off with an address.

My best friend at the time was the Geordie Gary Nesbitt, who came from that rather drab northern English city of Sunderland. The town was so drab, that I often wonder why Sira Kiwana, decided to make himself the only Ugandan known to have lived there.

Getting back, Geordie Gary Nesbitt and I always had this feeling that most of the adverts were some kind of scam operated by London’s notorious sex underworld. But whatever reservations we had, we felt it was a scam that was worth spending 25 pounds (sh85,000)on. One weekend and after taking down the contact address of Blond Nurse who is in a position to mail you her soiled knickers for a fee – perhaps as a way of earning extra cash seeing that at the time the nursing profession was not the best paying job in England, we did the needful and sent off our dime.

A week went by and every morning when the postman turned up, he delivered nothing but bills. Another ten days went by and again no knickers but bills. Then one Friday, the postman this time, rang the door bell to give us our mail rather than push it through the letter box as is the norm. And the reason why he rang the door bell? He had a package that could not fit through the letter box.

The nondescript brown envelope got our hearts racing. What this it? Would it be worth the 25 pounds we had spent and the nineteen or so days of waiting in anguish for? When Gary ripped open the envelope, a plastic bag – one similar to those used by the police to store crime scene evidence fell to the floor and its contents were all too evident. They were indeed knickers and on close inspection, they looked soiled – well they had a ‘browny streak’ running through them.

It was the most disgusting thing I had seen and of course I fled the room and left it to Geordie Gary to whatever it was that he did to them!

Back to my trip to Europe. , at one point we breezed into a small town called Bruges on the Holland/Dutch border. Just to give you some history, Bruges was one of those towns that had seen fierce battles between Adolf Hitler’s Nazi’s and the Allied Forces. And despite the battering that it took, it has since been rebuilt with all the scars of the war erased.

Bruges filled up with families on a Sunday. In just about every store, hypermarket, café, restaurant or store that we walked into, there was a family presence. In some cases, there were three or more generations of families – something that you do not see in Uganda.

And it was into one hypermarket that we piled and only to find it was a sex shop with more floor space than your average warehouse in Kitgum that stores grain for The World Food Programme.

The first part of the store sold the usual stuff – Playboy, Penthouse or Mayfair magazines. But the further in that you walked, the magazines got more graphic as did the titles – Hustler, Knave, Pus**y amongst others. In the far back of the warehouse were toys that would put a smile on the face of anyone into sadomasochism sex. Handcuffs, masks, chains, whips – I think you all get the drift. While all that was an eye opener, what took me aback is that the Belgians and the Dutch from just across the border are pretty much open when it comes to sex. Adults don’t shop for sex toys alone. They take along their great grandparents, young sons and daughters, sons and daughters’ in-laws, uncles and aunts!

Like I did, am sure that many of you would have fled the warehouse for it was almost as sordid as seeing your average Ugandan Christian and well to-do family deciding not to go to Lido beach over the Easter weekend but down into the seedy depths of Bwaise to watch kimansulo! But if anybody wants the address of Blonde Nurse – you know the one with the dirty underwear, just holler, txt or send me an E-mail for I Googled it up the other day.

Golf With The Judge

It is one thing watching a game of golf on Supersport and seeing just how easy golfers like Ernie Els, Tiger Woods and our very own Deo Akope make it look. While I have been to Uganda Golf Club in Kololo, my ventures there, have not been to play golf, but rather, to sit at the bar with a cold Tusker and pretend I know everything there is to know about golf.

And so it was to Entebbe Golf Cub that I found myself invited to take part in the Kampala Sheraton hotel sponsored tournament. I was paired with Mrs. Camille Aliker and Jenifer Nsubuga amongst others.

Mrs. Aliker teed of first and her ball soared down the fairway. Jenifer went next and I brought up the rear. Disregarding all the advice my caddie had given me, I took a swing and when the club came down, there was contact and with that, I looked up and expected to see the ball shoot down the fairway. But there was no golf ball, neither was there a murmur of ‘shot’ coming from the small gathered crowd. Instead, there was laughter. When l looked down, the ball was still sitting on the pin, and the contact that I had made, was simply digging up a whole load of turf.

Nevertheless, I persisted and it was more than a relief when we got to the sixth tee. The Sheraton hotel staff, had thoughtfully set up a refreshment area including a well stocked bar. Thank God the game had come to an end I so blissfully thought to myself. Now we can get on with the quaffing. But there was Mrs. Aliker who went and spoilt everything by telling me we still had seven more holes to go through before we get to the final 18th hole.

So we trudged on. If recall, from tee off to the first green is a par five (as in it should take you five shots to sink the ball) but, it took me close to 12 shots to get there. So you can imagine, if by the first green I was almost 8 shots over par, try then to figure my score by the time we got to the 6th!

Somewhere down by the 10th, my ball disappeared behind some thicket and off I went to ‘look for it’ though I had no such intention of doing that. I was done with the game and at that time, the only thing on my mind was getting back to the club house, putting my feet up and languishing with a bottle of Tusker.

So I hid in the thicket and in order not to hold up the game and the other golfers who were following, Mrs. Aliker and the rest carried on without me. By the time they completed the course, the score in terms of beers, mean that they were 7 under par behind me. That day I retired from golf.

But Sheraton was not having any of it. The following year they persisted and invited me to yet another tournament, at Namulonge Golf Club in Gayaza near Ugachick.
This time I was paired up with David Cutting, the former managing director of Standard Chartered Bank. Cutting hailed from a sun baked island in the Caribbean where, the sand on the beach is whiter than sugar and scantily clad girls spend their days on sun loungers soaking up the sun. While I been in Cutting’s company on many occasions – at parties and other events, I had never seen his daughter and dare I say, when I saw her, she was a babe at that. Obviously golf was no longer on my mind. How could it be when there was a foxy lass milling about? Amongst the other golfers taking part was the High Court judge, Justice Kanyehamba.

Somewhere around the 10th, my ball went in the wrong direction and struck Kanyehamba on the leg. Scowling, he looked round for the culprit while muttering to himself in Rukiga. Again at the 12th, my ball went haywire. It bounced off a tree and hit him square on the forehead. This time Kanyehamba threw down his club in anger, had a word with his police bodyguard while looking round for the culprit. But it didn’t all end there. Moments later, I struck him again on the butt. This time, there was no reaction from him save for his growl.

At the end of the tournament, I chanced upon him to ask how his game had gone. “Not very good” he replied. “I think they (read government) are trying to kill me. Now they have followed me all the way to Gayaza and want to take me out on the golf course.” It didn’t make sense to all who were listening and especially to Cutting who was a foreigner.

Then it dawned on me. At the time Kanyehamba had fallen out with the government and the ruling NRM party over a number of issues – something to do with a court case that Kizza Besigye had won – if I recall. With those issues being played out daily in the media and now that he had been struck thrice by a golf ball, it was all too much for him to take in and he didn’t trust anybody.

Now for the great debate. Should I have told him that it was me who had struck him and that it was not intentional? Hell no, for the way he was growling and frothing in anger, if I had dared told him, there was a good chance he would have throttled me.

I let him be. I let him think there were sinister forces out to get him. With that I turned my attentions to Cutting’s daughter but sensing a negative look from her mother, I let her be. With that, I called my photographer, Albert Ayiga and off we fled leaving Kanyehamba nursing his wounds and expecting another golf ball to strike him at anytime and a relieved Mrs. Cutting breathing a sigh of relief that her daughter was safe.

Underwear or Not?

Well before the millennium and before a certain tabloid came onto the market, the pictures that appeared in the newspapers did tend to be clean pictures. They were not rude or smutty nor did they expose. They were so clean that they would have probably put ethics minister Nsamba Butoro out of a job for he would have had nothing to complain about.


Then along comes New Years Eve 2009. In 2009, one place that was kicking was DV8 where, the old Cineplex used to be on William Street. In fact as part of the end of year celebrations, they decided to hold a street bash along with some other activities including a fashion show. The night I thought went very well. We had a blast way into the wee hours of the morning. The reviews in the papers the following day were positive that the oganisers felt happy.


But it was three days later when things started to go horribly wrong. A Tsunami was brewing and was going to rip through town. Some previously unheard of model called Jamila, became the talk of the nation. Had she done something spectacular? Of course she had! During the DV8 fashion show, the dared to model on stage without underwear and some eagle eyed photographer had taken the picture. To make things even worse, it prominently appeared in the papers.


People went on the rampage. The police swung into action so fast you would have thought that it was Osama Bin Laden that was being arrested. The police went to her home, arrested her and charged her with ‘being indecently dressed and doing it while being a minor’. Child services were called in, the church and every person who felt they had something to say on the subject came forward to voice their opinions. I too became a celeb of sorts for it was on my society page that the picture appeared.


The funny thing about a Tsunami is that it dissipates almost as soon as it appears. Three weeks later and the name Jamila, was a name of the past. In fact nobody could remember why she was in the papers and my celeb status also dwindled into oblivion. Thanks Jamila. Nevertheless life went on.


Today, it is no big deal if some bimbo is pictured in the papers showing off her underwear or her boobs popping out and going to the extreme by not wearing any underwear at all. They figure that if people like Paris Hilton, Jessica Alba and Lindsey Lohan can do it and get away with it, then why not them?


However there is ‘but’ because it is not as simple as it looks. We men will look up women legs if the chance presents its self. But the look has to be that of a sly. And so it was at Zanzi’s in Naalya that I found myself having lunch with Spidey. As we were just about to start on our ribs, in walks Pregnant Woman. When Pregnant Woman takes her seat, she is so oblivious to the mechanical malfunction of her dress under the table. Her dress had ridden way up her thighs and because she was sitting with her legs very wide open, she was displaying all her wares for us to see. Suddenly the pork ribs did not taste as good as they ought to and to make things even worse, it was impossible to change our seats for it would have meant sitting in the sun. So we hardened with the view that was before us and fled as soon as we were done.


If it was any consolation, at least Pregnant Woman was wearing underwear because though she had her legs wide open, you could only make out a small portion of her underwear because her ample thighs had done a good job of providing some cover.


It has to be said that it is one thing looking at woman who is sitting badly and realizing you can see her underwear. But it is another site to look at a woman who is also sitting badly when you realize that she has nothing on!


And so it was at the Kiggunda at Namboole Stadium that I found myself a couple of weeks ago. The women who go to Kiggunda are a different breed. They tend to be the shop attendant type, the kind you would find plying her trade somewhere along Luwum Street and further down.


Going to Kiggunda for them is as big a deal as I would find going on a boat cruise to Bulago Island, while drinking pink champagne and feasting on fresh lobster. And the clothes that they wear are hardly appropriate for Kiggunda. Extremely short micro skirts.


With the kiggunda in full session, the music blaring and the pickpockets doing brisk business, Namboole was on fire. Throw in the beers and the muchomo and all was set. But for some people especially the ladies in the micro skirts, there were bound to be a problem or two. They had to go to the ladies but the thought of going to the ladies and coming back to find that they had missed their favorite artiste, they were going to stay put.


While they were showing a bit more than they should be showing, I was always under the impression that they were wearing underwear that was flesh coloured. I was even about to commend them, for their underwear looked real and so flesh like.


The something I did not expect to happen, happened. One of the girls dropped to her knees and while still gyrating to whatever Irene Namubiru was singing about, slightly opened her legs and right there inside the 18 yard box where just weeks earlier the Uganda Cranes goal keeper had successfully defended his goal against the Angolan’s, she peed! But when she peed, I did not see her adjust her flesh coloured knickers. When she was done and I made it my mission to have a good look, and eek I was horrified! Flesh Coloured knickers? Yeah right! It was the REAL THING, the real raw flesh that was devoid of any protective garment! All along I thought I had been looking at flesh coloured knickers. Call me a coward, but it was all too much for me that I melted into the dark and to look for some water to cleanse my eyes.

Load Shedding

When you have been living abroad for a while and especially in Europe or the States, you get embroiled in a lifestyle that is far removed from Uganda. You don’t have to battle with potholes, the dust or, crazy boda riders springing out of nowhere.
Life there seemingly gets along and while London, Boston or New York may have their own frustrations, those frustrations can hardly be called frustrations especially when you take Uganda’s woes into account.

When I returned to Uganda, it was difficult to adjust. There was this thing called ‘load shedding’ which was something new to me. It was something I found frustrating and unable to comprehend. But over time, I got used to it and began to accept it as a way of life.

Load shedding so it seemed, had its advantages. Darkness is something Uganda’s took to almost as fast as fish would take to water. Driving through the suburbs of Kansanga, Kabalagala, Wandegeya and Ntinda, it was obvious that they all had one thing in common – a deftly darkness and even when they was no load shedding. People just loved the dark that in most bufunda’s, the tables that were in the darkest of corners were much sought after.

So here we are and out on a Sunday night. Kampala on a Sunday night does ‘happen’. It looked more like a Friday or Saturday night than a Sunday. Meanwhile a Sunday in London is so obvious for its streets are deserted by 8:00pm and the pubs shut early. And finding a club to go to would also be a hard paper.

Somewhere along the night, we ended up in Nakulabye. I can’t tell you which part of Nakulabye it was, for despite there was load shedding that night and the dark that was cast over the area was unbelievable. The lights from the lantern were so dim that it took your eyes a while to adjust.

And in the dark we ordered for pork and when it was served, it was next to impossible to see what being served, who was doing the serving and what exactly it was it that we were eating. Whether the pork was raw or not, we couldn’t tell. We just ate.

Somewhere along the line, there was a need to go to the washrooms and getting to the wash rooms in Nakulabuye is no easy task. It is not an easy task for when you ask the waitress for directions, she simply tells you: “over there”. Where on earth is “over there” especially when she is saying it without pointing in any particular direction. So I tried again and this time adding the pre-fix of ‘nyabo’ (Madame) just to appease her. And the answer still came back as “over there.”
So it was to over there that I went. Getting to over there was not as hard as it looked for there was the light of the bar – the solitary blue light that the owners had put up in a bid to make their place stand out and powered by a small generator. And from the dark that I was sitting in, it acted like a lighthouse, guiding you to where you want to dock.

At the bar, I got a clearer direction of where ‘over there’ was. It was behind the bar, down a treacherous path that, doubled up as a sewage drain amongst many other things including a bathroom and an open kitchen where the washing is done.
With my bladder now empty, it was back to the table to eat more pork and quaff more beers. While getting back from the washrooms to the blue light – if at all they can be called washrooms, was easier than getting there, getting from the blue light in the bar and into the dark where I was sitting was to a major headache.

It was pitch black. All I could make out from where I was standing were silhouettes’ of heads bopping about and the occasional laughter. Perplexed I stood there trying to adjust my eyes to the dark, but I still couldn’t figure out which table I had been sitting at. Then I saw something familiar – the Bell branded umbrella and with that, the panic was gone and once again, I began to think straight.

Knocking a few heads here and there as walked between tables, I eventually got to my table, took my seat and rummaged around in the dark for my beer. As I got hold of a bottle, there was suddenly conversation, but not the kind that I find appealing! In Luganda this gruff voice was saying out to me: “But sweetie, I have missed you for a long time. It is like you don’t love me anymore! There must be something that is troubling you. Tell me, what is it? Is that man still troubling you?”

Whilst I could hardly make out the gruff voice that was doing the talking, for a split second, I thought the voice came from the next table. Then out of the blue, I felt a hand drop on my thigh and was followed with a gentle rub!

Something is amiss here! Something is so not right! Then the laughter came. It was a familiar laugh and it belonged to Fitz who was one of the chaps I was hanging out with. And the laugh was not from the table I was sitting at, but from a table two rows ahead of me. With that, I freaked then jumped up and fled. As I fled, Guff Voice was demanding to know who I was and why I was sitting in his girlfriend’s seat.
Back in the safety of my friends, when power came back and lit up the place, it was then that I realized my error. There was not just one Bell umbrella but thousands of them. And when I looked back to see who Guff Voice was, he was busy in a heated argument with a mama!

The Code

In some circles, they call it ‘The Code’. Though I have never seen The Code as in, reading it, nor do I know how many pages it has and who wrote it, I know it does exist somewhere out there. The aim of The Code is to keep men on the narrow path, to guide them and to see that they don’t get into trouble.

One of the subjects written in The Code, is that, ‘man shall not lust after his friend’s wife or girlfriend’. It further states that ‘no remarks shall be made about her – and that means everything from body size, to facial looks, size of bust’ and so on. And to the best of my knowledge, it does not mention anything about giving lifts.

If at all a comment is to be made, it should be limited to the following words: “She is nice” or “she is pleasant.”

And so one Monday I find myself at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport in Nairobi and waiting for the 7:00pm flight back to Entebbe. But for some reason or another, I missed the flight. Okay, okay, okay, truth be told, I know why I missed the flight! I was in Java’s at the far end of the terminal having a beer and did not hear the KQ flight being called.

That was no bother, for I got the next flight back. After going through the formalities at Entebbe Airport – customs and immigration, it was to the ATM for some money and then to the long-term-stay car park to pick up the mots (dad, mots means car) and drive home.

It was at the ATM that I saw her and I knew who she was. She was Friend’s Wife (and I really can’t mention his name for obvious reasons). Friend’s Wife is one of those ladies you would call ‘nice’. And while The Code stipulates that no remarks are to be made about size, I am breaking the rule here and saying that she was not my size for I think she is on the larger side. But she is a pleasant lady and one who occasionally drops in at the bar that I frequent, along with her husband for a drink. When Friend’s Wife saw me, she came up to me and the conversation that followed went along these lines.

Friends Wife: “Hi, Tim, are you picking up somebody?”

TB: “No, I just flew in.”

Friend’s Wife: “Are you driving?”

TB: “Yes, do you want a lift?”

Friend’s Wife: “Thank you, but I don’t finish work for another hour. Would you mind waiting?”

I didn’t mind waiting and when she was done, we hit the road to Kampala. While Friend’s Wife lived in the same neighbourhood as I, I was reluctant to drop her at her door step. Not because I was scared of what Friend might say, but I wanted to drop by Miki’s Pub to see the boys before I went home. To my relief, Friend’s Wife was okay with my suggestion because as she put it, “my husband should be in Miki’s and I would be able to get a ride home with him.”

When we got to Miki’s Pub, it was a full house. The boys were in attendance, the beers were cold and the music was reverberating. The boys wanted to know all about my Nairobi escapades, something that took close to an hour to narrate.

But during the narration, I noticed that something was amiss. Over at the table in the corner where Friend and Wife sat, there was a silence. In fact, it was more than a silence. It was a deftly silence and make things even worse, he was brooding. Occasionally and from their hand gestures, it was obvious they were having a row. And for some eerie reason, during the row, he would point and wag his finger in my direction. Then I didn’t think much of it. Just because he was pointing his finger in my direction did not necessarily mean I had anything to do with the row.

As my kaboozi to the boys carried on and the beers flowed, I looked up to find Friend standing by my side and saying: “Timo, we need to jazz. ”So out of Miki’s Pub it was that we walked, round the corner and there he hit me. Well not physically, but verbally and the wrath of his words went along these lines.

Friend: “TB, just who the f**K do you think you are?”

TB: “Excuse me? You have lost me.”

Friend: “Who told you to give Wife a lift back from the airport?”

TB: “Well she asked me and seeing that we live in the same hood, I was just being polite and neighbourly.”

Friend: “Well she is not your wife to be giving lifts to. I really do not appreciate it at all.”

TB: “Look Friend I am sorry. It won’t happen again.”

Friend: “She had taxi fare and she knows how to get home using a taxi. Next time you see her, please don’t give her a lift!”

Eh, have I lost the plot here? The Code does not mention anything about giving people’s wives or girlfriends a lift or, did somebody rip out the page that I missed it? Why would Friend want Wife to use a taxi all the way from Entebbe Airport and back to Munyonyo? Surely he could see the reason why I gave her a lift? We are friends and we live in the same hood?

When friend got back to his table, stern words were exchanged with Wife and minutes later and without finishing her drink, she got up hopped onto a boda and was gone.
To be on the safe side I too thought I should go. But then again what if Friend thought that I was going to give Wife a lift yet again? I had to stay put and wait till he had gone. And it was coming to 4:30am when he called it a night – or rather morning.

Since then, “thou shall not give lifts to wives or girlfriends” has been added as an appendix into The Code.

Mistaken identity

I am not particularly good at remembering faces or events. I am that terrible that, if I saw a crime being committed and was asked by the police sketch artist (by the way does anybody know if Uganda has a police sketch artist? I only see them on TV shows like CSI New York and Law and Order?) to describe the perpetrator, I highly doubt I would be of any help.

Anyway getting into the first slice of today’s column, it was a nondescript Thursday evening and I was gathered round the bar with utl Paulo, Muloodi Oscar amongst other people. I don’t really remember why we chose to sit at the bar but we did. Brenda was still the head bar person and when it came to dealing with drunken and unruly patrons, she would leap from behind the bar and with all her petite 5:4 height and would take on chaps who were 6 foot plus and twice her size.

But when it came to dealing with white expatriates, Brenda was not so secure of herself. She would wrap herself up into a vulnerable petite woman who would cry if you dared take her on.

And on this nondescript Thursday evening, in walked heavily inebriated Muzungu Expat. After downing a number of Ug Wa’s at the bar, he asked for his bill and when it was presented, he went livid! The price of a pack of Sportsman cigarettes was sh500 dearer than it is at Sliders where, he normally drank from. And with that, he went into a rage that unfortunately had more than a good number of racist undertones.
With those undertones, there was a need to step in. After calming him down and paying the sh500, we threw him out and assured him that if he ever came back, a good hiding awaited him.

To my surprise and horror, that Sunday afternoon when utl Paulo and I walked in, leaning over the pool table and about to pot the black was Muzungu Expat, a man who had been barred only days earlier! The confrontation went along these lines.

TB: “You are a funny chap! You know you have been barred?”

Muzungu Expat (Ever so politely): “I am not sure what you are on about.”

TB: “Listen here, let’s make it neat and tidy. Finish your drink and take a hike.”

Muzungu Expat: (Now even more polite): “Am sorry, but I don’t know what you are on about.”

At this stage utl Paulo was busy tugging on my shirt and whispering: “Timo, Timo, he is not the one!” When the part of my brain that does the ‘recognition thing’ kicked in, I found myself agonizingly looking at a Muzungu Expat I had never seen before. This chap was tall and huge unlike the other chap from nondescript Thursday. Worse, he was wearing a white Saracens shirt, so he had to be ex-South African army and with all that he had learned while fighting the ANC during the apartheid era, he could probably plummet me into a mashed up human form.

All of a sudden, I had an urgent need to be in the washrooms! My bladder was on the verge of letting loose, I was soaked in sweat and my utl ‘backup’ was nowhere to be seen. I instead threw myself out and fled.

Recently, I thought I had lost my backup utl phone and it was such a relief when I called it using my MTN and it was still on. From 11:00pm up until 3:00am the following morning, I called the phone and it rang but nobody was picking, so I resorted to sending a txts. The first read: “If you have my phone, kindly call me on the following number.” No reply but phone still rings when I call. Second txt: “It is your best interests to call me on this number so we can work out a way for you to hand back my phone.” No reply but phone still rings when I call it. Third txt: “I will find you and pluck out your eyes! Right now, there are people tracking you down. Very soon we shall know where you are and have you arrested.”

Funny thing though, every time I rang or sent a txt, I would hear ‘beep’. A beep similar to that given by a phone when, the battery is about to expire. But, for some reason, I ignored the ‘beeps’ thinking they were emanating from the movie I was watching.

Then my MTN rang. The number was familiar – in fact it was my utl number! Finally the culprit had taken my threats seriously! However, when I answered there were no formalities of ‘hello’. Rather, it was an irate male voice that ranted on and accusing me of harassment and sending threatening txts. Not having any of it, I retorted and assured him that if he wanted to live another day, he better give me my phone back before I find him and pluck out his eyes. My threat had an effect on him for he hung up and promptly switched the phone off.

Resigned to having lost my phone, I got round to picking up my clothes from the previous evening for washing and going through the pockets, I found it – my utl phone. With relief strewn all over my face, I settled back to my movie.

Then my MTN phone rang again. This is strange I thought. Why would I be calling myself using my utl line which was on the bed next to me? Looking harder, I saw the discrepancy – the prefixes were different. I am on a 0712 prefix and the number calling had a 0714 prefix though, the rest of the numbers were the same. And when I answered, that irate male voice was on the other end shouting out how he is going to have me arrested for harassment and sending threatening txs.

Eeek!! All along, instead of sending the txts to my utl line with a prefix of 0712, I had all along been using 0714! The need to be in the washrooms was once again upon me for my bladder was on the verge or letting loose. In the meantime, my utl line is switched off seeing that the tables have turned and it is now I, who is getting the threatening txts!

Wedding Mayhem

There is something about weddings that bring out the best in people. Be it the guests, parents or even the bride and groom, there will always be some form of drama at a wedding.

A few years ago, my dad attended at wedding in Busoga. According to him, all was seemingly going well but behind the scenes, there was somebody who was quietly simmering. It was Bride’s Father. While I guess something could have been done before the wedding to cool him down, he was left to turn in a full blown boil at the wedding.

As the church service proceeded, it got to that crucial moment when the priest asks, ‘if anybody objects to the wedding and if not, forever hold their peace.’ Well at that moment and as everybody looked back to see if there were any objections, nobody noticed the elderly figure at the front standing up. By the time they all turned back to face the front, it was too late.

Father of Bride had stood up and he was not a happy man. Regardless of the threatening looks from his daughter and the rest of his family, Father of Bride was not about to be intimidated into sitting back down.

And in perfect Lusoga that required the consultation the Lusoga dictionary, Father of Bride said the wedding cannot proceed because, Groom has yet to deliver the last instalment of the bride price – that of three goats. And with that, the wedding came to a temporary halt. The men went outside to consult and raise the money and only after the goats were bought from a nearby market and were tied to a tree in the church grounds from which, Father of Bride could hear them bleat, did the wedding go ahead.

I need not remind the people who were at Spider’s wedding when, Young Speaker on Bride’s side started talking about ‘pussy’. In his heart, he was doing nothing wrong and he went on to advise Spidey that, the first thing he has to do every morning was, ‘tend to Bride’s pussy!’ “She loves her pussies so please look after them” he said. But as we all know, the word ‘pussy’ in this day and age means something totally different so for a large section of the guests, we wondered which pussy he was talking about. Was it the pussy as in a young cat or was it the pussy of the human female type?

A while back it was a boring Saturday in London. Norris one of my best friends called round my house and suggested we go for a drive. And into his car we piled and drove round the isle of dogs in East London looking for action. As we kerbed crawled, we drove past St. Andrew’s church and there, there was a wedding about to start. Of course we had gate-crashed parties including house parties and office parties but never a wedding. And in our jeans and t-shirts, we took our seats at the back of the church. When the service was over and after having the audacity to pose for the traditional photographs on the steps of the church, it was a simple case of asking the rider of the horse driven carriage for the address to the reception. With that we went home and got changed for the evening ahead.

Crashing a wedding reception that is held in somebody’s home can be simple – but not when everybody is white and two of you are black. So we stood out like sore thumbs but for our ‘forward planning’, we had a plan in motion to avoid being rumbled – attack first! When we felt we were getting looks of ‘do you know who they are?” we would dive in for the kill and ask the inquisitive person which side they came on. If they answered ‘bride’, we would say we are on the groom’s side. And with that we got away with it for the best part of the evening until it was time for Bride and Groom to start mingling that things started to get hot.

By the time a decision was made by the wedding organisers to throw us out, we had had our fare share of beer, champagne, food and cake that when we fled, we couldn’t make a run for it, for we were so full. We just walked to the car.

More recently, Nodin and I turned up for a wedding reception at UMA showground’s and before you even start thinking about it, we DID NOT crash the wedding for Groom, is a colleague from a leading newspaper. While the wedding was unique in its own way, the table and corner in which we were sitting was lighting up like fireworks on New Year’s Eve. Service at our table was swift and the attention we got was way above par.

At some point during the night, it was time to give out the cakes. For obvious reasons, Parents of Bride and Groom got the biggest cakes to go home with. Then cakes were given out to relatives, friends and in this case, one cake was given to the representatives of a nightclub where Bride works and one to the newspaper where, Groom works.

Now this is where it all becomes a bit of a blur. For some reason a cake was put on my table – and so close to me. It of course was an overwhelming gesture to think that Groom had thought of me! And through the corner of my eye, I could see this girl eyeing it. Taking no chances, I pulled it closer to me. When it was time to leave, Nodin and I picked up the cake and left but as we walked to the car, we could see the girl who had been eyeing ‘my cake’ running down the road after us. Not wanting to share the cake, we out ran her, got into the BMW and fled.

It was only two days later that I got a call from Sylvia from the paper wanting to know where the cake was. Apparently it was not mine but for the staff of the paper to share. Eek! But by then, it had already been waffled down! Sincere apologies to the staff of the newspaper who, were waiting for a slice of the cake but fret not, for a replacement cake is on the way.

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