All that Glitters is Not Gold

Let me tell you about the guy with a shy but terrific smile, Kit. He’s a young man of integrity. He has been a staunch Jesus Christ follower since he was ten. It was expected being that he is born of a prayerful mother. His environment conditioned him to follow the straight ways described in the holy book. Doesn’t the good book say that thou shall bring up their children in the ways of the Lord and they shall never digress from the path? Well, this fine young man is an epitome of discipline. In addition to that, he’s a sharp chap who has always scored highly in class. At 12, he represented his school in chemistry contests at the national level. That particular contest saw him banking two trophies in a row. He’s no doubt a precious starlight with unmatched brilliance.

I remember one time when he was nine, Little geniuses Kenya awarded him the prestigious kid of the year award after he developed a formula that simplifies calculation of a cone’s volume. Can you imagine a kid that young developing a whole formulae? I do know a few bearded fellows who collapse at the mention of math and formulas! Since then, he has risen from one level to the next. Even in his adult exuberance, he is still an example to emulate. In fact, he’s a gem treasured by the old and young alike. Of such people, they say good roots bear good fruits.

As norm, folks from this village must pay homage to their roots at least once a year. Kit landed for the cultural thanksgiving. To be honest, I don’t know why we would have festivities in January. With the dry weather, hot unforgiving sun and meagre fiscal strength, it beats logic that such unfriendly conditions can support a party mood. With these harsh conditions however, you can never fail to enjoy a bowl of sweet potatoes downed with several cups of uji. That combination slaps differently all the time.

Even in his grandeur as the Managing Director of Pisces Inc. based in Mombasa, Kit’s ability to swiftly fit into the bottom food chain amazes me. Today, his two buddies; Adan and Benedict were tagging him along to a grazing expedition. Growing up in the village gives you all round skills. It makes you to be in touch with all aspects of everyday life. This makes you to be a self-dependent individual. For Kit however, Boarding school had eaten into a huge chunk of his teenage-hood. Herding is not naturally wired in his system.

Being a dry season, the trio had to veer into the forest for pasture. Kakamega forest is enormous in its green expanse. Thick trenches, enormous roots weaving through the ground like the back of the ancient marine dinosaurs, a stray squirrel here and there, the forest exhumed fascinating vibes of the countryside life. The forest smelt of age. Its woody aura was from centuries of snapping branches crashing to the forest’s floor and rotting silently. The composing, organic smell rose in waves like a murk. With every sprawling tree, Kit was reminded of a watchful guardian, a silent sentinel of the groves. The enchanted forest beckoned on his pulsing heart. He was beyond smitten.

They veered deeper into the tangled heart of this primaeval woods in search of not only pasture but also Mugombero. This fine man had heard stories of Mollis and brother Ochola that stormed the streets of social media and wondered if Mugombero was to be blamed for all the leaked guilty pleasures that bred a nation on edge in under a week.  I suppose each and every Kenyan fed their wanton side with the leaked tapes. Perhaps, if Mugombero could be proven to be the real deal, our tall brothers in government offices don’t need to down the blue pill. Why go artificial when natural has your fancy covered?

As they pushed deeper in a frantic search for the root, they bumped into a luscious blonde collecting firewood. It’s not unusual to bump into a group of girls in the jungle. Collecting firewood is norm. What’s baffling is bumping into a lone beautiful girl at the heart of a forest. She had brown eyes which seemed to light up each time she flashed her pearly smile. Her coffee-coloured skin was enchanting. She looked unblemished. Not even one hair was out of place. Her lips were temptingly pout-like. Her lower lip was thin so that her cupid bow could come down together to form a perfect M. Her hands were careful and slender almost as though she was cut out of the finest almond.

As Kit’s eyes travelled along the path of her long, jet-black hair, down to her African waist, he knew he had it bad.  He was almost ashamed of the direction his thoughts were taking him. In his heart, he was convinced it was illegal to look at a girl the way he was now doing. The more she bent over to pick more firewood, the more he couldn’t help his eyes trailing her like a hawk. It reminded him of the famous Lapobo poem that he had religiously studied in poetry when he was in high school.

Like any well-bred gentleman, Kit embarked on engaging the girl to know why she veered too deep into the woods. As it turned out, the fine young woman was an orphan living alone in Atocha village. Her life was the definition of tragic. But such is life, sometime it serves you a bitter one. It trickles down to your will to rise above the negatives. The trio offered to help her gather enough firewood to last a week in exchange for Mugombero roots. She had the forest’s terrain on her fingertips. A girl’s beauty is tempting but one with extraordinary confidence can stop your heart and sweep you off your feet. Her eye contact was captivating. Kit felt a smooth flow of blood in his veins – something he had never experienced before.

Sometimes love works magic that you wonder what kind of force it generates. No one has ever discovered this, or maybe it’s the same kind of force Sir Isaac Newton discovered while sitting under a mango tree. In his mind, Kit idly thought that Sir Isaac Newton’s discovery was justified by virtue of him sitting under a tree. Is it even possible to experience Eureka moment while standing? No one has done it. Even Archimedes himself had the Eureka moment while in a shower. Maybe we discover things in awkward moments after all.  When we least expect.

As though giving a peace offering for his veered thoughts, the trio talked the young woman into joining them for a meal at Kit’s home. What would it hurt to give such an innocent girl accommodation, a job and even funding for her studies? Kit was sure he wasn’t ashamed of raising those concerns with his father. In this life, lending a helping hand is the true legacy. The evening sailed smoothly with little banter in the living room. Like every African home, it was a norm to pray before any meal in Kit’s family. Kit’s mother is a prayerful woman. She is the leader of the women’s guild. Her devotion to the church is beyond exemplary.

No sooner had they opened their eyes after the biblical Amen than they noticed the young girl’s glaring absence. Just like that, the guest had disappeared in the midst of prayer! She was nowhere to be seen.  Whoever knew prayer can make people just like problems disappear?  There was undoubtedly a big problem. Kit’s mother went on her knees cursing the devil and chasing evil from her abode. Saying that he that dwelleth in the highest place is a deliverer, refuge and fortress. Truly, there are moments that make you understand the power of the Holy Spirit.

He silently rose from his seat a heavy-hearted man. He needed sleep to relax his worries. But nothing prepared him of what was in store for him. Right there on his Egyptian cotton bedding, lay a colossal cobra snake! To think he had fancied a thought about the coffee skinned girl! It was apparent that without his mother’s prayer, he would have died. As the Isukuti dancers drummed away their energy, Kit knew that was his last day in the village. His village witches had overworked tonight. The devil is a liar, he always is!

Featured Photo by: luizclas from Pexels


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