You can find part one of this story here
We had an event at our local church, a youth dinner and I remember because I wasn’t ‘there’ for half the event. I was outside, on phone, with Miss Rolling With The Punches. We were talking about everything. As usual. She was interested in the event and who I had gone with to the dinner. And when she found out that I hadn’t gone with anyone she pressed me about if I liked someone there or anywhere for that matter. I hesitated. She pounced. There must be someone. There was. I was already eying someone who would eventually become my second girlfriend. I wasn’t too evasive about her inquiries. Big mistake.
She immediately said she had something else to do then she hung up before I could even say goodbye. I was perplexed. Did I say something wrong? Was she mad at me? I have never considered myself ‘slow’ but that day I felt like a log floating down a river. I tried calling back but she wouldn’t pick up my calls. My texts went unanswered until I sent an apology saying sorry if i offended her in any way. I was still clueless. After a few more texts she told me I didn’t have to be that honest. Women! When she calmed down, I pointed to the fact that I had no idea how she felt, she never told me. We both apologized and ended up talking about her hair. I would have liked it apparently.
We carried on like nothing happened, albeit with a lot more caution on my part with what I said to her. And I put a pause on pursuing the other lady. I wanted to see where this was going. After a few more weeks of talking, we decided to send each other pictures. Back then we didn’t have phones that were able to take and send pictures and I don’t think she had an email address and even if she did, getting pictures on emails and sending them would have required us both to seek help from third parties. So we decided to send them through the post office. I don’t remember why but we agreed that she would send hers first, then I would send mine and after we liked what we saw we would meet up. She had something to do in Nairobi and we thought what a fabulous idea it would be to squeeze in a meeting. Although I was highly suspicious that she didn’t have other plans. It was exciting!
It was the longest two weeks of my life. Yes, it would take two weeks. At this point I was still unsure of how I felt about her. I mean, we had great conversations sure and seemed to get along, but love through sms!? Absurd. Plus there was that age thing. I mentioned that she was three years older than me right? I am sure I did. It was my pre-older-women-preference era. Story for another day. After two weeks I got her mail. It took me another day or two to open it out of sheer anxiety. I wasn’t used to letters, writing or receiving them. I opened it and I found a letter accompanied with three pictures. We were just supposed to send pictures so I was happily surprised. The letter, which I still have, was the most beautiful thing anyone had ever written to me at that time. It ended, unsurprisingly with a poem. It read like a sunrise, beautiful and captivating. Is there a limit of how much you can sit to watch the sunrise? I read it over and over and over. I liked the pictures she sent too, although I must have studied it meticulously. And she was right, I did like the hair.
Now this is the part you start to hate me.
I wrote my reply, put it in an envelope and threw in a few pictures. I sealed it up and all that was left was to drop it. I think it was still Ksh. 25 (around a quarter of a dollar?) to send a letter. After a week of stalling I went into the city to send it. But I got so caught up that somehow I ended up with it at home and this happened several times more. She kept asking if I had mailed it and I kept telling her I would soon. I can’t explain it to you but I just couldn’t send that letter, at first not by my doing but then it was. And after every passing day, I grew more weary of sending it. After a few weeks I reread her letter trying understand what was wrong with me and that’s when I saw it. Especially in the poem she wrote, the answer was right there. I came to the realization that even though I wanted to, even though it was exciting, I didn’t feel the same way about her. I decided not to send the letter and in the spirit of not being too honest I resolved not to tell her why.
We didn’t talk much after that. I guess after getting tired of asking she knew something was up. And we never had the same kind of conversations. We faded. She surprised me with a call about two years ago, but we didn’t talk much. Just finding out how I was. I am not proud of how I handled the whole situation, it’s one of the rare moments I feel regret.
It doesn’t mean much now, but I’m sorry H.