Married men are a no-go-zone. They are to be looked at, appreciated from a distance and then left alone. Like you ignore the fact that he is fine, polished, rich and mature and you walk away like you did not see him. What? Are people serious? Like I see some nice flat shoes and don’t bother to try them out even when am not buying them? Like I see my best friend trip and fall and I don’t laugh? I just ignore? No… how do you ladies just ignore that?
Me? Maria? I will look. I will look and move closer. Then I will look more keenly. Then greet him and appreciate him at a close range. Then I will tell him he has nice cologne. Then I will wonder loudly where he gets his haircuts. Then I will tell him I liked his presentation. Oh then we will exchange emails. Emails are interesting. I feel like if he gets time to draft an email and not just the mainstream phone calls, he likes challenges. Oh! I love challenges too. I like letters and emails and notes. I hate short texts.
Then in the evening, I will receive an email:
This is Melchizedek. I enjoyed your company immensely. You are quite an interesting lady. Are you free over the weekend we grab some coffee at 4?
My blood will get warm and active. I love these old fogies who are straight to the point. And especially those who write emails and are old school. Those one who don’t bother me with one text after the other,
How was your day my dear?
Wee ni mrembo. Napenda voice yako
Hehee utaniivite lini kwako?
Looser! I hate code-switching. I hate it when cocky men think it is okay to land in my house on the first day we just met in an event.
So I like Zed. He did not describe me as mrembo or ask me how my day was. Goodness I hate that question. I think it is because if I say my day was bad, are you going to make it better by asking Sauti sol to serenade me with Isabela? If not, why do you ask me? Why? Why? Why? I know it is not that you care. It is just a phrase to pass time. And I hate people who want to pass time. Their time.
I reply to Zed’s email. Girls are girls. You can replace girls with women too by the way.
Thanks for the invitation.
However, I am afraid I will be in some forum in the outskirts that will end at 9pm. Maybe some other time.
Then I smile and tell myself, if he responds, he has passed stage one. However, I just want to look. I will try my damnedest not to admire, touch or look way dipper at him. He is definitely married. Though he wasn’t wearing a ring nor did he creep away to receive some phone in some corner, he has those married men poses. Nor did he mention wives and kids. But I know he is married. He is not young. If he isn’t married, then he has a problem. He is gay, a serial killer or gosh! Maybe his little man down there is the size of my small finger. Or he is impotent. Or he is a freak. He has to be married, otherwise am not going to be his friend.
Zed does not respond with mrembo that’s so risky! Si I come pick you up? He does not ask for my number. He does not ask which hotel or facility the event is being held. He doesn’t say a thing. He has mystery. Sexy mystery. So I sit back and start listening to some boring classical. I listen to songs from Zed’s generation and doze off. Kind of a premonition, huh?
Days pass and roll lazily into a week.
Sorry for the delayed response. Kindly get in touch with me *1(2)333762 if you don’t mind. Been quite busy and failed to reply my mails. We have this launch coming up in a week’s time. Why don’t you try and get time on Saturday at 2 pm please?
Well, I create time and meet Zed. He laughs loud and we talk about silly things. He thinks my generation’s artistes are quite something. He admires the energy we have. He thinks life in his generation is boring. He asks me about life in college, life in corporate and gets puzzled at how different I am from my peers. He thinks I will be successful in future. His phone beeps. He does not answer. He apologizes and assures me that he’ll return the call after the lunch date. No problem, I say. Is it your wife? I ask. I hate the way I can’t sit on some issues. I hate my curiosity. I hate how blunt I am. No. He responds with a smile. My wife lives in states. Time zone challenges.
I love challenges. I am obsessed with winning. I am competitive in nature. His wife being in states does not sit well in my bowels. We talk about so many things. He does not look like a freak or sound like a serial killer or have those stunts people in an abused relationship have. He is focused. He does not procrastinate. He exercises. He loves pets. He loves travelling.
I hope we have a condo… or maybe a beach house as we walk with our two dogs, Pat and Kat, I hope we go mountaineering. Soon I am enrolled for my driving classes. He gets me a white fluffy puppy. He makes my dreams come true faster than I thought they would. Soon I get a red sports car. He lavishes me. Anytime the evil thought reminding me that he is married crosses my mind, I quickly shun it and kill it. We talk about everything except his wife. Zed is the gentlest man, generous and very kind. At this point, it is too late to be rational. I won’t mind being the second wife. After all, this life is short and people live once. Love is love! We look for love desperately and when we get it, and especially if it is genuine, we ought to hold it with both hands. I hold on to Zed. With both hands.
After many months of living in paradise, something ordinary happens. Something that happens when a man and a woman conjugate biologically. Something that was not an accident that you breathed or got prickled. I am in the family way.
Just to let you know I am pregnant.
1 week. No emails. No phone calls. No roses. No chauffeurs. No dinner dates.
I month. No response. I get worried. Was he mugged? Did his competitors make him disappear? Or is he in a comma or got involved in an accident and has amnesia? I call up his chauffeur. He does not pick. I call his PA. She asks me who I am and that I should leave a message. I am his… I have…okay tell him it’s Maria. Ask him to call me on my cell. The nerve? Who does that to his… Well, I actually am not sure if am his second wife, clandestine lover or a ghost.
6 months. He has moved back to the states. Child support feuds start.
Why did I, in the first place, imagine he is a good married man? I was just one of his passing clouds. They come pregnant with rain and then get blown away. I was just another alphabet, another letter, another word and another unanswered email.