Chapter 5 – Before love came to kill us

What can I say? I was riding high, three men blowing up my phone, I would wake up to three different ” Hello Beautiful ” s , some of my friends couldn’t even get a man and here I was, with three and despite myself I began to feel kind of smug. My sister warned me that I was flying too close to the sun and would soon come crashing down but what did she know?

Technically I was not cheating , so much as I was exploring my options as any smart woman would. So what if people were catching feelings? These were grown men and besides I convinced myself they were seeing other people too. I didn’t even have a favorite so everyone had a fair chance and they could win or loose by their own merit. My love and commitment was the iron throne and the last man standing could ascend. Also in the meantime I was being the light of everyone’s life!

The boy with the espresso skin was having a bit of a hassle with his business and guess who was the dutiful girlfriend? Ready with a word of encouragement and a bright idea? Me! He was leaning on me and if I tipped over he would fall, but I wasn’t going to tip over, we were as solid as a rock.

The East African man of means needed to decorate his house and I had my babe’s back. Throw pillows? Wine glasses? Just hand me your card boo and I’ll make it happen! We even went house hunting for a place I would find more comfortable.

Dr bae was , bless his heart , offering me emotional support while all this was going on, but don’t think he was getting a raw deal either, my sexting game is on point so I made sure what we lacked in physical contact, we more than made up for in texts. I was bringing that man to the edge of ecstasy with a few well worded texts. No nudes needed. My command of language was enough.

I was offering three people the girlfriend experience without breaking a sweat, I was ready to teach a class. I was girlfriending at a premium level and all three of my babes were satisfied, perhaps a bit too satisfied.

You know how it is in adult relationships , the pesky topic of sex was coming up and obviously that would necessitate picking and I didn’t know what to do. It wasn’t even on their side only though, all this wooing also made me want to succumb to the sweet agony of coitus because I am not made of stone either.

It was time to balance the scoreboard. So far our friend from East was winning in terms of buying gifts and taking me to expensive restaurants. The boy with the espresso skin was leading in terms of charm and sweet talk. The odds were stacked against Dr bae, what with the distance and all so deciding that I could not decide I left it in the hands of fate. I would see who made the first move in terms of the sexuals and let the chips fall where they may. To the victor would belong the spoils.

Chapter 4 – Dr Bae

If I’m being a 100% honest I wasn’t all that into Dr Bae at first, he was much to serious for my liking. His conversations dull and juice-less but his friend kept insisting that he was just what I needed.  His stiffness and rigidity were apparently the very thing I needed to complement me, given that I go through life too freely and recklessly.  He was touted as the yin to my yang or whatever and also he drove the same car, same exact model and color as my boss and I saw the opportunity for a small joke and I am never one to miss the opportunity for a laugh, however small and childish.

Iv never been impressed by cars per se but I did find some sort of mirth in the thought of me driving to work in the same car , same color with the man who paid my salary.  I even fantasized about parking in his spot and rendering him confused as to why his car is already in the parking lot while he is still in it. I  thought he would be a little disoriented for a minute and who amongst us doesn’t secretly fancy playing a practical joke on the boss?

Anyway since he worked on site far out of town our courtship was via text. It started off slow, nerdy but I preserved and since he didn’t talk much it gave me the opportunity to unload all my thoughts on him, all he had to do was listen.  Our relationship (for lack of a better word) took a turn when he tested positive for Covid-19.

There is nothing to make you want a man more than learning of his eminent demise.  No longer did I find Dr Bae dull and boring, suddenly he became the most precious thing to me and I spent many a night bargaining with God for his life.  I couldn’t go see him obviously cause he was in isolation but I was blowing up his phone with messages of concern and trying to keep his spirits up. That man has to admit that I was his rock!

Scared by his life flashing before his very eyes, he too opened up to me. How he doesn’t want to die without a family and as stupid as it is now ,I was ready to get a marriage official wed  us as soon as he stepped out of that bed. A man I had only met once! But we were in the middle of a pandemic and I too didn’t want to die alone.  Also I have been guilty of promising people to marry them without proper consideration,  I already had been a runaway bride, one solid engagement,  two serious proposals that I got out of later,  and an almost elopement.  When people asks me to marry them I generally say yes and figure it out later.

Anyway Dr Bae did get better but he had to go back to work and we didn’t meet but the trajectory of our relationship had changed. I mean we had already gone through in sickness and in health so ….

In the following weeks we began to talk every day,  this time I was the one going through it, I was going through a depressive episode,  what with the Covid-19,  loss of income,  general sadness of winter and being locked down and worrying about my other lover so he became my rock too and he was quite understanding and adult about the whole thing. Even suggesting I talk to a professional.  In Lesotho, the average response to telling someone your mental health is not up to scratch is “Get over it” so I was glad to have someone who understood and was supportive without being overbearing.  My feelings towards Dr Bae softened and I was now waiting with bated breath for him to get home.

Chapter 3 – The Boy With The Espresso Skin

You know that song by Ms Beyonce Giselle Knowles Carter – Brown skin girl.  If she hadn’t specifically said girl I would think it was about him. He had the kind of melanin rich skin that glistened like pearls in the sunset . That was the first thing I noticed about him and I was enamored.  He didn’t so much take me on a date as he came by my place and we sat in the car talking.

Normally I would not have responded to such low efforts but I have been accused of being mercenary in my dating so I figured I should relax and go with the flow.  Besides,  he had brought me a PS bar and the last time I had gotten one of those was from my high school sweetheart so the gesture made me nostalgic for a simpler,  much innocent time in my life .

He was great at conversation and I felt understood , a lot of the men I’d dated over the years have often made me feel like an accessory but this time I felt like he saw me. Me! Not a pretty face, not the wit, biting sarcasm and indifference I wore to survive in this cold hard world but me. In all my Disney loving,  sometimes insecure glory and God , did i fall hard!

I was determined to lay myself bare,  no inhibitions and total vulnerability. If you know me,  you know I don’t let people in like that. So even my best friend was impressed at what she called my new found “emotional maturity ” .

There is a term I coined to mock my friends.  “Winnie Mandelaring ”  , coined after Winnie Madikizela Mandela.  It means when you meet what is a potentially great man and you align yourself with his goals because in your heart you know that with you by his side he will ascend to Nobel prize laureate greatness .

Such was my infatuation with the boy with the espresso skin.  He was incredibly smart, had his own successful business with an impressive staff complement at just 32 and I was sure with me by his side I was convinced he was well on his way to becoming Africa’s next billionaire.  And me? I  would of course become a great writer but that is the kind of pursuit that would leave me time to be by my man’s side as we build our great empire.

To his credit, the boy with the espresso skin never asked this of me. If anything he was sure I would make a great lawyer except even before him, I had never planned on being a great lawyer.  My law degree is just something that comes in handy from time to time while I pursue more noble callings.

In any case, ours was a genuine courtship, fears were laid bare, financial crises were admitted and past lovers were discussed and scrutinized . Well not entirely,  I had a teeny tiny secret.  You see, back when i was young and naive I had gotten into a less than moral dalliance with someone who turned out to be one of his friends.  I planned on telling him, I really did but something about not wanting to rock what was a smooth sailing boat made me keep on postponing

So there I was, falling deeper into the throes of a deep passion whilst also waiting for the shoe to drop….

Chapter 2 -The East African Man of Means

So anyway, whatever brought us here, brought us here. I have convinced myself that it is time to get back on the proverbial dating horse and bachelor no 1 has been secured. He has been calling all week in preparation for our date. I must say I too am getting kind of excited then tragedy strikes. A couple of days before the big date I wake up with a scratchy throat! These are Covid times so isolation is the only way. I am forced to tell him and we agree that I must stay indoors for 7 days and see if I develop symptoms. I am of course distraught! How can I just die, just when I have just met the father of my children? I am panicking. Young, gifted, beautiful and dead.

A few minutes later I get an SMS, it is from Vodacom “+266 58** **** has recharged your account with x GB of data “. The EAMOM texts to say that its for me to watch Netflix so I don’t get bored. I honestly would have been more impressed with a straight up E-Wallet but the thoughtfulness is touching. I of course use the data to plan our wedding on pinterest. The theme is Black and Blush and I will walk down the aisle to Lana Del Ray’s young and beautiful. He keeps on doing this every second day till we agree that since I don’t show any other symptoms its time to get off my isolation and go to lunch! The only problem becomes, what do I wear to a date with destiny?!

For this auspicious occasion my mother has done my hair, my sister has styled my outfit and I look like a peach. He picks me up in his chariot! Fine, it was a car but.. He looks dapper, smells like confidence and an expatriate’s salary and welcomes me into his car by sanitizing my hands and giving me a new mask, I of course had my own mask but in these Covid times, masks are the new flowers. We drive to a restuarant out of town for our lunch.

At the restuarant, we have to sign a register for contact tracing, security guy asks for my name, writes it down then turns to my date and goes “you should write your name, I probably can’t spell it anyway” I am offended, I tell him off, why does the color of his skin makes you assume he has a difficult name? I go on a tirade about how if he was French and his name was Jean-Pierre they would have atleast attempted it. Besides, his name is only 3 letters. In the end we are seated and he tells me that he doesn’t mind and is used to these little indignities, he says he is quite impressed by my fighting spirit though.

We are sitting outside on the terrace, the cocktails are flowing, the food is delicious, I have a sunkissed glow, the conversation is intellectual sprinkled with him marveling at my beauty, which is fine by me. I soak up compliments like a sponge. His timepeice of the day? An Aviator! I shamelessly google the cheapest Aviator watch while he goes to the bathroom and what I find out makes me realize that I shall indeed have a Cartier ring to go with the Vera Wang gown.

After lunch we decide to order drinks to go, he tells me I can order as many as I want since it’s a lockdown so I can frink some at home later, I politely just take 10 cause I dnt want him thinking I am that kind of girl. He pays with a Chase Black card. Then he takes out cash to tip the waiter, he tells me that he likes to tip in cash cause he knows what a struggle it is for waiters to get their tips back from restuarant management. So sweet of him to understand the struggles of the common man. He is going to teach our children such valuable lessons one day. Ohh,iv already decided that our first daughter is going to be named Nala. If you were worried about my English bundles running out during the conversation, no need to fret, I am a multilingual boo and nazumgunza kidoko ya keSwahili

In any case I come back from our date with a spring in my step and a song in my heart.

Chapter 1 – Kissing Frogs

Chapter 1 – Kissing Frogs

I lost the love of my life on a Sunday, a wintry August Sunday which somehow seemed fitting for such an occurrence. Of course I am being dramatic, as I am often wont to do. That man was not, and was never going to be the love of my life, if only because the true love of my life is the Unidentified African National. But that one was stuck in a city where the covid-19 cases kept on rising and he wasn’t available on the phone so thinking he was lost to me, I dared to venture into the Maseru dating scene. Big mistake! But first a little backstory
I approach dating like investing, I like to diversify my portfolio across a number of factors but we were in a lockdown so I was only able to come up with three potential candidates to fill the hole in my heart that had been left by the #UAN and perhaps with a bit of luck, some other cavities as well, I figured out of three, one has to be a winner. I must admit I was quite pleased with my selection. Allow me to introduce you to the nominees

Bachelor Number 1- The East African Man of Means!
Well, shall I say bachelor number one was on paper, the perfect fit for me? He was as tall as he was dark, A Harvard man who I met while having wine with a friend. A better woman would not admit to being impressed by his Patek Philippe timepiece but I have never been a good woman. His method of wooing me? Having the waiter bring us a bottle of what we were drinking and telling us that we could order whatever we desired on him. Colour me impressed. A few minutes later he made his introductions and a date was set for the very following weekend. I was already picking out my Vera Wang wedding gown.

Bachelor Number 2- The boy with the alabaster skin.
I met bachelor number 2 through a mutual friend. The youngest of the pack, he did come highly recommended and what he lacked in quality wrist wear he more than made up for in being a great conversationalist and genuinely interesting. I found myself, despite putting my Vera Wang at stake, liking him more than the others. The plan had been to let their behavior weed them out but from the first I was rooting for this one. He came to our first meeting armed with a PS Bar and I know it’s not the most expensive gift in the book but I thought it was sweet and quirky and I loved it and swore not to eat it. I planned to show it to our kids when they asked how we met ( I am hopelessly and foolishly romantic)
Bachelor Number 3 – Dr Bae
This one I met while talking to a friend at the mall, he came over to say Hi to his friend and I did not take much notice of him but a couple of days later his friend was all up in my face about him. Apparently he was a Dr of some sort of chemistry, old enough to be ready to settle down without being too old as to be boring and as his friend put it, I too was not getting any younger and would benefit from dating what he called a “Husband material” so I gave the go ahead for my number to be given to him. I figured at the very least he would give me smart kids and he was not at all bad looking.
Anyway armed with the unholy trinity, I prepared to sit back and let the wooing games begin. My friends of course were picking favorites but I wanted to stay as neutral as possible and let their actions speak for themselves, ohh what a fool I was!

    You may be asking yourself, as I am . How did a young woman, blessed with beauty and wit such as myself get here! Pre-lockdown I had it all. A tall, dark African man with a French accent, a little less tall other man who was younger and agile, a baecation already planned out with the French speaking love of my life. I was riding high. And then the lockdown came.
    The speaker of French has always been referred to by my nearest and dearest as the Unidentified African National. I could of course refer to him by his real name but I thought it afforded him an air of mystery and as previously mentioned I do tend to be dramatic.
    I met the UAN in 2018, the 21st of December 2018. I remember it like it was yesterday. I was waiting for my flight to Johannesburg, having just gotten off another one from Walvis bay from a girlcation with my best friend for my 28th birthday. It had been a wild week that culminated with us leaving our bras at a local bar in lieu of settling our bill. My afro was all shambles and I was not wearing a bra, letting my titties roam free. I looked a little the worse for wear and all I wanted was to get to Joburg, shower, sleep and get home the next day. Meeting a man could not have been farther from my mind. My friend had smartly taken a direct flight to Joburg but I had foolishly scheduled a meeting in Windhoek with an old friend who cancelled on me.
    So there I was, with a four hour layover in Hosea Kutako International, tired, hung-over, and quite frankly regretting some of the decisions I made that weekend. Dragged my weary self into a restaurant to read a book while I waited and there he was! The tallest, handsomest, darkest man I had ever seen. I had never wished for a bra that much in my life but sadly my luggage had already been checked in and all I had was my handbag.
    So, I’m sitting right across this Nubian God and hoping he will make contact but deep down I know I am not looking my best so I decided to go past him to the bathroom, hoping he would notice me. First shashay over. Man does not even glance up from his newspaper. I waltzed back from the bathroom, where I had attempted to at least apply lipstick and not a word. I sat down, in my head I’m thinking this is an international airport. His flight might be called at any moment and he would be gone, and just like that I would lose my chance at everlasting love. So I decided to make my move, carpe diem or in my case carpe the bae.
    In my sexiest voice “ Hi, I’m Thakane, I couldn’t help but notice you are very tall, do you have a girlfriend and would you like to take me out next time you are in Lesotho or I’m here, assuming you are from here , if not the next time I am wherever you come from”
    I could bore you with the rest of that conversation but it is enough to tell you that I have a 100% macking rate and by the end of that conversation, he had promised to take me out next time he was in Johannesburg, he had never been to Lesotho and I had already named our first kid, Genevieve. Ohh in case you were wondering, my future husband was going to Germany for Christmas cause –White Christmas, hello.
    Anyway, what ensued was a passionate love affair that spanned three countries, an attempt to abandon the graves of my forefathers and for the first time in my life I fancied myself well and truly in love. We did have our problems but I mean, what young, attractive, successful couple doesn’t? And then the lockdowns happened.