Searching for a bride has never been easier for Diaspoman. Mainly because of the miserable pockets that look up at me in sheer misery! Whereas I am now a small time employee who earns a salary, I still find it difficult to take a lady for a decent outing. But things were worse for Aggrey and I during the late 90s here in our beautiful Kigali City.
Those were the days when we used to be seen driving in a serious Rav 2. The other name of the Rav 2 was Footsibishi. That meant that we used our feet to walk from Kabeza to Nyamirambo – and back. We were as fit as a fiddle and to quench the thirst after long walks, we would sit down and do justice to ice cold frothy drinks all the way from Bralirwa.
So, in our search for brides during those days, we would take the unlucky ladies to a rowdy popular drinking place for a romantic dinner. If we were lucky, our ladies would settle for a bottle of Fanta. One would ask for a Fanta called “Koka”, while the other would order for Fanta called “Orange”. I always got confused as to why they referred to “Koka” as Fanta instead of the good old Atlanta-based Coca Cola! But do I need to inform you that our lucky days comprised a mere one per cent? I mean, almost every outing with the ladies turned out to fall into the “Unlucky” category.
This category is one that most bachelors dread. It is the category in which the lady beckons the waiter and places an order. Instead of ordering for a bottle of mineral water or indeed koka ikonje, the lady proceeds to spell out a name of a drink which sounds very Russian. In the middle of her sentence, you may pick out words such as; cocktails, Beringer Blass, Wolf Blass, Yellowglen, Jamiesons Run, Castello di Gabbiano and many more different tribes.
By the time she is through with her mini speech, you find yourself sweating profusely. You are not sweating due to hot temperatures. You would be sweating due to a severe pang of panic as a result of your weeping pockets. This is the type of life that we were pretending to live. Sometimes, we would feel a strong temptation to run away from the place so as to avoid settling such high bills. The leeway always came in form of the waiter’s wise words: “Madam, we do not sell such drinks here.”
Wow, as we rubbed our hands in glee, the ladies would come up with more demands. This time, they would turn their attention to some nosh. Instead of asking for a stick of brochette and chips, the ladies would look up at the waiter and proceed to ask: “Would you please bring us a plate of rice and prickles, some dried udon noodles plus noodle broth? Also add a deep fried pan with chicken in Basil cream sauce”. Now at this point, I could gauge Aggrey’s expression on his face. I could immediately tell that he is on the verge of wetting his pants.
Once again, our good old waiter would eye the ladies in a fashion to suggest that they had come from another planet! At this point, he would politely tell them to go try elsewhere as they never served such dishes. “Madam, we serve chips and fish and sometimes ubugali”. The ladies would look at the waiter in a disgusted manner and proceed to the next sensible thing that anyone would do. They would pick their bags and walk out on us citing that they had never seen worse villagers than the two of us.
And that has always been my story when it comes to bird hunting – it is a headache searching for a bride! I need to first get my pockets bulging with real currencies…