So for the four years or so that I have been in this habitat, I have done none more than mind my business and the most I have interacted with my almost six-household neighbors is when I need the very immediate neighbour to help with changing my car battery or jumpstart my ka beetle.
And then the lockdown happened. Now, we can blame this lockdown for so many other things but thou shalt not blame this period of uncertainity for not giving you time to get acquainted with your neighbours. I am sure many will raise their hands in support of this one. Never in the coming years had I imagined that one in five people I meet on my walk down the stall to buy a rolex would likely be my neighbour…how in the landlord’s name do I know this so many people on the kaalo?
Well, as I write this, the neighbours and I are now BFFs of sorts. I mean, there is only so much you can do with yourself when Umeme decides to do a dirty on you, when the books are reading too fictitious to carry on, when the people in your WhatsApp chatroom are nagging AF, when the statuses are all but too much whining and begging.
A human needs to step out, stretch on their newly-discovered porch and just be there.
It was during one of those stretchy days that one of the neighbours approached me to interest me in joining the workout group they had formed (Now everyone who knows me knows I am not one for working out). But the lockdown did/does not give us the luxury of having options. You either fit in or you fit in. And as fate would have it, from workout came board games, hosting dinners, hosting NTV dance parties, celebrating birthdays together, and they telling me stories of their lives and some more. And boy am I good at listening! So far, all they know is that I am no slay queen afterall, I work somewhere important-ish. They think I am moneyed — bless ‘em!
They prolly hope that I can open up more. But how does a girl start telling of how one time her happiest moment was when she was dancing on tables at 2am in Cielo Lounge, that her lowest moment this year will be the fact that she will not be living it up at Nyege Nyege or the very euphoric moments she enjoys a blunt butt-naked in her bathroom? No No No!
At the risk of somewhat blowing my trumpet, I am some sort of sweet vibe *wink* and I think the neighbours enjoy my presence; they will text to check if I am alright — that’s if they do not see me swaying my little hips around the compound or call when I delay to return home. And now this is where I say… yo, calm down my new found friends, tubebakakamu!