JUST AN AMAH

woman

I am seated by the pond with my back against the Sun. I am a shade or two darker than Lupita so I feel the harsh rays penetrate deep into me. There is a sweat dripping down my spine and a smell emanating from under my armpits. Little Mr. Two is seated on my laps chewing on some inedibles. Once in a while, Mr. Two adjusts his little buttocks on my laps, he wiggles. He is looking straight ahead. Maybe into the pond where the fish are creating ripples. Maybe they are dancing, or not. Maybe they are mating or making love. Except they are still too small, which makes me wonder if at all these pond-grown fish can actually reproduce.

Beside me, the Altman Code is beckoning. Little Mr. Two keeps crying ‘apaaa’ indicating his arm. He wants me to scratch his arm for him. Mr. Two is like that, he keeps scratching his little body and then suddenly stops, pulls your hand and says ‘apaaa’. You have to comply.

The path behind me is busy. Men keep walking up and down, so do women. Presently, a woman is walking down. She is clutching a hand of a small not-so-fat boy. The little boy’s gaze is fixed on me and Mr. Two. I say hi. He looks at the lady. The lady looks at me, Mr. Two, my brown leather bound note book, my pen, and the Altman Code, then walks away.

I chuckle. She is so normal, that lady. Normal people like her don’t care about amahs. An amah should not say hi. She should wait for greetings, never offer any. Everyone despises amahs except, of course, the little ones who sometimes forget to call you auntie and call you Mamii. When they become big, maybe too shall become normal, just maybe, and they shall no longer call you by your name and not auntie any longer.

Workers; all workers despise you. Even the violent-looking boy who blows his nose into his hands thinks he is superior to you. He sits on his mother’s sofa, reclines his back, puts his legs on the coffee table and stares at the TV, remote on his right hand and popcorn dish on his left. He thinks he is sophisticated. He imagines you should respect him because you don’t get to watch TV half as often.

I have not the time though. Because I am perpetually busy. When I am not cooking or scrubbing something, perhaps a pot or a corridor, I am washing or scooping poop that fell on the floor as Mr. Two was running about. Or maybe doing some other job away from my usual ones like making madam’s bed, undoing her braids or polishing boss’ shoes.

An amah is always fine, except the lazy ones who complain of headaches and fatigue and all that. She cooks but only what madam orders.  An amah doesn’t choose, she’s directed. Do this, do that, don’t that, always waiting to be told. However, when madam and boss are away, nobody is there to order you around. You execute the orders you were given in the morning, formulate yours and execute them too. When amah’s are alone they make decisions, they use their short-lived powers to be happy. If anything happens to Mr. One, madam would skin me alive, ask why I wouldn’t use common sense if I said I was waiting for her orders.

Sometimes I am teaching Mr. Two to make a faces or I am putting him to bed after sleep swallows him. I love it when Mr. Two sleeps, because it takes of some burden off my shoulders. The only burden being carrying all his weight from where he slept to bed. When he wakes however, I shall have to change his diapers. Mr. Two wets the bed. And his pee smells awful, I don’t like it. But you see, amahs don’t do what they like., so they have to like what they do. Like smelling a kid’s diapers seven million times a day. Amahs sweep the house, all rooms including the bosses’. Sometimes they sweep used condoms, used and dumped on the floor.

The clothes are not yet pressed, the chicken haven’t been fed yet. Mr. Two hasn’t had a bath. If madam lands home now, I will get a lashing. Madam speaks a hundred words per second and this increases tenth-fold whenever she is angry. She has a shrill voice, one that makes the neighbors fold their curtains and peep, just in case. I wonder what they think. Still I can’t help stealing away from the house.

I do not have a specific time when I wake up. It can be at three, if boss is leaving for an important meeting out of town, or at five; to prepare Mr. One for school. On most days, my alarm goes off at five, I really don’t like the sound of that alarm. Whenever it goes off, I immediately jump out of bed and finish my yawning and stretching between the living room and the kitchen. I clean the house and cook breakfast simultaneously. I don’t have enough time to do one thing then the other and if I wanted to, then I’d wake up two hours earlier. Madam will be snoring past six, till a few minutes later. On some days, she overstays in bed till the water I warmed for her cools down. Then I have to listen as she yells, asking if I’m fed up with work. She knows I can’t answer, and silence means no, I need this job. I don’t know why they can’t move to a bigger house, an expensive one with hot shower. I really don’t understand, they have money. As she rushes to shower, she throws a bundle of clothes on my bed. These need ironing. I do iron my ironing in the corridor. Mr. one wakes up at around six thirty. He takes his time deciding whether he will have milk with cereals or tea with bread. Sometimes he doesn’t want to eat, he just stands there rubbing his eyes. He wastes food, that baby. He never bites his slice of bread thrice (sophistication!). It’s once, he turns it in his tiny hand, bites for the second time then places it beside him, picks another slice.

Daddy drops Mr. One at school. He rarely gets late. Madam usually drives herself to work. She is perpetually late. Her mood is ever foul in the mornings. She spends one hour thirteen minutes and fifty nine seconds before the mirror; coating her face with powder after another. When she is done, her eyebrows are drawn up in a thick black; that’s why you might think she is always surprised. She dresses and undresses at least six times before she settles on an outfit. All this time, I am waiting outside her bedroom, her naughty baby strapped on my back. I have to iron all the seven clothes that she tries each morning.

She then leaves the house in a hurry, shouting orders over the clanging of her heels after which I usually walk to the door and feel myself exhaling as she drives away. Sometimes I even wave at the disappearing car, not because I wish her a safe journey but, because I just want her away. Her presence here spells noise, trouble and more trouble.

Then I set Mr. Two on his feeding table, mix his foods and start feeding him. He is mostly uncooperative. A small bowl usually takes an hour or so to finish. When he is done, I strap him on my back once again and start on the laundry. The laundry is usually light but with Mr. Two on my back, it always feels worse than breaking stones in a quarry.

As an amah, I am meant to be a good cook, know everyone’s appetite and be able to serve them food accordingly. I sit on the table last after everyone one is already settled eating. I must be ready to dash to the kitchen for baby’s milk, or for more salt. So I always ensure everything is on the table, even an extra plate and spoon. Mr. One loves his food salty. While I sit last to eat, I must eat fast, faster than Mr. One so I can once again start my duty of cleaning his hands and face.

An amah is always fine, except the lazy ones who complain of headaches and fatigue and all that. She cooks but only what madam orders. How Sad always being under instruction, Waiting to be told to do this or that.

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THE WOMAN I SHARE A MAN WITH

I WISH

To tell you about….,

The woman I share a man with. The woman I share a man with, is not like other women; she is different in a nice way. She is not fat like you may think, no. She is slim, and tall. She is not yellow yellow though, she is dark like me. She has the nicest curves, and when she walks, her buttocks do a kind of a dance and this sends all men into reveries of infidelity. She is prettier than me. She is educated, and above all she is wise. She is wise; she has never ever confronted me even though she has heard rumors. I know she will never confront me, she is beyond exchanging words, and she is beyond public drama. I love her and admire her, and I am happy that we have at least two things in common, the color of our skins, and her husband. She is a rare woman, she is like my mother. She is the only woman who has been silent about my sleeping around with a man who is not mine, his man. It is like she understands. She even says hi to me when she sees me at the market. I once met her in the butchery, she was buying meat. She looked thoughtful, maybe sad. Her husband had spent two weeks in my house. He had also spent three quarters of his salary on me. She works in the bank, she gets good money, and I know this because her /our husband told me. It wasn’t necessary though for him to spend all his money on me. But he is man and for some weird reasons, he feels he should make me feel like a prostitute by paying me which is not good.

I have always wished that we could talk, me and her, you know, that we could maybe sit down, over a cup of steaming coffee, under a mango tree or any other tree that she wants, so we can talk. Can that happen? I want us to meet and talk woman to woman, talk for two hours maybe or more if she wouldn’t mind. I want us to talk about this man that we share. I want us to talk about lots of stuff, about his long beard and the way I love it. talk about his broad chest, about his snoring, about his groans, and then maybe, just maybe, we can work out a Rota, a sort of timetable, who knows, he may end up in her house three days a week and in mine the remaining three days and then on the remaining day, we can have a threesome. I am already imagining how it will be, you know the threesome. I will also take notes about other things, like how to make him eggs that don’t nauseate him, and how to make him stop eating omena. Then I might also explain why I do it. Why I am in it, why I will stay. You know she needs to understand that should he die (God forbid), it is her who will sit on the widow’s seat. It is her who will inherit most of the stuff; the money, the cars, his clothes, shoes, et cetera. Then I will re assure that I am free of all sexually transmitted bugs, and I am willing to be faithful for her own sake.

passionofthechristbythomasdodd

I know she will see sense in my words. She might even introduce me to her two fat kids, or invite me to her sister’s wedding. This should surely work. It will make her have peace of mind, and it will of course make me feel freer …………….well, it is just a wish.

 

STAYING TRUE TO DISEASE…..

I went drinking last night. This should be normal, and easy, except that I have a bad liver. My heart is also bad and my brain. i wont be surprised if I am told that my bones are rotten, and my blood is lighter. I have heard worse things about this body, my body. At ten I had rheumatic heart disease. I thought it was bad, montly injections and dyspnea., weren’t that bad apparently. At sixteen I went to india. Before you think I am better because I have seen the inside of a plane, let me tell you, I have no memory of india at all. Well, except for its very clean hospitals, its almost brown people with black long hairs, I don’t remember much. I had open heart surgery, my chest was split into two, my blood diverted into an artificial heart, then artificial valves were placed after my bad ones were taken out.
Years later, they discovered I had an an infarct, then epilepsy. My mother should have given up at the point when my heart was not willing to go on. She didn’t. I had to live. To grow a beard. To live practically on drugs.
I am mostly disciplined, every evening I bring out my array of drugs, my anti epileptics, my blood thinners, antibiotics and others whose work I don’t know. I put them in a small bowl and crush each tablet into a fine powder, then I add a little water into the powder and drown it in one gulp. A normal person should vomit, I don’t vomit because I am not normal.
It is depressing, limiting, saddening, annoying, and restricting being on drugs. Some days you might just decide to take a whole packet of those shitty tablets and pray to wake up dead. I have ever taken so many of them. I didn’t wake up dead, I woke up in the ICU. My mother was seated beside me with her hands over her cheeks, she was looking super sad. I made it out of ICU alive. That was a miracle considering I had taken a mixture of all my drugs. I swore never to kill myself after that.

THE MOTHER OF ADELLE

My grandmother calls me Adelle. I keep reminding her that I am Anna, her grand- daughter and not Adelle, her daughter. She has the mind of a chicken though. She always forgets as soon as I remind her. The doctor says she has amnesia, old people’s amnesia. I have decided to stop reminding her. I have also resolved to respond when she calls me Adelle even though I am not Adelle. I forget most of the times though. I am not used to being Adelle.
She loves sitting outside her house in a small mat. During early mornings, she loves to sit directly under the sun. I always place a jug of uji by her side. She turns away every time I hold a cupful of uji before her. So I have to beg and coax her. She agrees and drowns a cupful. She throws away the cup when she is done. This means she doesn’t want more. Then the drugs, it takes hours to get her to swallow only one tablet, every morning; she has to swallow four, two for her hypertension, one for pain, and one for? I can’t remember why she swallows the other one.  On some days she will swallow all of them at once, and then vomit all of them. On some other days I have to grind them into powder form and stir them up with a little water before she can swallow. On some other days she will just refuse. So I sit beside her, close to her good ear and shout to her, call her the mother of Adelle, call her a mzungus, then make her swallow her life saving drugs. If I tell her she will die for not swallowing her tablets, her eyes glint. They always look like they are smiling. I know she desires death. So I never tell her about dying
I miss the days that have gone. She recently lost speech.  So she gestures all the time.
She has never had a bath and is not planning on having any. When I put water in a basin to wash her feet, she turns the other side. Sometimes she glances at the water then at me, and starts crying. This is how I know she doesn’t want to shower.
I have problems dressing her for doctor appointments. She doesn’t wear panties, she always removes them. She likes her flabby breasts sagging over her chest rather than being held in place by a bra. She has a white camisole that she forever likes wearing. She never removes it from her body. It used to be white, these days it is black.
She says the same thing for a little too long. She pisses on herself and never feels the urge to move away from her urine. I never let visitors into the house on early mornings. I don’t want people talking.
She falls asleep in the middle of conversations and when she wakes up, she calls Adelle. She can no longer recall my name. She insists on calling me Adelle, while she used to say I look like my father, tall, light with a gap between my upper incisors, not like the short plump Adelle.
She used to tell me about Adelle, on these days that have passed. I know she loved my mother, she missed her even. Every day she would talk of a lifeless Adelle, squatted by the kitchen fire. A placenta hanging from between her legs, her eyes wide open. She wanted to push, she would say. At this point her eyes would be moist, her voice distant. This is the point when I would move close to her, and put my hand around her shoulders. Then she would look at me in the eyes and say, but you have her beautiful eyes.
So every day I would take the mirror and look at my mother’s beautiful eyes. Then I would imagine life with her. Maybe it would have been a little different, a little better even. What if she would have lived? Would I be having a father? Would I have lived with grandma all this long?
I remembered the day I grew breasts. How grandma had told me to walk straight, to drop my stoop. But I had feared they would swing, flap on each other. They did, and the boys laughed. But she told me to ignore them. She should have bought me a bra, she didn’t and I understand. On the day when my period came, she should have told me to record the age, exact age when I became a woman, she should have told me to always chart those days. Above all, she should have told me that it would always trickle down, out through my birth canal. She sat me and gave me a lecture about me, about becoming pregnant and about becoming a mother. She was only making sure that I don’t embarrass myself, and her. Or maybe that I didn’t have to die during giving birth like my mother, she was just making sure that I don’t die of postpartum hemorrhage during the process of bringing a life here, like many other young girls.
My grandmother; She tried to raise a child who had killed her own. I can’t complain, I cannot, and it will be disrespectful. And because she was there for me, I will be here for her. I will sit next to her and do the needful. Meanwhile I will think of the little girls who were not as lucky as me, I will think of those who were never told that they cannot play with boys after seeing the color. I will think of teenage mothers, heavily pregnant and the risk of the pregnancy to their own lives. Teenagers shouldn’t become pregnant; they should just sit around wooden tables on evenings and read from the light of the lantern. This is what my mother should have done; she could have been alive right now (maybe).
PS; no woman should ever lose their own life while bringing a life to this world. A mother should give birth and live to nurse the child.
……………………………………………………..BEYOND ZERO………………………………………….. 

HER DEATH-DAY/MY BIRTHDAY

“You did not cry like other children. When you fell down on the floor next to those three stones there, you were silent. We thought you didn’t make it out alive.  Mong’ina, may she rest in peace, is the one who took you and rubbed your back. She then sucked your nose, and then you cried a hoarse cry. You cried hoarsely, you cried as if there was some sputum on your throat. You did not cry like a baby Sabina, you cried like a tired old mourner. You cried for a minute, only one, and then you closed your eyes. We cut the umbilical cord with our kitchen knife the one that fell in the water hole. We used a string from an old sweeter to tie it. It fell after six days. .
It was around two in the morning. The placenta did not come out. It was a difficult labor. You were a difficult child”. “Like my father maybe,” I interject. But my grandmother spits and goes on. She too has a problem with a man he doesn’t know. She has a problem with my father.
I wonder if she sits down and tries giving him a body like I often do. I do not know him. But every time I try to envision him, I see a tall brown man. I see a man with a gap between his upper incisors. I see a man with broad shoulders and a flat stomach. I see a smart man. My grandmother says I look like my mother, except for my gap and my light skin. That must have come from this man that I don’t know. Does this man know that I am there? Does he think about me? Does he even miss me? No. if he missed me, he would have come to look for me, this man doesn’t miss me, maybe he doesn’t even know that I exist. That is what I tell myself when I want to get out of this reverie of a father, my farther.
“I should have known it would be a bad night”, my grandmother continues.” There were no stars on the day when you were born. The moon was also hidden below dark heavy clouds. Everyone was tired, we had spent the whole day planting.” Now this, this information about rain and planting helps.  So I know I was born on a planting season. It was also during the rainy season when I was born. That should help me get closer to my birth date, but there are two planting seasons and two rainy seasons, so I have to choose between March and July.
“She called me in the dead of the night. The pain had started. I couldn’t do it alone, so your grandfather went to call Mong’ina.  Those days we had no mobile phones. “This is another clue, I was born in the pre mobile phone era, early nineties, or late eighties. “She came. She came with her daughter in-law. We sat her here in this very kitchen, on a small stool. For hours she; sat quietly, head bent, hands over her belly and feet wide apart. We sat across from her. Adding logs and logs to the fire. She grimaced with every contraction. But she didn’t rant. She talked, called the names of all her female ancestors, when she exhausted the lists; she called all her brothers, uncles and cousins. This is the point she should have named her lover, your father. She didn’t. She just exhausted those names and started singing. So I stood behind her and asked her to name him. But she kept shouting no. then she pushed. Suddenly, when I looked, I saw a leg. Fear ran up my spine (not down). All the women opened their mouths and closed them. No one spoke. She just squatted around the fire and kept pushing, the pushing punctuated with deep sighs”. Silence. I look up and see tears in my grandmother’s old face. I want to cry too, I want to cry because she is crying, not because I am an orphan. All my life I have grown calling her mama, because that is who she has exactly been. Seeing tears on her old face makes my heart crush into several pieces.
So I was a breech. My mother must have been a hero, she brought me out. In normal circumstances, I shouldn’t have made it out alive. But I did, I made it alive a little quiet. My mother, when it comes to this part, granny’s voice becomes deep. Her eyes become watery and she avoids my eyes. She cries, not the usual sob. Tears only form in her eyes and flow down her nasal lacrimal duct into the oral pharynx then she swallows, she swallows tears and pain.
“She died because the cord that connected you to her refused to come out. So she bled and bled until there was no more blood left in her.”  Postpartum hemorrhage. “She was a fighter, she didn’t give up immediately. But after all the blood had come out of her system(Is it even possible to bleed all your blood), she just lay on her back, glanced over you once and breathed her last. You, you were asleep with hands in your mouth“(I must have been a ravenous baby. So my mother died on my birthday. She also died without ever holding me, without ever nursing me. So whose breast did I suckle? I should ask this question, I want to ask, but I know the answer, its answer, I did not suckle.
So I won’t celebrate birthdays for so many reasons. Apart from the obvious reason that which each passing year I get closer to my grave, closer to my death, I do not know exactly when I was born. Because it was a sad day when I was born. I don’t think there was really anyone to hold me. My mother was dead; she was probably lying in a pool of her own blood. I had caused her death; I don’t think my grandmother wanted to see me. It was such a dark day. I can’t celebrate my birthday ,cant be happy on my mother’s death anniversary, I can’t light two sets of candles, I can’t be happy and sad at the same time, that is not paradoxical, it is not even ironical, it is wrong, it’s wrong to celebrate.

DESCENDANTS OF PARROTS-KENYAN IDLE MEN

Kenyan men should learn the art of silence. Someone needs to teach you the meaning of the old adage, speech is silver, and silence is golden. You, brothers always accuse women of talking too much. You do what Jesus said; see a speck in another’s eye while you have a log. Women talk to other women, silently, I have no problem with the kind of talking that women do, my problem is with men. Men seated by the roadside are the worst gossipers. They wake up early, leave their pregnant wives fetching water and go to the roadsides. Some go to wash cars, others to look for menial jobs, other to sell sweets and groundnuts, others to just pass time before lunch so that they can go back to their houses for the afternoon fill. These men are ill mannered, and their talk is stupid. They make themselves political analysts, economists, Google maps and marriage advisors. I don’t mind them talking of politics, something they have no understanding about. My main issue is their big mouths, and the way they feel like they should throw words at the females passing in the roads.
First they call you like chicken. Whether you look at them or not, you are doomed. If you look at them, one or two of them will wink at you. You are supposed to wink back. Of course you can’t win back because you are sane. They don’t take being assumed so easily. Girls with nice buttocks will be called matako, matatu ya wengi, Malaya, one of them will ask you; who was riding you last night? Now you are a woman and this is Kenya. Our parents advise that we should never answer them back, they are men, they are stronger, and the weak you should only walk away. Abuses sting, kwanza those that are accompanied with loud satirical laughs. You will start wishing for a smaller ass, and buttocks that don’t dance as you walk if this happens to you twice. I happen to have a chest that protrudes before me as I walk. Sometimes my breasts swing this way and that way, especially when I am in a hurry. I should never feel ashamed. I never asked for a larger bosom, I got it for the benefit of my babies (and my husband maybe). These men who sit by the roadside don’t understand. They think I should look up when they call me like a chicken. They believe I should smile at them, and nod to their stupidity. I don’t, so you see, they call me a cow that has just delivered; one asked me umenyonywa Na wangapi? (I am not a prostitute and these stings like salt on a raw wound). Others like telling me to hold them, they are going to fall. Men, in groups are more stupid than a pack of rowdy school kids; they are as foolish as sheep. Their mouths are so rotten, every word they utter stinks. They look where they should not look and complain, they talk when they should be silent. They fool each other into stripping poor girls and forcing their rotten stinking selves into women, and then they run. How do you live knowing you have de flowered someone’s daughter? How do you call yourself a father of a girl while you don’t have even a morsel of respect to girls? Is your will power that little that you cannot control your erections? Does your brain work every time or are you a psychiatric patient roaming the earth loose while you should be locked off in a mental institution under drugs?
I have no problem with men. My father is a man, I love him. My brothers are men, my grandfather was a man. Most men are good. But some men are a disgrace to the male gender. They are so unmanly that they find it pleasurable hurling abuses at young girls who are their daughters’ age mates and others who are old to be their mothers. They never weigh anything, never sieve their words, and never stop to think of their effects. They just talk like they are having verbal diarrhea. They only abuse women, they never dare any men. My question is, to which planet do they want us to shift beautiful women to? Someone can’t be brown and in peace; they say umejibleach ( kutoa tint)when you refuse to listen to their nonsense. If you are dark they call you a sack of charcoal, and if you are between dark and brown they say umekosa rangi. A woman can’t rock an afro and walk in peace, they will call you manywele if you are strong enough to hold your peace and walk away from nonsense.
Why, men why? Touts pull at women in bus stops, never men. Professors fail female students for refusing to sleep with them. Even chokoras prefer disturbing women than men. Being a woman in this country is too much work. It is emotionally draining. It is unrewarding. I am just tired of being guilty because of my breasts. I am tired of being too careful. One day I will slap a man and kick his balls so hard. He will never forget me because his balls will rotate. He will get a slap and fall asleep instantly, only to wake up hours later without testicles. He will permanently remember to respect women, where he came from, but before I do that, tell them. Tell these men who sit in groups to grow up, but if growing up is too much to ask for, then tell them to mind their own business. Tell them to talk their nonsense with each other, tell them to keep their voices low, tell them to shun from abusing hardworking citizens. Tell them to stop drowning in foolishness of the masses. A group never dies unless there is an earthquake. One day a single man will be caught. He will serve as an example alone. Be warned idle citizens.

DEAR FUTURE HUSBAND

Dear future husband I hope when the business of giving birth is over, you will walk to the hospital and have vasectomy.
On days when mama was far, I had my daddy. So at the tender age of six, I felt the love of my mother from my father. He cooked, he washed my clothes, and he taught me how to shower. He taught me how to be a child; he made my first toy, Katrina. He helped me sew Katrina’s first sweater. He taught me how to tie Katrina on my back. Then one morning I woke up and there were two round swellings on my chest. He bought me a bra. He bought me my first pack of pads, and taught me how to wear them. He did all this and he is still a man.
Washing clothes, scrubbing floors and cooking pots doesn’t make a man a woman. A man who cooks is just a man who cooks, not a woman. A woman who has dreams is also that, a woman with dreams, not a feminist.
Future husband, I am a woman who has dreams. I know most of my dreams will come to pass. I am letting you into my life with a condition that you will complement me because I will do the same for you.

I have no problem with waking up at six. I am not lazy and marriage will not make me lazy. I will cook tea all mornings. I will never complain about having to wake up to cook tea since I do not trust any other person to cook my tea.  Here is why, I don’t like milk that much, so I always get excuses to not take tea. I have to cook my tea to make sure it cooks well. While I am up cooking tea, I don’t expect you to be asleep. I don’t expect you to be in the kitchen with me though it could be brilliant having you there. You can be ironing our clothes, spreading the bed or holding the baby while I prepare breakfast. I hope we will have hot shower in our house, but in case we won’t be having it, then I will boil water for us to shower. But I will not be the one to carry it to the bathroom. That will be your work. If you have a question about this, then just ensure that we have instant shower before our marriage. I will not pour tea in your cup for you; I will also not apply jam or blue band on your bread. In our house, it will always be self service, except for our children and on days when you will be sick. On normal days, you will serve yourself that will save me from the headache of estimating your hunger, and the extent of your appetite. This will help you on those days when I will not be at home. Washing dirty utensils will be the work of the house girl. But on those days when she will not be around, then it will be our work. We will all stand before the sink and scrub the cooking pots. I will not do it alone on cold nights while you will be tucked in bed, dressed in warm pajamas, a scarf and gloves. No, never.
About children, I want four, if you will want five, I will have no problem. But I will not deliver your mother, father, grandfather and all those other relatives you might want to name our babies after. If I get girls only, I will stop at four or five. A child is a child. I have no obsession over heirs and whatnot.  I will equally take part in naming our children. We are not going to name our children after any dead person. We will not also name them after any living person. We will just give them nice African names, names like Taabu, Mapenzi, Furaha, and Mazuri. No son of mine will be called Christopher Hawking. He is African, he is African.
I always slash the grass around my house. I fix my bulbs when they blow. I ring the alarm when I hear people outside my house. I will not expect you to be electrician, plumber, and protector. So I don’t expect you to make me cook, dishwasher and washing machine.
I will be a working lady. I will not add your name to mine coz three names is too much; having a fourth one will be ridiculous. I will always work. I will be expected to be consulted when big decisions are made. I will respect your mother but I hope she will never at any one point consider moving into our house, unless of course she is sick. I will always work, so I won’t ask for money for any of my businesses from you.
I will help the children with homework on someday but you will have your days too. I will never be the one to spread the bed if you wake up after me.
I will expect you to be in the house on time. If you will need time with friends, I will expect you communicate in time. Otherwise, I will not sit up many days waiting for your footsteps so I can open the door for you. If you come home late, you are also the one to warm your own food.
If you cheat on me, you go or I go. You beat me even once you sleep in jail.
Otherwise, it will be a good marriage. I hope you will love listening to me as I read your stories. I believe you will never feel henpecked sitting over a jiko cooking chapattis as I cook the stew. I hope you will enjoy me dropping you at your work place as much as I will enjoy you dropping me at my place of work.
Above all, I believe you will tell me the truth. That you will tell me that my hairstyle is great when it actually is.