She was as tall as a street pole. You could see her from a mile away. She was as slim as a palm tree, but you would have had to be blind to not notice her curves. She had a fair skin and her hair was strikingly dark and short, neatly combed too. She was dressed in a simple flesh-concealing top and had a conspicuous patterned chitenje wrapped around her fast moving legs. Her face testified that she was in her early twenties.
She was the lovely stranger that passed by his gate every sundown when he was out to breathe in the nostril cleansing evening breeze.
“Hi, I know you are probably in a rush to get home. My name is Solomon, and I would like to get know you…”
“Excuse me, pretty lady! There is some mystery about you and I am very curious. Do you have a name? …”
“Hello, I am Solomon. Can I walk you home? …”
He would ask her, but only in his mind. Two full moons had elapsed since his eyes first stumbled upon her beauty, and Solomon still could not gain the bravery to speak to the lovely stranger that left an aroma of roses every time she went past.
There were times, a few times, when he managed to get her attention, when his sharp eyes pricked her so much to the extent that she could not help but address them. Their eyes would meet. He, in a moment that he fervently believed could be described as “painted with heat and monstrous attraction”, would nod his head slightly and quickly to her.
Surprisingly, she would respond warmly with a colorful smile – ‘colorful’ because her teeth danced in lime white, and her lips glossed with redness and had a pitch black smooth line highlighting them.
Oh! And once or twice, she waved at him before continuing with her athletic pace.
“She is the one!” He would tell himself and blush every time she acknowledged his mere existence with her brush ‘colorful’ smiles and waves.
On some evenings, before she even appeared, he would see her approaching. He would make rain fall from an empty blue sky as she was in his proximity. She would have no choice but to plead with him to offer her the shelter by his veranda. And on the veranda, everything sweet would happen. Her top would grow wings and fly off her, her chitenje would grow hands and unwrap itself. She would smile at him endlessly and invitingly. Finally, he would pull her close to him and…
However, his fantasies would come to a dramatic end when a random cyclist rang his bell very loudly to alarm an absent-minded pedestrian, or more usually, when his nose was greeted by an aroma of roses.
He desperately needed to talk to her.
However, since he instantly became a mute when she appeared, he knew he would only manage to converse with her when she sparked a conversation.
And so he waited.
He waited in vain!
However, on one evening, he resolved to act. He decided to track her so that he could finally know something about her – her home.
As usual the lovely stranger made her way past. She was decently dressed, with a handbag on the left shoulder, and the aroma of roses trailing beautifully behind her.
Solomon instantly got up from the pillar he loved to sit on every evening and tailed her. He made sure to keep a good distance. The art of being a good stalker is flirting with distance, he thought.
As usual, she paced as though she was leading in a marathon. It amazed Solomon how she still managed to appear as though she was cat-walking for a beauty-pageant, even when walking at an athlete’s speed.
“She must be in a hurry to get home,” Solomon thought. “She probably lives uptown in a well-heeled home with a chimney and a gate that welcomes guests with a uniformed guard. I mean she seems of high-class,” he speculated in his head.
The lovely stranger paced on and on, made turns to the right, to the left, to the left again. In no time, she exited Solomon’s residential area and pursued the path that led to the tall city buildings, bright lights, and fancy cars.
Solomon trailed behind. He was too preoccupied with thoughts about her to the point he did not even notice that the evening was aging quickly, and that he was minutes away from the city. He snapped out of his thoughts as the lovely stranger disappeared into one of the public toilets – the ladies.
His face was expressionless. He wondered if he had foolishly walked all the way from his house following a lady that was simply in dire need to answer nature’s call.
Solomon decided to wait a distance away – a good stalker he was.
He looked around and could not help but get lost in the mesmerizing sight of all the bright sparkling lights that completed Blantyre town at night.
In the distance, beyond the ladies room, blinked neon red lights that spelt: Mount Soche Hotel.
A fancy Porsche emerged out of the hotel gates and advanced about twenty meters and stopped beneath a tall streetlight pole.
Three tall girls, dressed in almost nothing but their flesh, appeared from the edge of the road and approached the Porsche. After thirty seconds of what appeared to be a heated conversation with the driver, one of the girls jumped into the vehicle.
Within a flash, the Porsche disappeared in the darkness way ahead. The city life! He thought and smiled in amazement.
Solomon’s eyes quickly caught a tall figure leaving the ladies. It went past the hotel and approached the streetlight, where the two girls stood. As the figure got beneath the streetlight, it became so familiar. It was the lovely stranger.
She hugged the two girls briefly. She looked different… She had lost her hand bag… She had lost her chitenje and her thighs were reflecting the streetlight… Her top no longer concealed her flesh… Her hair, it had miraculously grown! And it neatly hung loose over her shoulders.
Solomon’s eyes protruded with wonder.” Perhaps her father or uncle will pick her from there and take her home,” he thought as he scratched his scalp.
Soon enough, a shinny Mercedes Benz appeared from the darkness way ahead and stopped beneath the streetlight. The girls hastily raced towards it. They got to the window of the driver’s seat and engaged in a burning conversation with the driver. Moments later, the lovely stranger ran round the vehicle and hoped in.
The two remaining girls retreated hopelessly beneath the streetlight.
His heart shredded to pieces as he watched the Benz disappear into the hotel gates.
No one would have guessed. She was young, attractive and … and a stranger…
Breathless, Solomon turned back and slowly made way back home. He tried as hard as he could to ignore the aroma of roses that seasoned the evening breeze.