The 15 seconds of fame I did not ask for.
Let me tell you about the time I became WhatsApp famous.
I met Joe at a bar. The swanky ones where even the dancefloor looks like a VIP section. The ones where your alcohol is served with fireworks. The ones I like to party in. He was the right kind of dapper. I am usually very particular about a man’s clothes. I do not need profound reasons to fall in love, just a man wearing the right clothes, shoes and cologne and I become jelly in my high heels.
The music blared in my ears, the mojitos kept flowing and when I spotted him he seemed to wink at me.
A few moments later, he moved to the table where I sat with my friends and introduced himself. ‘Joe Lemaiyan,’ the name rolled off his tongue, smooth like Baileys. You should have seen how my friends drooled over him. It was at that moment I confirmed that his good looks were not because of the booze or one of those cases where ‘beauty lay solely in the eyes of the beholder.’
He kissed my hand and politely asked for my number. I gave it to him without hesitation lest he change his mind and I miss an opportunity. I crossed my fingers and hoped he would call the next day.
Thankfully, I slept immediately I got home, saving me an agonizing night of anxiously waiting for his communication. I woke up to his text in the morning which was an invitation to coffee. ‘What time should I pick you up?’ he asked.
At this point, it was safe to say I was impressed. Most times I would have just taken a bus or cab to our rendezvous point and here was a man asking to pick me up! Chivalry is not dead after all. I sent him a pin of my address and an hour later he was at my doorstep. He gave me kiss on the cheek and we left for our date.
Many dates later we were officially dating. He proposed for us to be a couple on a long drive from Naivasha on the weekend and I said yes and we posted our first couple selfie on Instagram. I added #Bae and #Blessed and a vague caption just for good measure. My life felt like a romantic movie and I wouldn’t have had it any other way.
A few months into the relationship, he was out of town and asked me to send him some sexy pictures. I was feeling sexy, in love and I decided why not. I decided to wear my sexiest lingerie (you know the type that is barely there) and pose. I probably took hundreds of pictures trying to channel my inner model before settling on the perfect ones. His response came seconds later, ‘Wow babe, can’t wait to get home.’ When he came back we made love like a 90s RnB video. Slow and passionate and lasting all night.
A few weeks later I received an image through a WhatsApp group I shared with my friends. I downloaded the image and when I saw it, it felt like the air had been sucked from the room. There I was, in my lacy red lingerie, looking like Dita Von Teese with the picture captioned ‘This is what Nairobi ladies are up to smh.’
To say I was in shock is an understatement. The tips of my dark ears turned red. Joe was in my sitting room and I went to confront him.
‘Lemaiyan! What is the meaning of this?’ I screamed waving the phone in his face as I stormed into the room.
He took the phone from my hands, looked at the image and shrugged, ‘It’s your picture.’
Anger rose from within me.
‘How can you be so smug about this? Why did you share my picture? How many people have seen this? To whom did you send this to? Didn’t you understand it when I said it was for your eyes only?’
‘Okay maybe one of my friends went through my phone at the party last Saturday and he might have sent it to himself. Maybe he is the one who shared it.’
‘A friend might have gone through your phone?’ I said in mock amusement. ‘How does that happen? You never even put it down for Christ’s sake!’
‘Which friend then?’ I prodded further.
‘I don’t know. There were many people at the party. I’ll ask Steve,’ he said dismissing me.
I had never seen such blatant nonchalance in my life.
It was obvious it was him who had shown the picture to his friends. He wanted to brag that he was ‘hitting that’. That friend showed another friend who showed another friend and six degrees of separation later, the image reverts to the owner.
I broke up with Lemaiyan. I thought I could trust him but clearly, the only person I could trust was myself.
I spent the day hiding. I took the day off and switched off my WhatsApp where messages were coming in fast and furious as people texted to either console me or condemn me. I wondered how I would survive this storm.
In the evening just as I thought things were calming down I saw a call from my mother. Oh no! She knew. My mother never called me just for the sake of calling. Shit was going to hit the fan with this one. My life as I knew it was over.
***Single lady in Nairobi is a collection of real-life stories and opinions from different women. It looks at the current world of dating in Kenya and the experiences that ladies have gone through. The views and opinions expressed here are those of the contributors and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of Potentash.com.
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