So there we were at the kind of three for one event that never happens in Kenya but most assuredly should. It involved party of some kind where you could buy drinks and talk. Talk, at an outdoors event. Most clubs in Kenya are so loud you can barely hear the music as it blares itself out. There is no thought given to those of a conversational character, people don’t meet each other to talk they meet to dance, drink and maybe fuck. All conversation does is get in the middle of these things and while it may, like a cream filling or an excellent stuffing, make everything better by being in this middle why bother when you can have the bare necessities? Is what the clubs in Kenya think.
In addition to this taking place there was a swimming pool. A huge, huge swimming pool. We have had a recent spate of sunny days in Nairobi and my I missed the sun, when am out in those rays dressed in the least I can wear and still get away with it I feel like God is hugging me, I spread out my arms wanting to grab each and every one of the warmth atoms flying down. The water was perfect too, not cold at all. For a lot of my swimming life I don’t get over how cold the water is. I plop myself in with a self-help phrase or find myself pulled in by a helpful friend. The initial shock overcomes me, every nerve set a-tingling and then it just doesn’t go away. There is no point when am not freezing, am cold until the only moment of swimming I actually like, when I have pulled myself out of the pool and am lying down near the edge. The sun has to be one of those God hugs though cruelly it’s always accompanied by a breeze, a light breeze but enough to set me shivering again. The water evaporates until there are only islands dotting my body, here an island, there an island but not everywhere an island. That moment, that moment is the only true pleasure of swimming to me. When I had almost forgotten what it meant to be warm and now I have almost forgotten what it means to be cold.
Then there was a movie after all this. An I-max movie no less. We went to the theatre late and were shunted next door. In this movie room we were in there were two screens none bigger than a normal movie theatre and each showing the movie simultaneously, “its Imax tax free someone yelled.”
But back to the pool. On this occasion my swimming was top notch, it’s like I had been smoking weed all my life.
There were shark in the pool too. They weren’t really sharks more like eels with shark teeth; they were as big as sharks and lived in these cavities in the pool. They would strike out of the cavities to eat or to mate, such things. As I was watching these sharks one of them began the business of eating and another wanted to mate with it. Some of my dreams have déjà vu or maybe that’s just what dream logic really is. It makes sense because it makes sense that you saw it somewhere else. Where you saw it is forever out of your reach. Probably nowhere but you don’t know that because when the one shark bit the other’s neck it made sense that this is how these animals begin to mate. It wasn’t a sharp bite it was the kind of necking that humans do, not as slow or sensual as red candles usually inspire but quick, slobbery, filled with unfulfilled passion and lust that may not last past an afternoon.
I also knew that in this state the sharks would not attack me. So I swam closer and realised just how wrong dream logic can be. The shark disengaged and came at me. I swam away far, far away. And this was the moment I realised they weren’t sharks in the traditional sense but eels. It came at me for metres and metres. I have no memory of the chase or sensation of being tired or even moving. All of a sudden I was maybe thirty metres away. The sharks had extended its mouth but its body was thirty metres long, I veered to the right just as it clamped down. Then I took a deep breath, I was still alive.