Without a care…

The wooden roof on the patio creaks forcefully from the energetic wind thrashing the tides in. It is two o’clock in the afternoon and as I lay on the wicker couch watching my husband and son mucking around at the ocean front, I feel like a queen on the throne. We all needed a vacation and all I can say is “Ah, the bliss of the Indian ocean!” 

If the world could just sit still and let us enjoy this moment… without a care in the world. Malik runs away from his dad towards me as he jumps over a series of baby waves and yells “Mummy look! I can jump over the waves. I am the master of them all”. “Yes you are Malik!” I yell back. Malik has brought so much joy into our lives, and I have every reason to be grateful for this living miracle.

I lay on the couch watching my husband minding our son. Adam is the love of my life, he has grown a little bit older, walks with slight stoop, the creases on his forhead have deepened and silver streaks have mushroomed all over his head. He has acquired a great tan over the last couple of days. Despite what nature has done to his body, I still have butterflies in my belly every time I see him. He has a powerful effect on me. How did we meet? I can almost hear you asking.

I used to sing at a certain restaurant in the outskirts of town, nothing special about the place. Same folks always came in for drinks and bitings. I would sing there every Tuesday night and it was my source of healing and strength. I had just gone through a rough breakup and a painful miscarriage, two major blows in one. And a year later, I made the choice to live my life again without a care in the world. One night during my break, my best friend set me up and there I was, trapped like a bird in a cage with this handsome stranger sitting across my table offering to buy me a drink. Sigh! “You better be good to him”. That is the message I read on my best friend’s facial expression as she walked away from us.

At first I did not realize that I had been set up, I assumed it was a potential client who wanted to do business with me. He looked sharp dressed in a white linen shirt and sky blue jeans, gold watch and platinum chain around his neck. He was soft spoken and had kind eyes. He offered to buy me a drink and I asked for a cold sprite. I had no business ordering alcohol during strange encounters with strangers especially sexy men like him. We exchanged pleasantries as is common in any generic conversation and dragged on and on until I was at the end of my wits and asked him directly what his agenda was.

Nasty huh? That is what you must be thinking but I was without a care in the world!




Tomorrow I will tell you what happened next… 





So what happened?

As I moved on to the next class, I felt partially relieved that I was almost done teaching for the day. My head was still being pounded by the diligent elf and now my throat felt like it had been soaked in sulphuric acid.

There is not much difference between the last class and the current one because the children here are a notch higher when it comes to chaos, monkey chatter and adolescent giggles. My brain has switched from semi-functional to auto pilot on ultra high frequency levels. I muster all the strength my vocals can handle and print out the one word imperative order. “Silence!”

They all turned to give me a quizzical stare. I see the “what is wrong with your voice” kind of look. I know that I sound better than a grunting horse because I am in between low grunts and high hisses of a factory chimney kind of voice. The pain in my throat is unbearable and my brain is crying out for a hot beverage to soothe it. I know it is impossible but I manage to promise myself a hot cuppa of “DAWA” at Java Restaurant after this session. My brain concedes and I proceed to teach.

I take charge and calm them down, after exchanging pleasantries, I dive into last week’s lesson and assess their progress. that gives me time to sit and find the much needed relief that I was longing for. As each child stood infront of the class and recited, I concentrated on studying their voices more intently, their tonal differences, postures, how they practiced breathing, their facial expressions and I couldn’t help but notice the heightened level of nervousness around each one of them.

I was wearing a no nonsense kind of look for a good reason, I felt like being a bad cop and it suited my misery. On any normal day I would be my jovial self, entertaining their jokes and having an easy time but today I wanted to see if they actually have a memory bank, how much is in it and if it actually functions. After fifteen minutes of assessing them I finally set myself to begin the day’s lesson.

I put the music video on for them to watch the dance routine. So we got set to try out the first pattern of the dance routine.  I switched off the music video and got the Audio CD playing. I placed them all in strategic places and demonstrated the first pattern of the dance routine. I was still layered in my scarf and woolen trench and it was starting to make me feel uncomfortable and hot.

I threw my scarf and it landed on a chair near the CD Player and took off my trench coat. I rolled it into a big ball and threw it away also. I picked up the remote and started to play the song all over again. The beat got to me and I temporarily forgot that I was not feeling well, oh the power of music! My feet tapped to the beat in anticipation of the first dance routine.

“Five, six, seven, eight!” There I go, jumping to the beat and throwing my hands in the air. I turned, twisted and jumped to the beat and then walked towards the end of the room, prepared for the drum roll and there I go; running and then executed a perfect cartwheel. I land seamlessly into a standing position and look at my students to see if they got it. Their eyes are wide open, jaws dropping and squeals from the girls fill the class room.

I can clearly tell that the boys are challenged by the fact that I, their teacher who happens to be a female can do this so well and with so much ease. The girls are whispering among themselves “Wow! Did you see that? How can she do that so well?” The boys be like “Er… Miss Lydia can you do that again please?” Oh how my heart swelled up with so much pride! I still got the groove in me? After all the injuries my body has undergone through, I can still pull this off? Then I be like. “Boys, I am gonna do this one time only, and you be best paying attention coz I don’t have time for repetitions. Okay?” The boys be like “OK Miss Lydia we will pay attention. Girls please quit the giggling and watch!”

So I take the remote and restart the song one more time. “Five, six. seven, eight then I did the same pattern all over again. I am not seeing the students in my mind. I am on stage now. The blinding stage lights are on me, crowds cheering and Im in my bright green leotards and shiny jacket. I strut to the end of the classroom and wait for the drum roll to set me into action; one, two, three, four! There goes Miss Lydia, running for the cartwheel and voila! I do the cartwheel again and remain on a handstand demonstrating how I need a perfect V on the legs. As I am explaining this to the students, I suddenly note that they are all having strange looks on their faces.

My speech fades and my eyes follow their stare and it ends up on me, specifically my jeggings. I land on my feet with the same ease as before and straighten my long shirt. I pick up from where I left but they are not listening to me anymore. In my mind the crowds are not cheering any more, they are silent. I hear one voice at the end of the auditorium booing loudly! I look at my jeggings once again and to my horror! I had worn my jeggings inside out and just to add cream to the cake of embarrassment the back side was at the front! How could this have happened? You mean I was incorrectly dressed from my house this morning until now? The shock on my face from this realization was not as bad as the onlookers but I was so embarrassed that I could not even make it look like a new fad in town!

The pounding came back with such vengeance and my throat was too try to make any audible sound and that is how my session came to an upbrupt end. I picked up my scarf, wrapped it around my neck. I took my trench coat and put it on and managed to print out what my beclouded brain could communicate. I gave out a guttural order. “Class dismissed!”

I am so glad that the melanin on my face cannot show the deep crimson blush I had acquired. The sun was out but I did not notice and neither did I care! I was totally focused on getting home with an urgent mission. I took those damn pills out of my medicine box and flushed them down the toilet. Those damn pills stole my show, pride and dignity. Then my second agenda was to deal with the aliens in my upper respiratory tract head on with garlic, lemon, ginger and honey in hot water period!


The End!!

Life Experiences