I am just a girl who loves reading and talking about books
It was on a Saturday morning, I had just received my salary. Thoughts of how I would spend the money got me so excited that sleep became elusive. By 7:00am in the morning, I was in a Matatu heading to town.
My first stop was ‘back street’. By then hawkers use to sell their wares in the back street of Nairobi away from the city councils’ view. Being a Saturday, most of the hawkers had already set up. In a few minutes, I had managed to get a few blouses and skirts for work at very fair prices. The next stop was the supermarket for some shopping to last my family a month.I couldn’t wait to get home and give the shopping to my mother; I could already imagine her smile of gratitude.
While heading towards the railway station to get a Matatu, I came across a seemingly elderly woman standing outside the bomb last park. She was dressed in a long flowred dress with a matching headscarf and wore a sad expression on her face. The woman looked lost and it was easy tell that she needed help. When she caught me staring at her, she approached me and asked for help. I am normally wary of talking to strangers especially in Nairobi but the woman look old and harmless so ignoring her seemed a bit heartless.
She explained that she was looking for a children home in Westlands where her church was taking some donations to the orphans. Her voice was filled with sadness as she explained how she had lost her way in the big city. I immediately volunteered to take her to the Matatu she was looking for. However, she gently turned down my offer, saying that directions would be enough.
After my directions, the lady did not seem to be in any hurry to leave. She instead struck a conversation with me, expressing her gratitude. She introduced herself as Wambui from Nakuru where she worked as a preacher. Talking to her was easy and in no time, I found myself introducing myself and really opening up to her. Due to her age, she looked motherly, someone trustworthy and easy to talk to. Wambui told me that she was a preacher .Then she started telling me how she could sense a good spirit in me from the time we met. For some reason, I stood and listened to her although looking back now, that was a stupid move that I being wiser now reckon shouldn’t have made.
After a short while, a gentleman walked to us and enthusiastically greeted Wambui while referring to her as Pastor. He told her that he had seen her on TV performing miracles, healing people and making people realize their dream. The man then turned to me and asked me if I had watched Wambui. By this time we were chatting like three old friends, we had even moved to corner so that we could have some privacy. Wambui then told the man how I had helped her and she insisted that she had to thank me by saying a prayer for me.
She explained that the prayer would help me lead a successful life. I eagerly joined the two in prayer for about five minutes. On opening my eyes, I found her staring at me with tears in her eyes. She said that God revealed something to her during her prayer. Apparently she had seen a vision of me , standing at a loved one’s graveside. The vision had shown her that I would lose a loved one in a very short while.
At this point, I had started crying. Passersby were staring but they probably thought I was ok since I was with ‘my family’. The lady told me that I would require a cleansing prayer. She asked me to go to the nearest supermarket and buy a packet of salt; once I bought it, I was to say The Lord’s prayer three times. This would keep evil and grief away from me. She asked that I leave her my shopping and all my bags so that I may run. Evil spirits are dangerous; she explained you need to act first.
I ran to the supermarket crying. I got my packet of salt and said my prayers, even backing them with my own personal plea to God to spare all my loved one’s lives. I rushed to the counter and that is when I realized that, I didn’t even have any money to pay for the salt. I left the salt and ran back to get money from Wambui. However,she was gone .The man had disappeared too. I tried asking the security men at the bomb last gate but nobody had seen an elderly woman and a younger man leaving the area.
In my state of confusion, it still hadn’t yet dawned on me that I had been conned. Instead,my main priority was getting home first to ensure that my whole family was still alive . Still in tears I explained to some men at the bus stop that I didn’t have money to get home and I was in a hurry. Maybe it was the crying or my confused look but they quickly gave me bus fare and I rushed home. Hours later after I had seen my family ,it finally dawned on me that I had been conned.
Since that day; I never help anyone in Nairobi. I never stop to talk to strangers and am particularly wary of elderly people asking for directions.