Column Squad

Taxi Memoirs: A Ride With Miss Clueless

Short Haircut for Black Women3

I had an early start today so the conductor, most of the passengers and I are dozing. In my fitful sleep I keep praying that the driver doesn’t join us on this sleep in, on the taxi. So I don’t seem to recall where Miss Cyber joined us. Unlike us she is not dozing but furiously engaging her laptop. The look of concentration on her face makes me imagine that must be perusing the broad sheets i.e. the New York Times and the Washington Post or checking what the Economist is saying about the falling Yuan. Or better still trying to find out what the Daily Mail is saying about the immigrant situation in Calais.

You see as middle aged chicks we are always checking out the young ones to see how far we have fallen and how we can salvage what remains of our youth, of course always taking care not ruin the old wine skin completely with too much new wine. So I note that her green nail polish on me would cause consternation and the red hair piece would have our Mothers Union chair lady taking me aside for a word or two.

At Katwe our driver takes the Lubiri road detour to avoid the Clock Tower jam and luckily everything goes as per plan because it is not uncommon to get into a grid lock while trying to avoid a light hold up on the main road. Just opposite the Lubiri main gate Miss Cyber gets a phone call which she promptly answers. After the usual greetings the caller seems to ask her for information about an inmate and so begins a lesson in not judging a book by its cover. Miss Cyber informs the caller that the inmate’s case being so grave, she found out that he would be tried in Luzira Maximum prison!! Really ! I have never heard of such a thing so I perk up my ears.  She emphasizes this fact with some sympathetic noises. After a moment of silence maybe after the caller registering this shocking news, he asks where the inmate is right now. To which she replies that he was sent to a place called “Limanda”. When the caller asks where this place is, she says that such a place is not easy to find because it is a security risk to reveal it to anyone especially not the inmate’s relatives. So she suggests that money has to be found and a lot of money at that, probably 10m for a good lawyer such as Kasongo Alaka,  Muwema or Rwakafuzi who would be able to extract this information from the judge who sent the inmate to this “Limanda”place.

What is so disturbing or amusing is that the way Miss Cyber describes this process is akin to a human snatching a whisker from a wild lioness. The caller hangs up with the promise to find the money and she says she is going to do more research on the process of the trial and hangs up. I am left feeling shocked by Miss Cyber and feeling very sorry for the caller. You know in Uganda the culture is that rural folks have people in Kampala on whom they depend on for life’s nuisances i.e. that elusive  job or missing marks or a doctor’s contact for a complicated illness or in this  case a relative who has run in with the law. And  to think that some unfortunate family somewhere are pinning  there hope on  this ,I  don’t even know  what to  call her, is she a crook or just plain ignorant?

Anyhow when the taxi stops I try to get out fast to get a close look at her but I am blocked by other passengers. I only catch her figure eight silhouette. So guys out  there if you are dating, a light skinned, trendy girl with  a nice figure I suggest that you ask her outright if she knows the difference between a court and  prison ,and  what is remand and what a lawyer does and what a judge does. I know this sort of conversation might be hard, but if you don’t I can assure you that whoever marries this girl will be in big trouble.  Don’t say I didn’t warn you.