The country of red eyes, black glasses! 

HAVE you ever wondered what in the name of all that is good God was thinking of when He was in the process of creation?

Yeah, I know, no answer is forthcoming, and believe me, I wont tell you either, because to be honest, I don’t have the slightest idea.

But there are things which usually happen, and they make you wonder at the marvels of Mother Nature (and I mean that exactly), because they really don’t make sense.

I know by now you have noticed something new in town lately, and if you are new in the city, then you might be forgiven if you go ahead and think to yourself that the Bongo population have gone crazy with sun glasses.

You might be forgiven if you go ahead and believe that the Bongo population is so in love with one of its top musicians, Diamond Platnumz and decided to wear his trademark dark glasses.

But then, when you think of the bloody hot weather in Dar es Salaam, then you might think that it is a normal thing. That is until you meet toddlers in the streets with dark glasses on.

The whole story behind the great number of men and women wearing these glasses is something which goes by the name of ‘Red ‘Eyes’

That is why when my boss, that arrogant fellow from those sides where……I value my job, so let’s stop there, so when he entered the office one day wearing dark glasses, I became convinced that the guy was still fighting a losing battle against old age.

“Bosi naye bwana! Bado anafikiria ni kijana tu, sijui atakuwa lini!” I heard one of the women in the office telling someone along the corridors in the office.

What we didn’t realise then was that the guy had the Red Eye virus, and he was doing his best to conceal it, because I was told later that when he removed the glasses, his eyes (which are big enough!) looked exactly like ripe tomatoes.

Two days later, my son, the domestic thug, came home, and one look at his eyes and I was convinced that he had taken a long draw on the illegal stuff, which he fondly calls the ‘Holy Herb’.

He looked very confused with his dark glasses on as he dashed to the kitchen to raid the refrigerator, which is his usual habit, and when he returned in the living room and removed the glasses while balancing a heavy plate full of food, I knew by all means he was high.

“Dogo umetoka kuvuta bangi!” I accused him. Believe you me, if eyes had knives, then I would have become history there and then, because he threw me a red, scathing look that told me to cut the subject or else……

Being the ignorant fellow that I am sometimes, it took me a long time before I knew about the virus, and by the time I was getting to fully grasp what usually happens if you get it, my eyes had started to itch, and before I knew it, I was in the streets asking for the price of a pair of dark glasses. “Nahitaji nyeusi kabisa!” I told the young man who was selling them.

And that was when I tried to wonder what God was really thinking about when He was mixing His concoctions for all the diseases in the world.

But come to think of it. Apart from all these funny diseases, recently I was wondering what the big man upstairs was really thinking when He was creating pesky little things like flies and mosquitoes.

I have reasons to believe that He had a sinister smile as He released them into the world, with clear instructions.

“Go ye unto the world, (especially Bongo) and give the people a rough time, wreak havoc as much as you can. Flies, your job is to harass them during the day. Don’t let them eat their meals in peace, and mosquitoes, you will be taking over as soon as the flies knock off, and continue with the harassment where they had left, sawa!”

His voice might have boomed, and if He was as angry as I believe He was for Him to unleash such terrible insects in the world, then He might have ended His statement with a loud ‘Kudadadeki!’

Anyway, back to the red eyes. I knew the situation had become drastic when I entered ‘Zakayo’s Pub’, my local watering hole in Manzese, and half the patrons in the place, including mzee Zakayo himself, had dark glasses on, despite the fact that it was heading to midnight.

I was just watching the news on the television the other day, and I heard a woman telling the whole nation that the virus does not have any known treatment, so guys like me who dashed to the chemist for eye drops were just wasting valuable money.

And considering that a small bottle of the eye drops roughly cost about four thousand ‘bukus’, if you convert it to brown bottles, you roughly get about two frothy ones, at the right temperature.

So I was not surprised much when I went back home only to find my three-foot daughter, The Natural Disaster, wearing very dark and small glasses, and because she has this weird habit of speaking only when she feels like, she looked at me with the pose of a kid gangster when I inquired from her whether she had also been infected with the red eyes. (of course I blame her mother!)

So because it is easier and more fun to point fingers at the government, I will go by this trend and do so, and advise them to ban this red eye thing from Tanzania, before visitors from other countries start accusing us of being a nation full of ‘Wavuta Bangi!’

Of course the mother of my small clan blames all of it on me, the red eyes, blue eye and all the eyes you might think of, because just the other day when she looked at me with very red eyes, she decided to let me know who she was blaming.

“Baba Boyi, ungekua unatulia nyumbani like all responsible husbands we wouldn’t be going through this, now see you are torturing all of us because of mingling with all kinds of people in the bar,” she told me and rushed to the kitchen.

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