When Mixing Work with Pleasure left me with Egg on the Face!
Teacher Neema was the new face in the village school. She had what was a typical bewitching smile, a well proportioned behind and an ample bosom with a revealing cleavage that made every male staff member drool after her. It was hard to tell then why she had chosen to teach in such a godforsaken village school that offered no quality education and little value for money.
To begin with, it was a private institution with a confluence of Early Childhood Development and Education certificate holders, diploma graduates and a slew of untrained teachers. Salary was pegged on one's seniority and the level of training or experience garnered.
I, being an untrained teacher, was in the lowly third tier with a salary nothing to write home about. Basically, it was a wage and not a salary that saw one go broke in a week or two of the pay day.
Teacher Neema, we learned, was an 'ECDE holder with distinction' and had come to 'motivate the pupils and the staff alike with her long experience and expertise.'
And true with her coming, we male staff members were falling over ourselves to please her. She was of average build and neither too plump nor too thin. Her firm but rounded breasts jutted out like a pair of ripe apples dangling temptingly.
“What would you reckon to be her age? It beats me especially if the women are in cosmetics and disguises their actual age.” Mr Nahashon said to me one morning. It was shortly after mid-morning break as we watched Neema leave staffroom to attend to her lesson.
Nahashon was married with close to half a dozen kids. I was still in the bachelor's pad then, and, as far as I reckoned, I was most likely to have her attention compared to my five colleagues if Neema was single.
“I would say late twenties,” I recall answering Mr Nahashon.
Before long, I found myself attracted to Neema. I was the only 'privileged' staff member who owned a safari charger back then when it was fashionable to charge each phone with its unique charger. There being no electricity in school, teachers would leave their phones charging at a shopping centre a kilometre away. At break or lunch times, they would send Kipchoge, the school's aspiring athlete, at double speed to pick their phones.
But for those whose phones fitted compatibly well with my safari charger, I would charge them ten shillings repayable when the salaries were issued. Most were defaulters who never honoured their pledges. ‘Uchumi mbaya, (bad economy)’ they'd say.
Neema's Chinese Nokia model fitted well with the charger. It was a fake that drained the battery in matters of hours. I undertook to charge hers free of charge, which soon earned me a good rapport with her. I was the envy of all.
To be 'in sync' with her, I began coming attired in my brother's three piece suits, stylish eye glasses and designer sharp shooter shoes.
“You must be in drugs or something. I don't believe your salary can sustain your lifestyle!” Mr Kinuthia told me one morning. He was a drunkard whose sight made the lady recoil especially on Mondays when he came nursing a hangover.
Mugo, the school's battered van driver, swore to me that as far as he was concerned, Neema was 'single and searching.' He said he picked and dropped the lady at a particular residential estate.
“I understand she lives in a single rental room,” he said.
“And have you seen the particular room in question?” I asked him.
I didn't take him seriously. He was, after all, trying to pique my interest in her, if he himself had no vested interests in the lady too.
One thing that remains ingrained in my mind was one particular Tuesday morning. As if by coincidence, Neema and I found ourselves in the staffroom after everyone else had left for classes. It was hard to resist stealing a glance at each other. She pouted me a kiss that I edged towards her desk and deposited myself on Mrs Omwaka's chair.
Before long, the headmaster entered and caught me with one hand around the lady's neck and the other in process of caressing her.
His jaw dropped.
I later received a long reprimand letter but not after being pilloried before the whole staff members.
“I want to make it plain to all staff members that the school is a working environment not a ground for sensual pleasures!” thundered the headmaster.
Talk of mixing work with pleasure!