PLATTE-LAND 018: ANNIVERSARY

Related imageTime had rolled off in such a fast pace. The journalism club members were busy preparing for the maiden anniversary of the school mag since the celebrated launch. Everyone was upbeat and excited by the niche the mag had curved for itself. Blue chip corporate firms were jostling for the elusive space in the premier millennials’ magazine. From the giants in the telecommunication industry to multinational brands; the likes of Safaricom and Samsung, it was bliss and glow to the team behind the mag. Tidy monies were rocking their accounts so consistently stealing an eye from the campus V.C who as a result gladly accepted to honour the invitation of being the Chief Guest during the celebrations earmarked to take place, on the subsequent weekend.

Sly had worked on her presentation the entire week. Being the chair-lady of the Journalism club and the ingenious brains behind the mag, it was only well deserving for her to have a slot to talk about the journey the magazine had covered. She had like 6 drafts with Abigail her co-chair helping in editing her final draft.

The magazine had a special pullout to acknowledge the season it came to birth. A pictorial album was being crafted as well as a detailed editorial script summarizing its maiden year it had been in circulation. Many ads had also been lined up as part of the marketing gimmick to tap the million dollar youthful section of the economy.

***

Ladies and gentlemen, to start with, I wish to extend my gratitude to each and everyone of you present in this room, for resolving to come and witness this momentous day of our institution. As you all know, 12 months ago Must Zone magazine came to the fore. You can all bear me witness, it has been a roller-coaster and marathon race to the journalism club and all the stakeholders for having made my dream come true. The magazine has leapfrogged and gained confidence over time but more importantly won the hearts of legions of comrades.

Comrades yeeeh

Comrades aaaah

We’ve sharpened our skills in producing competitive work and in return attracted many partners who in tandem have moulded long-term partnerships. Well, it started as an idea in my mind and were it not for each one of you who believed in it and the school management who walked the talk of sponsoring it, certainly, we wouldn’t be in this room, today.

Of importance to all of us is to appreciate MUST Zone has become a household name and such a coveted brand besides emerging as a product of benchmarking by other institutions of higher learning in and around East Africa. Mt.Thondio University, Ndunduri University, Gathigiriri Teachers College, Wiitemere School of Applied Sciences, just to name a few have not only shown interest in emulating this noble idea but have manifested high appreciation for the level of investment and the kind branding our school has achieved through MUST Zone.

We have also tapped on the amazing talent our school has got and exposed it to a bigger audience for nurturing. For instance, we have student-writers publishing articles in our columns in a very regular sequence. Dr. Kiogothe to be more specific, has been running a fiction series that I’m told is on the verge of closing in a deal with one of the top daily newspaper – Syokimau Weekend. Isn’t that unprecedented?

Last and not least, I’d like to exude my indebted regards to our Dean of Students Mr. Mwangi for believing in our idea even when it had little to prove. He went ahead to pitch it to the school management who in return dared to give us a chance. On behalf of the journalism club, we can’t thank you enough Mr. Mwangi.

Mr. Mwangi stood up and briefly waved to the crowd, though shyly.

It’s now my humble opportunity to invite our V.C to give his speech.

***

The V.C having been impressed by the noble idea of MUST Zone school magazine made a surprise declaration that all current members of the Journalism Club who were actively involved in publishing the mag would earn a competitive salary starting immediately. But more importantly, he promised to steer a team that would ensure most journalism club members in MUST University got absorbed by the leading media houses the likes of; Syokimau Media Group, Igwa Miti Television Network, Kiawara Broadcasters & Kiandutu TV. He also hailed praise to Sly for landing the post of Syokimau Morning show presenter.

Mr. Mwangi, the dean of students would later have a word with his love-struck student, Sly, at the sidelines of the anniversary itinerary.

“Congratulations, you looked very confident on stage.”

“I owe it to you. You believed in my idea.”

“Just the other day, it’s now a year gone.”

“Sure, will you be joining us for the after-party?”

“You didn’t invite me plus still haven’t received your feedback on our trip to North Coast.”

“Is it payback time Mr. Mwangi?”

“Not really, is only that you misunderstood me during our date.”

“Can I make it clear to you that, that was not a date. At least not with my approval. Secondly, it sits awkwardly with me to have you develop feelings to a student who holds you in high regard.”

” It’s just a casual arrangement. Don’t read too much.”

“I’m disturbed Mwalimu by your pestering. Sorry if I sound offensive.”

“Anyway, let’s meet at the After Party.”

“Fine, if you say so.”

“By the way, you’re doing an incredible work at Syokimau Fm.”

Sly’s face melted from a frown to an easy face.

“So, you listen to my show? How do I sound on radio?”

“A voice that one would wish to listen on and on. You were made for the radio!”

“You can say that again.”

“See you later.”

Photo credit: Ted Talks

Previously on Platte-land series Internship

Platte-land continues next Monday…

PLATTE-LAND 016: TRYST

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They had numerously stumbled on each other, with the Dean of Students always imploring on her of their date especially after the incredible idea of the school mag. Speaking of which, the mag had become so popular that the Vice Chancellor of Matiba University requested for an audience with the brains behind it. Sly was taken by surprise besides being overwhelmed by the level of support her idea had gathered. The journalism club had been a buzz of activities ever since the launch, with many products finding their way in to the mag. The uptake had been indeed, fulfilling. The margins had also been growing steadily leaving the future with no choice but to be kinder.

Sly was meeting Mr.Mwangi at the backdrop of a painful break up with her ex – Chris, after she got wind of him cheating on her. It was heartbreaking and unbelievable. She chose to follow the high and unpopular route of not forgiving him and denying him any second chance to redeem himself. She rather chose to forge on, in the uncharted waters of single hood as life unfolded. It could be a blessing in disguise for her to repair the broken pieces in her life.

Mr. Mwangi would pick her at Adams Arcade and they’d settle on a getaway off Ngong road.

It was in one of those scenic hideouts with a flower-littered road tucked in between a forest that also domesticated legions of playful monkeys and chirping birds. Sly had never been to such a private engagement with any of her lecturer(s) before. But unlike her, many campus ladies had found themselves toying with the idea of befriending and firing up affairs with their lecturers all for good grades and enviable lifestyles. Scores of ladies found themselves wadding in love-flings hatched from infamous locations such as this.

So, why would Sly give Mr. Mwangi that kind of privilege to buy her lunch in a getaway frequented by people in three-piece love affairs? Of people shy of basking at the scrutiny of the public eye? Was she naive not even to inform her folks or Njagi that she was off to a lunch date, just in case? You know sh** happens! Had Mr. Mwangi been all innocent or had he mastered the tricks to woe Sly?

***

“Have you been here before?”

“Ooh no. Looks vintage like!”

“Yea, with a heritage to uphold.”

“Seems like it. It’s peaceful and equally captivating.”

“You didn’t seem to be very keen on the date though.”

“Date!!!”

“Yea our lunch date.”

Sly faked a choke from the garlic and lemon fish curry they were having.

“By the way, the meal is too awesome. I’m impressed by how they’ve garnished the coriander leaves.” Dodging his question.

“My pleasure.”

“So, Mwalimu, what was the essence of the so called date?”

“Aah, could you refer me as just Mwangi.”

“That will definitely sound awkward.” Making a sarcastic laugh.

“Why?”

“I can’t see myself referring you as Mwangi!”

“Well you just did.” He giggled turning away from Sly’s impressive gaze.

“Why would you encourage me to do so. You’re still my lecturer. And a senior one for crying out loud.”

“I’m not denying that. But this is a different arrangement altogether. I have a life out there, you know.”

Sly nodded as she awaited more from Mr. Mwangi’s bubble.

“Who doesn’t like having a good time with friends?” Making a more pronounced smile that warranted Sly to notice a gap that once housed one of his molar teeth.

“So, where is this headed Mwangi? Gosh, sorry. Mr. Mwangi.”

“Very good.” He ordered for some white wine.

Amid the laughters and long talks, Sly opened up to Mr. Mwangi about her bruising break up. She was surprised by how attentive he portrayed himself to be. He was such an incredible listener. He never interjected, nor blinked through the story. He nodded when called upon to, made faces when expected, while his eye contact remain drawn to her. That surprised Sly and in essence drew some positive attributes about him.

He sympathized with her story.

“Was he the first boyfriend you ever hand?”

“Mmmmh….you could say so.”

“You don’t sound sure.”

She crossed one leg to the other, took a deep breathe and adjusted her watch. “Okay, let me put it differently – it was the first serious relationship I have had so far.”

“The rest were?”

“The usual flings that die before they start.”

“Hahahaha. Is the guy who accompanied you to my office the one who hurt your heart?”

“Oh my goodness.” She walked to the ladies laughing loudly.

5 minutes later…

She found him on phone speaking to a female voice whom Sly deciphered, was his wife demanding to know where he was. She spoke with utter disgust and venom.

“That’s my nagging wife.”

“Nagging.”

“She is always venting and complaining of something.”

Sly sighed off. “You should make time for her. Perhaps she thinks you’re denying her attention.”

“But I’m always busy. I have no time to stay indoors and supply attention.”

“You see, that’s where you men go wrong. In the beginning you’re always very romantic and available, wait until the dust settles.”

Mr. Mwangi responded to an itch on his ever bushy beards. “I’ve got to provide for them. I can’t just stay there pampering her. How will I create wealth if I don’t whip my a** and get connected to the right people in this town?”

“But you called me for a date at the expense of your family!”

“I felt obliged to appreciate your brilliance.”

“Are you sure there was nothing more?”

“I have always been carried away by your charm right from the day you joined our institution. I wish we became more closer, perhaps even flying to the coast for a weekend, you know! Is that much to ask from such a dazzling woman like you?”

“But I’m your student and you are very much married. In fact, your wife deserves that trip more than I will ever do.” Sly was beginning to feel offended and intruded.

“Just a weekend.”

“No no no Mwalimu.”

“You could think about it, no pressure.”

“That’s not right. Are we done here, I see mum calling.”

Sly got to the car as Mr. Mwangi took his time clearing the bill and watching the smoke waft in the air from his smoldering cigarette-stick at one end of the parking bay, seemingly angered by his backfired moves.

They drove off with no much talk in the car apart from Sly engulfed in retrospection, with Mr. Mwangi trying to do some damage control to his proposal that didn’t go down well with her.

Did he jump the gun?

Photo credit: ebony.com

Platte-land series continues next Monday…

Previously on Platte-land series: Cupid

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