A girl needs to sleep

Insomnia. This sucks! Until recently, I have been having a big problem when it comes to sleep. I couldn’t find that one thing that would get me to sleep. For months! I finally found myself sleepy on a fine night. There is a time sleep can seduce you to a point that you submit. That night was it. I was going to sleep like never before…I was in bed by 10.40pm. Baby Steps…

11.00pm MONDAY

Mum: Paulaaaa…!!!

Mum: Kwani uyu mtoto amelala? (Is this child sleeping?)

(Still debating whether I should respond or not)

I wasn’t asleep yet but I was very sleepy. Mum just doesn’t give up. She had to open the door.

Mum: Paulaaaa…!!!

Me: Mmmm…

Mum: Oh..you are awake. Nataka unisaidie aki nimekwama. (I need your help. I am stuck) Am really stressed!

Me: Ok..ni nini? (What’s up?)

Mum: Am trying to add an icon on this new WhatsApp group I have just created and imekataa..(its not working)

Could it be because its 11pm?! Maybe they just don’t work at 11pm!!! That is an emergency? Really mum…come on.

Me: Si ni rahisi tu. Vile tu ulichange ya family group juzi. (Its simple. Just the same way you changed the icon in the family group the other day)

Mum: Aaa..aki wewe mtoto amka unisaidie nimesahau (You wake up and help me. I have forgotten)

Great! How would that be easy to remember? I had not typed that down. Mum once made me type all the MS Word shortcuts that I know. Why? Just in case. Just in case what happens? You know, just in case.  I take the phone and just before I unlock…

Mum: Now don’t just press things and give it back. Show me the step by step procedure.

Sure thing mum… That will definitely make a difference. Anything for you.

Mum: Asante aki…hii kitu imenistress tu sana (thank you so much. This thing had really stressed me up)

Me: Goodnight

Mum: Goodnight

11.20p.m MONDAY

From a distance…

Aunt: Paula amelala? (Is Paula asleep?)

Mum: She will just wake up.

Aunt: let me just open the door. She will wake up

***luhya mumbling***

NO! NO! NO…Not again. This had better be a real emergency. Like probably someone needs a kidney. It had better be an urgent matter. A life or death situation. Door is open…

Me: Mmmmm…

Aunt: Ebu nisaidie kutuma vitu kutoka kwa simu ya mamako.(help me send some things from your mum’s phone)

Are you kidding me? That is her emergency?! I was so mad I just started laughing. I can laugh. I laughed to the point I was in tears.

Me: Aunty kusema tu ukweli hamko serious. (To be honest aunty, you guys are not serious) You two need to know the meaning of an emergency.

Aunt: Aki wewe nisaidie tu (just help me)

Of course I will help. Its really hard to use bluetooth. I mean so hard. You will need to apply to some second floor institution, do your six months learning and graduate as a certified bluetooth user. In fact you might wear a gown and call your kins from the village to attend the graduation ceremony in droves.  This is how hard it is to use bluetooth.

It was such a crucial thing that she needed to have a video of an elephant struggling to get off the river on a raised bank, at 11pm! That and many more videos. This very one was the top priority. I had to wake up and attend to it. That was just madness!!!

Me: Uko na flash share? (Do you have flash share)

Aunt: Ee..lakini sijui kutumia. Kwanza ebu nifundishe (yes. But I don’t know how to use it. Teach me!)

What had I gotten myself into?

Flash share tutorial took around 5 minutes. I had to repeat all I was saying 10 times. Answering the very questions continuously. All the time wondering what was the point. I was bound to repeat the tutorial soon. Only God knows when. We sent the videos she wanted.

Aunt: Thanks. Niko na all videos nilitaka sasa. Kuna ingine mzuri unaeza nitumia? (Thank you. I now have all the videos I wanted. Are there any other nice ones that you can send?)

No way!! I wanted to sleep. That can wait. Sleep can only seduce you for so long. I was not letting this chance pass.

Me: Not really. Unless you ask mum

Aunt: Mama Lauraaaa…!!!

Oh no…not both of them. No…no…no…

Mum: Eee..!!

Aunt: come and help me choose good videos. Paula can send them to me now

Poor me…we sent 7 more videos. Via Flash share. With two more tutorials.

11.45p.m. MONDAY

Now I can sleep peacefully. Finally.

Mum: Paulaaaa…!!!

Again? What now? Should I charge her phone too? Did she need to check her balance? Did she forget the code? Should I have written it down? Maybe someone sent a GIF and she need me to tell her what a GIF is. I mean what new emergency do we have now?

Me: Mmmmmm…

Mum: At what time do we leave tomorrow?

Me: Lets see about that tomorrow

Mum: Goodnight

Me: Goodnight


Mum: Paulaaaa…!!!

No way. Not again mum. When will she sleep?

Door opens. Lights on. Damn! She must love this.

Me: Mmmm…

Mum: Should I switch off the security lights?

I see…So the lights had to be switched on just to ask me if the outside lights can be switched off. Wow Mum. Wow.

Me: Yes

Mum: Goodnight…kesho amkako mapema. *kindly insert a luhya accent* (Wake up early tomorrow)

Me: Goodnight.

I had to wake up late. I just had to. And I was going to. My own pay back. I was going to be a bitch about it. It had to be a big deal.

To avoid more of this, someone tell me how to teach my mum and aunt the real definitions of the words Emergency, Urgent and Priorities. I love them so much but they need it. Urgently. This is a real emergency. And its a priority right now.

A girl needs to sleep…

Paula Norah

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