In the spirit of Lewis Hamilton’s first 2016 victory at the just concluded Monaco Grand Prix, I decided to write something about conquests. Now I am nowhere near a world championship contender, I do have a few small victories that I rather much enjoy almost as much as Lewis did his 44th career win.
However, in the race of life, no one really comes out on top. As Kansas so eloquently sang, “All we are is dust in the wind.” However, aside from life’s rat races we encounter various competitions here and there. And the little victories make the never ending journey of life that much more enjoyable. Trust me. I know.
When I was a kid, with falling milk teeth and fingernails chewed down to the bed, I used to come in no. 1 at school. Every single time. At one time, I was ranked best at math and English in the entire stream. The English badge was essentially mine but plus the mathematics one, that made for a very happy little girl. As happy as a teen mom who got a diamond ring from her baby daddy. I can still recall the naked joy on my father’s face. The cccchhh of the one litre soda he bought for us to drink in wine glasses.
Unfortunately, this lasted between class 1 and 3 because when I joined 4, I went from being outstanding pupil to depressingly average. Since then, I can remember ALL the victories I have had since. Yes, they are that staggeringly spaced out and- ahem- few.
In class 8, I came in first at the three-legged inter-stream school sports day. In form 1, I participated in a raffle and won a soda. In form 3, I was selected over a handful of other candidates to write my house’s play for the school inter-house drama competitions. It came in last but being picked was a victory on its own. I have managed to rake in a whopping 3000/- from sports betting after placing close to 600/- in various bets. Profits are a victory.
I have run for a front place in a line and arrived ahead of my adversary. It takes an almighty amount of concentration not to smile smugly but I remain silent and demure- gracious in victory. I have undercut a matatu, a citi hoppa, pretentious SUVs and city council vehicles while driving. I have successfully held in a fart in a long distance matatu ride and more impressively, didn’t succumb to a number two call of nature while out on a run.
I have gotten off matatus without paying. That was especially satisfactory when the conductor was a rude bastard and the driver was a man who attended a demolition derby for his driving lesson. I have won a jumper and t-shirt after answering questions correctly during trivia. They are hung in reverence in my closet with fancy hangers. Nobody should ever say ujuaji didn’t get me anything.
I have silenced hysterical people in a public place with scathing logic. I have pacified crying babies. I have outstared strangers. I have found thousands of cents in forgotten change in my pockets at end month. I have proven countless people wrong and then when they argued even further, been proven right by Wikipedia. That has to be the sweetest victory. Even sweeter than a free chicken teriyaki sub for being a frequent customer.
I could go on but I suspect that I am becoming boring. My point is rather simple; when you perform those singular activities where you outdo your companions, rejoice. Inasmuch as I am no Formula 1 driver or even an athlete, there’s something to be said for the little victories. I like going to bed knowing I won, even if just for a second. Words of caution though, don’t do it at auctions. You’ll bid on crap you don’t need with money you don’t have just to prevent being outdone. Trust me. I know.
[i] Photo from odt.co.nz