I walked into the office with my chest puffed out, my chin haughty and high, proud as a peacock (And not just any peacock. A peacock with a very nice shirt on) and announced that I was a boy no more.

I was no longer a callow, green, tenderfoot novice. “I,” said I, “stand before you today as a man. A real fully-qualified Ugandan man! Clap for me everybody.”

Instead of the applause, they asked what I was going on about. In the hope that it would expedite the applause’ arrival, I explained that I had just bribed a traffic cop and in doing so became a real Ugandan man. Because that is what real Ugandan men do. Real Ugandan men bribe the fuzz.

Some real Ugandan women do this, too, but a lot of them don’t. A lot of them just wear low-cut tops.

The cop was in the window whingening at me, his breath foul and his eyes bleary and bloodshot. He meandered around the point, dancing the way we all did in the days of jiggers, halitoting about how my friend had broken traffic regulations and how I should have been responsible enough to warn her etc. I soon had enough and so I raised my hand.

“Cut to the chase the way the rat in your mouth evidently cut to the cheese. You don’t want me to learn a valuable lesson, constable malodorous, you want me to bribe you!”

Whereupon the policeman sniggered sheepishly and muttered, “Now that you mention it…”

I whipped a note from my back pocket and tossed it into his face, telling him, via this contemptuous  gesture, that I was tired of him and demanding that he get out of my face. I am surely a man now. I am a Ugandan man. I be bribing traffic cops and then telling them to sod off. Whatabout.

“How much?” office people asked.

I told them.

And instead of applause they gathered around me to offer sympathetic hugs of condolence. You poor chap, they sobbed. You poor poor thing.

Apparently you can get out of a ticket AND get full convoy to escort you to your bar for five k.

And me I had given the guy a 20. He wins.

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