The Nightmare of Withdrawing Over the Counter

I need cash, and instead of a five minute dash to the ATM machine, having no ATM card, I find myself having to make a trip to the main banking hall. Here I am, wearing my pencil jeans, my gothic top and almost-three inch heels. Smile at boda boda guy and hook my leg over the passenger seat. I can feel the bumps on the road…slow down boda guy; can’t you see these pencils are too tight? I am afraid they may bust. The other day J asked me if I have to lubricate myself to wear them. Ludicrous I know, it’s just that he’s an old flame who still flirts with me. You think I should leave him alone? Well…I left him a long time ago, it’s him doing the flirting this time, I swear. Okay, bye, thanks for the (rough) ride…now to take a matatu.

Jeez, where are the mats? Been standing for almost 20 minutes, why did I feel sweet for the matatu that just departed? Please don’t talk to me, fellow waiting passengers, am in no mood to be friendly today, besides I woke up late. You actually talking to me? Yeah, I’ve been here for almost 15 minutes, Dude-with-Shady-Sunglasses-and-Funny-Hairstyle. Don’t worry that am turning and looking at the other side, a sure sign of disinterest. As I explained, am not in a friendly mood, which is why most of what am saying is not coming out loud. But am taking the next matatu that comes along.

Oh, here it is. It’s so full, but the conductor is giving me his seat. I’ll take it, but am regretting a few minutes later because another passenger has just entered and am forced to sit in space, literally. There is this space between the seats in a matatu that acts as a passageway for back seats. Am dangling off one side of the seat and perhaps I should gain a few more pounds so I can sit in the ‘space’ more comfortably. Am hating this ride, can’t wait to be over. Conductor, just take the cash, don’t bother saying something witty, I won’t laugh, I promise you that.

Finally, here we are. Ok, to the inquiry desk. Yes, Reception Guy. I have to sign the activation form for my account, I know, it’s been dormant. Not because of me, I assure you. I am not in charge of putting money into the account you see, only withdrawing it, and for the past six months, the person in charge of putting money into the account has been giving it to me directly. Oh, you have to take this withdrawal slip to be signed by the manager since I have no ID. Fine, I’ll wait.

Five minutes, how will I know it’s been signed? And I can see the manager through the glass window talking to a client? Can’t she just sign my slip…what’s taking her so long? I am not going to pace, just stand and stare. Finally, she is beckoning me…okay, Miss Manager, just so you know, this is the hundredth time am repeating my theft story, so just sign? What? I have to now join the withdrawal queue? Isn’t that the queue that is almost spilling outside? Do I have a choice? ATM card…I am still waiting for that. Okay, thanks anyway.

Oh Mon Dieu, this is the longest queue I have been on since first year when I was paying my school fees. Am glad my-not-so-old-man is doing it now, though that means I can’t lie about how much fees I pay in order to take a few thousands for myself.

Let’s see, where is the tail of this multiple S queue? Behind the Quiet-Personality Guy(Q.P)? Squeezing through the ATM queue now…here I am, Q.P Guy. I wish I had my phone, I’d be on twitter right now, or facebook. Am so bored, how will I get through it? I wish I had even carried my novel…that psychological thriller by someone Kellerman.

I guess am going to have to look for some way to amuse myself for the one hour or so that I’ll be standing on this line. It’s hot in this hall, Jesus, where is the air conditioning? Hey, who is this guy? Is he cutting the queue? Squeezing past me now, so unapologetic…oh, the pungent whiff of tobacco, he’s a smoker. He seems to find his place in the queue, I get it now. He had gone out for a smoke. Smart move, not just because smoking is prohibited, but because the room might bust into spontaneous flames…it’s that hot. I have to remove this sweater.

Mr. Tall Man…you seem to be the only tall one around. It’s like the world is shorter or something. Everyone here is as short as me, or just a little taller. Oh no, don’t look at me…no, not even my bust. I know, I know, it’s conspicuous. Am wearing one of those modern bras that push your high chest even higher into your face. Yes, I can breathe, I just can’t see my toes without bending into an acrobatic angle. Ah, I see…now your interest has shifted your attention from what’s beneath my top to what’s drawn on it.

Let me explain why it’s goth. On it are these two nude chicks…sitting at some angle so no exposed vital parts, but both have wings. One has a halo over her head, the other a pair of horns. They are seated on a skull…I wish I still had my Chinese phone, I would have put up a photo. Anyway, below the depiction is the caption DAMNED. Did I mention it’s a glow in the dark kind of thing? I love this top…I even refused to give it to Cliffo Small as a souvenir. Maybe when I finish campus, though I doubt it will fit him. He’s pretty muscular, you know. No, that’s not how I know…I just hug him every time we meet so I know.

Second guy from front, what are you doing? Am sooo irritated, yet I stare in horrid fascination. Why are you picking at a clean beard? Wait a minute…it’s a miniature pimple that you are turning into a monster one…stop it! Now! Before I say it out loud. Look away? I just can’t…don’t know why. Could you be an obsessive compulsive guy? I can see your fingernails are bitten short…do you swallow your nails when you chew them? Fine, I can’t stand your pickings any more, I have to look away. Straight into the mirror.

Am confronted my browning wild hair. I combed it this morning, it does have a habit of sticking out. My mum says I have inherited that from my father, well, she knew him back when he used to have an afro. I remember how my bro has been refusing to shave his hair…and his defense is that my dad had an afro at his age, why can’t my brother have one? Needless to say, he shaved it in the end…my dad is still boss. Bro is not yet in campus so he can’t do anything he wants.

Finally, I’ve turned a corner…thirty minutes gone? My thoughts are killing me. So far, I haven’t said a word out loud. Where are the young people in this hall? It’s like am the only one, at least the only one under 25 with a dress code of jeans. Oh, there you are Young Dude. Really, eye contact? Am not interested. Where is your hand going? Hmm….you are trying to impress me by ‘chomoaing’ that phone…don’t bother, I can tell it’s Chinese. I am experienced, my brother, besides mine actually looked almost authentic. I see you have turned another bend in the queue and out of my line of vision. Good riddance.

At least now there are some 20 people behind me. Lady in Pink, tsk, tsk….I know the decency debate, but you can wear fitting clothes. You are practically floating in yours, but it is your call anyway. Aren’t you in your early thirties? Take it easy. Oh, I see, you are studying me now. Disapproval oozes from you, I can feel it. Don’t mind me smiling out loud…these pencil jeans are in fashion. Besides, if it makes you feel better, the heels are killing me.

Why is everyone here wearing a weave? Including Matronly-Woman-In-Purple-with-Green-Plastic-Basket. She reminds me of a primary school teacher on her way to retirement with a farm and some cows. Yes you, what’s in the basket? Can’t see from this angle, besides, you have covered it with one of those ‘vitambaas.’ Looking closely, I can now see it’s a wig, not a weave. A good thing am a distance away, I am sorely tempted to yank it from your head. Not unkindly though….it’s the restlessness that comes from being in a queue.

Finally, just one more bend…Guy-From-Deposit-Queue-Opposite, you are not my type, so please, quit staring at me. I swear, I don’t like attention…I can assure you when am in campus I don’t stand out. I have seen outrageous dressing. A good thing your queue is short, and moving rapidly. Still haven’t given up? How can you be looking sideways like that, you might have neck-ache later.

At last, am facing the cashier. It’s been almost an hour. I have spent it composing this blog post, which is true, by all accounts, I can assure you.


20 Responses

  1. did you get money coz it would suck if you queued for that long and the depositor was behind you in line

    Yeah..I got the cash, the depositer was in another queue which was moving faster.

  2. Hahahah sweetie you have made my morning. Bless you a thousand times over. 🙂 And I want that t-shirt – you can keep the jeans and the heels **grin**

    Ps: It wasn’t that long, heehee 🙂

    I guess you are the queen of long posts… just all those not-so-friendly thoughts running in my head, I had to write them down, and that was not all, I cut out some! The t-shirt, you’ll have to come get it.

  3. Lovely lovely post.

    You are too choosy. There were disapprovals in here flying left right and centre! The Smoking Guy, the Phoney Guy (well, the phone, that is), the Wig Weave Debate Mami, the Zit Guy (did he really burst it?) Lordy!

    Like I said, lovely post. You should stay in queues often!

    Am pretty ordinary though, never choosy. Oh, don’t remind me of the zit guy…no, it didn’t burst.

  4. Hahahahahah!
    Si ur a HATER! Yaani u spent the whole hour psycho-analysing innocent bystanders byqueuers LOLest
    Pencil jeans are the skinny jeans right?

    skinny=pencil, yeah.

    Well, as I said, I was inclined to think the worst of everyone, I wasn’t in the best of moods.

  5. Um, you have issues. Sorry to bust your bubble but not everyman who looks at you is interested in you. get over yourself, geesh

    This is the ruddest comment, ever…anyway, I do not believe that every man who looks at me wants me, is that what I implied? I don’t live in this bubble where am the hottest girl every man wants to have, geesh!

  6. hi pliz check out this online money making opportunity for your blog @ cashcrate

    lemme know your view of it!do people still withdraw over the counter as opposed to atm?

    When you’ve lost your ATM card, you withdraw over the counter. Am not sure how the money making opportunity is supposed to work, but am interested.

  7. Good post!!
    Lucky you didn’t encounter the smack behind you guy. Dude who won’t respect personal distance in the queue, and will keep bumping into you.

    May you get a replacement ATM card soonest girl.

    Oh, Mr. Smack Guy was there..I just didn’t mention him. I had to stand slightly askew from the queue…

  8. Haiya! I’m coming to raid that top! Gothic=Awesome! 🙂

    Let me wash it and iron it…then I can show it to you, but as for taking it..we’ll discuss that.

  9. Savvy, you are a lucky student with nice clothes and cash in the bank ( :

    • Having a bank account is not the same as having money in the bank, sometimes my account is as dry as the Sahara..

  10. wat ws tht bank u were at?….am thinkin…. they other less queued banks lyk… up….. yaself

  11. eh hata mimi nasema you should find yourself in queues more often! Nice piece.

  12. didn’t know standing in a queue could make such an interesting story.

  13. Cool albeit lengthy post.


  14. I’m with everyone else…. this is like being a fly on the walls of your brain… Interesting. I do feel for you though.. Queues kill me.

  15. from cute cops to queues, kewl!

  16. i am still waiting for a photo of that tsho!

    I just may put it this space.

  17. I wonder how boring it wud hav been if u owned a 3310 Nokia phone. Ooh, the joy of technology.

    I could have played snake! as it turned out, I had no phone at all. Now I have this phone with basics..

  18. Interesting time at the queue as some commentors say perhaps you should stay longer without the ATM card so that we can get more stories like this.
    That said I totally loath lines in the bank especially in out of town branches but sadly for where I am its a fact of life

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