She went to the land of Hollywood with a diamond wedding necklace hanging loosely from her neck like a noose before it gives its snapping goodbye. She went to the land of dreams with pride coloring her shadow; a haughty swing of her thick plait; and why not? Her name was Serina –she was named after a dream.
Why not? I thought, though I cried the night before because she got the chance bestowed to her curvy hips, her white Colgate smile, her crystal blue eyes. And what about me? What about me. I have never had the smartness of a woman.
I envied her from the day I realized that looking pretty was more important than being rough. I had always been good in games, in fighting, in being well… rough. When we were much younger, I used to bully her so badly that she never joined in any of our games. She became a weak ghost, a girl who was just that…a girl. No more. Well I… well; I was more of a boy, a fighter, someone who laughed when the mother advised the daughter to wash her hair with herbal shampoo to make it shiny and black as coal. I ran after kites and learned that slamming the flat of your hand into someone’s face is much more effective than curling that same hand into a fist. I learned that one should never box someone with the thumb hidden inside the white-knuckled clench of a fist. I learned that if someone digs at your eyes with two fingers, you could just bring your flattened hand vertically up at your nose, and whoever’s fingers however long, would never reach your eyes. I learned that being flat was more beneficial than being round.
The day I discovered that I was turning round, that my legs could not carry me fast enough, that the boys I used to beat up now towered over me; anger glinted inside like a raised knife waiting to fall. From then on, I stopped fighting with boys and started fighting with girls instead. I could have died for my gang - a group of seven girls who knew that their only honor was their strength.
One day my friend was walking down the road after a harvest party with a cup of alcohol made out of rice gurgling in her stomach. She bumped into an older woman with a baby clinging onto her hip; and the woman turned around and told her to watch where she was going, if she wanted so much to bump into somebody, why not pick on a boy and not a woman with child.