I felt like a boxer.
That’s figuratively speaking, of course. It would be foolish to imagine myself taking punishment so that others would be entertained.
The walk kept me thinking straight. The distraction helped clear some of my doubts as to where I was truly headed. The constant jabs to my confidence could not pound my perseverance to surrender. I had to evade time and again, the left and right hooks of unseen problems, the uppercuts of malice from other people and the knockout punch that could end all my dreams.
Like Muhammad Ali, I needed a rope-a-dope style to life, bobbing and weaving, keeping my distance to deny my foe, boredom, the ability to clinch and stuck to me like glue. It could sap my energy, wriggling away from the hold.
“You look haggard,” my kumpare observed later, a few hours after he left me near my house. “Is there something wrong?”
“I had an uneasy sleep,” I admitted, clicking my tongue to signify it was a small matter.
“Tell me, man!” he asked adamantly. “I could help, you know.”
“You see, it bothered me a lot learning about the wars going on in other parts of the world.”
“That I could not help you with,” he remarked. It was his turn to click his tongue.
“Aren’t you bothered at all?” I was surprised by his marked indifference.
“Life is hard here at home. We have our own war to fight. You know, daily survival.”
“I see!” I sighed, accepting that his logic was correct. “You are a family man.”
“Why not look for your other half?” he suggested, the grin on his face came back.
Ouch! I should have not mentioned the word family.
“All of you has this ability to turn every topic back to my status.”
“You’re tough, man. But you will be tougher if you have someone beside you. Besides, your godchild pesters us with questions about you we have no answers of.”
“Children,” I smiled comfortably, “will always stay innocent until the world teaches them otherwise.”
“There you go again,” he laughed loudly. “Can you speak in plain language for once?”