A 60-year-old man in Murang'a is in distress after losing a whopping Ksh700,000 in a week to a woman he met at a bar.
In an interview with a local daily, Tom Ikonya painfully narrated how the woman he met in Maragua town defrauded him in just six days, leaving him hopeless, high and dry.
The money, the old man who has worked as a plant operator for years said, was payment he received after disposing of one of his assets.
"Not from a poor family, I own some assets here and there and, in my retirement, I decided to sell one of them so as to welcome myself into the world of senior citizens and pensioners," Ikonya told Nation.
Moneyed, he proceeded to Maragua town on November 10 to relax for a day or two and then venture out into the town in search of premises to start a boiled-meat business.
He settled for a bar situated along Police Road for a beer or two, to quench his thirst.
"For those who know Maragua town well, it is a cardinal rule that if you are not streetwise, you make merry near a police station in case you find yourself staring at machetes in the hands of deranged teen criminals," he said.
It didn't take long before he had company.
"I am a popular fella around here and it was not long before I had company, firstly males and then some females. With cash, my generosity goes up and within an hour, my table was a mini party," he recounted.
He said he spent about Ksh6,300 on his newfound friends including a woman who seemed concerned about his safety.
"There was this woman who remained stuck on my side ... I had not known her but she kept reminding me to be careful ... that being rich and drunk was risky. She appeared genuinely concerned and I trusted her," Ikonya added.
At around 10.45 pm, revellers were asked to prepare to leave before the official closure time at around 11pm.
Exhausted, Ikonya decided to take take a room at the bar to spend the night. But the woman rubbished the idea, proposing to host him at her spacious rented house.
"I decided to take a room because the bar also had lodges. They cost Sh300 per night. But the woman who remained by my side opposed the idea. She told me that her place was spacious and she wouldn't mind hosting me," he said
One of the men in his company cautioned him against following the woman but a kiss from the beauty saw him disregard life-saving advice.
"But the woman overheard him ... she kissed me on the lips and I forgot the warning. After another kiss, I was following her outside the bar, to board a motorcycle and within 10 minutes, I was in her house watching TV. She lived alone," he added.
He spent six days at the woman's place and was treated like a king as they hopped from one bar to another enjoying the man's fortunes.
"The daily routine was waking up, praying together with the woman, bathing, taking breakfast, conversing about this and that, venturing out and into different bars and retiring back to the house for the night," he narrated.
The woman also volunteered to develop a business plan for the man's meat business with a budget of about Ksh250,000.
The woman advised him to withdraw Ksh350,000 to facilitate the project works.
"I presented myself to my bank and withdrew the amount and handed it to her. Plus earlier withdrawals, my account balance by day three was slightly over Ksh260,000," he revealed.
On day four, the woman told the man she had paid for the business premises and asked for more money to process the licence for the premises. He loaned her some Ksh50,000 too to attend to "some emergency".
"She also told me there were licences to be paid for and I had to part with a further Ksh100,000. She also wanted me to loan her Ksh50,000 for an emergency. I honoured those demands. So far so good, I thought," he narrated.
On day five, he decided to withdraw even more money after "trips to the bank became tedious".
On day six, they left for a local joint as usual but the woman returned his ATM card and excused herself to attend to some emergency. She never returned.
Ikonya had no cash on him and was relying on the woman to pay a ksh3000 bill that was pending.
The attendants became impatient and demanded that he pays the money.
After several failed attempts to get the woman on phone, he asked to be escorted to a nearby ATM to withdraw some money to pay the bill. The request was granted.
"In the ATM lobby, the first shock was that of ‘you have insufficient funds to withdraw Ksh10,000’. He asked for the balance and the second shock hit him like a thunderbolt. I had Ksh8.78 as the available balance," he narrated.
At 10.30 pm, he proceeded to the woman's house but found it locked from the outside.
On calling her, she informed him that her military husband was home from Somalia and they were at a nearby bar having some good time after months apart.
He phoned his elder brother, who accepted to pay the bill and save him the embarrassment.
"I immediately knew I had become yet another boy child to be conquered by the girl child ... Not by force, by very peaceful means. I knew the moment of reckoning was here with me," he said while fighting back tears.