(OLIVE BURROWS) "Do me a favor and write a story on what women want for Valentine's," Laura Walubengo tells me.
I give her a dumbstruck look and burst out laughing because I have no clue as to what women want for Valentine's. Personally, I'd like me a Christian Grey of the Fifty Shades of Grey fame: handsome, super rich, puts my needs first and is always in control.
But like the famed 'Alejandro' in Mexican soap operas I know it's a tall order so I decide to hit the streets and ask a couple of ladies what they would like for Valentine's. "I'd like jewellery and definitely chocolate," twenty-two year old Joanne Maina says, "it will make me feel like he cares and it's nice to feel cared for."
The significance of February 14 is even greater for Joanne as it is also the day cupid struck, "We got together on Valentine's day last year." Lena Macharia, a secretary, makes her way hurriedly through the streets of Nairobi with a brown envelope in her hand on her way to run an errand.
She's clad in a pink flowered dress and a hot pink bolero but she wants her Valentine's gift red, "I'd really like a red laptop and an iPhone that's all. I've never seen a red laptop...that's why."
Having been together with her boyfriend for the last six years, Lena feels she can make such demands on him. Twenty-two year old university student Linda Sohelo has no boyfriend to make demands on but that doesn't mean she has no special someone to share Valentine's day with.
"Valentine's is not just for those who are dating; you can show your mother love but if I had a boyfriend I'd expect flowers and dinner. I just love vals."
Anne Wambui is a florist and flowers are the last thing she would like to receive on Valentine's Day, "I'd like to go for a nice dinner but I don't want flowers because I work with them all day." Flowers, chocolate, a card and a teddy bear are non-negotiable as far as 29 year old waitress Hilda is concerned, "I expect flowers, chocolates and a teddy bear."
Nicole, a business consultant, has been with her boyfriend for the last five years but she's with Anne when it comes to flowers, "I'd like for him to surprise me...maybe dinner but I'm not a flower person. 'Yes' to chocolate and wine though."
Single gal Esther Kungu is rushing to class when I stop to ask her what she'd like for valentines, "I'm going to have dinner with my dad," she tells me.
The twenty-one year old has no boyfriend but if she did she'd skip class, "I'd have spent the entire day with him, that would be nice, and we'd have breakfast and lunch or brunch together."
Faith Michelle, another single lady, wouldn't settle for just a day, "A holiday someplace like Zanzibar would be ideal."
Who can blame her? At 17 years of age, she's got her entire life ahead of her.