I shall never forget Boney’s for many reasons fun related but also because this is where I first ever watched a movie before 7 o’clock, at home, mzee only allowed us to watch TV from 7pm-9pm after which she would chase us to bed. I don’t remember anything like bed time songs/stories, the dark was my companion until my mind took me to another realm, dream Land.
Boney was a tiny little man on the village where I grew up but he had the best local cinema around and people always flocked it making lines and booking before hand. Back in the day, very few people had TVs so the only option was to flock Boney’s for football and movies. There was just one rule, the cinema was out of bounds for people below 18 and I was only 11 but I was determined to watch ‘the Matrix’ because I had heard one of my uncles talk about it.
I had to sneak in, grab a sit and shut the hell up because the penalty for sneaking into Boney’s wasn’t just being thrown out but it involved being publicly punished, no one wanted that, it made the girls scarce and other families would regard you as a spoiled brat and mzee would really be disappointed in me, being the first grandchild.
I was somewhat a coward, but I braved the situation because I was with Jack and my little brother whose example, I was. We were just little boys who wanted to watch the Matrix, nothing more, so we sneaked in, grabbed our sits on the floor and we acted invincible.
Back in the Day, Cinema was like a tea party or a bonfire place, everyone in the village would meet their friends at the cinema, some fell in love seated in Boney’s best sit at the back of the Cinema, others broke up just after a movie, drunkards frequented the cheap cinema and many memories were made there, the cinema was a meeting place for the mature. As for the young, it was a learning place that emphasized that there are programs on TV that we were not supposed to watch, this explained why Mzee only accepted us to watch the news and Drake Sekebba’s ‘Vumbula’.
Times have changed, the young have evolved, the modern day 11 year old fella knows thrice what I knew when I was 11, kids are accepted to watch whatever they want on TV, even the maids can’t control them, to many others, TV is there daily meal, and truth be told they have learnt a lot from TV, Is this a good thing or a bad thing?