In April 2014, Martin Kimathi was busy running his Internet café business in Meru town when a cousin of one of his employees walked in for a visit. For the next several months, this became a frequent occurrence and soon Martin and Evelyn Kanyua became acquainted.
Later, Evelyn’s cousin quit her job and recommended Evelyn as a replacement. Evelyn sensing an opportunity and Martin needing an employee, they mutually agreed to give each other a chance. Evelyn started working at the café as Martin’s employee.
“I trusted that she would do a good job like her cousin and she did not disappoint. She was committed and hard working. My respect for her only continued to grow,” says Martin, adding that he woke up each morning looking forward to getting to work.
After a year of working together and quite unaware of the fondness that had grown between them, Martin and Evelyn prepared to part ways.
“I decided to further my studies in hospitality management and the college I was to join was in Thika town so I quit my job,” says Evelyn, adding that they agreed to keep in touch.
In April 2015, Martin sent Evelyn a text message asking her if she would be around for the safari rally competition that had its route through Meru town.
“While my attraction to Evelyn wasn’t immediate, shortly after she left for college I found myself looking for little things that reminded me of her. That is when I realised she meant more to me than an employee,” says Martin.
Evelyn adds, “Coincidentally, at the time he invited me over to watch the safari rally, I was on a study break so I agreed to join him. I had also realised I was missing his company.”
Spending time together in Meru watching the safari rally was to be the turning point in their lives. “I didn’t want to be apart from Evelyn so I went ahead and asked her to be my girlfriend. We ended up going on our first date at a local hotel in Meru,” says Martin, adding that they had lengthy discussions and he discovered how authentic she is.
“Evelyn says what she means and means what she says,” he summarises her character.
Evelyn says that the more time they spent together, the stronger their bond became. “Initially, the age gap of nine years caused us some anxiety but we sought advice from other couples in the same position and their assurance reminded us that age is just a number,” says Evelyn.
Openness was key in their courtship given the age difference and also because they lived in different towns.
On August 28, 2016, just five months after the couple started dating, Martin popped the big question over a picnic date.
“My mind was made up and I didn’t see the need to wait as we were both in love,” says Martin. They tied the knot three months later. “We didn’t want to risk anything standing in the way of our union,” says Martin.
With their parents blessings the couple walked down aisle on 31 December 2016 at the Kenya Methodist University Chapel in Meru. A reception followed at the Ebony gardens in Meru. With a budget of Kshs 500,000, the couple hosted 600 guests.
The couple says they are enjoying their marriage as they lay the foundation for the future. “We believe communication is key to the success our marriage and we are spending time getting to know each other,” they say in conclusion.