Friday, November 02, 2012


I would like to start this story with an important caveat. This actually happened. It did. How do I know? I was there. As you will see from the story.

Two of my biggest fears: Motorcycle & Kanjo.
My friends will have you know that I have a very very unhealthy fear of four groups of people. One is midgets but that's only because they play sinister characters in movies and can punch me in the groin in a fight. The second group is Kenya Power technicians. Why you may ask? Well when I was young I had a great understanding of electrical engineering.  So when Kenya Power would disconnect the power I would promptly reconnect it. And from then I would freak out about hearing that motor cycle because the evil men would be coming to sentence me to a life of darkness. To this day the sound of motorcycles sends me to the bathroom where I curl up into the foetal position and sob like a little girl. Just in case anyone from Kenya Power is reading this, I stopped doing my electrical moonlighting when I was about 13 after a particularly nasty shock. It's not exactly painful. It hurts you in ways words can't quite describe. At any rate you couldn't make me touch a postpaid electric meter with Eugene Wamalwa's nose.

Third and fourth are held by the cops and kanjo. And that is the point of this whole story. It all started one bright Tuesday morning. *Fade into flashback* My friends and I were going to Coast and we'd decided to take the train. (Second class is pretty awesome when you have friends to travel with.) So the meeting point was the Hilton jobless corner. With about an hour and a half to the train departing, we were waiting for the rest to arrive. Some of you will know that some of the concrete seats there are broken. The one I was on had the bottom part broken so I was seated on the top bit. My first mistake.

Minutes later some woman walks towards our group. My first assumption? She was lost. Then she walks past my group of friends straight towards me. My assumption now? She is incredibly lost and I am the only person who can save her. So she walks up to me and takes my hand & asks "Hivyo ndio wewe hukaa kwa nyumba yenyu?" Taken aback I shot back in the only way I know. Sarcasm. "Ndio!" But she got the last quip. "Basi hii si nyumba yenyu!" Then she started dragging me. For a second I thought of struggling but there was a huge guy behind her. One of those burly dudes with a hairy chest and top three buttons undone with a gold chain hanging there.The idea of struggling evaporated.

I was unceremoniously dragged to a waiting pick up. My friends were so freaked out. They tried pleading my case but the two enforcers would hear none of it. I asked them to chill out. I was cool. Almost heroic. Inside I was pissing myself. I just didn't want a scene. And also I hate wedgies. In my head I was the good guy being vilified for something I wasn't responsible. He was a cop and good at his job!! I was doing that slow motion hero walk to the pick up with a soulful look in my eyes letting my friends know that everything would be ok. Actually I was just trying to blink back the tears.

I got into the filthy pick up truck and was promptly pushed against other law breakers. Turns out everyone who had been breaking the laws had also forgotten to take a shower. The smell made my eyes water. A lady next to me sobbed uncontrollably. This was her first time in Nairobi. What a welcome. Her crime? She'd leaned against a potted plant. The miscreant.She was probably a serial killer in waiting. There was a man who only spoke in Luhya. He was on the phone trying to get some relative understand what was going on. I was huddled up to myself. I was trying to figure out if it was possible to get mugged or have your pocket picked while 'under arrest'. A shudder told me I didn't want an affirmative answer to that question. Then there were the usual suspects. Touts, parking boys and a hawkers who seemed quite at home. I looked at the back of the pick up and for a second entertained the thought of making a run of it. The burly man must have read my mind because the look on his face seemed to dare me. He could take me. Easily. Took a few seconds and then with one last look at my friends we drove on to uncertainity....


  1. laughed myself silly! serial killer in waiting..kanjo can spot the eye...the crazy eye

  2. nice read!! part 2!