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My Encounter II

Updated on September 19, 2012

The other side of Nairobi City

Many people especially the rural folk think that life in towns and cities especially the city of Nairobi is the other paradise on earth. Little knowing that life in the city could be its own nightmare.

Nightmare because the other side of the coin in Nairobi city life is utterly gruesome. This is because despite many people appearing smart and moneyed in reaching their rural areas. Some even go to an extend of borrowing clothes, phones etc when visiting their rural homes, thus creating an impression of holding a decent job in the city. If you realize what kind of jobs such crooks do, you may faint.

According to my research, I found out that many people in rural areas in Kenya have a thinking that everything in Nairobi is decent and decently made, this including housing, food, road transport, sanitation etc. in fact the name city scares them so much to an extend of thinking that everything in the city is in the highest standard.

But just for ones knowledge, some houses especially in the outskirts of Nairobi city are even as worse than those in the rural areas. Take for instance such houses as those in Kibera slums, Mukuru slums, Korogocho, Dandora, Mathare, Kosovo. just to mention but a few, which appears in a pathetic situation. The situation becoming worse when it rains, that is the time you can know one who lives in the houses and one who lives in a form of a house. I came face to face with this reality one day when I visited my cousin living in Mukuru kwa Njenga slum, a few kilometers from the city. Unfortunately or fortunately, it rained heavily on that night and the house turned into a small lake, in fact I had a difficult time going for a helping as I could not walk on that pool of water, even warring gumboots was doing zero work as the water was too much, that incident made them to relocate the next day probably due to the shame they had received. Another relative in Kibera slum had his roof of the house plucked off by strong wind; they had difficult time salvaging households from the strong winds and rains.

Some houses in slums are built in mud, sheets, timber, parts of boxes, cartons, containers etc. some people even sleep in forests, bushes, shrubs, verandas corridors cartridges inside bridges, abandoned or unfinished houses etc because they can not afford to pay rent. Others do odd jobs to make ends meet, such jobs including working in a mortuary, in a construction firm, or other manual jobs as carrying other peoples luggage. In fact some people who appear very smart may look very odd when in that job. Others engage in small businesses, cleaning toilets or collecting garbage, being a watchman, just to name a few. Even in such companies where others claim to work actually engage in very odd jobs, jobs such as steel production which takes tedious and cumbersome process, road construction, cement making, salt making, bottle manufacturing, cloth making just to name a few because though they help in earning one an income, most such jobs have also their consequences. The list of such crude jobs ranging from working in a construction site roasting maize, prostitution working as a night watch man riding a cat, collecting garbage etc is endless but many people who do them are not recognized to be doing them when they visit their rural homes as they struggle to appear smart and refuse to disclose the kind of job they do. In fact others borrow things such as clothes phones etc when going home to entice relatives and friends. So next time you flash, ask for money or you visit someone in Nairobi city and he/she switches off the phone. You probably know why.


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