Purity can still relax because there is something urgent. There are some Kenyans who have been pestering me to write about two issues but I am not sure whether their ideas are good and how Kenyans in Stockholm might take the comments. I will take up one of the key issues today.
You have a very good Kenyan friend who respects you very much. She has two kids and the elderly child is having a birthday. As a buddy who is in her “white books” (you are almost topping the list), you are one of the first Kenyans and friends to be invited to the birthday bash, sometimes 30 days before the extravaganza.
The big day comes and then you arrive without a present for the child. It could be understandable if you didn’t have time to buy the present because your schedule is very tight. But then, you also fail to “put something” in an envelope which could later materialize into a present for the young lad who is turning I don’t know how many years.
Then, a small discussion about birthday presents suddenly pops up on a light note and, like a radio with new batteries (to borrow from comrade Martin Ngatia), you take over the debate, proselytizing about the general concept of birthday presents. According to your innovate theory, birth day presents are part of “white culture” because “our fore-fathers” never even used to celebrate birthdays in the first place.
According to your so called theory, the most important thing is that you have left all your stuff to attend the birthday Party. Your argument is that your presence at the occasion is itself the ultimate “birthday present” that is even “beyond purchase”.
In the meantime, you did not come alone. You pulled a friend who is totally unrelated to the family that had “specially invited guests” to come along and the justification for the extra company is different depending on whom you talk to.
According to you, “we are Africans” and not everybody needs to be invited to a birthday Party. “My friend called me and asked if we could go out. I told him that I had been invited to a birthday Party. WE THEN DECIDED that why not? We could hook up and zoom to the Party together. That’s the good thing with us Africans, you don’t have to be invited to such parties”, you roar.
WHEN THE “STAR OF THE PARTY” BUST INTO TEARS…
By then, your beer level is about 4-5 cans and as you speak, you are at the same time throwing tiny bits of saliva on your listener’s face because you can’t shut your big mouth. Your hands are in the air and as you dinya your points, you are pointing in the direction of Kenya, saying “huko nyumbani, people don’t care”. Just to rewind, you opened a fresh drink, took two sips and forgot the can in the kitchen. Noticing that your system is still not yet saturated, you call for a new drink simply because vinywaji are freely available.
The thing izz, You have forgotten that the Party may have cost the host between 5-10 thao in krona (Ksh 50-100,000) and that probably, the budget was based on a simple arithmetic on the number of expected guests.
To counter any possible argument to the effect that uninvited guests (like the one you came with) are being unrealistic, you posit that “if you don’t have money, don’t call people to a birthday Party”. This is where we are. If it was your rib or some soft flesh your fingers are walking over, it could be understandable if she is the uninvited baggage. You have arrived with a functional alkizz (alcoholic) whose first demand is a whisky.
He is functional bcozz at least, he knows where to take the last train or the night bus. Even then, you have to call him in the morning to confirm that he arrived in his one roomed shabby flat because he has a tendency of feeding you with stories the following day of how he slept in the night bus and that he had to be woken up by the driver in the middle of nowhere. He enjoys telling you these stories because he likes remembering how drunk he was last night. That is his hobby.
As for him (who arrived without a birthday present if you have 4gotten), there is a different explanation as to why he is there – eti it is always good to have friends because “they make things happen”. The truth is that he was supposed to spend money on drinks at Vasa but once he discovered that some free drinks might have been packing somewhere at a birthday Party, it was time “to go and meet Wakenya”.
Gate crashing within the context of African culture is not wrong per se. But why can’t you also contribute the cash you were supposed to spend at Vasa for the kid to have a birthday present or to appreciate the effort? We are Africans but we are not in Africa. We are in the “Krona world”. Even in Africa, there is what is called “communal contribution” in certain situations because life has become “hard”. If I were Leonard Mambo Mbotela, I could have asked: “Je, hu ni Ungwana kweli?”
I was one day very embarrassed when I got to a birthday Party and suddenly, the kid who was celebrating her birthday started crying mysteriously. The mother was around and I was making a corner, (just on time) to download at the small room. Surprised, I stopped to ask the mother why the “star of the Party” was crying. With some difficulty, she said that there is a guest who had arrived without a present and the child could not understand.
“MPANADA NGAZI HUSHUKA”
The problem is that all along, both the mother and the child had been positioned strategically to receive visitors and things appeared to have been going well. Guests were either carrying presents or envelopes with others requesting for envelopes if they hadn’t carried any but had planned to “do something”. It was not a “police marking” kind of situation but those who did not carry presents quickly explained to the mother (that they had something) then the Mom relayed the explanation to the kid (a present would be purchased) with the result that the kid kept her cool. Every time a guest arrived without a present, the kid expected an explanation.
Suddenly, a guest arrived without a present and since the guest did not indicate that something was on the way, the mother too could not relay back any signals. Haya.
The kid questioned why there was no present and at first, the mother tried to ignore in some kind of cover up. The kid insisted and the mother still tried to brush the issue aside because it was embarrassing. When no explanation was fourth coming, the kid burst into tears shouting aloud where the guest’s present was. A crisis of sorts started brewing as the kid persisted in the middle of a deep cry: “where is his present?”
When I enquired why the kid was crying, the mother whispered to me the explanation as we entered into an emergency brain-storming session to contain the crisis because if the news were to spread at the Party, the guy ran the big risk of being the “talk of Kenya-Stockholm” (if you know what I mean yeah!).
“And did you hear what happened at the birthday Party of Nani’s kid?”, so it begins. Nani ali-arrive without a present halafu, mtoi ndiyo huyo…”. The Kenya-Stockholm professionals normally break-down the story in bits, leaving you hooked.
The Question is: Should people carry birthday presents when they are invited to birthday parties or should the practice be left at the level of individual discretion? What I know is that there are few birthday hosts who will criticize a gate crasher who tucks some quid in an envelope “in solidarity”.
If they were to pass comments in the situation, I know Wakenya and they will, most likely, say that even though he/she was not invited, alitoa kitu. He/she “is better than nani who was invited aka kuja mkono mtupu”. They might even add that the invited guest came empty handed even though “yeye huringa sana”.
To try and explain why the guest did not carry a present, they might say that these days, “amefirisika”. Some Kenyans might even turn philosophic eti mpanda ngazi hushuka and in some cases, they might conclude that ameisha kabisa! Just because you arrived without a present. To carry or not to carry, always remember that the consequences are lurking in the shadows, at least, in Kenya-Stockholm as we know it.
For Kenya Stockholmers in the know, there is a general explosion of scandals doing the rounds in Stockholm. Some of the scandals are so huge that even talking about them openly has become a taboo because of the reputation and responsibility of those involved while others are still in different stages of development.
As a matter of entertainment and because the scandals continue to flow like the Niagara water falls, it is time to touch on some of the most well known ones. We will avoid those based on ramous and hot gossip. Wakenya have entered into a season of scandals and it would be irresponsible for KSB to ignore this development.
Take the case of certain members of the Kenya-Stockholm Christian community (also known as Wafarisai) who are out-rightly living hypocritical lives while at the same time preaching to Wakenya to encourage them to become candidates for membership in heaven when they die.
There is a church group (that some Kenyans believe is a sect) which has had a very serious unit whose responsibility has been to “give advice” to married couples who enter into romantic crisis. If you feel that your marriage is not working, you are free to contact this group, pour out your problems “in deep confidence” and expect not just consolation but workable solutions that might rescue your relationship. To be exact, this group has been doing very well and many couples have benefitted greatly from their services. Little children have been saved from losing parents through “preventable divorces” and Wakenya have been happy.
The good work of the group has meant that more and more couples have been turning to the team with their problems. The Christian background of those involved in the mediations has given many Kenyan couples great confidence in the group because no one would open up private stuff (even in times of crisis) to someone or people likely to spend hours on the phone updating other Wakenya about “the latest” on Nani’s crumbling relationship.
Recently, a contact called KSB to accuse a leading member of the group of having “snatched her husband”with whom she has had a long standing crisis. According to the story, the woman contact has been receiving advise to help get her hubby “back on track” after he discovered that the husband has been ignoring his responsibilities.
What she didn’t know is that one of the female Wafarisai who has been helping them has actually been eying her husband and simply using intelligence gathered during discussions to entrench herself into her territory. Before the victim could figure out why her problematic hubby has been saying very nice things about the female counselor, her husband had already been taken.
The Counselor has herself been single. After the Mfarisai got convinced that she had trapped a new bull that could take care of her needs, she began to inform the loser to try and “think in another direction” because the hubby in question might need special treatment that may take ages before any good results could be seen.
“I am talking to him and I think he needs a lot of prayers. He is responding well but it might take time”, the Mfarisai told her victim but the victim did not understand exactly what the Mfariasi was saying because she was “talking in tongues”. In her ignorance, she thanked her for taking extra time to try and help them get back to real romantic business. Little did she know that the woman was already feeling some new and welcome warmth from non other than Mr. X.
The victim only woke up one day when another Mkenya called her and asked her what is going on because her husband is being seen too much with the female Mfarisai. The Mkenya did not know that the couple has been in crisis because the guy has been evading responsibility after making a baby with the woman. He still thought that he is a kijana and that despite the fact that he was being called “Baba” he still had all the traits of a kijana and so he still had the right to retain some of the privileges of a Kijana like taking off to a pub at very short notice to swallow once a call gets in that there is something a Kijana friend wants to discuss.
According to reports, the lady rebelled while the guy also stood his ground. The crisis deepened when the lady also starting playing the same game and dumping the baby to the guy – talk about giving him a taste of his own medicine. The guy became even more irritated.
The lady was out of work while the guy has had a long standing job. The employment equation only worsened the situation because the guy started using the fact that he is the main “bread-winner” to try and gain an upper hand on who was in control of the situation. The lady responded by arguing that without her little income from the Swedish insurance office (föreldrapenning if you have been there), all the bills could never be sorted out. She also argued that the guy works because she sticks with the kid and that if the guy could stick with the kid, she could also work and bring in even more cash. As the crisis deepened, the couple decided to seek help from Baggarmossen Church. Haya!
At first things were good because they were getting some helpful tips punctuated with bible reading especially on areas touching on marriage, the role of the man and the woman in the family and other stuff.
After some months, the lady victim reported that what she didn’t know was that the lady Mfarisai was working hard to make an impact on her husband in order to snatch him. She was telling the hubby that he “got a wrong woman” who doesn’t understand the psychology of African men. The guy started nodding. Mmmmmm.
We can’t be sure that these were the real words the woman helper used because we were not there but it reportedly went something like this: “Your main problem (the guy) is that the woman you married is Swedish in the mind and African on the skin. I hope you don’t cook or change diapers”. The Kenyan man began to see some good points. Suddenly, the guy started making appearances at the lady’s place for “extended consultations”. Whenever he came back, he did not want to eat because “he was OK”. He had been fed and probably boozed? The story is very long.
When the victim was informed that her hubby is too much in the company of the Mfarisai, she began to question him about the nature of the contacts. That is when the guy went bananas. He started spending nights away from home without explanations and turning off his mobile phone. In the meantime, the nice side of the Mfarisai continued to take up the better part of the guy’s defence mechanism.
Since this case is now “well known” the question is how it will impact on others who might need help from the Church or how it would affect the reputation of the good people at Bagarmossen church who honestly want to continue helping in the field of matrimonial crisis. We understand that the Mfarisai in question is now telling her colleagues in the Church not to “interfear with her personal life” because that has nothing to do with Jesus.
Today, the guy is together with the Mfarisai while the woman has moved out with the ka poor kid. When she began to confront the offending woman, the woman reportedly said that the only way to win the hubby’s heart is to try and understand the root of the problem and that this is what she is trying to do. The woman continued to deny any romantic relationship with the guy although at the moment, Wakenya in Stockholm know that the guy is taken. Guess who is involved?