East Side vs West Side


You tried [quitting blogging], and you failed, so the lesson is, never try – Homer J. Simpson (parenthesis mine)

I was born in a babbie hospital, but I have been raised in Eastlands. That means if you mention masimba or Innercore, I will know exactly what, rather, where you are talking about, but if you mention Galleria (I even had to ask a friend to help me spell that word), well, I might have problems. The good thing is that I jacked someone and now have an IDIOT which has Google maps and so I can find where Galleria is at the touch of a few buttons. Unfortunately for those of you who live in babbieland and own these fruit phones, sijui blackberry and Apple’s iPhones, I doubt you can locate where Obama Estate is!

Once in a while, I have to make a trip to Westlands in the name of hustling. On those days, I choose my best clothes so that I do not pass for a mungiki adherent. On such a visit the other day, I duly got to Globe roundabout to get those number 118 javs, the ones that go those sides of MP-Shah, not the ones that go uko ocha sijui Wangige. You will be surprised that those mats are worse off than our mats. Not even one of them is blessed with a radio playing MatatuFm. On the other hand, people here are civilised, not like in Eastlands where five people will scram for a 14-seater mat. I think scramming is such a part of our lives that even if you are alone in the stage, (I hear it’s called bus stop), and an empty mat comes, you have to wait for someone to come so that you can scram the mat with them.

Getting back to my boring story, I get to this jav and we start going towards those sides of museum hill ‘something’ (I do not know how to call it. Formerly, it was museum hill roundabout). The kange starts collecting money. By looking at him, he, like me, has Eastlands written all over him. There is a way you can tell. The thing with Eastlands is that you give the kange the exact fare or both of you might forget about your change. Woe unto you if you remember after alighting because the kange will remember to deduct the money from the proceeds of the day as he gives the owner of the mat the money made. The dilemma I was in was whether to give the kange the correct 30 bob fare or a 20 bob kinjaro in the hope that he will kanyagia the 10 bob since we are ‘brothers’ in a foreign land or give him a 50 bob in the hope that he will return a 30 kinjaro for the same reason as me giving him a 20 bob.

As I am debating with myself, I see a hot chick and immediately count the points I will lose if the kange blurts out, “Ongeza kinde buda!” The bright person that I am, I take out the largest note in my wallet, which happens to be a Ksh. 200 note. I could have sworn I had a 500 bob note, I must have paid off a debt somewhere, I will remember later. The kange continues to collect money and I notice the hot chick is seriously counting coins. Seriously? Coins? Is that your ploy to have a guy like me pay for you 30 bob? So, even the kange is running out of patience since everyone in the mat has paid except her. Apparently, her coins are not even enough to fika 30 bob and as I am Laughing Quietly To Myself, I am silenced when she chucks a Ksh. 1000 note. The kange now wishes that she had found enough coins since he has no change. He starts complaining about the change part as the girl explains in broken Swahili that she does not have any lesser denomination of currency.

Just then, someone from the back seat screams in a Luo accent, “I have change!” As I said earlier, sometimes you can tell someone from Eastlands while, as we are human, other times, you may be wrong. My first instinct was that he was an Eastlando but the well cut suit, maybe not. So, end of story, crisis averted and everyone heads home happy ……… well, until the guy at the back again screams, “Hii pesa yako ni FAKE!” Everyone is now looking at the hot chick who is beyond words. The kange is trying to construct some words in English that I cannot decipher, but I think he was trying to ask the chick what she was thinking trying to con him.

The drama is unfolding at a much slower pace than I would like because I am fast approaching to my stop. Words are exchanged, the chick is left to dry on her own as everyone starts hurling insult after insult, from, “Mwangalie vile amevaa..” to “..hawa ndio wanakuanga koinange” etcetra. She finally gets a lifeline. She explains that she withdrew Kshs. 22,000 from a local bank, to which she produces a bank slip issued not more than two hours ago, proceeds to say she paid a bill of Kshs. 16,000, to which again, she has a receipt, then produces the remainder of the 5000 in new 1000 notes, just like the one she had given. All are genuine and different from the fake one.

The guy at the back is busy asking for his money when a lady seated next to her, who had been quiet all this time, sort to salvage the situation. “You do not need to shout, you can just say ask for your money quietly.” The guy at the back was now foaming in the mouth, and by this time, I am convinced he is from Eastlands. No sooner had he started shouting at the lady than she told him, again firmly but somewhat calmly, “How do we know you are not the owner of the fake note?” And for the first time, someone had said what I had suspected all along. As insults now started turning from the hot chick to the guy at the back, I had to alight the mat as I had come to my stop.

THE DAY’S

Quotes: Men will like each other until they have a reason to hate each other. Women will hate each other until they have a reason to like each other – Anonymous

I saw two twins babies. One had a shirt that said ‘Copy’ the other ‘Paste’. That made my day.

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