I am actually writing this piece from the comfort of my bed.You can’t really blame me, its July, the coldest month of the year. This is the first time in a long time that July has found me home, I am gonna take this moment as a sign and run with it, write about home, the land of hills and valleys, the land of matoke. My motherland.
I grew up in a place where the soil has always been red and sky has always been gay. A place where July also indicates ‘mapera’ and avocado season apart from low degrees and cold mornings. Heck, everything about me screams my tribe, the way I talk the way I walk even the way I handle things. My school friends need to stop telling me that I am kikuyu till I open my mouth ( I hope you see this)
I have been called angry, rude, loud but defensive is the one I hear often. I find all these new, because one thing about our language is, it doesn’t have courteous words and at home these adjectives would not raise eyebrows. You see, the same word we use to say ‘please’ is the same exact word we will use to express shock ,anger…it’s just the intonation that changes. This word ‘gaki’ has put me in trouble as much as it has gotten me out of trouble. The same agitation we use to express love is the same one we use to express anger. So forgive me if I sound angry while reciting the sonnet 57.
I have heard and read about how kisii women are temperamental and at the same time submissive wives. I don’t know about you but submissive is what I am not, temperamental? Maybe. I have had friends who praise kisii men for their prowess in bed but call them out for their stingy nature. Sounds like a dillema but honey, you have to choose, get the load or get the rod.
The great thing about our men though they always marry home, the few who don’t, you could blame it on diversity. Ask them why and the reason is always the same, its easier to marry home no need to learn a new language or even get accustomed to a new culture and again, the submissive thing about their women carries the day.
Kisii has also been called the land of milk and honey ,this is three quater way true.We always have food ,all year round explains my love for it. Rain is in plenty and the air is always fresh, but the thing that excites me the most everytime I board a transline shuttle pale afya centre to come home is the people, the ‘oboamate’ which loosely translates to communism. The feeling that I am among my people, and that I am coming home. The moment I start seeing green matoke leaves, sugarcane being sold at throw away prices on bus windows, avocados rotting on the roadside my heart is at rest. Home at last.
Do we have a downside? you ask. Ofcourse we do. I can’t even begin to recount the number of times I have been asked if I have seen a witch, or to explain the concept of witchcraft some even go to the extent of asking if I am a witch. I laugh it off, mostly because I am clueless when it comes to this and also because I am a cerelac baby ,cut me some slack (cerelac loosely translating to sweetpotatoes and porridge). No I haven’t seen a witch with my naked eyes, yes I have seen people point fingers to certain families..you see..clueless!
Last but not least, we are an easy bunch, keep our stomachs full and please respect the sabbath and we are good to go.We also like everything soya especially our tea and our meat.
Before I forget, do yourself a favour and eat a banana or an avocado today.(rooting for avocado). Lemme go pee now.