May I vent?
The other day, I had gone to meet one of your pretty cousins for coffee at some nearby overpriced piece of sh** excuse for a cafe.
[Frankly, not a big fan of Java and Dormans. I have Nescafe and milk in the kitchen if you’re thirsty. Just bring sugar, some of us drink it black.]
Anyway….after we placed our orders and chatted for a few seconds, Paul Tergat walked by. I recognized him immediately but didn’t react. She, however did.
“OMG, it’s Paul Tergat.”
[Just to clarify, she actually said “OMG” and not “Oh My God”.]
So I gave her a shoulder shrug as if to say “…and so….?” but instead she immediately assumed and blurted out the following.
“You don’t know who Paul Tergat is? What kind of Kenyan….” and her voice trailed off.
I gave her a half smile and had half the mind to just walk away.
But I didn’t. Not because this was acceptable, but because it wasn’t the first time that it had happened. In my numerous years living here, there and everywhere, people always assume that I’m from the furthest away place possible. Currently, I’m American, as I just returned from Obamaland. And no matter how hard I try to remind people around me that I’m just a kid from South B, I’ll forever be subconsciously bunched with the foreigner I frequented; a lesser African by decree of the people.
Yet, I’m the one who’s downtown so much, people look for me there before they check at the house. I’m the one you call when you need an escort to that dodgy part of town or when you’ve forgotten which matatu number you should be boarding, or where exactly something is located…yet I’m still less in touch than you. And my only crime was owning a passport and exercising the will to travel.
Somehow this doesn’t make sense to me.