Home Global More Stuff I Learn’t From Backpacking To Kakuma, Turkana.

More Stuff I Learn’t From Backpacking To Kakuma, Turkana.


By Silas Nyanchwani

1. Flying back, I noticed that our forest cover has diminished to a paltry less than 10 %. It was disconcerting that approaching Eldoret Airport and after leaving all the way to Naivasha onwarrds, the brown was far greater than the green. I know it is a dry season, but driving from Nairobi to Kitale can give you an illusion that we are a forested country. We need to do something about this.

2. I was in the same plane with two of the most powerful men from Turkana. They were easy and didn’t suffer any insecurities. But airports and flying is usually very humbling.

3. We made a stop over at Eldoret International Airport on a weekday evening and the place was so abandoned, so deserted I wondered what is so international about the airport. But the tree a cross the runway give the airport some cool European feel.

5. Back in Kakuma, speaking to refugees from different communities and nationalities I realised that as human beings we will always see the other community as the source of our problems. All the communities live separately and occasionally there are incidents of violence that pit one community agaist the other. Notably, Dinkas and Nuers are still hostile of each other.

6. Richard Leakey just commissioned a kickass 3-D museum to be built in the middle of nowhere in Turkana County. It will be state-of the-art and it will be designed by the man who designed the new World Trade Centre. The budget is like Sh 10 billion, and he has like Sh 1,000. He will fundraise the rest. It will be the an interactive prehistoric museum, you can go there and simulate your distant uncle using a stone to butcher an antelope.

7. In Kakuma, boda boda people never have change. All of them. Every time I flashed a Sh 100 note the boys told me they had no change. However, there is one who really touched me. He went fetching for the change and brought the Sh 50 note, leaving it with the watchman. That touched me.

8. The far away you move from a big town, the older the currency notes get.

9. Stereotypes will be the end of us. So this Congolese guy we became friends told me on spots, “Wakisii nyinyi ndio wale walogi(sic) wabaya.” It hurt me.

10. There is an Ethiopian refugee millionaire whose story I will tell you soon.


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