Category Archives: Travel

In Vino Veritas

So the other day there was an … incident … at the hotel.

There we were, sitting on the settees, minding our own business when a stocky gentleman, portly of girth and bald of head appeared before us, complaining bitterly.

We were surprised and amazed. His complaints seemed indecipherable. So i rose to inquire from that gent exactly what bee was in his bonnet.

He took that as a cue to turn on his heel and depart.

I looked to my colleagues in amazement and returned to my seat.

Not five minutes later our friend was again amongst us.

This time I caught a snatch of his rant “… first borns should not touch each other … “, as well a whiff of alcoholic breath that could sterilise surgical instruments.


We were amazed and surprised. Talk about from left field.

I again rose and asked him which scoundrels where these, touching each other.

He again took this as a cue to depart.

Once bitten, I remained on my feet and within minutes our old friend joined us, now foaming at the mouth.

This time the disturbance caused some consternation. Guests looked disapprovingly at us over their assorted meals and drinks.

This time our friend was objecting to the presence of the Indian community at the establishment.

Worn out from all this foolishness I asked him what business he had with first borns, as he was neither God nor Pharaoh.

He did not have any response.

At this point the hotel concierge appeared at my elbow, as if by magic and asked delicately what the problem was.

The problem, I informed him, was alcohol and the youth, personified in the unsteady gentleman before me.

The concierge made a discreet motion and two large security men appeared and firmly escorted my protesting friend from the premises. His beer and glass sat forlornly upon the table.

Effusive apologies were offered and accepted.

We sat down. Life went on.


Good afternoon from Lusaka benders!

I find myself far from the hallowed shores of my homeland seeking pastures green down South.

The KQ flight, to my surprise, took off on time and landed early.


Lusaka is a very pleasant place. Roomy and green. Zambia btw is bigger than Kenya (720,000 vs 520,000) and has a smaller population (12m vs our 40m)

In terms of business, all I can say is the world is your oyster if you are organised and have the right execution.

Foodwise, one cannot complain. Apart from it being impossible to get fresh juice and these good people’s wholehearted embracing of creamer. Aside from that I must say I am glad there is a gym at the hotel. Enough said.

Unarmed Combat

I pity the fool who’s unaware of his surroundings

My timing is impeccable. When it comes to things that do not matter in the least at any rate. Otherwise my timing stinks. I tend to appear at the most inopportune moments. Like the time in my usual erratic fashion effected an entry into an office like a tornado.

I found the sales manager’s sheepish explanation of removing something from the marketing manager’s eye unconvincing. Unless the marketing manager had swallowed his eye and the sales manager was trying to retrieve it with her arms tied behind her back.

But I digress.

I was not in the least bit surprised when I ended up in another tense situation. I swaggered into the establishment, loudly inquired after the health of my mates Bob and Jane, hailed a waiter and sat down heavily.

Within seconds I realized all was not right.

Bob had a vein, about as thick as a hose pipe pulsing steadily at his right temple. His teeth were gritted so tight and his face was twisted into the grimace of  a man that has had something very large and very jagged introduced into his person.

Jane’s bleached face, a result of months of Fair And Lovely, and possibly a few litres of bleach, was redder than Moody Awori’s shirt.

What, Jane demanded to know, did Bob mean by that?

Bob sought to know if he had stuttered, and then proceeded to reassure her that he meant exactly what he had said, Bob reassured her grimly.

Feeling like a man who has absently wandered onto the middle of  a battle field just as Nelson and Napoleon charged at each other, I stood suddenly and begged to take my leave.

Jane’s fingers dug into my arm like an MP into the CDF fund. Just where, she demanded, did I think I was going?

My excuse was dismissed on several technicalities

  • Motorbikes do not generally have doors, questioning the possibility of my forgetting to lock the doors
  • I do not own any form of transportation of any kind
  • The keys I was holding pointedly to reinforce my subterfuge were clearly branded tri-circle therefore could not possibly be for anything other than a padlock

And so I sat just in time for things to explode. The eloquence of my friends was dazzling. The air turned blue for miles as the rich English language was given a good workout.

Bob’s, Jane suspected, was a gentleman conceived outside the legal and social framework of the institution of marriage. Furthermore, she continued, the identity of Bob’s father was something that only God and a few alley cats could be sure of.

Bob’s rising eyebrows expressed his surprise, informing her she was a fine one to talk, due to her close kinship with characters bearing names like ‘Fido’, ‘Goofy’ and ‘Spot’.

Jane hastened to quote the Good Book, drawing his attention to the section where one was requested to attend to the toothpick in one’s eyes before attacking the forest in another’s. Didn’t Bob, as a matter of principle, attempt to fuse his DNA with any organism that had a pulse?

Bob again expressed shocked amusement at Jane’s myopia. Was she not both famous and infamous for the difficult exercise of scaling the corporate ladder of success while simultaneously remaining on her back?

Stung, Jane cast aspersions about his relationship with his mother, alluding that it was not entirely filial.

Sigmund Freud would have nodded his pleased approval at the exoneration of one of his hypotheses. Bob stumbled backwards, at least as much as someone seated on a bar stool could. Rallying his forces, Bob loudly questioned Jane’s commitment to the heterosexual movement, referring to her by the name of a landmark generally associated with the Netherlands.

Jane naturally objected, voicing that she was of the opinion that he was the type of gentleman with an acute disinclination to work, and culminated her analysis in concluding that he was a creature of the variety that Jesus rode at some point during his ministry.

Bob let out an outraged “Ha!”, and wondered where she had left her hat and her preferred method of transportation,  a broomstick.

Jane’s face twisted into a scowl and she assured Bob that she was a full blooded woman, which is more than he, an alley cat in a pin striped suit, could say.

Bob could not fault her assertion, and agreed heartily. Indeed, he conceded, she was a full blooded female, the blood being of the variety of type ho.

Simultaneously hissing and whispering, Jane wondered why she was actually conversing with him, an individual lacking wit, intelligence or indeed any attribute of human interaction to such an extent that his own right hand regularly turned him down.

Bob retorted that she was hardly in a position to talk, seeing as even her shadow refused to be on the same premises as her.

Things would have deteriorated still further were it not for the tactful appearance of a trio of bouncers who gently but firmly BanKiMooned the warring factions and by force brought about a truce.


While wasting 40 minutes of my life trying to convince Safaricom to take my money so I can settle my bill, I found myself seated next to this chap, who I could have sworn I heard mentioning a weakness for a certain Kenyan Chick. After much manoeuvering I captured him on film


Step up o ye clothes horses!


I’ve been using the same template for 2 years. Something’s gotta change!

Koffi Olomide – Si Si Si

Fare Play

Yesterday I got into an altercation with one of the chosen few men that have to wear maroon shirts and brown trousers to work, a matatu tout. After an entire day of working hard to have my hard earned money taken by people who do not even pretend to work, my defences were at an all time low.

Date & Time: Circa 2006, May 23, 20:30 Hours

2030: M drags self into matatu and collapses in a heap
2031: Matatu fills and sets off
2033: M switches off all vital systems but breathing
2040: M tapped on shoulder by tout
2041: M tapped again on shoulder by tout
2042: M absently hands over 20 shilling coin
2043: The still of the night is shattered

Tout (T): Boss, where’s the rest of the money
M: What rest of the money?
T: Fare is 40 bob
M: (Speechless)
T: 40 bob
M: (Exploding) 40 bob? WTF? Did your mother clothe you in asbestos?
T: (Woodenly) Huh? 40 bob. Fare is 40 bob.

Murmuring from other passengers

M: (Struggling to bend mind around the idea) You’re telling me that the fare has doubled since morning
T: Er… yes.
M: It’s not raining, is it?
T: No
M: And no one has moved constituencies while we were at work
T: No
M: And the road is the same length
T: Yes

Long pause

M: (Revelation) Aaah! I see, I see
T: Yes?
M: I’ll have a coke
T: A coke?
M: Yes. Because for me to pay 40 bob you must be serving drinks.


Goodbye Puffy


If health Minister Charity Ngilu has her way, smoking in public will be illegal in the next few months, which includes restaurants, clubs, etc. The fines are anything but punitive — if you’re caught smoking in public you’d better be carrying 50,000 bob or some similar figure on you, and be ready to spend 6 months eating Government cuisine and enjoying Government hospitality. If you’re reallyunlucky you’ll get both and dropping soap in the shower will be but one of your many worries.

Spam I Am


Just realized that le blog has crossed the 2,000 mark in term of spam comments that mercifully I’ve never had to delete manually. And this is in just a couple of months!! Thank ye SpamKarma.


Schwarzenegger, Stallone and Van Damme are discussing roles in a radical new movie where they play classical musicians. They are given the opportunity to decide which actor will play which musician

Stallone: I … uh … I’ll be Beethoven
Van Damme: I’ll be Mozart
Schwarzenegger: I’ll be Bach!


If a fool and his money are soon parted,
Members Of Parliament are considerably in arrears


This is a school somewhere in Mombasa …


“Aar! Ye be taking the young un’s to this here school mateys! Aar!”

Eminem – My Dad’s Gone Crazy

Livin La Vida Hotel

Living in a hotel is something I look upon with fondness. There’s a lot to be said about having your clothes washed and ironed for you, not having to do the dishes, and having your bed made for you. I’m currently investigating if there are any hotels that offer value added services like brushing your teeth and combing your hair for you. The fact that I do not have to spend any of my own money is something I feel sure is a popular concept.

The only thing better than travelling is travelling at someone else’s expense, and the only thing better than that is travelling at company expense. Nothing aids the flourish with which you sign bills with the knowledge that someone else will be coughing up the cash. This way you don’t wince when the smug lady behind the counter informs you crisply that you will be paying close to 100 dollars a night for the room alone. Meals to be charged separately.

When it comes to travelling at company expense my mantra is “deny yourself nothing“. When confronted with the challenging choice between a three course and a four course dinner I heartily recommend the four course. If in the middle of the night you feel the urge for fruit salad smothered in ice cream, pick up that phone. Just think of that chef in the kitchen looking mournfully at his uneaten creations. Have you no heart? If when passing a restaurant you feel the urge for a steak be strong and be firm. Walk in and have the steak. After all, a cow gave up it’s life!

The Grand Palm hotel looked promising from the entrance and did not disappoint

Driving In

The Entrance

The lady behind the counter who checked me in looked and sounded like Barry White, right down to the mane of hair. I knew as soon as she opened her mouth that she was not going to be my friend from the establishment. It is always good to have one of these, who can hook you up with extra pillows, extension cables, and most importantly Internet Access, because the Grand Palm charges the equivalent of .25 $ or 20 bob a minute.

I burst out laughing at this news and cemented the fact that we were not going to be even on talking terms.

“Really? Are your keyboards diamond studded? Or does your Internet traffic travel first class by British Airways?”

Continue reading Livin La Vida Hotel

I’m Back!

Finally, M has returned to Nairobi.

Which, as usual, was not bereft of adventure, and my old friends Air Botswana featured prominently in the same. It was not enough for them to keep me away from my luggage for a week, oh no, not them!

Attempt to change departure date. Get run round so much it is simpler to call Nairobi to do it for you.

Get confirmation that flight is departing at 8:00 Monday morning

With past experience of Air Botswana, call their airport office to confirm. Airport office tells you proudly they are not connected to their main office. Call main office. No answer.

Call main office again. No answer. No answer at the airport either.


M: Good morning.
Staff: Good morning.
M: I’m here for the Jo’Burg flight
Staff: (Cupping hand behind ear) Do you hear that plane taking off?
M: Yes?
Staff: (Smiling sweetly) That’s the Jo’Burg flight
M: Krrrkmtz!!

Had I said what I was strongly inclined to say, I would have left little doubt that I would have made an excellent Commissioner for Oaths.

Continue reading I’m Back!

Life Sans Luggage

Watching the baggage carousel at the airport is something I will henceforth be doing with considerable apprehension. After the one at the Sir Seretse Khama airport ceased to revolve without any evidence of my trusty blue case, alarm bells went off in my head.

"Can I," an optimistic voice in my head wanted to know, “Survive without my case?”

The answer from other quarters was unanimously in the negative.

Hair: I like that! And who is going to take care of me?
Feet: Dude! If you think I am going to accept these socks for a second day you have another thing coming!
Torso: This new vest chafes!
Teeth: Survive without your case? Just who is going to brush us?
Chin: Thank God! Can’t think why you insist on bringing sharp blades near me each morning!

"Try the 3 flight," A bored looking staff member said stifling a yawn.

So I tried the 3 flight And the 6. And the 9.

It was well that the Air Botswana staff members rapidly left their offices because the heights of eloquence I rose to left little doubt that I would make an excellent commissioner of oaths.

Continue reading Life Sans Luggage

Botswana Or Burst

Getting to Botswana from Nairobi necessitates getting to Botswana by Kenya Airways, flying over it and landing in Johannesburg. Jo’burg airport could learn a lot from JKIA

  • Having natural gas powered trams to ferry passengers to the terminal is not good for passengers’ health. They will develop flabby underarms, pot bellies and varicose veins
  • Refusing to announce departures and arrivals is not good for passengers either. They have to keep reading from dozens of impossibly large screens, which is bad for their necks and eyes.
  • Having large plasma screen TVs in the departure lounge again makes vegetables out of travelers. They should be indulging in quality time with their loved ones.

Once at the terminal, you are greeted by a cheerful gentleman behind the Air Botswana desk who issues you with your boarding pass. You then proceed to explore the airport and almost immediately find a colossal eatery. In the list of Things To Do In The Lifetime Of M I can cross out drink fresh strawberry juice. A sandwich made with impossibly fresh bread, with bacon that belonged to a pig that was quite possibly half an hour previously happily eating his swill.

Continue reading Botswana Or Burst