By W Thuku
YOU are a young man (25-40) working in Nairobi. Your parents are small scale farmers in Embu or Kirinyaga or Kieni. Your dad is 75 your mom is 68.
You will be going to visit them today or tomorrow through to 26th. You have not seen them for 8 months. But they know that since you last met, you have been promoted at your work place (they were told by their neighbours or your other siblings) and so you are loaded.
Something will happen with almost 99% precision.
DURING your visit, especially just before you leave on 26th, or during the climax of celebrations on 25th, your mother will call you “aside” (keheri-ini) and feed you with well choreographed propaganda on how your dad is the worst man on earth.
The ‘small’ meeting is always held somewhere under some tall banana plants away from the homestead, or deep in the napier grass farm or at the cowshed. Never mind they have been married for 45 yrs you will be briefed (in tears) on how your old man spends all his time at mung’etho (local trading centre) drinking with his friends and comes home late with no food for “her”. How he sold their black cow and ate the money alone. How he only bought himself new suit with the tea bonus and how he has neglected the rice farm. How he refused to pay fees for so and so…bla..bla…bla. Some of the accusations you will be hearing them for the 6th time since 2015.
By the way, your father will never call you “aside” to accuse your mother to you. Never. I don’t know any right thinking man, young or old, who would ever badmouth his wife with their children. Not in Africa.
BACK to the small banana farm meeting you will be made to believe that their marriage has not hit the bottom, (it has hit they same bottom every Christmas since 1980). The old lady will make it look like she is already ailing and you will be contemplating going back to Nairobi with her, for check up at Nairobi Hospital.
By the end of the session you will be mad furious with your father for the “stress” he has subjected her to. To console the old lady, you will give each of them 2k, in the presence of each other. Then as you depart to your V8, you will sneak another 2k in your mom’s dress as a little secret between you and her to wipe her tear. Yes Mr CEO, you have bought the story and the propaganda and accusations hook, line and sinkers. Can I tell you what you are? A big fool.