My right corner lamp signal ticks away as I wait to turn in to the place she had just told me about. I get way from the driver ahead and zoom in to the tip of the barrier. Habari Mkubwa, ndio hapa?” I make small talk with the watchmen. He answers back and proceeds to tell me to open my doors for a security check. He isn’t rude actually he pleads with me in his head. “I should fix that boot lock” I, on the other hand think to myself as he opens and proceeds to unfurl some things in the back of the car. This is the 1st defence you find at any building in Nairobi. Since they started the whole culture of under body mirrors, metal detectors and sweaty ordinary guy on the street guard, it camouflaged the real threat Kenyans now faced from Terror.
I have just described above how you can disarm a guard with charm. Be friendly, speak a language he will speak back to you in based on what you know about him. I’ve done this trip 5 times now. I knew he would not look in the back seat this time. What If I had an IED or an AK 47 on that chair? He would never have known because he thinks I’m friendly. All this time I’m saying to myself this is not easy but neither is it hard to act like a terrorist. I think what we did after 1998 was put a plaster on a wound, clean it once in a while and learn to live with it. Now the wound is smelling – Mental picture complete with smell of City mortuary on a bad day. We need to liberate ourselves from the notion that we are safe. We aren’t because we are at war. When we make it none of our business and everyone else’s we are no better than a 13 year old hood rat teen who hangs with the famous boys but hopes one day they will get a good boyfriend. We need to find a better solution to security at our malls, buildings etc. The government is doing what it needs to do about the threat. What about you? We need to rise and be loyal to our country. This is the place we were born and am proud to be a Kenyan. We need to be loyal to it! Wake up, Live!
Someone, anyone.. PLEASE bring back the Loyalty Pledge.