There are times…..
Times when a reckless arrogant driver makes a wrong u-turn in town and comes right at me. I am walking to my matatu terminal after a long day when he comes very close to the pedestrian walk. I think he is going to stop but he doesn’t. He keeps coming until the matatu nearly touches my skin. I stop and look at his face. He has this grim grin on his face. I think of throwing insults at him but I click, turn and walk on. He shouts after me and says, “I can hit you and run you over and there is nothing you can do!” I am clinching my fists by now with anger and my feet slow down as I think of turning back but I walk away. They say that the wise thing to do in such a situation is to walk away…. I did not feel very wise that day but I guess wise is not always (if ever) a rosy feeling!
Times when a tout is forcing an old lady to alight before her stop because he has suddenly decided that her stop ain’t a stop anymore. That stop is an official stop and matatus stop there everyday but not today! 😦 She tries to protest but he tells her harshly to alight! No one in the matatu says anything! She alights and I can see the bitterness in her eyes. I am shaking with anger!
Times when I am walking to my matatus again after a very long day. I am with my girl and we are deep in conversation when this smelly man calling out for people to board his matatu gets hold of my arm. I shake my head in the usual, ‘I am not boarding this one’ and try to keep walking. He is not letting my arm go and instead he holds me tighter. I hate him so much at this time and he is actually hurting me by now. I want to hit his groin so bad!!!! I regret giving up taekwondo and most of all I am amazed at how there are so many people passing by but no one notices what is happening with me. Anyway I shake him off with all the strength I have and he finally lets go. I loathe him as I walk away. He is definitely high on something but the nerve!!! What?!!!
Times when I really wish I was a man….
I am sure ladies in nairobi or even Kenya go through this so many times. I have analyzed it each time and I am sure that these hooligans only do such things to women. They have never done the same to a woman who is walking with a man. They take advantage of the ‘weaker’ vessel that women are. This is why sometimes I really wish I was a man. If only I could turn into a man during these incidents! I love being a woman and all but sometimes. …. wah!!
I thank God though that I am not a man because I think I would hurt someone real bad!!!
Such men get away with this craziness because our society has become so individualistic. We pride ourselves in minding our own business while injustices thrive freely. Next time you are present as someone is being harassed let’s speak up…. Our men especially. .. Whether we like it or not, it’s true that a man is priviledged in this regard.
Stand up for your could be sister or mother! We need you!
I on the other hand I’m praying for wisdom to see how I can stand up for justice as a woman. One of the ways is writing this piece….
Let’s keep walking!