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Friday, July 14, 2006

Couples Reunion At The Airport After 6 Long Years, Turns Ugly

What happened between Mwema and Dorothy (not thei real names) at the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA) the other day, made me realize how common this problem must be for many Kenyans all over the world these days.

The situation in our country has forced many Kenyans to seek greener pastures outside by going to seek jobs in foreign countries. Many times, it has not been possible for spouses to tag along. The result has been long years of separation. Long years of previously married people going back to living like bachelors.

The following is a reconstruction based on an eyewitness account and on the bitter words that were exchanged in loud voices and actually caused a scene.

Dorothy had left the country for the United States by being part of a group that were going for a special convention somewhere in the States. The meeting was being held in a State where she knew a number of friends and so it was easy for her to miss her flight back to Kenya. For the next six years she worked long and hard to make money in the land of opportunity. It was much harder than she had expected, she would say in her regular communication with her husband Mwema. Mwema was a very responsible man and looked after the couple's children as well as taking care of the home. Dorothy would send money regularly and as a result of her efforts the couple now had not only a plot somewhere in Nairobi, but they had also constructed rental houses.

Mwema had really looked forward to this day with all his heart. He had not made love to his wife for 6 long years and he was so much looking forward to it that he had organized things so that on the way from the airport they would pass a city hotel for a "second honeymoon." But it was not to be.

The minute Mwema saw his wife he knew that there was something that was very wrong. Her smile was not quite hearty enough. It did not reach the eyes. She finally came through and they hugged.

"Where are the children?" Was Dorothy's first question.

"They are at school. I've really missed you Dorothy. How have you been?"

"Could the children not miss school for a day as important as this?"

"But I had plans and…"

"Mwema, you will have to be tested."

Mwema could not believe his ears and it took him sometime before he could digest those words so as to be able to reply.

"What test?"

Dorothy tried to whisper under her breath at as they walked through the busy arrivals area at JKIA. "AIDS."

"You must be joking."

"I have never been more serious in my life."

To cut a long story short, tempers rose and what followed was an ugly scene where several Kenyans were treated to the intimate details of this marriage as accusations and counter accusations flew. What really seemed to irk Mwema was the fact that Dorothy seemed to have set up an intelligence unit, which he had been aware of the whole time, to monitor his movements. Mwema's point was that people who did not trust each other had no reason to get married in the first place. Dorothy's point was that all men are created weak and although the spirit may be willing the flesh is always terribly weak.

The couple left in different taxis after the intervention of security personnel at the airport who urged them to continue their lively debate in the privacy of their home.

The whole incident made me think of my own marriage. If it were to happen and we were parted with my wife for many years. Would I insist on an AIDS test? It is an issue that is still disturbing my mind.
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A True Kenyan Story: A Doctor’s Revenge

A True Kenyan Story: Matatu Nightmare

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acolyte said...

This happens quite alot with Kenyan couples that have been away from each other.
There have been other cases where spouses who are abroad take new lovers and leave the ones here with the children to fend for themselves.
Going abroad reeks havoc on marriages.It takes strength for a marriage to survive it.

kyukhoney said...

mmmhh...!! That story is definately food for though! as a kenyan abroad.... i guess its a very real case senario to me... personally id have no problems getting testested if i had a partner back home whom wed been separated for long with... I think it my have gone down better with mwema had dorothy suggested they do it together maybe..... (its a wise thing to do...)

Anonymous said...

Why did she have to ask him AT THE AIRPORT! He was so excited to finally see her...and then get's questions about AIDS. Just goes to show how stereotypes are deeply imprinted in our minds..whether we are kenyan or not...

Anonymous said...

Before we even get to the AIDS test let us not forget that these were already STRANGERS after such a long separation.
This fact alone might account for all comments of why wasn't she wiser or why at the airport.
They just didn't know each other anymore and he should have known better than to book a hotel on the way from the airport. He should have sent the housi off for the day, prepared a bath for her and a romantic meal instead. Then gone for the test together the next morning...whats the big deal!

It's not about AIDS but about being STRANGERS...this needs more time together reacquainting not sex.

Anonymous said... about bitch! you're african, you go to the states for a few years and get back to africa with a white-person perspective? really nice. if i went to hong kong or china (i'm chinese) would i be able to ask everyone if they had SARS? i don't think so.

Anonymous said...

I don't see why requesting for an aids test is such a big issue. May be the manner in which she did it was wrong but the request was quite noble. I also believe that the kids could have skipped school for a day after being away from their mother for this long.


Anonymous said...

I don't see why requesting for an aids test is such a big issue. May be the manner in which she did it was wrong but the request was quite noble. I also believe that the kids could have skipped school for a day after being away from their mother for this long.


Anonymous said...

Aka pimwe kenyan have too much aids


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