Seated under a coconut tree, between two mud-walled houses, Karisa Kaingu weaves a piece of reed for roofing, a daily activity that earns him a living in his old age.
With his toothless smile, open shirt, and a pair of big grey shorts, tightened at the waist with a rope from green coconut leaves, Mzee Kaingu, 70, welcomes us to his home.
He is from the famous Kwa Mwamtsunga family from Mitangoni village in Ganze, Kilifi County. For over seven decades, he has taken pride in walking barefoot, denouncing shoes, even to formal engagements.
At first, Mzee Kaingu is ready for the interview to start but suddenly changes his mind, excusing himself to go change his clothes.
"I cannot appear on television while I am shaggy. Even if I am old, I must be smart," he says, amid a hearty laugh.
His wife Sidi Karisa, who was standing beside him goes after him to help him search for another set of clothes.
As if not satisfied with his wife's choice of shirt, he asks for another one.
Mrs Karisa quickly dashes out of the old house and heads to their new house, where she emerges with a white shirt, and within a short time, they come out together.
Mzee Kaingu walks back into the interview, smartly dressed but barefooted, with his wife on tow, sandals in her hand.
He goes back, sits on his mat and continues to weave his mats as he narrates why he dislikes shoes.
"I do not stop my wife and children from wearing shoes, but I will not wear shoes even when I die. I have left instructions for my children that when I die, they should buy me a nice suit and give me a special send-off, but they should never put shoes on my feet," he says.
A father of six and grandfather to three, Mzee Kaingu said that he disliked shoes as he grew up since he did not see his parents wearing any.
He disclosed that he is always proud when he walks barefoot, and feels as if he is wearing shoes, even though he is not.
"I was born without shoes and all the time I was growing up did not see my folks wear shoes. Those days, we used to trek for long distances barefooted and I am used to it," he adds.
Mzee Kaingu has maintained his stand and even when invited to a weddings or any other formal event, he will dress decently but without shoes.
"I am never ashamed to be in the company of people dressed in suits and expensive shoes while I am barefoot because this is my culture and I must embrace it," he says.
However, his community is awed by how he has managed to survive the hot dry soil during sunny days since he has been known to walk for long distances.
Mzee Kaingu was a herdsboy in his childhood but as he grew older, he was employed to work in farms in Roka, Majengo and Ng'ombeni areas in Kilifi.
Mzee Kaingu says that he comfortably worked in the bushes and thorny land, tilling farms without getting any injury.
"I am not afraid of the hot soil or tarmac road when I walk," he adds.
His wife disclosed that when they were newly married, his niece gifted him a pair of shoes but to honour his word, he did not wear them.
She says that her husband took the shoes looked at them and put them under the bed.
"I do not know what is wrong with my husband that has made him dislike shoes. This habit has always left us puzzled," she says.
She adds that the shoes he was gifted later disappeared under unclear circumstances.
Despite her husband's peculiar act, Mrs Karisa is still proud of him.
She refers to him as 'Mwenye' a Mijikenda a term used to refer to husbands, which gives them the power of ownership and be decision-makers for their wives.
On most occasions, a woman will not do anything without seeking permission from her husband.
"I am happy for my husband, even if he does not want to wear shoes. That is his decision, and no one will go against his wish even when he dies," she says.
Mrs Karisa suspects that her husband might have discarded the pair of shoes he was gifted.
Mr Pozland Kazungu, his younger brother says the family was shocked by their elder brother's stance but have come to obey it.
Mr Kazungu adds that they have never bothered to buy shoes for Mzee Kaingi.
"We don't know what the shoes did to my brother. His strange character has shocked us because even the oldest people in our community have shoes. Maybe there are other issues we are not aware of that he has not disclosed," he says.