Mwalimu Andrew: Why I’ll not be going back to Kakamega


The only other way we have communicated has been through the children, like when she told Branton to tell me that I was watching videos on the phone loudly.

Photo credit: John Nyaga | Nation Media Group

After such a busy and hectic term, which I started as an outgoing HM-cum-incoming MP but finished as an acting HM who is struggling with common staffroom issues, I was so keen to see the schools close – albeit for a short time. I was tired and I needed to rest. Properly. As usual, my earlier plan was to close the school early. I always do this to give my teachers ample time to rest.

But once I remembered that I was fighting for the same teachers who would never take a bullet for me, I decided against it. You all know how they have been handling Branton. As a way of paying back, I took the closing day to the very last day – and not in the morning but in the afternoon.

Before that day, several teachers asked me if I could let them close the school earlier. I declined.

“Let us respect the school calendar. July 1 is a working day and you are expected to be in school,” I told Nzomo before forwarding her the school calendar on WhatsApp.

As we closed the school that Friday afternoon, I was also thinking of how I would spend my one week.

The first thought was to go to Nairobi. But I did not have money. Staying around would not help. After long and hard thinking, I decided to go to Kakamega and spend quality time with my family. At first, I wanted to leave Branton behind but I thought that would be courting trouble – for he is a boy that you put under 24-hour surveillance.

That evening I called Fiolina, the laugh of my life, several times but she did not respond. I texted her and informed her that we would be visiting her the next day. She did not respond. Early last Saturday, we left for Kakamega. Branton had a happy-sad expression. On one hand, he was excited to be going to Kakamega but on the other hand he knew there would be no freedom as there would have been in Mwisho wa Lami.

It was only after I alighted from the matatu that I noticed an SMS Fiolina had sent the previous day. It said: “I will tell you when you can come.”

I was already in Kakamega, so I ignored it and went ahead. As usual, before going to the house, I passed by the market to buy Baby Sospeter some toys. They did not have the usual toys, so I had to go for expensive ones that cost over Sh200.

Sospeter was excited to see me and he jumped at me. The two girls, Honda and Electina, were expressionless. They only got excited when they saw Branton.

After greeting them, I went to the bedroom where Fiolina was still asleep. I needed no calculator to know that I was not expected. Her eyes remained on her phone. An hour later, she went to shower.

As she dressed up, she asked: “So, my opinion does not matter, Dre. Does it?”

I asked her what she was talking about and she told me she had asked me to wait to be told when to come.

“I just saw your SMS today when I was almost in Kakamega,” I said. “Should I have gone back?”

“And you want me to believe that?” she asked. I asked her to believe me then added something I should never have said.

“In any case, this is my house. I can come here any time I want. Is there a problem?” I asked.

“Did you just call this your house, Dre?” she asked, looking at me. “Let me just say that that’s interesting.”

She banged the door and left before I could explain.

When she returned, she was complaining about Branton: “And why did you not tell me you were coming with that spoilt boy?”

“I did not think it would be wise to leave him home alone,” I said.

“That’s not the question, Dre,” she said. “I am asking why you never informed me that you would be coming with him.”

“What is wrong with coming with him?” I asked.

“Once again, you have avoided my question,” she said. “Anyway, the boy looks like a chokoraa. When did he last take a bath?”

I did not know.

“And, surely, you can’t buy the boy some decent clothes?”

I did not answer. She left me in the bedroom. I heard doors close, and only some time later did I receive an SMS from her: “I have taken the children out. But first I must buy your boy some clothes. He looks terrible.”

I was hungry as no one had served me any food, so I went to the kitchen to grab some food. While the kitchen was open, all the drawers and cupboards – with food visible – and even the fridge were locked. The keys were nowhere to be seen. I switched on the TV but it asked for some password that I did not have.

At around 3pm, when I could not hold the hunger any longer, I decided to go out and get some food. Unable to find keys, I just closed the doors, but did not lock them, and left for Teacher’s Tavern to have a quick meal and some drinks. My plan was to be there for a few minutes but that was forgotten when I met some teachers there.

It was 9pm when I returned home to a fuming Fiolina.

“What was that?” she asked me. “So, you want my things to be stolen? Do you know how much I bought them? How can you leave the house unlocked? This is not Mwisho wa Lami.”

I told her I did not see the keys.

“Did you ask anyone?” she asked.

I added that I was hungry and everything else was locked.

“We usually do not lock anything but with Branton around, we are not taking any chances,” she went on. “There is no difference between you and Branton. All you think about is food.”

That was the last time Fiolina talked to me. Since then, everyone has been minding their business. We face opposite directions when in bed. The only other way we have communicated has been through the children, like when she told Branton to tell me that I was watching videos on the phone loudly.

I will be going back to Mwisho wa Lami today, but I doubt I will be back in Kakamega. Not any time soon.