Tales From Kenyatta University: The ‘MESS’

Tales From Kenyatta University The mess
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Eastern Kitchen, Western Kitchen…
At around 11:50 am, I can see loads of people moving to the ‘kitchens. Walking as fast as they could not to miss the good meals. Its a sequence well planned to behold.

Am walking from Old Menengai headed for Amphitheatre. But due to this’ organised game’, I turn to my right and decide to quench my hunger with a sizeable meal.

The queue therein, is very long that you have to follow it right from the pathway. Its discouraging but since I have to feed, I practice patience.

Most guys on the queue are talking these obvious stories.
‘Jana mtu yangu nilipatiana exile…’ a gent will converse,
‘Wacha, kwani ulikuwa job ya kulima, nini?’ another will ask,
‘Lazima shamba ipaliliwe, Msee… ‘ the lead character will reply…
Hahaha, a laughter here, a laughter there…

Finally we get to the counter where you have to pay for the services. I look at the menu and decide my meal; Rice 14, Beans 10, Chapo 10, total 34. I give the server a 50 shilling note. He gives me back 10 and a piece of paper on it written 6.

This is the point where I get annoyed. From a far end I can see 5 shilling coins but why does he prefer to use a piece of paper instead. As a researcher I question his deeds and I call for a detailed explanation to know where our coins disappear to.

‘Mimi sitaki hizi papers, nataka pesa… ‘ I plead,
‘ Hakuna change, si utakujia baadae.. ‘ he’ll assure me,
‘ Hapana, kwani hizo coins ziko hapo unachukua wapi? ‘ I prove to him,
‘ Hizi ni za kupreserve ndo jioni tuwarudishie… ‘
‘ Nipe saa hizi… ‘
‘ Sawa… ‘

He finally retreats his piece of paper and gives me back my balance. I move to the next point, pick my food and choose a section to sit to ‘enjoy’ the meal.

Poor cooking, poor service, poor behaviour, yet they steal from us.

Tomorrow I’ll pen a story of how they’ve grown rich and run their own business by stealing a coin each day. Stay informed.

We pen as we receive it…


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