Top 10 Brutal Truths You Will Learn When You Move To Kenya

With Kenya’s numerous echo-making packages for tourists, it is a country that captivates you when once you land and never really lets you go when the time to leave finally comes. You will have a great time with safari, watching of famous African sunset with awe, and being surrounded by amazing and alluring beaches and resorts that exude pleasure. Every tourist has a great experience on every single trip to the coast.

OK, we know all these goodies but it’s definitely not the easiest country to get to grips with. While people show deep irritation as time creeps in slowly and struggle with heavy hearts when it is finally time to go, there are certain brutal truths you will really learn when you relocate to Kenya: It’s a huge learning curve, embracing the cultural differences, some local slangs and you might soon find yourself calling everyone brother or sister. Below are some of the lessons you will actually learn when you move to Kenya. 

10 Brutal Truths about moving to Kenya

Where You Decide to Live as a Visitor Relates to Your Social Circle

If you are settling in Nairobi, there are two clear choices you could select from Westlands or Karen. Westlands is a more heterogeneous community as it is the area of choice for the United Nations and the American Embassy. In contrast, Karen is often the area where you find the old living persons and the families who have been inhabiting the area for years. So you can decide whether to be in the midst of old timers or close to American embassy staff as well as UNs. Whichever one you choose, try to orient yourself with the happenings around.

Your Sense of Humor Will Swell Ten Times as Much as It Was in the Past: 

Believe me darling, as soon as you are done driving a hard bargain to get the best price for your vegetables, you’ll get home to your local pishi (cook)  who’ll laugh over the price you paid for them, that’s where the humour level will start growing. You’ll also find your humour level rising rapidly when you want something that has a target date to be done as fast as possible and you probably find yourself still waiting a few months later.

It’s not Always a Sunny Paradise

One of the brutal truths about Kenya is you might see yourself hiking around in full ski gear complete with gloves and hat especially if you live in Limuru, one of the coldest parts. However, torrential rain only happens in the rainy season so don’t depress yourself over that.

It is Either you are a Land Rover or a Land Cruiser Person

You can’t haggle this unless you want to raise a few eyebrows when you spew out that you have no preference (imagine your reaction if someone said that they were neither here nor there when it comes to Marmite – preposterous). There is an ongoing debate regarding which car is better to take to an off-road driving called bundu bashing. You would look awesome if you pick a car and defend it to death. For that reason, you are advised to make a choice which will earn you greater respect. Now, this is another of the brutal truths about Kenya which will save you lots of embarrassment.

You Must Learn the Meaning of the Words Jua Kali

Sadly there is no direct translation for this word in English; in the fewest possible words, it’s the general term used for describing work carried out on the side of the road by manual labour. You’ll understand this better if your car breaks down and you get stuck on the side of the road miles away from nowhere save maybe a tiny African village in the distance. The brutal truth is that the odds are in your favour. There is someone there who will be able to fix your car, albeit temporarily.

You will Realize how Necessary it is to Engage in Conservation 

If you are not a fan of animals then maybe you don’t need to relocate to this country. You’ll have cats and dogs moving around but chances are you’ll also find a troop of monkeys or a family of bush babies setting up home in your garden. Beyond that, you are residing in the country that is housing some of the world’s most astonishing animals who painfully are under threat.

Taking Alcoholic Drinks At Sunset is a Way of Life

Kenya has a lot to offer you on every safari trip to the coast or the evenings. While you are living here, you would notice the excited and happy rush to make either the staple Kenyan cocktail called a dawa (Swahili for medicine, even though the typical ingredient is vodka) or get a cold beer and rush outside to watch that popular alluring African sunset. Even though at some point you may get distressed at the way the country works, more often than not, you will take a chill pill, have little peals of laughter to yourself and begin to plan your next trip to the coast.

Having a Work/Life Balance Really is Possible

Promising entrepreneurs make more trips to Kenya than any other group. The country is brimming with a great number of opportunities as one of the leading economies in Africa (being the strongest and largest in East Africa) and there are people everywhere willing to help and invest. This is one of the brutal truths any business man/woman who have been here will agree to. However, you need to research critically before going into business with anyone – just so you don’t get into the wrong hands.

You will Begin to Call yourself a Kenyan, Irrespective of What your passport Says:

One of the interesting brutal truths about Kenya and Kenyans is their positive influence on you. Kenyans will influence you with their hospitable attributes because they are gentle, kind, helpful and pleasant. Note that Kenya is strongly tribal in its ways, with certain tribes living and dominating certain areas, and the longer you live there the easier it will be to spot the differences. You’ll get to meet a unique breed of people dubbed the KCs (Kenyan Citizens but they call themselves Kenyan Cowboys). They are Caucasians who were born and brought up in Kenya and are often of British descent. It is easy to spot one of these unusual people as they spend their days roaming around in flip-flops, kikoy trousers (very brightly coloured) and will always have a Tusker (Kenyan beer) in their hands.

You will Become a Beach Snob

In Kenya, Whether you find yourself in Diani, Watamu, Kilifi, Malindi or Lamu, you will be ankle-deep in the soft white sand of beaches with palm trees and empty beaches surrounding you. And the best thing? You can fly there in an hour from Nairobi. After spending weeks on the Kenyan coast, an all-inclusive package deal to Malaga will never seem pleasant again.

Fadamana U
Fadamana U
Fadamana has built up professional writing and editing experience over the years in report and technical articles, informational and creative content across various topic specialties. Outside work, I like to binge on new movies.


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