Saturday, 29 October 2011

A Dismal Diwali......For Some!

Kenyans(of Indian origin),Indians(of Indian origin),the major malls,the small shops,in short everyone connected to India,were all set to celebrate a dazzling  Diwali in Nairobi.Then just a week before D day the bombshell fell!The Kenyan government resolved to flush out a certain militant group in a neighbouring country who had taking to kidnapping tourists from the beautiful beach resorts of Kenya.So the Kenyan army(which,I think,like the Indian army is a Kolonial legacy!) marched forth rapidly into their neighbour's territory.
Thus the action began and the upshot was that the militant group threatened to attack prominent malls and other public places in Nairobi.A couple of grenade attacks took place immidiately in downtown Nairobi and what is more surprising is that one of the perpetuators was caught and sentenced in a matter of seventy two hours!We Indians who are still butchering calves to feed Kasab(the butcher) could only look on in admiration....
To go back to Diwali,my friends had lost no time in telling me about the marvellous firework displays that herald India's festival of lights.These take place in about four different locations and were said to be worth a dekko.I,being of the opinion that we create enough pollution just by existing on this earth,was not really enthusiastic about encouraging even more pollution,but the children were eager to see the display and so we planned to go.
The net result of the grenade attacks was that all firework displays across Nairobi were banned by the government as they did not want to risk someone sneaking in a real bomb in lieu of a faux one!All the pollution enthusiasts were sorely disappointed and a few like me rejoiced!It was indeed a dismal Diwali for some!But,unlike in India,people here actually obey the rules and hence this Diwali was really a silent one.
The other immidiate effect we could see was that all the security personnel at all the malls began scrutinizing our cars,our bags and our purses for bombs,grenades and the like.The reassuring silence of the metal detector as it passed over us made us feel we were back home,where of course thanks to another neighbour,we cannot imagine entering a mall without being sanitized by the security people first!
Yesterday,the children's school had the parent teacher meeting and on the way there we passed the United Nations Africa head quarters.Sniffer dogs were actually entering each car and checking it before allowing it to proceed through the gates!A first for us since we have only seen these noble animals on duty at airports till now!
To top it all,it rained on all the days of Diwali and we got caught in a major traffic jam due to the heavy rains yesterday.It is more fun to write about a jam than to suffer through one.It took us two hours to reach our destination which is just twenty minutes away on a normal day.The kids were hungry and thirsty to say nothing of grumpy by the time we burst out of the car.How dismal can a dismal Diwali get?!


  1. awesome!as usual i love d part bout d doggies!sooooooo true bout d traffic!ew

  2. Thank you so much!Your English teacher said yesterday at the meeting you are a great writer so let me return the compliment!


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