The Monkeys Never Came

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I was at Dunga Hill Camp in Kisumu, seated by the lake, with two heavily drinking doctors. It was a few days shy of Jesus’ birth in the famed manger so most people were either drinking or getting drunk in His honour. These two doctors, however, were hammered. They’d been drinking for the past two days straight, someone said proudly.

The first doctor was the silent type. He wore a drunken smile on his droopy face, head occasionally lolling on his neck in that sad, annoying way typical of someone who should have long left the table and gone home. We had been introduced but I couldn’t remember his name, but I remember thinking, what a brilliant chap with a gaping hole in him. A hole so big, I could wedge my fist through it. When he spoke he surprised you with how articulate (if not slurry) he was and you could tell he was one of those guys who always topped his class and everybody hated him because he always reminded the teacher not to forget to give homework. He was in his late 30s at most. Seated next to him was his girlfriend and as these ironies of life go, men like these tend to date up. Anyone would have described her as being “easy on the eyes.” She sat next to him dutifully, looking irritated and stoic at the same time. 

The second doctor was the loud type.

He’s an extremely cerebral fellow, an old friend of my brother. They met in university where they used to cause a ruckus, riding loud motorbikes and living as close to the edge as they could. When my mom died, he had pitched up in my village on the day of the funeral, dragging, behind him, a leg on a cast. His leg. He had broken it by falling in a ditch or something like that, most likely on one of his wild night outs on the tiles. That was the first time I was meeting him and his broken leg and even in the pitch darkness of grief, I found him quite the amusing caricature. He was inebriated or hungover and had gone to great pains to get into a matatu (I’ve never seen him drive as long as I’ve known him) and find his way to our boma to help bury my mother. I was impressed with his level of compassion and duty towards his friend, my brother. It spoke to what kind of a man he was; a man who ignores a broken leg to stand by a friend. People are friends until it’s time to show up, then most don’t. If you aren’t going to be there for someone when they lose their mother, when else are you going to show up for them? I don’t need you when I break my leg. I need you when I break my heart. 

At the funeral, I heard him tell my brother, “I think I lost my spectacles in your toilet.” (We had a drop toilet in the corner of the boma.) “It fell in the toilet.” I found that hilarious. How do you lose your spectacles down a toilet? What shit are you looking at down the hole? So for the rest of the day, he stumbled about like a blind man, tapping on his walking stick and dragging his broken leg but never missing a beat to tell a story or test a theory. He was hilarious and smart and could be charming when he wanted. He can be verbose, though, and pesky, especially after a tipple, drawing out not only a discussion but a conversation longer than it should go. And as with very intelligent people, he always thinks he’s right. I like him and his brand of chaos but I can never hang out with him for too long. He can drive you up the wall, the trick is to find that sweet spot when you leave him, a minute longer and you want to garrote him. 

Back in Kisumu. 

I mentioned we were seated by the lake. The day was grinding to a dramatic end as days tend to end by water bodies; with a big evening sun plunging in the water on the horizon in a splash of orange. The boys barely paid any mind to this Instagramable spectacle as they worked their way through a second bottle of whisky. The second doctor’s woman sat next to him also looking irritated. There were other people at the table because men like him, generous men who love a jolly time, always have people around them like lint on polyester; hangers-on, yes-men, rubbernecks to a trainwreck. I like this guy, he always makes me laugh and stimulates me with his ludicrous insights on things, but I also feel sorry for him because of this obvious slavery to the bottle. How, in his early 40s, he seems to be wasting his beautiful brain and mind, his life ebbing at a table drinking and hollering. 

They were doing this strange thing where they mixed their whisky with vitamin C supplements. Wild! “You don’t get tired or hungover,” he explained to me, “you can drink for as long as you can.” Why? I cried. He put his hand on my shoulder like he’d had enough of my piousness and said gravely, “It’s Christmas, why don’t you relax a little, ey?” (It wasn’t Christmas. Yet.)

On brand, he was involved in a big argument with people around the table regarding one of his friends who was not present at the table. He felt that this friend had not been there for him when he was down on his luck, a friend he always treated, bought drinks. His woman – the only person who was courageous enough to stand up to him – felt, pointedly, that the problem was him, not his friend. ‘Are you serious? Nobody owes you anything,’ she kept telling him while not looking at him. He tried to recruit allies around the table and he kept saying, “Biko, what do you think, I’m within my rights to feel disappointed, right? Would you not?” What I knew, without a doubt, was that his question tags were on point. I also knew that his woman was right but these things are delicate. You can’t side with her and make him lose face before his woman, because are we not egos before we are men? But he kept insisting and so I told him as delicately as I could, without upsetting this apple cart by the lake, that perhaps he needed to adjust his expectations of those he thinks are friends. That what you imagine is a friendship might just be a convenience for the other party. He almost shoved me into the lake. “You are as useless as the rest of them,” he dismissed me, with a royal wave of his hand. “No more alcohol for you.” (I was coming out of a one-month drinking break, so I was not exactly drinking, just taking small delicate sips like a precious bride.)

Their drinking was sustained. The table became more raucous and more people joined. The breeze blowing in from the lake became more bitter, sending needles through clothes. I stared yonder at the black lake now darkened with mystery and at the small spots of light across from the shores, houses with families making dinner and preparing to lay down their weary bones. There is a sinisterness that falls upon the lake when the sun has set, like it wants to hurt you if you come close to it. The lake belongs to itself after dark, you can’t claim it or blame it for what it might do. 

At one point I heard the first doctor call up his girlfriend who had slipped out to go freshen up in the Airbnb. He was slurring sweet nothings on the phone, telling her “Baby, if you don’t come back right away I will jump and drown myself in the lake. Do you want that, baby?” he moaned, “Do you?” Well, Baby didn’t want that so she came back looking fresh and supple, smelling like fresh fruits with beads of water on them. She commandeered his phone because the table now had many people and he looked like he was going to lose the phone before the night ended. No hippos came by, in case you’re wondering if this story ends with hippos coming ashore and people taking off helter-skelter with their bottles stuck under their arms. 

They were shacking up in what was a fancy Airbnb in Milimani estate, at the very top floor, with a great view of Kisumu’s vista. The talk was the party would move to one of their residences (the second doctor’s exact words, which gives away his tribe) because he claimed he had the best view. There was more alcohol, he announced, and certainly more Vitamin C supplements to last until Judas kissed Jesus on the cheek. 

“You are coming with us,” the Second Doctor announced. I wasn’t. I had been planning my Irish Exit which I executed quickly, and flawlessly, and went back to my Airbnb (that didn’t have a view of the city) where I called my brother and told him his friend needed help to which he said, “what help has he not gotten? The only person who can help him now is himself.” 

Made me sad. The doctor always makes me sad because he carries such a brilliant brain but he soaks it in whisky.

All the brilliant ones are wasting their lives away. Isn’t that the irony, that the truly gifted are drinking their lives away? That their lives revolve around alcohol and hedonism? That there is great glory in counting the bottles of whisky you had last night? That drinking for two days is something worth announcing as if it’s an admirable feat at a certain age. Does nobody know how to walk away from the table anymore? Is moderation a mere suggestion, not a rule? That we swirl around bars causing this whirlwind that sucks us all in? Even as the death knell is sounded we continue to drink because we don’t know what else to do. Can we not go walking in a forest? Or find a hobby. Or read a book. Or start cycling, discover running. Or build something with our hands. Or go on a road trip and discover the wonder of the open road and the unending skies? Won’t we one day all wake up and look around and not be able to recognise where we have ended up or who we have become? And won’t it be a little too late? 

The Airbnb I was staying at is run by an acquaintance and I thought I’d support their business, maybe even plug it here, but it was truly a dump. It was in a detached servants’ quarter of a very large old house in a massive compound in Milimani estate, if you know those old massive muhindi houses in Milimani. Big old trees milled around the slightly overgrown compound, murmuring to themselves the way old people do. The space was meagre but it smelled slightly of something old and disused. The bathroom in the common area was shared with the second unit, which thankfully was unoccupied. 

At night the large empty house loomed ominous over me when I parted the curtain and looked out the window. I wasn’t scared (of course I wasn’t) but I thought what would happen if a band of seven monkeys showed up? I’ve never fought off more than five monkeys before. I lie; I’ve never fought off monkeys before. The main door was light, they’d simply kick it down with their small monkey feet and then I’d have to face them…and negotiate my safe passage. 

Anyway, I lay in the room thinking about these doctors and wondering if I should write about them and what that would mean if they read this story. Then I wondered why I was attracted to writing only about people of a certain type; dysfunctional people, people going through tough times, people who have lost something or are losing, anarchy and bedlam, pain and strife. Why is my writing attracted to doom and friction? Was it a character flaw on my part? Oh my God, was I broken? I thought, sitting up in bed like I had been electrocuted. 

Funnily enough, aren’t the stories like this that make for great reading if we are honest? If it bleeds it leads, they say. Who wants to read about happy people? Boooring! We like to gaze into festering wounds. To look down at people who fell over cliffs; did they make it? Will they climb back up dragging a broken leg? That’s why we all slow down to ogle at an accident. I’m not so broken after all. I’m like you. Only you pretend, sitting there sniffing at this. 

As the night wore on in my Airbnb, the silence became total and the seclusion palpable and I thought about all the people I have interviewed, especially those in the Marriage Series and the 40’s series. It’s coming up on five years now. Where are they now? Are they happy? Did they turn the corner? Did they pick yoga or nudism? Did they become vegetarians? How are their children doing? Do they walk barefoot to connect with the earth? 

Wouldn’t it be nice if I looked for them and found out where they are in life and how things panned out for them? You know, to have closure. We need closure, don’t we?

I write many stories, some I don’t remember. If there is a story you read here that you haven’t forgotten, please drop me a comment, even with the story’s link and I will find those characters and do another catch-up interview. And if I interviewed you before for the marriage series or 40s series, and you want to catch up, please drop me an email at [email protected] and I will be much obliged to revisit our conversation. 

Eventually, the monkeys never came. Because they knew I wasn’t in the mood to f*k around with some low-level primates.

 Happy New Year, Gang. 

Shall we hold this year by its cajones, then?

***

I don’t know if you heard but I wrote another book. I think it’s a decent book. I think you should get it for yourself and your office husband or office wife if you have already bought one for your real wife or husband. Buy it HERE and I will autograph it.

Oh, and happy birthday to my beloved Tamms who is turning 16 on Friday, 11th. 

Sixteen! Bloody hell!

 

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160 Comments
  1. There Were Birds, But They Didn’t Sing

    This is one of those stories I will never forget. I read it with a heavy heart and tears welled up in my eyes; it made me feel sad and angry, but also hopeful and grateful. It made me reflect on my own life and appreciate the things we often take for granted. Such a compelling and heart-wrenching narrative of human suffering and triumph. A masterpiece of storytelling and a testament to the power of the human spirit. I wonder what happened to that woman and the kid who was almost boiled to death.

    https://bikozulu.co.ke/2017/10/31/birds-didnt-sing/#:~:text=There%20were%20birds%2C%20she%20remembers,even%20know%20anyone%20who%20was.

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    1. Going through the comments and I’m …. glad?…to see that I was not the only one who was left with a heavy impression from ‘There were birds, but they didn’t sing’. Definitely follow up on that woman if you can. It’s been years but I remember reading that one and wondering about the depths of human resilience …

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    2. I couldn’t agree more.

      Also, Biko, I have had to flip my desktop calendar trying to figure out which month Tamms was born. Turns out it is October because 11th October falls on a Friday – the only Friday that is the eleventh day of the month this year. Perhaps it is a typo? Because January is definitely too soon for an October baby. Haha!

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    3. https://bikozulu.co.ke/2017/10/31/birds-didnt-sing/- We are legion! This one has stayed with me too. It would be nice to hear how she is doing. I hope we get a follow up .

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    4. Little hope. I am a young dad, so i have always recalled that story with tears ,agony and a splash of terror. I would really love to know that if the mum survived and if peace, light and laughter found thier way into her life again. I have prayed for her many a times. Too bad there wasn’t an mpesa fund for her. We would have loved to contribute. There is always that lady in the birds didn’t sing and the Duke of gatanga. Hope all are faring well.

  2. Two stories you’ve done before that I’ve never moved past;
    1. There Were Birds but They Didn’t Sing.
    2. The story about Ken(The gentleman who schooled at Got Abiero Secondary School and later joined Egerton University), Last we heard about him here he was at KFC Nakuru.
    Kindly, revisit the two. Nways Happy New Year 2024.

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  3. Biko, happy new year. Maybe we are all broken..Could you revisit the story of the refugee lady in ‘There were birds, but they did not sing’. The mere remembrance of that story waters my eyes, but I keep thinking about her, and her children, and their story..See how broken we are?

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  4. ‘That’s why we all slow down to ogle at an accident. I’m not so broken after all. I’m like you’. Yes I guess we are the same we love broken. Are we broken,

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  5. Happy new year Biko!!! please do a follow up on these two individuals;

    https://bikozulu.co.ke/2019/01/29/the-clothshorse-wearing-his-heart/

    and
    https://bikozulu.co.ke/2019/09/10/mike-and-micah/

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    1. Yeah he should definitely follow up on this guy. Did he get back together with his ex, did he find love elsewhere we’d like to know.

  6. Hi Biko, there is this kid whose mom asked you to? He was battling cancer if I remember correctly? I find myself thinking about him and wonder how he is fairing.

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  7. Happy sweet 16 to Tamms and happy new year to you Biko. My first read here was “give a girl a book” then I went back and read everything before that and everything after been hooked since.

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  8. Hi. I’d like to know what is happening in the life of the young lady who was involved in a car jacking and then assaulted. Her story haunted me for years.

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  9. Could you publish all these great stories in a book? Short stories sort of. You make some coins from the sales and we have a hardcopy to reread, gift or even bequeath our loved ones.

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  10. https://bikozulu.co.ke/2021/10/26/gentlemen/
    gentlemen, that was the best read for me. It is possible for men to raise sons and become great friends with them. I am a mother of 2 boys and that friendship the men have with their father is what I pray for my husband and our sons.

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  11. Nice read, Biko. I’m saddened by the take of the drinking doctors. Their plight and utter helplessness grieves me. One day they won’t be able to afford those drinks or be funny anymore and those so called friends will be nowhere to be seen.

    I’ve got a story, Biko. A story of pain, of loss, of grief. A story of groping in the dark trying to find life’s meaning. A story of wretchedness and despair, of deffered dreams and dwindling hopes. This story belongs right here on this blog. I could shoot you an email with a draft or synopsis to give you a rough idea of what it entails but…

    But since this is about revisiting past stories and finding closure, perhaps not. Perhaps another time. If that time will ever come, that is.

    I’m curious to know what happened to the lady and her Lacoste husband from Samburu. Is she still feeding and housing him in this Ruto economy in the name of love? What of that “mganga ” fellow who found himself tethered to two wives? Are they still one biiig happy family or someone decided to seek self love?

    First story title: The Lacoste of Samburu (women and marriage).
    Second story title: Next of kin (men and marriage).

    Biko, tell us.

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  12. This is very interesting because over the weekend, my cousin was telling me she wants to pick up reading as hobby/habit. So I suggested Drunk, Thursdays or Let Me Call You Back (because if you’re serious, this is a two hour read ) or posts from this blog. So I gave her what I consider the most emotion -invoking pieces (to me) so far:
    1. Little Hope
    2. There were birds, but they did not sing
    3. What Happens When Boss Lady Calls?
    4. Mike and Micah
    5. Ngatinku
    6. Kasupa

    Also, Happy birthday Tamms!! Gosh, 16 already? I feel like a proud aunt who’s watched her grow (to like snakes).
    And Happy New Year Chocolate Man and the gang!!

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  13. This is very interesting because over the weekend, my cousin was telling me she wants to pick up reading as hobby/habit. So I suggested Drunk, Thursdays or Let Me Call You Back (because if you’re serious, this is a two hour read ) or posts from this blog. So I gave her what I consider the most emotion -invoking pieces (to me) so far:
    1. Little Hope
    2. There were birds, but they did not sing
    3. What Happens When Boss Lady Calls?
    4. Mike and Micah (please follow up on this one)
    5. Ngatinku
    6. Kasupa

    Also, Happy birthday Tamms!! Gosh, 16 already? I feel like a proud aunt who’s watched her grow (to like snakes).
    And Happy New Year Chocolate Man and the gang!!

    1
  14. Nice read, Biko. I’m saddened by the take of the drinking doctors. Their plight and utter helplessness grieves me. One day they won’t be able to afford those drinks or be funny anymore and those so called friends will be nowhere to be seen.

    I’ve got a story, Biko. A story of pain, of loss, of grief. A story of groping in the dark trying to find life’s meaning. A story of wretchedness and despair, of deffered dreams and dwindling hopes. This story belongs right here on this blog. I could shoot you an email with a draft or synopsis to give you a rough idea of what it entails but…

    But since this is about revisiting past stories and finding closure, perhaps not. Perhaps another time. If that time will ever come, that is.

    I’m curious to know what happened to the lady and her Lacoste husband from Samburu. Is she still feeding and housing him in this Ruto economy in the name of love? What of that “mganga ” fellow who found himself tethered to two wives? Are they still one biiig happy family or someone decided to seek self love?

    First story title: The Lacoste of Samburu (women and marriage).
    Second story title: Next of kin (men and marriage).

    Also, tell us about Kennedy Olwana. Did he become a vet, after all? Lakini stoch boyno to lithna ga, nyereee. Podi aywak ga ka asome. He had been bitten and bruised by life, by poverty, by destitution. Each time time I read that story,I feel that pain, that brokenness deep in my bones.

    Because I’m the female version of Ken, although I never wore Ojebo, thank goodness.

    Happy birthday to Tamns. Sixteen you said? There’s no keeping up with these kids. The rate at which they’re in a hurry to start paying taxes. Otek pimo.

    Anyway, Biko, tell us. About those characters up there and whether you’re interested in my own story.

    An Kisumo kae wanyalo romo ka iyie.

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  15. I love this so much, and hell yeah, we need closure. I will get myself a copy of your new book.
    Also the ending took me out “Bloody Hell”

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  16. The story of the lady from Machakos County-Kangundo Sub-County whose child was eaten by wild animals- I think A hyena or leopard. Was she compensated by KWS? How is she faring in life? Please update.

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  17. ..I have not forgotten the story of the family that was caught in war, in Congo. The horrors..looking forward to updates on this as well as more stories. Happy New Year team and best wishes to Tamms as she begins the sweet 16 journey!

  18. The Lacoste of samburu. I don’t mean to be a pessimist but I feel they aren’t together.

    OVernight stranger .. of that man who realized his wife was cheating…

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  19. Happy new year Biko!
    Two stories that have kept my head spinning for years:
    1. They were birds but they didn’t sing.
    2. Open the window.

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  20. I don’t remember the title, the guy who was requesting for organ donation so that he could see his son grow up..
    How would you presume your past interviewees picked nudism

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  21. I’d sincerely love to know how Jadudi is doing (The article read title was “That thing in Jadudi’s head” or something like that)

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  22. Happy birthday Tamms, she shares a birthday month with my son, 8 days apart. We celebrated him on Sunday coz 19th would have him in school.

    Now on the stories I would like a follow up was that guy that was openly polygamous from the marriage series and had to wives whom, he had us convinced co-existed well. Then that other one that fell from grace, closed big deals with honchos and the who is who of this Kenya.
    How is that couple that met on your blog doing? somebody the tall? I hardly see his comments anymore.

    I think you do another series on maybe singles, divorcees, 20s series, 30s series. 50s? No?

    Be audacious..

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  23. “There were birds but they didnt sing” that story i will never forget. would be great to follow up to know how she is fairing, if she is better.

  24. There’s this story about a child who was eaten by hyenas in Ukambani. The mother had left her with the grandmother and upon her return the child was missing. She was found at the gate, skull Brocken and body half eaten by hyenas. My heart really went out to that woman. How is she?

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  25. There were birds but they didn’t sing. i thought about that woman and her Children for a long long time, always wondering what became of her.

  26. Also, there was this woman who was once in your creative class. She had a cabin in Nanyuki and planned an early retirement. By the time you were doing the interview she had lost everything and was starting from scratch. How is she? Her daughters? Her cat which you didn’t like? Or didn’t like you? I don’t remember haha

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  27. Thanks Biko for keeping LIFE alive.
    I would want to close on sooo many stories, but I will pick 2 (can’t recall the titles)
    1. The guy who abruptly stopped and stayed at a lady’s place at Burnt Forest for a few weeks trying to find himself
    2. The lady who was building a resort at Nanyuki after leaving a plum job Australia, marrying some Southern African maestro, self educating her daughters- last, she was living somewhere in Ngong

    Thanks again

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  28. The black prince ,this story was sad and with his prayer “I want to raise my children,” he says. “I would love to see my children grow into adults. That’s all I ask of God now.”

    https://bikozulu.co.ke/2017/11/14/black-prince/

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  29. Tamms is 16? Bloody hell. I was sixteen when I started reading this blog. Or 18 maybe 19 but I was definitely a teen and now Tamms is sixteen?

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  30. Happy New Year Chocolate man.
    How could we forget “They were birds but they couldn’t sing”? I think of the little child she described while burnt alive. I cried buckets. Also “Ba” and the “Black Prince”

  31. ‘There were birds but they did not sing.’
    This story has stayed with me ever since you wrote it, in fact there’s no single day that that line does not cross my mind.
    I’d love a follow up on that lady.
    Did she find healing? How are her kids doing? Is the universe treating her with kindness?

  32. I always remember this lady whose sweetest daughter was killed by leopards, or was it hyena? The girl who was killed by wild animals as she was waiting for her mother to come back home. How’s the lady now? did she get help through therapy? did the KWS eventually compensate her?

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  33. “People are friends until it’s time to show up, then most don’t. If you aren’t going to be there for someone when they lose their mother, when else are you going to show up for them? I don’t need you when I break my leg. I need you when I break my heart. ”

    A sermon.

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  34. The Duke of Gatundu.
    Or was it the Duke of Gatanga.
    The story about that man who lost his wife and their 3 unborn children.

  35. wow if it bleeds, it leads, quite deep.
    mine is this story https://bikozulu.co.ke/2023/05/02/oh-ye-lucky-ones/
    I can relate because I lost my mum too. my dad remarried , and home will never be home without my mother., the sad part is, I lost my sibling too, so no one to share with, those OUR MOTHER moments.

  36. Happy New Year Biko and a very Happy Sweet 16 to Tamms!!

    The two stories that really struck an emotion in me is these two, it would be lovely to hear where the two ladies ended up.

    https://bikozulu.co.ke/2017/06/06/god-is-a-gentleman/

    https://bikozulu.co.ke/2017/07/25/open-your-fist/

  37. Biko, I occasionally go back to the story of the woman whose little girl was, there’s no appropriate word for it, mauled by a leopard. Oh my gosh. My heart bled for her. Please check up on her. Not even for a story, just to know how she’s really doing. I would like to meet her too, not sure and do what, but her pain is unimaginable. In fact, it checks out that she lost her mind momentarily. The human mind is not built for such horrors. May she find peace in Christ.

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  38. Happy new year gang!

    Biko! It’s lovely to hear from you (sounds like I’m writing a letter haha!)
    Your writing is everything and more.

    The story I’d like a follow up interview of is ‘The Children are Fine ‘
    (https://bikozulu.co.ke/2021/06/08/the-children-are-fine/ )

    PS: Happy birthday Tamms!
    Ngai 16 already? Wow. They grow up so fast.

    Biko, please write sth about Tamms soon.
    Also, how’s Kim? Did you give him away and not tell us? It’s been way too long buana.

    1. Right? I also feel like he’s one of those people that love privately but hard. No public displays of affection, no overt gestures and treatises here but I’m sure his wife knows she is loved. I wonder if he would ever write about her or if that’s the one thing they are agreed not to write about?

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  39. Alex, the gasman: https: //bikozulu.co.ke/2017/05/30/alex-gas-man/

    Driver with a degree: https: //bikozulu.co.ke/2020/09/15/driver-with-a-degree/

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  40. 1.https://bikozulu.co.ke/2017/09/05/njeri/
    2.https://bikozulu.co.ke/2017/10/31/birds-didnt-sing/#:~:text=They%20were%20made%20to%20sit,was%20a%20man%20of%20God.
    3.https://bikozulu.co.ke/2019/02/12/overnight-stranger/

  41. Happy new year Biko and happy birthday to Tamms. Please revisit the following stories.
    1. There were birds but they didn’t sing.
    2. The magic number – Beatrice Imathiu.
    3. Scent of cents.
    4. God is a gentleman.

  42. Happy new year Chocolate man.
    Happy 16th birthday to Tamms!

    1. Birds didn’t sing – can never forget this one coz it totally crushed me.
    2. Overnight stranger – the cheating wife with a last born who wasn’t hubby’s child.

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  43. Isn’t that the irony, that the truly gifted are drinking their lives away? That their lives revolve around alcohol and hedonism? That there is great glory in counting the bottles of whisky you had last night? That drinking for two days is something worth announcing as if it’s an admirable feat at a certain age. Does nobody know how to walk away from the table anymore? Is moderation a mere suggestion, not a rule?

    when you know such victims, and Incase the victims are relatives; your heart just bleeds….

    A situation that only God can transform: not a rehab, not friends…none else!

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  44. I love this story so much and I’ve had the same realisations while attempting to get away from a bar in the wee hours of the morning where middle aged men were literally dosing and falling off their bar stools in drunken stupors. Wives get a bad rap since it’s always claimed the men are drinking to get away from nagging women although I think that’s still addicts failing to take personal accountability.

    One thing I know is that my story wasn’t featured in your marriage series, it would make for good reading since as you and the readers say, it appears people seem to enjoy watching
    or reading about the equivalent of having fingernails pulled out one at a time, which was my marriage. I’ve seen three or four women’s stories here which were close, but not quite and I would love to read the story in your words, you seem to put a je ne sais quoi spin on everything.

    1
  45. Two stories stand out;
    The guy who was in hospital due to his kidney failure. I often prayed for him and hope he is well to see his son grow.
    God is a gentleman
    The lady who worked hard and retired early and lived in a Mt Kenya cabin but returned to Nairobi with her daughters and cats.

    Happy 16th to Tamms, tomorrow. Her birthday is exactly a month and year later to my tall girl.
    They will be adults soon! Time flies.

    2
  46. The woman who asked for a radio…She sits somewhere at the back of my mind. The story was ” There were birds but they did not sing” I would love to know how she is doing.

  47. Happy 2024, personally i loved the article,it came from the heart.

    Well,we are all ,flawed not dysfunctional,but you posed a lovely question,why do gifted and brilliant people fall into alcoholism ?

    **,
    I recall the story there were birds but they did not sing.

  48. First thing first

    Happy New Year, Biko. It’s great to be back. Welcome home. This is the home we earnestly long for every Tuesday.

    Secondly, happy birthday to your daughter. May the universe conspire to give her the best.

    Here is the link for a story that drives me nuts. No human should be deprived the power to make a choice. May our sovereign Lord soothe and ease their pains.
    https://bikozulu.co.ke/2017/10/31/birds-didnt-sing/

  49. The story that introduced me to the blog

    1. That Thing In Jadudi’s Head – https://bikozulu.co.ke/2015/08/04/that-thing-in-jadudis-head/

    I always wonder what became of Jadudi. 9 years later. Did he get well?

    2
  50. As always you have the talent – or should I call it imagination. You always manage to hold attention to the other end. Come back with another as good as the rest. Do not rest before you tell me the rest.

  51. God is a gentleman

    Mama fei-Did the fellow start drinking again? How’s his married life?

    Beatrice Imathiu- the go getter lady who worked at safcom

  52. God is a gentleman

    Mama fei-Did the fellow start drinking again? How’s his married life?

    Beatrice Imathiu- the go getter lady who worked at safcom

  53. Next of kin-hows that guy married life to two wives
    Ngatinku-
    THe lacoste of samburu-
    Is shit a bad word- did that guy find a job?

  54. Next of kin-hows that guy married life to two wives
    Ngatinku-
    THe lacoste of samburu-
    Is shit a bad word- did that guy find a job?

  55. Hi Biko.
    there’s this story you wrote about a baby girl who got attacked by hyena and how griefed the mother was.
    please revisit .

  56. There was this story of the guy who found out his wife was cheating on him and kept mum for a while before telling her….did they separate and what’s the story from the wife?
    Then there was the story of the lady with HIV, did the wife to Mike get infected and how is that whole union unfolding?

    1
  57. I recall the story .Nobody wins..

    Anyway,no one can save anyone from their own sufferings be it depression ,boredom,loneliness.No one.

    The least we can do is to pray for each other and to show genuine care for each other.

    Otherwise,lets’ be our brothers keeper.

  58. Hi Biko, and Team,
    Happy New Year, Gang.
    I agree, there is a magic that reading these sinister, and dark tales has, and I believe it is because each one of us has that one dark side that we keep from others. Thus, the magic comes when we see the reflection of our side of the story from the doses and patches of the different experiences of others.
    Please, do a follow-up on these stories;
    1. There were Birds but they didn’t sing- https://bikozulu.co.ke/2017/10/31/birds-didnt-sing/. {What became of her life after? How are the kids?
    2. Dear D-https://bikozulu.co.ke/2019/09/24/dear-d/. {What happened to her? What happened to the hubby? Are the kids successful and enjoying the bliss of marriage?
    3. They Didn’t Like Dogs- https://bikozulu.co.ke/2019/12/10/they-didnt-like-dogs/. {I would wish to know if they got babies, adopted any, or if the guy manufactured his progeny out of wedlock}.
    4. The Tall Ghost- https://bikozulu.co.ke/2019/11/26/the-tall-ghost/. {What happened to our mathematician? Did she finally get married? Settled? Re-unite with the numbers guy?
    5. Full Cycle- https://bikozulu.co.ke/2019/11/12/full-cycle/. {Is she still in the same marriage or fate drifted her into the arms of another Lad?
    __________
    I look forward to reading more of these stories.

    Give us a bonus and do two articles per week Tuesday and Thursday….or any other day.

    4
  59. The story that stood out for me was Purple Drunk. It resonated with me a lot because, at the time, I was in uni, struggling to make sense of my life, and struggling with cheap booze. I still go back and find the story and relish at the mastery of your pen, and how well you can transform pain into words. I’d love a follow up to the story. And for my sake, and the sake of the guy’s mother, I hope he stopped numbing his pain with cold syrup.

    1
  60. The “Driver with a degree”. Does the guy still cook sipping drinks from his balcony and Nyambura behind the scenes taking orders? Did he stop chasing waterfalls? I would love to know.

    1
  61. How can I get Kasupa. The story of the young lady who was carjacked and raped in Ngong Forest. She must be 29 now. Buana how did she handle that pain? Did she ever leave her father’s house? Did she ever buy another car?

    Oh Kasupa!

  62. 1. https://bikozulu.co.ke/2019/12/10/they-didnt-like-dogs/ This babe was quite the oxymoron…a feminine alpha. What is it like to remain child free in a marriage where your husband initially wanted kids? Are the mums still beefing?
    2.https://bikozulu.co.ke/2017/10/31/birds-didnt-sing/ Didn’t matter how emotionally strong one thought they were,this story broke us all. We cried a little and prayed for this woman and her children…and deep down you sometimes wonder if she is okay, if life has been kind to her…if the nightmares go away eventually…oh, and the baby who was boiled on a pot…How did she turn out?

  63. Bradley

    Now that I’m a father, I don’t know how I would handle the pain of losing a kid.

    https://bikozulu.co.ke/2016/06/28/bradley/

    1
  64. My mother is everything, man. I even have a tattoo of her here.” He shows me a tattoo of his mom’s name. “She was disappointed in me given that she had struggled to raise us after my father died. She said that my wife was right, that selling drugs was like being a drug dealer.” So he stopped dealing.

    “Do you think you were a drug dealer?”

    “No. I was selling a product with less effects than ciggies,” he says.

    please visit Frank : https://bikozulu.co.ke/2019/03/05/a-tie-by-day/

  65. Happy New Year Biko and Happy Birthday to Tamms. Please revisit the lady in the story ‘ There were birds but they didn’t sing’ and the guy who was getting dialysis is he still alive, has he managed to get his dream of raising his kids? Biko we like the stories you write, we all put on masks and pretend that our lives are perfect but you dig deep to find the battle scars and that’s why we read your stories I guesd I’d be curious to know how many people are genuinely happy with their lives and havd no regrets.

  66. there were birds but they didn’t sing…whet a story, I well up every time I think of what that mother and her child went through in the Congo forest…in fact every time ever since ….the mention of Congo forest always reminds me of that story

  67. There is a story that broke my heart, and every time I get my email notifications, my mind races to her.
    the Story of the Kamba teacher who lost her only daughter to a Leopard. It was the most heartbreaking story I have ever read. Did she overcome depression? After quitting work, what happened to her?

  68. mike and micah. are they still in the situationship? did he learn of her status? if he did, how? did it affect their relationship. that story has always stuck with me

    1
  69. Talking of stories I’d want closure:
    1.There’s this young boy who used to write here back in the day,the last I checked,he was at Nairobi Uni taking English Lit.
    How did this pun out?

    2.Also, there’s this mama who used to pay all bills while the husband drinks all his money away..(I know that’s vague)All I remember is the man was well off but still couldn’t pay bills .. someone help me..

    3.The man who kept losing wives..went to the mountains to pray concerning the issue,….
    is the last wife alive?

    4.Tamms.How are you handling teenage years?

  70. Happy new year Biko!
    Happy 16th birthday Tamms….they grow up so fast!

    https://bikozulu.co.ke/mike-and-micah/
    most definitely!

  71. Hey Biko

    ‘Hurricane’ from the men and marriage series! whatever happened to that couple??…did true love last? Hope we can get a follow up..
    cheers.

    1
  72. There’s this Pastor who was not getting “Magwitos” ,what happened after they divorced? Did he remarry?
    How’s the ex-wife?-Curse of the gifted

  73. Find out where Olly is. How old is he now and how is life for him. “Thief In The Night”
    https://bikozulu.co.ke/2016/10/25/thief-in-the-night/

  74. Compliments of the new year to the Gang.

    Biko, a followup on this: ‘https://bikozulu.co.ke/2019/02/05/next-of-kin/’ and this ‘https://bikozulu.co.ke/2019/02/26/you-see-the-scars/’

  75. Biko, what do you think, I’m within my rights to feel moved by the doctors stories, right? Brilliant brains soaking in whiskey. Would you not?

  76. I am reading this story for the first time and I cannot come to terms with such barbaric and inhumane treatment. I am lost for words.

  77. The stories that stuck with me and would love for you to do a follow up,
    1. There Were Birds, But They Did Not Sing
    2. God Is A Gentleman
    3..Overnight Stranger

  78. “If there is a story you read here that you haven’t forgotten, please drop me a comment, even with the story’s link”…
    About this , I’ve just remembered…. some time the user experience in this site is simply mind-numbingly. To be precise, scrolling down the articles through the calendar that displays only 4 articles at a time is kinda hard. I believe it could be made simpler. Not like I’m requesting for the job, that doesn’t mean that I can’t do it when given a chance!

  79. Happy belated New Year Biko. For me ‘Suleiman’s goat’ carries the day. Just thinking about it has me in stitches!

  80. First of all happy birthday to tammy!! I love the idea of you biko getting closure for most of these stories that have stayed with us years since you wrote them. Kindly do a part 2 of Duke of Gatanga. It’s about this guy who together with his wife had been trying to have kids and finally his wife became pregnant with triplets but she died before giving birth and the husband was left picking up the pieces. How is he now…

  81. Well well well, the Marriage and 40s series does deserve a follow up, I would like to know how the situation of the Gentleman who had to discover the baby wasn’t his eventually turned out or perhaps the one with a an oops polygamy situation https://bikozulu.co.ke/2019/02/05/next-of-kin/. However, two of your stories that always come to mind, There Were Birds but They Didn’t Sing https://bikozulu.co.ke/2017/10/31/birds-didnt-sing/ and Little Hope, perhaps

    1
  82. Scent for Cents – The story about poverty, wealth and identity. It would be nice to know how his life has turned out to be. Is he wealthier? Did he re-unite with his wife? Did he remarry? Did he find his roots? Please do a part 2.

  83. 1 – Alex the gasman
    2 – Madhe (the guy who married his first love a Kikuyu girl the mother hates so much). Are they still together? Did the mother eventually warm up to her.

  84. I would like to know how Jadudi is doing. I hope he beat cancer, graduated from the university and is now happily building the nation.

  85. Hi Biko,
    Happy 2024!
    Hugs to Tamms on her sweet 16!

    Please follow up these 2 stories:-
    1. There were birds, but they did not sing.
    Most traumatic & heart wrenching story I have ever read. I can’t even visit Congo even if I got a free air ticket! What happened to the lady & her kids?
    2. The lady who’s child was mauled by a leopard. The grief she went through was palpable…

  86. Here’s one: When Happens When Bosslady Calls (https://bikozulu.co.ke/2019/04/09/what-happens-when-bosslady-calls-2/)

    I remember you did an update on Ng’ash after this story but I’m having a hard time remembering the title of the story. The one where he got kidnapped at a mall, dragged to some forest, and barely made it out alive. If anyone can remember the name then feel free to comment. Anyway, I’d be really happy if you gave us an update. Has bosslady called?

  87. There’s this brilliant chap you once wrote about. I think his name was Mike. You said he’s a writer, but he’d do drugs with some Nigerian guy who’d run out of money and have him call his mom for more. He’d also call you in weird hours of the night. I think about him alot. Where did he end up?

  88. Hey Biko, kindly find the lady on your piece – “The Magic Number”.

    https://bikozulu.co.ke/2023/03/14/the-magic-number-part-2/#

    Thank you.

  89. I barely understood the relevance of the title.

    I would love a recap of Hurricane,- the story about the kiuk lady and a luo man who left their marriages..i would love to know if they are still together..

  90. Deutorornomy 33:6 I have thought about this boy for quite somewhile now. Did his mental health improve? Is Linda in better place now?

    1
  91. Always a great read.
    Two recent stories I remember: one where you travelled from NY with a couple who had a baby. I think they were Rwandese. And you hated to travel with babies, until then.

    Then there was the story about the lady who got hiv after living riotously, after realizing his man had a wedding and got married. She got into a terrible accident and survived. The man would usually come to see her, in Nairobi hospital, often with half eaten cakes and stuff.

  92. I would really love to read the Articles on the Marriage Series and the 40s, around when were they Posted i try finding them?

  93. https://bikozulu.co.ke/2019/01/29/the-clothshorse-wearing-his-heart/ did she ever come back? His tips for moving on in case sue didn’t? Especially if you are that sure about someone. …