The other day I was in a bit of a pickle, you see I was telling an American friend about how in Kenya with the older generation (and maybe some of the younger ones) how due to the proliferation of christianity and westernisation polygamy as an established tradition has been dying down since Independance; but how as a result mistresses/second wives and families have taken root. We have all seen that whenever some public figures pass away how unheard of wives and parallel families crawl out of the woodwork.
So predictably I was asked, "Why don't these men divorce their wives and be with these other women?" I did tell her that over time this has been happening even though unlike in the States many of these first wives are left destitute by their estranged husbands but what used to happen was the man would just take up with his second wife if they decided to part ways but he would still take care of his first wife and she would still be seen as part of his family. I also did point out that for sometime divorce has carried alot of stigma in Africa, and it is also hard for a divorced woman in Africa to remarry but I do think that this is changing in Kenya. Lest I forget there is also this belief that when a woman is married by her first husband in many tribes they are inextricably linked and even if she passes away he still has claim to her body.
Anyway, I am getting ahead of myself here. Do any of you think that this business of parallel wives will die out anytime soon (even though I do recall reading an article in the Nation where quite a few women were ready to be second wives)? This second wives business is different from the humping around that men do, so as to make things clear. And for your information I would not have more than one wife (isn't bigamy a crime in Kenya?), one wife is enough responsibility and besides wasichana wa siku hizi ni watukutu sana!
Moving on, where did I used to get energy from? For the last few days I have been getting 5-6 hours of sleep and I really feel it the next day whenever the afternoon rolls by. A few years back it was the complete opposite. I remember the days when I would meet my pals in the afternoon to watch a U.K premiership match in a bar after which of course we would get to drinking, socialising bar hopping, roast some nyama choma (depending on where we were) do some more bar hopping if the joint was boring and go home early Sunday morning (that is if we didn't make a visit to Topaz). And after all that I would be good to go after just 3-4 hours of sleep, that is if i didn't have a hangover. Rest assured that if I went a on a bender that long tonight I would be out for at least half of the next day or as I call it I.C.U. I once remember 2 years or so back when my powers began to fade, I went out as usual and early the next morning I was supposed to drop someone to catch a bus upcountry. So I came home directly from the pub, took the person to the bus and since it was early morning I got a brainwave. I decided that I might as well go for the early service at church. I walked in just as praise and worship had ended and since most of the church was empty I got a pew to myself. I listened to the first few minutes of what sounded like a very enlightened sermon until all of a sudden due to the residual alcohol in my system my body failed to register how hard the pew was and the veil of sleep slowly descended. What made me wake up was the sound of the closing hymn and the burning sensation in my back as the lady sitting in the pew behind me glared at me. Needless to say that was the last attempt I made at going to church from the club. Stop laughing at me! I know you have all been guilty at one time or another!
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