How not to look like an Idiot in Kenya

Please, do not use “Jambo” to greet the locals-It is an extinct form of greeting.  Say “habari?”, ”Sasa?”, ”Niaje?”, ”hi?” or ”uko aje?” among others.
Flip flops aka Slippers
Leave your flip flops known as slippers here in Kenya, in the house. In Kenya, slippers are worn mainly in bathrooms and only extend to the house environment.


Kenyans are generally conservative, so kindly observe the general dressing of the people around you before you step outside the door.

Kindly,when you arrive and find ladies wearing “lesos” while cleaning the house or cooking,do not wear yours outside.Ladies wear lesos as a sort of overall when doing house chores thus, they are not to be worn outside the house,unless it has been made into an outfit.

Wild Life
We do not house wildlife as pets-they are wild. Not every Kenyan has seen wildlife  as we also need  to visit national parks,reserves, conservancies and sanctuaries to see them. Please, do not ask me or anyone,”Do you own a lion?

It is illegal to hunt wild life,so please””Keep your Hands off.”
Developing Country does not mean stone age.We do not live in caves or on trees, jump around camp fires, hunt wild game for food or eat wild berries. We have planes, schools, vehicles, homes, clothes and cities. Yes, we are actually like most developed countries.One statement that always brings a smile to my face-You speak such great English, did you grow up abroad? No, I am born, bred and educated in Kenya. English is actually like a first language to most, we speak it better than our mother tongue.(A shame though).
Kenya has 42 tribes,which means 42 distinctive languages and cultures.Take the time to learn as much as you can from across the tribes, you will be impressed.

Also, there is nothing like African language, please do not embarrass yourself with  questions like, “do you speak African?”

Personal Hygiene:

Yes,the African sun is hot.Yes,its summer time through out(most times).Yes,we have the “Hakuna Matata” mentality-It means no Worries.(Watch Lion King ,it explains it superbly.)However,personal hygiene is very important to us.Take a shower daily,put on roll on,comb your hair,dress in clean clothes and look presentable.Most of us have no idea why some tourists tend to look haggard.The sweat stains on their clothes,the unkempt look makes most Kenyans want to adopt some tourists or assist them with a  few shillings.


One thought on “How not to look like an Idiot in Kenya

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s