In Summary
  • In a ploti, neighbours never mind their own business.
  • Mama Boi at the far corner will even know how much Royco and salt you have in your house yet you rarely talk to her.
  • In apartments, everyone minds their own business even on those rare occasions when you’d like them to mind your business.
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I have a testimony. Bwana asifiwe. Asifiwe tena. Asifiwe tena na tena! (Praise God. Praise Him again. Praise Him again and again!) Okay, now I am being too much, but that is what my aunt usually says in church before she makes a testimony. She never misses a testimony. And she always makes sure the entire congregation repeats ‘Bwana asifiwe’ after her about 20 times before she starts telling people how her cow that has just given birth is producing 3 litres of milk a day. (Yes, those are her types of testimonies).

She’s always like “Huko nyuma siwasikii jameni! Pigeni nduru! Semeni Bwana asifiwe! (I can't here those at the back. Make some noise. Say Praise God.)” Then some guy who was probably dozing off is forced to cut short his holy slumber and repeat ‘Bwana asifiwe’ after Aunty Agnes.

She’s the best aunt ever. I love her more than I love … wait for it … take a guess … you have probably figured it out now … chicken. You knew I was going to say chicken, right?


Anyway, my testimony is that I finally moved into a better house. It’s still in the same hood but it’s a beautiful and spacious apartment. Despite the tough times I have been through lately, the good Lord has sprinkled some blessings my way and enabled me to move to a better house. Thanks a lot to my pal Gidi for telling me about this hidden gem.

It’s not an expensive place. It’s actually quite affordable, considering how nice it looks. I bet the landlord doesn’t love money that much. He must have listened to Nyashinski in the song “Finyo” where he sang “If your God is money then you are poor to me.”  

I moved due to a variety of reasons. First, I’d like to effortlessly accommodate visitors who want to spend the night, or a few days, without feeling that they are encroaching on my space. This will also enable me to work well.

I also don’t want to keep discouraging potential future wives. I have a feeling that a while back some of them used to show up and they couldn’t help but think “Sasa hapa tutaishi aje? Nyumba ndogo kama lodging hata haina space. (Now how will we live here? The house is so small.)”

I am an apartment guy now and I can’t keep calm. I’ve made it! Have I? I think I have! What describes success better than moving from a ploti to an apartment?

Right now a movie should even be made about me. They should call it “The Man Who Moved Into An Apartment.’’ Simple! That’s an Oscar winner right there. Idris Elba should play me. Haters will say there is a Grand Canyon gap in looks between him and I, but that’s just them. This Luhya boy right here is handsome and he knows it, even if he is the only one that thinks so.

Dear Hollywood executives at Universal Pictures, Paramount Studios, Warner Bros and Netflix, what do you think? Great idea, eeh?


I noticed that new enthusiastic landlords like labelling their new buildings with the word ‘apartments’ when that’s not the case. If you see a thin, dusty building called ‘Bla Bla Bla Apartments’ in Githurai or Kinoo, that’s a fraud. That’s a bloody flat. There is a huge difference between flats/plots and apartments.

I am noticing the difference myself. I am actually experiencing a huge culture shock.

The first noticeable difference between apartments and ordinary residential houses is the protocol at the gate. In a flat or ploti, each tenant normally has their own key for the gate. Sometimes the gate is never even locked, making it open season for thieves. Sometimes there is no gate at all.

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