I know I complain a lot, but America also has good qualities

After years here, I don’t remember what it feels like to sit in traffic like in Kenya

In Summary

• I find the bright side of this strange land in animals, solitude and hospitality

Traffic snarl-up at Allsops on Thika Superhighway on September 11 last year
Traffic snarl-up at Allsops on Thika Superhighway on September 11 last year

I love Reddit, it’s your one-stop shop for entertainment. It’s my favourite social media app and I’ve been on it long enough to know that the Kenyan subreddit is where many folks go to vent about their delusional situationships and what they think are relationships.

My favourite subreddits are all about cats and goats.

Cats and goats are my favourite animals, and I want to live on a farm with my six pet goats and my cat sanctuary. I don’t plan on having children, but I plan on having cats, so many cats! I want to be the proverbial 40-year-old unmarried cats lady.

When I moved to the United States, I was scared of animals, but everyone and their mother has animals here. I worked as a delivery driver for a while and was so scared that one day a Pitbull would just jump me. By the way, I just found out today that if you witness a violent crime in the USA, the government will give you a Green Card. I’ve been thinking about moving to Memphis, lol.

Your chances of being a victim of a violent crime in Memphis are 1 in 40, and chances of your property being invaded is 1 in 18. They offered me a teaching job in Memphis and when I told my former boss (who looked exactly like Santa Claus), he asked me, “Are you out of your damn mind?” I digress.

Americans love their animals, and after living there for a couple of years, I love their animals, too. I dated this guy who took me on a date to a farm. Yep. I saw the baby goats he wanted to show me and if he had asked me to marry him right there and then, I would have said yes, because I hadn’t seen a goat in about a year since moving here, and I was just so excited. Goats are so cute, and they are just as intelligent as dogs, a study I actually read from Psychology Today said.

During the first couple months here, I would always voice my fear when I met someone with their dog, and it was so sweet how they all reassured me their animals were friendly and some even showed me how to pet them. Now every time I meet a dog, I want to give it pets and say, “Such a good boy/girl.”

Another good thing about America, specifically here in the South, is that life in small towns has really allowed me to get to know myself. There isn’t much to do, and solitude is something you are forced to get comfortable with.

I love that when I go on a hike, chances are that I will only meet one more person on the same trail or meet no one at all. When I go to my favourite spot at the lake, chances are I’ll be the only one there and I can soak in the sunrise or sunset or the full moon, and watch how the light falls on the water and just inhale all of that beauty. I don’t remember what it feels like to sit in traffic. I don’t even think I would know how to navigate traffic at this point.

I don’t remember what it feels like to wait in long lines. I don’t remember meeting a stranger who wasn’t exceptionally nice (Southern hospitality). In Nairobi, I always had to walk around with a proper resting b*ch face, my hands clutched to my purse and looking straight ahead because you look at the wrong person and the next thing you know, you are waking up in an alley and you’ve been robbed blind.

However, east or west, nothing ever quite feels like home, and I miss home.

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