Kenya Dig It?
14/7/05, Buna, Kenya.
Tribal clashes with hundreds dead along the Marsabit road towards Nairobi, so I'm diverted by a worried-looking Kenyan along the back road. Chief Osman welcomes me to Buna and I'm put up in a comfortable thatched hut for the night.
He takes me by surprise a little by telling me that stocky ex-England player John Barnes once stayed here. If he'd said David Beckham or Bobby Charlton I'd have guessed he was fantasising. But John Barnes? Must be true.
The only place you can get a beer in Wajir is prison. At 9pm every night the canteen is opened to the public for lager and fried meat. Hot, dusty and knackered though I am, and having fallen off three times on the sandy-rut road that leads here, I'm not thirsty enough to go to prison for it. What if they don't let me out at closing time? What if there's quite literally a lock-in?
Apart from the unusual licensing laws, Wajir is a great town. Only two of the dozens of people who say hello ask me for a hand-out. A guy offers to wash my bike, but he's wearing a Chelsea shirt so I don't allow him to touch it.
Posted by Simon Fitzpatrick at August 12, 2005 02:08 PM GMT
"But - but - Chelsea and Gunners friends! From London!" he wails.
"No," I explain, "in fact the opposite is the case."