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Lost and found: A tale of torn boxers, leaking roofs and overzealous taxmen at the airport

Peter Kimani
 Transport CS Kipchumba Murkomen looks at part of the roof at the International Departures at JKIA that was under renovation on November 15, 2022. [Denish Ochieng, Standard]

The bright chaps at Kenya Airways, our beloved airline that trumps itself as “the pride of Africa,” have devised clever ways of keeping us healthy. They do not do this by feeding us properly but by keeping us on the run.

In my recent travels, my online check-in said Terminal 1A was my departure, but I and all other passengers were verbally redirected to Terminal 1B. In this ping-pong, gathering bags and running along, I hurt my back. I guess when one slouches towards old age, bones get brittle.

I thought I had suffered the worst, but I was wrong. Upon my return late last Friday, it was pouring.  

The diligent pilot gently brought the plane down where more drama awaited.

We did not disembark for some 30 minutes because we needed a bus to shuttle us to the arrivals lounge, rather than soaking in the rain.

We understand Nairobi traffic jam is horrendous when it rains, and it must be particularly bad at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport where roofs have been leaking like no one’s business, while power is intermittent. I suspect they had run out of power tokens as JKIA runs on pre-paid meters.

So, there we were, sitting in the plane, the enclosed windows turning our breaths into vapour. We had landed safely, yet we were still a long way from home.

We finally disembarked. I went to the carousel and waited for my bag. Nothing. I waited until another flight arrived and new cargo discharged.

I went to lost baggage counter where an attendant splashed with bright red lipstick said, with a hint of irritation, that my bag had been scanned in Nairobi, so it had been safely delivered.

I know the revenue folks have been busy looking for stuff to tax, but I did not think my torn boxers would attract their attention, but with this government anything is possible.

I reported my luggage as “lost” and went home. I received a call the following morning. Somebody had picked my bag, instead of his, and took it home, then returned it the following morning.


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