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Diary of a Kenyan matatu commuter
By Jackline | Updated Aug 30, 2018 at 10:30 EAT
Kenyan Matatu

This is a letter to matutu drivers, conductors and passengers from a concerned Kenyan matatu commuter

Dear Mr. Driver, when I board your matatu, I’m not looking for entertainment, I’m not looking to turn up, I’m not looking to go deaf, I simply want to reach my destination while minding my own business.

So, please Mr. Driver switch off that Diamond Kwangwaru song, which honestly I have heard enough of. I do not want it to run my whole day, nor do I want to be dreaming of him. He has enough baby mamas, Zari might come for my head, while Hamisa my Legs. Do you really want my death on your hands? Let’s not kill me before my time.

I also understand that we, Nairobi people are always in a rush, but surely Mr. Driver, haven’t you heard of the saying better safe than sorry? Why are you competing with Bus ‘412’? He barely has passengers in his Matatu, let him also get a few coins. Don’t be greedy Mr. Driver. I’ll get back to you, let me talk with your conductor,

Mr. Conductor, why do you honestly just mess up my budget? Why do you intentionally announce fare is 40 shillings but once we are at Two Rivers it suddenly becomes 50 shillings? Do you not care about my well being?

Mr. Conductor, I may be stranded in town without 10 shillings and I’m sure I’ll receive loads of insults from you after I try bargaining and you’ll probably throw me out of the car.

Respect my money Mr. Conductor, I respect your business as well. Mr. Conductor, I see a sticker on your matatu written ‘’A woman is not written in braille, you do not need to touch her to know her’’… Why do you put it there and don’t abide by it?

I don’t care if I am in a tight skirt or trouser and my bahookie is showing, or dressed in a low chest vest and my bosom is calling, you should know better than to let your sticky hands anywhere near my body. I do not touch your money when you go around the bus showing it off, likewise, don’t touch me.

Before I forget Mr. Conductor, I don’t know why you think I’m confused about where I’m heading to. I may be going through a few issues in life or may have had a long day at work, but trust and believe sir, I know where I’m headed to.

Don’t try push me in your matatu, it could be mistaken for kidnap sir, and I’m sure jail is the last place you want to end up in. Also Mr. Conductor, what is up with not getting me to my destination, Mr. Driver, I think you should also address this. Can we strike a deal? How about I pay fare once I’m at my destination? Let me know…

But just before I leave, allow me to address my fellow passengers. Dear sir and Madam, I understand that you have had a long day at work, but so have I. Why do you insist on laying your head on my shoulder and drooling all over me? Why do you insist on taking half of my seat? I have paid full amount for it you know…Sir, please keep your hands and leg to yourself… Madam, keep your eyes to yourself, and stop snooping on my text messages.

With all that being said, I appreciate every single matatu driver and conductor out there.

With Love,

Missy J.


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