Hot and sweet is Mwingi town
A good traveller has no fixed plans and is not intent on arriving - Lao Tzu
Like most Kenyans, my thoughts of Mwingi were associated with drought, scarcity of water and starvation and probably a couple of donkeys making their way up dusty hills.
The trip to Mwingi was eventful, the road reasonably smooth with a few surprise potholes and much bigger manholes. Though I travelled alone this time round, I realised just how fulfilling solo company can be. I was singing aloud to Peabo Bryson and Celine Dione and realised that that was not only therapeutic but also good for self-esteem.
Mwingi has several unexpected adventures in store. For instance, I found out that the people of Matuu do not believe anyone should travel alone. I had stopped at a roadside hotel for breakfast and found an unfamiliar young woman with some luggage leaning on my car. She was patiently waiting for me to give her a ride.
“Habari madam,” she greeted me in Swahili, “are you going towards Githiokoni?” She looked harmless, but being a typically cautious Nairobian, I stepped back and nodded.
“Can you give me a ride? I realise that you are travelling alone,” It was a polite but firm request. The one you cannot say no to. “How far is Githiokoni from here?” I asked her, expecting the usual novaa.
As if on cue, she replied, “Not far, round the corner, few minutes from here,”
We drove for almost thirty minutes before she asked me to slow down.
“Thank you madam, you will be very blessed,” she said as she pulled out her luggage from the back seat. As I was pulling out, a young man came running towards me and waved me down. “Madam, wait. Please, can you give me a ride to Mwingi?” I rolled my eyes and smilingly asked him to hop in.
“Wait a while, I collect my luggage,” he dashed off and immediately came back struggling to balance a heavy sack on his back. This time, I firmly turned him down. The sack was full of charcoal and the black coal dust had already discoloured his shirt.
Mwingi turned out to be a small sleepy town, with the friendliest and warmest Kenyans I have ever met. The fruits in Mwingi taste different, they are sweeter. Most were deeply coloured and concentrated, probably because they did not have enough water to turn them soggy as they were growing. When you visit Mwingi, be sure to bring back a lot of fruits to blend a nutritious mix of juice. On the same note, kienyeji chicken and eggs are a good bargain if you can contract a trader to get you some.
While in Mwingi, check into Mwingi Cottage hotel. The staff is professional and genuinely happy to welcome guests. The hotel has ample grounds for kids to play and clean cottages for the whole family. Cottage hotel is five kilometres from Mwingi town, therefore the quiet and serenity is welcome, more so for conferences.
Originally posted by Faith Gatimi