Stories from Mogadishu

In the last few months, my most interesting experiences have had to do with Somalia. For most people, interesting would not be used to describe Somalia. Maybe I have a dry sense of humour or I need interesting things in my life since I find Somalia quite interesting.

You see, I was back again in Mogadishu and for some reason the guys at immigration were not sure I should be allowed in and took two hours to make this decision. And even then, forgot to stamp my passport and so for about 30 minutes, I was an undocumented alien in Mogadishu.

The insecurity situation in Somalia should end. We spent two days in Mogadishu because we couldn’t find a flight that would take us 90km out. A 18 fucking minutes flight. Next time I will strike a deal with AMISOM to give me a ride in their tanks. Keep it here for future stories.

So we were in this plane where I think the wear a seatbelt is a mockery. Either there were no seatbelts or there were many of us and so no one bothered with them. Good interesting life..

What I find annoying is dealing with uncertainty. And no, it has nothing to do with security. I have before mentioned their concept of time. So imagine a situation when you can’t tell that a scheduled flight will actually be available. I was in a situation like this for two days and eventually flew to a beautiful green town which was wet and hot or is it hot and wet.

Anyway, I am back to NBI, where unless the clueless governor does something stupid, which is his wont, then life is pretty much regular.

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The missionary position

In this post I wrote, following, Professor Makau Mutua, that indigenous religions should be protected against the proselytizing religions, that is, Christianity and Islam.

Those of you who don’t live under rocks have heard about the missionary, John Chau, who met a not very good fate when he went to spread the not so good news of chesus to guys who were not interested.

Maybe had my ancestors meted the same treatment to early missionaries, the profile of our world would be different. If the missionaries believe their god is everywhere and can perform miracles, I would suggest they pray and fast, while at home, and ask the gods they pray to to convert whoever it is they are interested in saving from a death that meets us all.

Of sound and unsound minds

I think, Socrates then Cicero exaggerated things a big deal when they said

All silly people were unsound

But I go ahead of myself.

Sound here means minds that are under no perturbation from any motion as if it were a disease and unsound are those that are differently affected.

It’s this statement by Cicero in his disputations that I think is a stretch. He writes

No fool is ever free from perturbations of the soul; but all that are diseased are unsound; and the minds of all fools are diseased; therefore all fools are mad.

He says elsewhere that grief, being a disorder of the mind, cannot afflict the wise. This he writes is because, the man of courage is the only wise man and as such, grief cannot befall him.

Is liberalism a failed project?

I am reading this interesting book in which the author makes the case for rethinking liberalism. If he’s correct, liberalism is self-contradictory and is a failed project.

Somewhere in the book, he writes that liberalism’s end game is unsustainable in every respect, that is,

It cannot perpetually enforce order upon a collection of autonomous individuals increasingly shorn of constitutive social norms, nor can it provide endless material growth in a world of limits.

By the time I finish reading the book, I will know how I feel about it. Though I know of a tweep who has been consistent in arguing that liberal democracy has not worked for Africa and instead we have ended up with electoral authoritarianism. He argues, the claims made or goods that liberal democracy was claimed would make possible have remained but a chimera and it is time thoughtful citizens among us developed a system that would answer our present crises while offering hope for future generations.

from Mogadishu with love

Of all my trips to Mogadishu, this was the least eventful. There were dancers like those who received me in Garowe, no running across the terminal like the last time I was there.

That said, however, I took a picture in a restricted street. The guard saw and almost ate me and my phone whole. We, that is, I and my colleagues from Somalia were able to convince him there was no ill intent. We deleted the one picture and I was left to go on with my business. Mental note: no taking photos left and right.

There was an explosion near my hotel. No, I wasn’t hurt.

IMG_20181110_164345~2

I like the mosque coming up in the foreground

I think this was dusk at the beach

how not to take a picture

who would have thought the beach is this full of life

no good travel blog ends without food

view from somewhere to the airport

here is where to buy your tickets

tuk tuks are everywhere

I don’t feel black

Can I identify myself as grey? Can I go to court and contend this? Is complexion and by extension colour a social construct?

I ask all these because of this post from WEIT, where a man has gone to court to contest his age. He argued

Doctors had told him his body was that of a 45-year-old man, Ratelband argued. He described himself as a “young god”.

In my defense, when I look at the mirror and compare myself against a black object (social construct- pun intended) I don’t look black. So I will consider asking my lawyers to file submissions in court next week to address this issue.