Original Lead-In: These questions about Kenya were posted on a Kenyan Tourism portal and were answered by the website owner. I came across them through a Kenyan classmate of mine at Yale.
Just as I was about to delete this post altogether, I saw a note from Tom Murphy to keep it up solely based on the fact that it is funny. I decided I agreed with him and didn’t delete it. And because I totally bought the whole thing, based on my day-to-day interactions with Americans and their completely inaccurate presumptions about Africa (and my classmate from Kenya also believing it to be real), maybe it does actually speak to many of the stereotypes that Westerners have about Africa. And, just as relevant, maybe it speaks to many of the stereotypes out there of Western tourists, as Brett pointed out.
In any case, these are some questions you can ponder as you chuckle at the Q&A below:
Q: Does it ever get windy in Kenya? I have never seen it rain on TV, so how do the plants grow? (UK)
A: We import all plants fully grown and then just sit around watching them die.
Q: Will I be able to see elephants in the street? (USA)
A: Depends how much you’ve been drinking.
Q: I want to walk from Nairobi to Nakuru – can I follow the railroad tracks? (Sweden)
A: Sure, it’s only two thousand kilometres….take lots of water.
Q: Is it safe to run around in the bushes in Kenya? (Sweden)
A: So it’s true what they say about Swedes.
Q: Are there any ATMs (cash machines) in Kenya? Can you send me a list of them in Nairobi and Mombasa? (UK)
A: What did your last slave die of?
Q: Can you give me some information about Koala Bear racing in Kenya? (USA)
A: Aus-tra-lia is that big island in the middle of the Pacific. A-fri-ca is the big triangle shaped continent south of Europe which does not…oh forget it. Sure, the Koala Bear racing is every Tuesday night in Koinange Street. Come naked.
Q: Which direction is north in Kenya? (USA)
A: Face south and then turn 90 degrees. Contact us when you get here and we’ll send the rest of the directions.
Q: Can I bring cutlery into Kenya? (UK)
A: Why? Just use your fingers like we do.
Q: Do you have perfume in Kenya? (France)
A: No. We don’t stink.
Q: I have developed a new product that is the fountain of youth. Can you tell me where I can sell it in Kenya? (USA)
A: Anywhere where a significant number of Americans gather.
Q: Can you tell me the regions in Kenya where the female population is smaller than the male population? (Italy)
A: Yes, gay nightclubs.
Q: Do you celebrate Christmas in Kenya? (France)
A: Only at Christmas.
Q: Are there killer bees in Kenya? (Germany)
A: Not yet, but for you, we’ll import them.
Q: Are there supermarkets in Nairobi and is milk available all year round?
A: No, we are a peaceful civilisation of vegan hunter-gatherers. Milk is illegal.
Q: Please send a list of all doctors in Kenya who can dispense rattlesnake serum. (USA)
A: Rattlesnakes live in A-meri-ca, which is where YOU come from. All Kenyan snakes are perfectly harmless, can be safely handled and make good pets.
Q: I was in Kenya in 1969 and I want to contact the girl I dated while I was staying in Mombasa. Can you help? (USA)
A: Yes, but you will probably still have to pay her by the hour.
Q: Will I be able to speek English most places I go? (USA)
A: Yes, but you’ll have to learn it first