After some time, and several more phone calls, it had become clear that this woman, this helpful stranger, was my only hope. In hindsight, I probably could have been a little more confident and independent and selected a trustworthy taxi driver from the crowds of men shouting “Taxi? Taxi!” in my face.
But I wasn’t confident.
I didn’t feel independent.
I was totally alone.
I was starting to question whether my charity was even real.
I was starting to wonder whether this was what the next two months of my life would feel like.
I was overwhelmed.
WAIT! Have you read parts 1-4 yet? You might want to glance over those first…
My savior had clearly sensed my vulnerability, she likely read it on my paler-than-usual face. She set me up with a driver. She walked me out of the airport with her arm around my shoulder, across the busy street and spoke to a man in a language I didn’t recognise with a sense of urgency which I assumed was connected to my having been deserted by the driver I was expecting. She threw some English in occasionally, which helped me to trust that the conversation was in my favour.
There is nothing I can ever do to repay the warm, busy, helpful woman from Jomo Kenyatta International Airport, who took her time, on 21st September 2013, in the middle of a terrorist attack in their local city, to help a naïve and confused girl to get safely to her hotel.
She took an airport full of total strangers under her wing in a time of crisis, and ensured that every single person there was delivered safely to their destination.
My taxi driver, the man she had carefully chosen for me, filled me in on some vague details of the day.
That there had been an attack on his home town that day.
That Kenya is ‘never like this’.
That he was so sorry for my experience here today.
That he had lost family today in this attack.
These people lost friends and relatives that day, but in the face of terror and tragedy, they offered me their apologies for the minor inconvenience it may have caused ME?
The man delivered me to my hotel, and walked me inside, failing to worry me with the minor detail, that the attack was still currently in full swing, in the shopping mall opposite my hotel.
Making no sense? Maybe start with Part 1
Ready to read on? Move on to Part 6!