I’ve had a lot of requests for the Kenyan reaction to the inauguration this week. I wish I could tell you more, but I, like many others, watched it on TV. Nearly all the TV stations carried CNN live, starting on Monday and continuing through Wednesday. Shortly after Obama took his oath of office, I heard loud noises outside. I’m not sure if they were fireworks, exuberant gunfire or just trucks backfiring as I couldn’t see anything outside my window.
Perhaps the most poignant moment was when I was approached by Antony, our young IT guy on Tuesday morning. He came over to my desk to congratulate me on being an American, and the country’s choice of a President. It was very sweet and entirely sincere. He said he was excited to go home that evening and watch as much coverage as he could. When I saw him the following morning and asked if he liked the ceremony, he said it exceeded his expectations and he was really proud to be both Kenyan and work for an American organization. He’s got all his bases covered!
This morning my favorite news show featured an interview with a local lawyer. The topic was what Obama would do for Kenya, and for once, I heard a realistic view that he thought not much would happen. The gentleman was very articulate and quite informed on American politics and the myriad of issues that Obama must handle first on the home front. However, he did state that he hoped that at some point, Kenya would become the 52nd US state. I wonder which state is Number 51.