When 2020 hit I had plans for the year but not so much for a pandemic. I was going about life as best as I could manage,I was financially stressed out but pushing on hopeful for travels, love, and peace. Then around mid-March, the president of the republic announced there was a global pandemic called Covid-19. I cannot get into the details of what it is but all populations across the country were advised to stay at home, wash hands, sanitize, and keep a social distance of 1.5meters apart. Panic shopping took place, events were canceled. I do recall on the morning of the announcement preparations were in high gear for the rotary Sunshine rally, I was part of the transport team and it was overwhelming, to say the least having the event canceled. I spent the better part of Friday and Saturday distributing perishable food staff and listening to all manners of fears and anxiety all over. At some point in the week that follow rumors of total lockdown were in circulation and for a moment I feared being alone at home shut in my apartment. I called a friend who lived in Voi, I had previously visited and sort company, and hence the journey to Voi was made.
Traveling to Voi has several options, One can take a flight to Tsavo wildlife by private charter from Wilson airport, take a bus or shuttle to Mombasa and alight in Voi town along the Nairobi Mombasa highway. There also direct shuttles and buses to Voi town, One can also take the Madaraka Express and drop off at the Voi station not too far from the town. Due to the pandemic, the SGR was out of questions because of the unavailability of tickets and the shuttles were also hard to come by but that is what I eventually boarded at double the norma fare price. I arrived in Voi at around 1 AM, super grateful for my friend waiting on me and that was the beginning of a covid lockdown stay. There were all these measures on cessation of the counties to reduce the spread of the coronavirus and I just zoned out. I got still, very still during that period, I stopped wondering about the future and got on doing a day at a time.
In retrospect I achieved a lot, writing this blog makes me realize how we all get so focused on the future we don’t look back at how far we have come. I completed an Entrepreneur’s course from the Sinapis program (Such a milestone since I have had trouble completing training since campus 10 years ago). I co-ordinated the installation ceremony of our Rotary club president remotely held in Nairobi while I was in Voi, live-streamed the same, I managed to work on a wonderful client project affirming the possibility of learning a new skill and getting paid for it, I supported a friend on covid response project, I built stronger relationships with some of my friends. All this is such a blessing.
Blogging on a personal experience during covid just to highlight my view of Voi town despite all, my friend was able to dispatch merchandise for sale via the local bus services and G4S,I ordered items from Jumia which also got delivered via G4S. Unlimited internet was a bit of a challenge, I used an Telkom sim card because of their favorable rates,1,000/= for 30GB the whole month, I had to use Safaricom Giga though to handle zoom calls. The food was delicious, vegetables and fruits were a bit of a challenge to get but not completely unavailable. The silent atmosphere was remarkable but probably attributed to the shut down of churches and mosques in adherence to social distancing rules..
Eventually, after 5 months, it was time to come back to the city, my soul was at peace and my heart at rest. I would advise if someone wishes to have a slow-paced life and still keep an income then Voi is an ok town. One has to adjust to the weather, coastal culture, and really slow pace of things.