My Story as an African Immigrant: Introduction and Part One

Why Write Out My History in Australia?

Hello! Hello ! Hello! I once heard the expression:

It’s impossible to hate a person when you know where they have come from.

I think that’s because when you see where someone has come from, things that they do that seem illogical all of a sudden make sense.All of a sudden you realize that people have gone through what you go through and that when you break it all down, there are a lot of similarities between all of us, us human beings.

So, I am writing my timeline out here in Australia, not for egotistical reasons- though those are always nice- but more so that you can understand where I’m coming from. Whereas this blog is semi-personal, it isn’t a personal diary like most blogs which I know and love. This is because I honestly wanted to bring something different to this great medium known as the blogosphere. And as I continue to write less and less about myself and more and more about the type of stuff that will hopefully be useful to you, I want you to know where I am coming from. A lot of the things I have done are kinda cooky (just mildly though, don’t expect any serial killer stories here) , but in context, they all make sense.


This is my third attempt at writing this. The first one was six pages long and the second was 10 pages long. In spite of that, they both were telling entirely different stories. I didn’t believe it at first but my emotional and mental story is way too complex and convoluted for me to hope to explain it in a couple of posts so instead I thought I would walk you through the events themselves and just give you a bit of side commentary ala Twitter (btw if you and you’re friends are not on twitter, it is the coolest thing, make sure you get on it. You can be my twitter friend too, my name is masmilele).

Btw, that’s me sitting in the top right corner of the blog with a wistful, melancholic look on my face, for those who are wondering whether God hit me with the ugly stick. Without any further explanation and ado:

Leaving Kenya



  • In December, my family travels to Australia. At the time I have just finished primary school and am awaiting my KCPE results-for the unitiated KCPE is the exam done at the end of primary school in Kenya that determines what high school I will go to.
  • I do much worse than I expected to in KCPE.I strongly suspect that I was marked down (Marking down is the system where people from middle and higher income schools get their marks reduced so that they can compete with people from poorer schools that don’t have the same access to facilities. Fantastic system! In retrospect, I didn’t mind being marked down too much). Fortunately, I have a relationship with a principal of one of the best schools in the country.In the back of my mind, I know I can always fall back on that.
  • My family decides they love Australia and especially Melbourne. When we arrive home, my family decide that we are all shipping over to Australia. I am over the moon with joy.


  • I get into a great high school in spite of my only-slightly-better-than-average mark in KCPE.
  • My loud mouth gives me a seat as sport’s captain in my first day and voted in as Vice Captain in my first week: I have the sports ability of a modified antenna though.
  • I become relatively well known around the school and have at the very least acquantance relationships with everyone in my class and most people in the school.
  • I don’t care about academics at all. Only thing that excites me is arguing with my Italian RE teacher (gives you a clue where I went to high school if you’re Kenyan) who thinks I have half a brain :D Aside from that only thing I see when I look at the board are things to make snide remarks at, alcohol bottles& satchets and the female form.
  • I party at every chance though I am almost always broke, can’t afford fancy clothes and have no ability to talk to the ladies. Enjoy going out with my older cousin(big up V and friends from school)
  • Start a band while in school. Write about 20 songs, assemble about six members but never manage have rehearsals or do anything though we have connections with one of the best production houses – the best at the time – in the country.
  • Get caught shoplifting alcohol with my best friend at the time. That beating convinces me to never shoplift ever again. Precursor to my quiting drinking many years later. Guilt unfortunately melts away when me and my friend happen upon a couple of women while taking the bus home………..

First Half 2002

  • Learn that we are immigrating to Australia. Proceed to drop out of school like the place was on fire.
  • Mother is absolutely furious that I stay in the house and won’t do housework to the point that she kicks me out of the house in the middle of the night. With money I stole from her I go to the city where my cousin is staying thinking this is the beginning of a great partying lifestyle: I am home waiting to immigrate by the next day.
  • On the last week in Kenya a friend of mine informs me that apparently foreigners love African men and I should expect female rewards only comparable to a suicide bomber when I land in Australia. My hormones and general excitement threaten to overwhelm me.

Continued in: Part two/ Part three/ Part four /Part five

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No Comments

  • By gal africana, March 23, 2008 @ 5:15 am

    sounds like you were quite the terror son…are you sure you still want to have kids…they could very well turn out to be like you lol

  • By Mwangi, March 23, 2008 @ 1:39 pm

    Oh you haven’t seem anything yet….at the very least when my kid messes up, I can tell him/her, “I know where you’re coming from, I was once there.”

  • By stratharian, March 27, 2008 @ 1:29 am

    Haha. Strath? I had my battle of wits with Borruso too.

  • By Mwangi, March 27, 2008 @ 1:32 am

    @stratharian: Greetings ex-stratharian. No it wasn’t Mr. Silvano, it was the other Italian guy who used to love spreading second hand smoke in class via his pipe and used to cuss like all our names were f…. and s….

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