The journey to France starts with Bujumbura: The power of Social Media

April 28, 2017

Ndisi – rest her soul. She brought out the best in the average of the 7 that wrapped up her candidates sitting the High school national exams every November. Close to 100 students signed up for French each academic year. By the 3rd class, half had escaped her bait. The other half struggled to grow a thick skin, she was subtly ruthless. Eventually, a handful of us stuck it out for the love of the language – or the little we knew it promised. Or maybe just to stand out. We had recitals on parade, we had to be neater than everyone else and sometimes we graced her yard with blunt slashers to mow her lawn or uproot tree stumps. You’d walk half a mile on the school drive, smell her perfume and your legs would give way. She weighed about 90 pounds for 5.3’ or something close, her brown skin as flawless as a baby’s with dark black hair that stretched past her shoulders. She gave me all the French I know, sadly, half of it slipped through the unspoken word. Last week, God gave me Bujumbura through her.

6 years ago I went to Nyayo house – Nairobi to apply for a passport. I was supposed to be travelling out for work. It turned out that I would use it 5 years later to Tanzania. I opted to use it even though it wasn’t quite necessary. I figured I still got 29/30 other pages before it expired. Turns out I will be using it again, thanks to Twitter. I participated in a competition that winners would be awarded Educational trips to France and Burundi. When I was emailed that I was position 1 (my certificate later read position 2 coz position 1 was a tie – no kingdom has 2 kings, we know that right?), I packed my bags for France – in my head. I entered the competition under the university students category and the French embassy decided that the teachers who taught us how to pronounce la Tour Eifel should see it first. The teachers get Paris, we get Bujumbura. Fair play. I’m grateful – more grateful today than I was during the award ceremony. On the photos, I got this pout reading my tweet coz I was halfway sulking about not seeing the once upon a time love bridge with locked locks (Parisians campaigned to have it removed).

My 29-page passport is eagerly waiting for Bujumbura in August. If you had a shred of doubt about social media making a difference – it’s getting me a Bujumbura stamp courtesy of the French Embassy in Kenya. What is social media doing for you besides the midnight stalks? Most importantly, what is social media doing for your business?

Free Online Marketing training happening every Friday and Saturday 8.30am to 12.00pm at Edulink College off Ndemi Road Junction courtesy of #Africa118Inc., #Infomoby and #Google.

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