NO STOPPING AT LITTLE BLOCKS.
They say a happy person is not a person with a certain set of circumstances but rather a person with a set of certain attitudes. In the streets of Nairobi, I meet Abdulhakim Shehe a young man aged 23, with an envelope in his hand. Walking so keenly as if he was searching for a small coin of five shillings that he had dropped on the ground.
So I decide to say hi to him and help him look for what he had dropped on the ground. “Hello sir?” instead he continued walking as if he had not heard what I said. I tapped him on the shoulders once more and asked him ‘Have you lost anything? This time he answered affirmatively, “No” as he continued walking. I pressed this one more time “then why do want to injure yourself’ I held his hand so closely because just one feet away was a very gaping man hole and they have been so many deaths reported as result of people falling in the hole at night.
“It’s a long story sir” he said this time round with a charming smile on his face. “Really” is all I could gather courage to say, why someone would not be able to see that he really is in danger and especially with this board day I wondered aloud. Then cut it short because am really surprised”
As I was about walk away to my normal business, everybody in this big city does mind their own business. But I felt his warm hand holding tightly to my bad which was strapped on my shoulder, and he “maybe we have coffee, I would really wish for this right now’. Across, the busy street spotted one of my favorite coffee places, and yes ‘it was quite empty at this time of the day’. Once seated, Abdul narrated his life history to me at a café as we sipped warm coffee. I learnt that he is visually impaired and he was born with the sight problem but according to him he continued to live life like any other kid in the neighborhood of where he lived, until he was enrolled and finished school just like any other normal child. which he late got used to and took it as a normal situation since he could cot chance that, he went to school just like other children and he is now a certificate holder.
After, high school, Abdul managed to attain a certificate in radio and television presentation in one of the best colleges in Kenya, (East Africa Media Institute, in Nairobi). He top secret about his successful accomplishment in college, was by the virtual of using a computer software ‘Jaws’. This type of software through had to come in the Kenyan market, helped to with reading and writing and surfing online research which kept him on top of his class..
I was so happy to hear all about his achievements, despite being visually impaired. I was quite surprised to learn that he aims to study until he attains his master’s degree in communication. When I asked him what his goal in life was he had these to say: “I will never stop at little blocks, and after my education I would want to be one of the best journalist in Kenya, and work for international media agencies. And I have my eyes set, to work with accomplished journalist’s at British Broadcasting Co-operation”. True to his words, the sky is the limit, I wished him well and promised to always keep an eye on his progress since we had now become bounded ‘my brother, I share the same problem with you’ I finally gathered my courage and told him so. He mouth was agape with shock, and after the momentary silence, he stood up and embraced me as I felt his warm tears running down his face ‘truly, it’s a miracle that we meet, you’re brother and am your keeper’.
After the cup of coffee with Abdul I also felt challenged, and a question rung my mind every minute.(if a blind person can make a good journalist what about the rest)? So I found these be quite inspirational to me and everyone else. As I left the coffee place, with my bag strapped on my shoulder ready to face the world and back to business schedule. I told myself that ‘I will become an international and renowned editor, and use my media skills to highlight some of the challenges faced by visually impaired people.
By Kobia Koome