05-02-2021 by Freddie del Curatolo
They arrive, they arrive as if it were their right.
And perhaps it is, certainly more of a right than a duty.
The Italians arrive with a swab made 96 hours earlier in a country that still records 15,000 cases every 24 hours and at least 400 deaths.
But in these hours it is grappling with what appears to be the absolute priority: ousting Conte and setting up a government of technicians, economists and strategists. Suddenly, the Covid-19 is no longer the first news item on the page, but neither the second nor the third.
If they had thought about it before, all the smart people who spent their time complaining and insulting politicians could have solved their problems in two months.
And in the meantime they arrive, with a buffer that after four days could easily be disproved.
Do they do any good?
Probably more for their mental health than for that of those around them, unless they come to Kenya to abide by the same rules they have been forced to abide by so far in their homeland.
The law would still forbid them to leave Italy in the direction of Africa for tourism, but the countries of the Black Continent welcome them and await them almost like manna.
Oh God, in most cases they would prefer travellers who are a little more "luxury" than the Italians who disembark, but in times of hardship anything goes.
After all, they love Kenya, or at least a Kenyan citizen.
No, come on, it's said with a smile. We know very well that those who are arriving these days are not like the tip of the melting iceberg you see around, among pizzerias and boda-boda saddles.
There are also homeowners who are coming to see if someone hasn't sold it to them in the meantime, pensioners who, after having been rejuvenated by 10 years in a swimming pool with hydromassage in Malindi, have aged 20 years in a condominium with oxygen in Paderno Dugnano, and above all there are also those two or three who feel lucky because they can still afford to pay for a ticket and a stay on the shores of the Indian Ocean.
And the Kenyan coast goes back to being what it has always been, a receptacle for tourists of all kinds, to be talked about and talked about so and so.
It is a late summer, a bit like radicchio trevisano.
It goes very well with baked scamorze, especially those smoked on the Silversand shoreline.
Ethiopian Airways, the busiest airline between Italy and Kenya and the only one that has replaced charters in the expectations of its compatriots (a painless stop in Addis Ababa with ground operators who understand Italian and condescend to the ignorance of the languages of most of our people), shows images of planes that are quite full, while the arriving tourists take selfies and in the background appear queues of fleeing Italians, crammed in and wearing masks strictly under their chins. According to them, they are immune for a few hours anyway.
They arrive, they arrive.
In Watamu, the deniers can already be seen. An elderly lady, with the arrogance of someone who has lived through months of frustration and can't even taste the temporary salvation under the equator sun, refuses to wear a mask at the entrance of a supermarket and indignantly goes away cursing: 'You must want to work so badly'.
Dear lady, I want to tell you from the bottom of my heart: it is better to be hungry than to have to deal with assholes.
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