The day I arrived back home, a lot of people did not expect me to last this long. I’ve witnessed things and met people who I would never have associated with back in London. Warlords, no nonsense private security guards, rude cousins, pushy uncles etc... I also met some very good people, wonderful aunties, established hard working individuals etc.. But none expected that I came to settle in this magnificent city and make it my home once again. 5 months in, I’m still here. I must admit though, I have doubted myself constant times but realised in order to grow as a human, sometimes you need to get out of your comfort zone.
I’ve heard bombs go off, I’ve met both presidents, previous and current, met MPs that made me realise anything is possible in this city if they have made it. I’ve also re-united with long lost family members, seen the house I use to live at and privileged to be witnessing the resurgence of our great country. I tried to fit into society, i.e.; wearing local customary clothes when around my neighbourhood or even sometimes putting in incredible amount of effort in stepping my A game when it came to my mother tongue. But somehow someway, folks always can see that I am fresh to the city. Most just want to hear me talk, whether it’s in English or Somali, they really keen to let me do the discussion. Others are different. There are a few who see some of us as some kind of invaders. How the hell am I an invader when this is my motherland and belongs to me as much as yours? It begs the question, are you really firm to see me out of here?
That’s what really pushes me on. You see, I’m the type of chap who thrives on hate. I adore it. I truly consider that without any sort of disapproval towards you, (that’s only if you doing something positive for yourself or for others) then you must be doing some wrong. Negativity means you are doing well. (Just keep that noted for the future.) When I hear “are you still here?” or “Aint you going back?” mate, I tell you what, I aint a celebrity and I’m not screaming get me outta here! I’m here on the long run. Just bear in mind that.
But not all is like that. The mainstream of folks I came across really do want everyone to come back. Examples are when I met a policeman when we went to Liido for a swim one Sunday, he approached the vehicle we was in (me and one friend of mine from the States) before we got out. He asked real simple security question which is common in Mogadishu. He then recognised with our “not so perfect” accent that we came from abroad. Within minutes, he told us his name, and how he had kids abroad and felt happy to have met us. After 10 minutes of brief convo on the reason why we came back to Somalia, he told us frank that we made him be devoted to Somalia more in those 10 minutes then he ever did. Amazing. All we said was that how we had an marvellous beach and we are not grateful for it as a nation. We also mentioned back in Europe/America, you had to drive sometimes 2 hours or even more just to get to a beach and when you arrived, you realise how freezing it is and regret it. That’s all it took. He left us stating how from now on, he will learn how to swim in order to enjoy this wonderful beach we got for free.
The good always outdoes the bad. A lot of people want me to go wild and scream out “I’M A DIASPORA, GET ME OUTTA HERE”. But I guess they met the wrong dude.
Mohamed Hassan (Dj)