This is going to be a very different post that the ones I usually write:
Last year, my cousin Wam was having a reception at her new home in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. Her husband Dadi, is Tanzanian and a lot of family and friends didn’t make it to their wedding here in Kenya. So, she invited us and we packed up our little monster and headed for the bus at 7:00 in the morning.
When we got to the bus station, there was a man there (dressed as a security guard). His main job seemed to be standing around asking us to leave our luggage by the door before we went in to verify our bus tickets. We didn’t do this because, this is Kenya. This guy got very angry with us when we hauled our luggage into the station. He was shouting things like, ‘why aren’t you listening? Why are you going with your luggage into the station? I have already told you that you should leave you luggage here!’ It was very odd.
After a short while, another man (dressed in the company uniform) came out and started tagging our luggage. He would tie a tag onto the handle of the luggage, and give us the corresponding tag to hold inside our ticket. He did this for all the pieces before putting them into the cargo hold. Martin, my husband and Onyi, my cousin oversaw this process to ensure our luggage made it onto the bus. It did. There were about 20 pieces. (There was 12 of us). Among that, was Kendi’s travel cot.
We took off on the 20 hour journey and when we got to Dar, all the luggage was there EXCEPT the travel cot. We searched everywhere in the cargo hold and after about 10 minutes, it became apparent that it wasn’t there. The bus attendants said that they would keep looking for it and give us feedback in the morning.
Come morning, we called and were informed that they hadn’t found it. Kendi had to sleep on the mattress again that night, and every other night we spent in Dar.
So, when we got back to Nairobi, we called the company and the 6 month run around began:
‘I’m very sorry madam, we will check and get back to you’.
‘I apologize for not getting back to you, we are still checking if the luggage might have been dropped off at Arusha’.
‘It was not dropped off at Arusha, we are rechecking the station in Dar’.
‘It is not in Dar, we shall compensate you’.
‘We can only compensate you if we can prove that the luggage made in onto the bus’.
They are not picking up my calls. They are not replying emails.
Jervis, the manager I met when I finally went to their office down town, made an attempt to look for it and assured me that he would get back to me.
Kendi has a new cot now, she will never know the difference. As for me, I will never travel Modern Coast again.
Is it too much to ask to be compensated for a company’s own negligence?