I came to hybernate in the village at the very onset of COVID-19 in the country. At the time when the virus was just beginning to rear its head and tension was beginning to build up. I could remember the exact date if I checked because that was the day the last international flights were taking off. My sister and her hubby were around from the US and they had to fly out on that last flight before the airspace was closed.
I dropped the poor darlings at the ghost town that was JKIA a whole 9 hours before their midnight flight time, rushed back home, picked a few things, and came right back here feeling eerily like a character in a zombie apocalypse movie. Or Contagion.
Physically I’ve been here since then, save for a one day trip to the city once in a while after the country was finally opened up. But mentally and professionally I’m as Nairobian as they come. I’ve been working from home like everyone else and that means I’m online all the time, except I do not have access to WiFi. From all the way here however, I do not miss a work email, a contract, or a fun TikTok. So yes, being away from the trappings of WiFi means that I use up a lot of cellular data and talk time. I prefer not to look at it that way though. I look at it from the point of view where I’m able to work at all. In short I’m grateful.
Working from here also means that my laptop is always tethered. I’m in the digital media field and for a job that involves being in Zoom, BlueJeans, and Microsoft Teams meetings several times a week, it is necessary to have a solid plan on data expenses. And that’s why I’m more than comfortable with Safaricom PostPay. A bundled product with data, talk time and SMS for which I pay a monthly bill. For a Ksh3,000/- monthly plan, I get 25 GB data, 1,500 minutes talk-time, and unlimited SMSs. This gives me the peace of mind of working, catching up on family and friends, and keeping up with Nairobi without having to worry too much about the looming possibility of finding myself offline during an important meeting.
I’m not yet there with my PostPay journey and my plan is to soon upgrade to the Ksh5,000/- plan which will give me unlimited data, 2,500 minutes talk-time and unlimited SMSs. I doubt I can talk this much but the beauty of the product is that any unused minutes left at the end of the month will be carried forward to the next one. Unlimited data however is an absolute win for me so an upgrade is in the cards. I will downgrade when I get back to Nairobi and back to WiFi. Because all the above is not to say that I do not miss the city. I do.
I miss my agency friends and colleagues, all the work-related travel, media events and the banter and happy hours at Baraza Media Labs where I work from. Crazy as this may sound, I think I even miss a bit of Nairobi chaos and the fast life that I’m used to. Early mornings, late nights, traffic… the works. But for the next few months, the village is where it is at for me and I’m enjoying PostPay from here.
Karibu PostPay. If you would like to try it out, this is how you join.