’” But given time, his parents accepted the situation, which they saw as a trial marriage.
Maybe some mixed race couples just love each other? White men just want black women for the novelty of it and to fulfil sexual fantasies.The stereotypes Kenyans hold about what happens when races mix are never-ending and often contradictory. That’s what these relationships are all about, or that’s what you’d think looking in on Mashada or listening in on conversations.But things change when you ask Kenyans as individuals.“We always used to talk online, didn’t we,” Dani confirms with Chaka, before confidentially adding, “And I always fancied him,” with a giggle.In 2011, Dani decided to go for a February holiday in Kenya, “and that was it really, no looking back,” as she puts it.Most of the interracial couples in Kenya involve an expatriate.
That means that not only are the individuals involved not sharing their citizenship, they also aren’t sharing a similar culture.
However, as things get more generalised, stereotypes gain more credence.
It’s as if the social assumptions surrounding interracial relationships are so strongly ingrained in Kenyan culture that everyone looks at their personal experience as an exception rather than the rule.
When Chaka told his parents she was coming to Kenya to live with him, their first concern was not knowing her, and their second was whether he even really did.
“I said, ‘No, that’s something we can work on,’” Chaka recounts, “So to them, that’s a bit like you’re just testing it, you’re not serious.” Dani fires back with, “But in my mind, I was like, ‘Well how am I supposed to get to know Chaka if I don’t move over?
Chaka surprised her with a six-week visit to the UK that June, and Dani decided to take the plunge and move to Kenya in September.