About one of the most common sight in Nairobi suburbs and its environs, see a pale lost looking guy selling a paper bag full of leaves, fanning over it with a piece of carton or anything to keep it fresh for the longest time possible until most or all of his stock is sold. Muguka is the newest legal and cheap thing out there to keep you busy all night, if you are against women for whatever reason.

Like equity bank that sprung up out of the blue, muguka aka goks came from zero to hero, replacing the famous miraa that became expensive, rare and dancing around the thin line of legal-or-not. Miraa addicts all turned to goks and the trick worked so well since both gave the same effect; zero sleep, allowing one to conduct their nighttime business without the bother of heavy eyes.

The other thing about goks is people chew it anytime, not just at night, without raising eyebrows. The sad part is it kills appetite by numbing the senses of smell and taste. Taken with chewing gum, peanuts and a bottle of soda whose cap has been pierced open using a nail to allow only drop by drop drinking, goks also goes along well with some native roots we call mgombero and muda; I have no idea what they are called in English, but someone once said the former is chamomile, I didn’t believe them, still don’t.

I haven’t tried a lot of goks or miraa myself, save for the few times I was trying to look trendy to win a girl or just blend in. I however often forgot the rule and swallowed after chewing for sometime, messing up my stomach a great deal. Experts will warn you never to swallow.

November 22, 2012 David Omondi





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