Kenya’s cosmopolitan capital Nairobi barely sleeps. Not only are most workers up before the sun, for many young men and women, the predawn hour is when the real fun starts.
Then, Nairobi’s youth spill out of clubs and bars, and head for their chips funga — a slangy way of describing French fries to go. In Kiswahili, funga means “to be covered,” a reference to the way any late night greasy spoon will bundle your potatoes in tinfoil or a paper bag for takeaway. But among the young and hungry, chips funga has become a euphemism for taking a paramour home from the club.
The term works as a noun (“chips” or “chipo”), verb (“to chip”) adjective (“chipsed”) or past participle (“chipoed”). In many ways it’s the antidote to funga ndao — meaning to marry, or “tie the knot.” Chips Funga is now also the name of a Web site…
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