Shukran

I’m really horrible at asking for help. This is not a good thingย less than ideal.

Every so often, though, I ask. Meekly, pretty certain *nobody* will say yes, or maybe, or even no. Assured, for whatever reason, that the answer will be no. Yet, over and over again, the generosity of people astounds me.

This is for the people who messaged me after my SOS message on Twitter, the ones who continue to reach out, the ones who say, “Hey, are you OK?” even in the knowledge that the answer may be no.

Thank you all for the reminder to stay open, to stay willing to speak, and here’s yours that I’m an email away. And if I can, I shall, or I’ll try beam out a message.

Ann Daramola never fails to point out that we are surrounded by love. I have felt it keenly; I am overwhelmed and terribly grateful.

Related (because she is such a source of joy and light & this is something to highlight): Aisha Ali wrote about consent in Brainstorm today & will be moderating a session on consent and gender violence against women on Saturday. Go, if you can, the panel is amazing & the audience is bound to be interesting.

Note: This post is part of #CuminWrites366, my year-long attempt to write a post a day. Find the rest over atย readability.com/cuminwrites/

Questions, comments, suggestions or looking for SOS-related contacts? Send them to cuminwrites@gmail.com ๐Ÿ™‚

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Conversations in Silence

Instead of a trip to the doctor with SSS on February the 18th , we went to…. Goethe Institut in the evening for the opening of ‘Conversations in Silence‘… There were 3 partnerships and a single artist’s work…

From the original program, it had been anticipated that Miriam Syowia Kyambi would be part of the project, which was essentially a Bauhaus University alumni (B)/Kenyan artists (K) one, but that was evidently not the case on our arrival. Why that is, we know not. This project was intended to explore the nature, extent, influence on, types of, and means of commemorating Kenya’s collective memory. This post aims to say a little of my impressions of the exhibition. I went to the opening as well as two more times; with SSS and then E so I hope I present a, shall we say, rounded view to the nature of the exhibition.

Karolina Freino (B) & James Muriuki (K) presented 3 separate pieces; 2 of which are related (at least to me…) In one, a video, Muriuki interviews a lady called Peninna who sells potatoes at Nairobi’s Toi Market (I have always wondered why it’s called that but…not to digress) as she postulates on the role of women in providing support for their children, the reduced role of men in the same and why some jobs are still ‘women’s jobs’. Market women all over Africa are exposed, informed, and opinionated. This one does not disappoint & makes for interesting viewing.

In another of the works of Freino & Muriuki; they placed piles of potatoes, monuments to trade in a manner of speaking, near various monuments around the city of Nairobi. The contrast is striking, making one view both the potatoes and monuments in a new light… The contrast between the Nyayo Monument at Nairobi’s Central Park and the pile was most engaging for me; this is a monument built to commemorate the reign of a man during whose time in office Kenya was brought to its knees and there next to it was an enduring testament to the desire of all Kenyans to improve their lot. Substitute those potatoes for cassavas, cabbages, coconuts and so on and you have the story of a country striving, sometimes against the establishment. SSS was especially enthused by a photo that the pair had taken atop a building with the sun, bright, in the background. I was happy to see her enjoying herself. It was her first time at an opening and at the encouragement of our new friend Gnash, she spoke to Muriuki about the possibility of a print. What delights one gets with friends!

The last of their works is ‘How are you?’, a recording of the chant one often hears directed at white people in the slums of Nairobi. They provide a ring tone at www.howreyou.mobi that they hope will set off conversations and lead us to ask questions regarding the role of the Westerner, aid, the NGO world, dependence. If I had not gone to Mathare with my German friend J (read about it HERE), I would have found it quite hilarious, this piece. Walking in Mathare with J, though, I heard children repeatedly chant those very words in our direction. The fact that at some point we were walking through the slum carrying some wood as we set off to build a fence only reinforced his role in their minds: Do-gooder. Almost 50 years after independence, we have such a long way to go….

Deqa Abshir (K) & Drusica Drazic (B) worked on 2 items: ‘The Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat’ as well as a pillar in Kibera. I looooved the coat. The idea behind it is the memories of Somali refugees in Kenya and it has images from their time in their country of birth on it. Each of the people photographed in the coat give it distinct character. At the opening, Deqa offered the people present an opportunity to get into the coat and be photographed. My excitement at the chance (I had been asking X if the possibility of wearing the coat, right there on a mannequin, existed) led me to clap before her statement was over. Which would have been embarrassing if I had the capacity for shame. SSS & I got photographed so when you go for the exhibition, look out for the shots from the opening… the shameless-looking girl? That’s me ๐Ÿ™‚ At least you know I’m a girl, ha ha.

Their other work was a concrete pillar they put up in Kibera (inarguably every Mzungu’s favourite slum in Kenya) as a means of commemoration which they hope will grow into something larger and even more significant. Images from its planning and construction were put up. I generally do not find installations accessible so, in classic fashion, I glossed over the thrust of the pillar. Better people shall yet come after me and appreciate that pillar. I hope.

Sam Hopkins (B) & Kevin Irungu (K) had 2 related pieces and they collaborated with a man named Ashif to actualise them. Their work, called ‘Ochuo’s Funeral’, is related to a funeral of a Kibera resident that caused quite a stir in the slum & its environs. Half of their work is a video of a re-enactment of the funeral and other half is a series of interviews with various people (all men, I noticed) who were, in one way or another, part of the planning & execution of the funeral. If any piece of work spoke to memory & the perceptions of people in this exhibition; it was, for me, this one. Every single one of these men remembered some version of the event that was a bit different from other people’s. And enjoyable, more especially if you understand street Kiswahili. This exhibition was being curated-originally-by both Sam Hopkins & Potash (Matathia Charles Anthony) but Potash pulled out due to ethical issues related to ‘Ochuo’s Funeral’. What they are, I wonder. Granted, I put that down on the comment book on the 28th but I want to ask it gain on this forum…. Potash, fungua roho yako!

Finally, Irene Izquierdo’s work. She made a foray into Hilton Square and met some very intriguing characters…some of whom were on hand to entertain on the day of the opening. There is also a video of the people who sit there speaking of their experiences that is peppered with various performances. I’m going to say this; because it’s my blog. I have never in my 20-plus years of living in Nairobi, seen that much entertainment at Hilton Square. Either all those artists are sitting on their talent waiting to be discovered as we walk past or that was an act for the Mzungu. This is a very un-PC thing to say but my sponsors asked me to be honest. One could feel the Mzungu interference with the accounts of Ochuo’s funeral but it was not as marked as with the Hilton Square work. There is an accompanying book that one would do well to read…if only for some insight.

On the whole, an interesting exhibition worth a go-see. The opening was lots of fun; what with X there, our friend LFGrad taking photos and meeting Gnome as SSS was introduced to the wonderful world of art, and openings at that. As well as so many of The Usual Suspects being as fun as they always are ๐Ÿ™‚ X and I have been on a roller-coaster of late; I’m afraid what we have is in a precarious position but going for the opening gave us a chance to be together without the tension that has characterised our interactions of late. Thank you, art world.

As Wednesday from ‘The Addams Family’ just said on TV (we are all watching Boomerang); many thanks and much love. I’ll be back soon ๐Ÿ™‚ END(1st Mar 2011)

My real name is Lady Gaga

Turns out I’m unconventional…

I hadn’t planned on doing anything for Valentine’s day mostly because I have never done anything for Valentines Day (sort of kinda like) but I got X postcards just in case he popped a surprise on me and gave me a gift & I was giftless. And wrote touchy-feely (surprisingly honest) messages on them… I’m getting better at this relationship business :D….

Went for a piano recital at Starehe Boys’ Centre on the 13th… Ned Kirk is a pretty awesome pianist, even though I walked out of Liszt to go walk & talk with my friend Lim as well as meet his brother Clem. During which time X, who would meet me there, called me and I didn’t pick my phone. Had left it with my cousin Sasha (great kid) who was a very random Plus One for the day. Anyway, after we had all met (X, Sasha, Lim & I – see, I’m introducing X to my family….girlfriend behaviour!!!) X & I decided our children will go to school there (sorry, Alliance High School-now that’s wifey behaviour)

We went back to the City centre & ended up at Maasai Market- a large curio market open on Saturdays & Sundays at the High Court parking lot. As we walked, I told X I really want to get an old school camera & a dark room and he said, “So I need to start saving up for dark room equipment.”ย  as well as positing that it was influence from ‘Vicky Cristina Barcelona’ . To which I replied to the effect that that created the impression that we’d still be together when I wanted those. He got royally pissed, asking me why I ‘do that’ (What? Cast doubts? Yes, he says….) I don’t know, sometimes I don’t feel like I know where this is going (says Miss I have his postcards in my bag) but I got reassurance.

What else? We ended up going for Love is Kenya where so many great contemporary Kenyan musicians were performing….

๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚ Nairobi kuna solar sana/ Kijijini ni ku-poa sana ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚

and I saw H, my dad’s friend and his son, Tim. Totally random. Tim told me today that I saw his dad because H had spotted me across the area (the Nairobi National Museum) and had come over to say hi. Anyway, X’s friend R made me really uncomfortable when he turned to me when the clock struck 12 on the 14th, and X said Happy New Year! [yes, Chinese] to tell me, “You guys should be kissing and making out…” Really, almost stranger? Don’t mess with my head… Plus X & I got tired of standing at some point and ended up sleeping on a concrete pavement (very rock star behaviour….) and he launches a talklet about how our being horizontal wasn’t a source of action. I have never received such overt ‘get laid, start making out’ sentiments from a person. But from a person who doesn’t know me well, and who I tried cracking a joke about my wearing a chastity belt to (if only for the purpose of clarity) that was a discomfiting experience. That and so much more innuendo didn’t really provide entertainment. But X singing Sauti Sol & Dela’s ‘Mama Papa’

(for me? I would hope so….) was quite something. I love the singing, his singing…always have [chalk that up with ‘part of X’s charm’]

Anyway, we all went home in the end (proud to say I took a mat both ways… Yay me) and I spent the next day picking belated birthday cake, going to L’s house to eat it & get tales & finally going back to my room. Happy Valentine’s Day, The Shaboozle.

Monday: Exam 1 at 0900 (I have exams till the 26th & here I am blogging, he he). Saw J & B for cake and fun times. Pretty awesome. J copied lots of music & affirmed me: she’s my emotional twin, I swear. She kept urging me to study for the paper I have in slightly over 3 hours (at this point) but I had that planned for yesterday & today, I’ll have you know.

Yesterday, Tuesday the 16th: I went for French class (yes, I started attending those) and met X afterwards. Fun times ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚ I had a bit of pseudo-drama with asking how it was I didn’t get a Valentine’s gift (we call it Val’s aroundย  here) and all but I had a moment of clarity when he said he didn’t seeย  the point of doing something for someone on Val’s. But it’s convention, I say. Since when did you follow convention? Touche, X, touche. And there it was, the truth… I was upset he hadn’t faked it too… So yes, I will get gifts at random times ๐Ÿ™‚

I had thought of Marie as I did my laundry in the morning so imagine my pleasant surprise when I saw her at the mall where X and I were having this conversation. The National Geographic crew (X & I) spoke while we girls had fun and talked & I told her about the giftlessness. Talking to my sister (yes, she is) made me realise I didn’t really want a gift. I don’t do the things other people do, why do I judge myself by their standards in my relationship? Why do I want to be physical, to celebrate something I don’t care for (because I love him *all* the time)? To fit in? Because I had candidly said it to X before Marie & I came… a gift was just for adding to the pool of stories girls have, not for my wanting. Speaking to her reminded me why she’s my sister…it’s always great to have someone who questions you but also affirms your choices (yes, the issue where I’ve only garnered support with SSS & my twin)…

Marie, X & I are going for Manjano, The Nairobi Province Visual Arts Exhibition, on Saturday. Plus today us girls go for a film that’s part of Alliance Francaise’s offerings of French films this week (Images From France)… Fun times ahead… feedback very soon.

Last but definitely not least…I got a letter from my brother on Friday… It made my day… I love that boy. Wherever I go, I know I have his love. And that counts for a lot ๐Ÿ™‚

I’ll leave you with a video of Rick Lau’s ‘Men in Love’ which gathered critical reviews and snippets of which I heard on the BBC. I especially love a bit form this performance where a (gay) man, on realising his lover has run off with their neighbour mourns on the loss of his lover, his car keys (and hence his car), his stereo….and especially, his “Lady Gaa-gaaย  CD” Enjoy

Nishike pole pole mimi ni bibi ya wenyewe

Which loosely translates to: Hold me slowly, I am the wife of others

I turned 21 on Saturday, 30th January.

I had an interesting day….Or rather, an interesting 3 days ๐Ÿ™‚

January 29th: I begged a phone off my friend E, saw a Facebook post by my friend that’s usually referred to as SSS (Sole Soul Sister) and called her. Yes, I would have wine and chocolate with her (yes, my non-drinking self would have wine and chocolate, stop staring ๐Ÿ™‚ ) and yes, she could sleep in my room as part of that ritual called ‘The Sleepover’. Signpost in my head: This Way To Fun Times. I met her and her friend Charles, an amiable guy, after her boyfriend of 2 years (time is important, just keep reading) left her in my care. We went to the food court at the mall we were at, I told them a funny X-related story, and we bought wine after unsuccessfully trying to buy soda. Translation: We left the soda in the trolley for so long, the guys at the supermarket (wisely) decided we didn’t want it ๐Ÿ˜€ We met Jay & Co, went back to the supermarket….and the 2 of us ended up in my room ๐Ÿ˜‰ he he he

It was interesting… Around her I am not reticent…at all. I didn’t need the tongue-loosening powers of wine to get me talking. About how down I had been in the 1.5 years we had been apart. About X. I’ve known her for the last 7 years and in a sense she is me…I can trust her. That, for me, counts for a lot. And she let me speak about how the absence of [intense] physical displays of affection in my relationship with X had got me confused, should we say bewildered. That >6 months into it, all we had done is hold hands…And here was a person saying that which I had wanted so badly to hear: Let it be…don’t rush it and look back and think to yourself: This, not that, is the right moment [though I momentarily forgot her advice the next day]. Everyone around me, minus my twin, has created the impression that the absence of a make-out session up to this point signals the presence of a malfunction in my sentiments for this boy, a quirk on his part….[not that my virginity pledge doesn’t complicate issues]… I was happy to know she has been happy. Because as the person I could always trust to pull me out of the doldrums, I wanted; need, actually; her happy. And she is. I’m not playing catch-up again ๐Ÿ™‚

January 30th: I woke up on the morning of the birthday to the presence of SSS, A gift I have not received since she transferred schools when she was 16 & I 15. It was a better gift than any I could have asked for. Having X call me to meet him close to my hall of residence [“Meet me Halfway”]

and meeting him… E and SSS had met the day before [during the time at the mall] so when E came, they had time to bond after SSS had had time to speak to X. X & I were left in my room, I snoozed, E & SSS waited for almost an hour and IT happened.

IT: My roommate’s best friend walking in on me sleeping with X lying next to me. We looked so chaste; almost like 6 year old cousins having their Sunday nap on the same bed. My 4 year old cousin & I have had scenes like that, my 9 year old brother…no biggie. I had my eyes closed [not least because I was asleep], he didn’t…no cause for her reaction. Effusive apologies, almost like she had found us doing SOMETHING [your mind is now allowed to wander…] and the humour of the situation not being lost ๐Ÿ™‚ย  SSS & E called me post-bonding and I went off to the city (all of 10 minutes away) to get drinks for my party-let as well as meet Marie & our mutual friend I.

Marie, X, I & I all headed to the Nairobi National Museum [a great place to have any sort of event…] where J, her boyfriend K [no jokes], her friend S, and our friend B were waiting for us…Getting high on soda is a plan; as X and my previous run-ins with Coca Cola products have shown.ย  We drank litres of the stuff, played random games, got to know each other, talked, made fun of each other & made up for lost (friendship) time. I was told, by J, how after a series of arguments she had urged K to ‘court her’ a romantic notion that included chasing her like the past months hadn’t happened. X & I clocked 7 months on my birthday and J was tired 2 months into her relationship & SSS had logged 2 years in one relationship. Time is so fleeting and yet we attach so much to it…

We all walked (I joke not, past 1800) to the city centre-ish with Marie & I walking in front of us. J asked me for more than a year if X and I were going out and the answer never changed: No. But our body language, mirrored so clearly in my friends’, said it all. We liked each other….a lot ๐Ÿ˜‰ J had asked me what the deal was but being as I had asked the girl half and it had said pretty much nothing,ย  I wasn’t pushing it. Oh, but after we had walked into the city & were about to order dinner, they decided to leave. There’s never been a moment, surrounded by friends, as awkward as J asking them if they were dating…and them saying yes….*cue jaw drop*

How now? when I had tried subtly? But being as the guys (X & I) had hit it off at an earlier meeting, I got to pry [If J can, why can’t I…J/K] and asked the question that had such heat in myย  brainย  I could almost feel its searing effect: When did this happen? Or was I always blind (Yes)? X & I walked them to the corner, dinner was had & we went to a club. This after Jay, happily gay, had come over and had conversation & strangeness with J & K (who X & I have beaten at the awesomeness that is ‘vogueing’, thank you very much) being all over each other. Jay was hard-pressed to understand how our straight selves were going to go to a club that attracts the gay crowd sans him… But go we did.

Post K having a talk with me about ‘taking care of J’ before he left, we went to the club. On our way there it was revealed that one of X’s friends [a member of AIESEC, the organisation that he is-I did not stutter] tended bar there. Before I forget, X became President of his AIESEC chapter (coincidentally, the code for the organisation within the organisation is the letter X) and I almost died-of pride. Seriously…Which some people would say is a good thing ๐Ÿ™‚ She was so happy to meet me, his friend, saying that it felt good to finally meet me post-X’s conversations about me. And she was pleasantly surprised to realised he has friends outside AIESEC [remember, earlier, I did not stutter?] and we had an interesting time that included me getting a call from my mum & jokily telling her I was out with X getting drunk (“take care of yourself”) [that was the night before :D]. This didn’t last long as the crowd sought by J & B was elsewhere & so J’s friend K, her boyfriend J & the rest of us left.

X left us at the entrance of the 2nd club [we would later sing ‘Another one bites the dust” when Kate’s J left]ย  and we went and had unbelievable fun. Which included guys hitting on K after her boyfriend left & not single B. Which was an improvement on the joke that was the last time we had gone out together when, with my relationship with X now declared to J, she had repeatedly fended off the men that tried hitting on me by insisting that I had a boyfriend [though stated as, “Yeye ana bwana”-she has a husband :D]. We left that club because of J’s insistence.

The one we went to had an age limit that the lady at the door imagined up at the sight of us [23 & over-who ever heard of that?] and we ended up at the club we had gone to for B’s 22nd on the night of the 8th/9th. We-J & I- (you have to believe this) fell asleep & in the end J went to her hostel (my & B’s former residence) & I put B up for the night. Thankfully, my roommate hadn’t been in on those 2 days, sparing all the parties involved the awkwardness of a shared bed…

Sunday January 31st: I woke up to lock the door after B left, lay on my bed and showered & ate in time to look calm when X came to watch Woody Allen’s ‘Vicky Cristina Barcelona’, the first of his films we are (were?-English is confusing…) to watch together. We were originally meant to watch ‘Sherlock Holmes’ at the theatre but a conglomeration of factors meant that we started on our list… The twin & X had an awkward moment when I left him to get VCB & she went to my room to pick her book without my informing her of his presence. But it was OK in the end…with X remarking on the film’s ‘European’ qualities…

This past weekend rocked…the CAT I had today, that I aced, couldn’t cast a shadow on it… The small moments (my uncle-who calls me his ‘niece & friend’-calling me, my friend & I planning a post-birthday lunch in lieu of her presence) the ones that made the day what it was, the time spent with X (so hard to get since I became a First Lady ๐Ÿ˜‰ )….I had a great time…

And about X & I not being physical…I couldn’t have said it better than SSS did… I want something to happen,ย  I’d like for something to happen…but I have the sense to know that rushing matters won’t make for a great ride and so while I wait [need I say ‘hopefully’?], I shall enjoy all the beauty of my life & the joy of my love ๐Ÿ™‚

PS Mo, I wish you’d been around…it would have been like the Ribena ad with the blackcurrant that can no longer contain itself…its goodness just overwhelms it… We miss you…

. Parties & such

So, em, I’m back [a bit obviously, ahem]

Light or heavy first?

I have become an insomniac…so here I am blogging at 2358 instead of being in bed [why do I insist on 24 hour time? Force of habit, I guess] and that has led me to all sorts of places. (Un)fortunately, not in the literal sense. Ag. I miss W ๐Ÿ˜ฆ That was random, that thing I just said…It’ll stay…

Today [that is to say, the day that just ended] was a wonderful day. I got one-on-one time with my great friend C & more importantly, Tusker Project Fame 3 came to an end. Of course TPF3 was much more important than seeing C; as demonstrated by the rest of this post…

I went clubbing in Kisumu [woop woop] with C & my high school classmate J. Eh, Magaribina concurs with me; Kisumu is a trip. In a literal & figurative sense for me…being as the townhouse (as if, but not quite) is in Maseno [wonderful university town], a 30 minute drive from Kisumu. Now when I say 30 minutes, I am not being faithful to the facts. Such as matatus (public transport minibuses) that cannot possibly move if they are not carrying excess passengers…it’s against Matatu Code to follow rules. Yes, visit Kenya ujionee [literally, ‘see for yourself’ as opposed to your friend seeing for you<–dogs excepted :)] the wonders that are the commuter transport system.

>>>>Stay focused, The Shaboozle!!!<<<<

Where was I? Yes, Kisumu clubbing. First, we had to eat…chicken at a particular eatery [if you saw a girl in a heavy sweater at Tammiez last Saturday; guilty] was supposed to beat that at any other. Mother dearest was most definitely not intrigued by turn of events….had expected to cook for C & J (OK, mostly C…J doesn’t jingle her bell*) but hey, gulls girls sometimes fly away from their mums in such ways ๐Ÿ™‚ To get there we had to get on a tuk tuk [should really get phone with camera, really] from a random bus stop [It was right there close to the middle of nowhere]. Several minutes later; chicken (well worth the wait), ugali & kachumbari (savoury, I think it would be called?) is served. This after C & I had gone to the bar to get drinks-this girl is always dehydrated *before I forget; T currently calls a balloon filled with water a ‘hydra’<–love that boy* & I was told I could do a random dance called ‘the jungle’ really awesomely. AwEsOmE ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚

Then *The Rave* Ai, Caramba. Tuk tuk, again. I walk to the rave in Nairobi being a proud citizen of a walking working country & all ๐Ÿ™‚ so it was strange having to board a means of conveyance to the rave. From, yeah, because some people are smashed and really need to be carried by, you know, a car. Some place called Grillz. Entrance charge 100KES (about US$1.30) is waaay out of the league of most university students [read: C, J & The Shaboozle], club-hopping wise. Which means once the decision is made -or made for you as in my case being as it was my first time in Kisumu post-2100- you stick to it. Oi, thanks Kisumu for allowing us to savour options…Full of aggressive men [NO means, well, no], gay men-these ones I am at peace with :), & the man who didn’t contemplate that I could possibly not want to go home with him after dancing with him, accepting a drink & having a conversation.

I found a dam near the townhouse. Bliss. I’m really earthy in the installation in nature sort of way, he he. Was led there by T (who thinks himself quite the tour guide) today…Bliss (oops! said that already) It’s pretty in the way abandoned things are…and allowed me the peace to speak to T about stuff (probably overload him…world’s best 9 year old; I โ™ฅ him :)..). My mum had practically kicked us out of the house (and we were headed out, would you believe!) and I had a chance to talk about a conversation I had with X yesterday. About the weirdness surrounding the long distance, the distance in and of itself… He said it had been latent; I had refused to speak about it even with my cousin F, who’s half of a long distance relationship (LDR) herself. I can’t wait for school to resume, ag. To see X again…<–Enough!!!

I’m going to throw my daughter(s) period party/ies of the sort in Vagina Monologues (the book) when they have their first. My mum was shocked albeit prepared when I had mine-very distinct memory of self calming down said mum….we’ve come from v v far, she & I. One’s first period should be celebrated, rejoiced, enjoyed, remembered with joy….and I’ll make sure she/they has/ve that. I just wanted that out. Ah, now it’s out.

Random something or other: X is a great listener. The sort that retransmits your information & makes you question yourself as you talk…my favourite sort of listener. Putting that down on my ‘What I love about X’ list. I felt a bit stranged out [is that a word? If no, it is now….I’ve gotten tired of ‘weirded out’] by the whole Kisumu debacle. I felt like I had, what do I say?, cheated on X. I felt sorta like this video:

Strange that I should have Blue October here considering X’s latest post is related to them. Eish, great minds ๐Ÿ˜€ But I think, not going home with said guy is more important than whatever signals I may have been giving him in order to end up being asked to be one half of a one night stand. I’ll say it here: The long distance is not the best thing to happen to our relationship. Young and fragile & all. But I’m growing up along with it and I like what I am becoming ๐Ÿ™‚

Talk to you soon ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚

0159 STOP ๐Ÿ˜€

Fuzzy Lumpkin

You know the guy; from Power Puff Girls. He hairy; he so hairy he don’t got no skin (speaks like that, too ๐Ÿ˜€ )

I’m through with shaving, really I am. I’m going natural. OK, I’m not being honest. I’m kinda going natural. That is to say some bits will remain artificial…he he he…like my accent (as if, I’d be working for Nairobi’s Capital FM if I had one of those)……while my hair stays well away from a salon. Eh, how will I survive? It’s hard going without processed hair in the wonderful city I shall soon go back to called Nairobi…I mean, seriously, who will accept me…Neanderthal female that I shall have transformed into? The Good Lord help me (religious references are high today, what?) and keep me from salons. Amen (resounding like those televangelists who keep you glued to your TV screen, you know they do)!!! Preach, The Shaboozle, preach! Mmh, Imma testify (I’ve moved from redneck to black in one post….too much American TV, I’m going Brit…he he he).

Eh, but white people make not-shaving sound like a crime. Oh, my mother’s friends chose not to shave etc, goes one Obama (the president, not one of the girls….I said white people)… And they died. No, seriously, they did! Of being hairy…Obituary went something like this:

Obama’s Mum’s friend…loving mum, friend yada yada yada… No flowers. Please donate to the End to Anti-shaving campaign.

And there was a nice ribbon on the side as were once popular for people who passed away from AIDS. Really, people, you can survive with body hair. And let’s not even talk about J’s friend N who’s a religious waxer (hail the order of the waxed); the universe help her when her hair grows back (God forbid); her skin shall itch like you wouldn’t believe. Not that I’m speaking from experience, you see. I’m highly perceptive, and a voracious reader. That’s all my information ๐Ÿ™‚

Got a letter from X on Friday. It’s coming to a close soon, that relationship of his with The Shaboozle, I tell you. I have seen the writing on the Facebook wall. I realised his value system and mine are so different that we were going to be at war soon. He has a weapon of mass destruction distraction that he’s not using. It’s called technology. He said [in response to the message I promised to send him in this entry] that I ‘mean a lot’ to him & he won’t let his issues get in the way but updated his Facebook status to say he’s only human (hence can only do so much etc) so I was pretty pissed (I love me some alliteration) when I saw that. [Aside: his mum was unwell at the time & my mum & I agreed message was a bit un-empathetic. Apologising turned out to be a ticket for him to resume previous behaviour. They always said not to apologise, he he he]

And then he’s willing to tell me things about himself he would do well to keep to himself. Today the voices in my head were talking to each other (the voices of Me, Myself & I can get loud at times…especially when I am asleep and they contrive to masquerade as characters in my dreams…I’m on to you, Voices In My Head) and they were telling X that I wouldn’t be able to tell my our children about Justice & Fairness. In this, I think the voices in my head were watching Al Jazeera English along with me as Al Jazeera’s Riz Khan interviewed Hanan Ashrawi [get a life, you voices! or your own programmes to watch for Pete’s sake] Reason: he got his internship through his mum’s contacts (it had to be done because he’s so daft someone has to arm-twist someone else. Chief reason I’m going out with him, his IQ is soo high). And in his letter, he tells me about how his aunt enabled him to be bumped ahead on the queue when he went to his chosen hospital’s A&E (pompous new way of saying ‘Casualty’ but oh, doesn’t it sound classy…say it, you know you want to ๐Ÿ˜€ ) being as she worked there. Odd, I thought it was him I was telling that I loved England for the fact that everyone there respects the queue. Here, in Kenya, to ask someone to join & respect a queue is seen to be an act of courage. Oh, look at me, I’ve walked in Baghdad during bombings…and asked someone to respect a queue. Where is my Nobel Peace Prize, already? More importantly, when did we get children? Someone is becoming a girl…eh! Save her from herself…

I was told, quote, I have ‘hiyo maneno yote’ (translation for my readers from the non-Swahili speaking world [usidharau Swa, it’s a UN working language, eh] : all that jazz) on my blog. I wonder if the person in question had in mind: what I say or how much I say. Idea: I could ask the said person [my brother W1’s mum L].

Unrelated news: I’m going to Lamu in November. Of course the lovely people at my university will give me 3 days off school for the Lamu Cultural Festival. I have organised accomodation at one of my best friends’ (my desk-mate in Form 2 and room-mate in Form 4’s. Wonderful school I went to. Friends in every corner of the republic…and beyond…) house. Thanks, Z. She’s an awesome friend, she is ๐Ÿ™‚ And I’m set in terms of funds for the trip there & gifts for my friend’s family (whom I’ve never met…true friendship, I say) plus I’ve become a mini-expert on Lamu. Of course, I have. You don’t have to go somewhere to be an expert. Who goes to, say, Iceland…he he he [nothing against Iceland, I should visit]? It’s a joke, all you Icelanders looking at me with menacing eyes!

I am looking forward to a great week. For some reason. A good one; I think. Enjoy yours ๐Ÿ™‚

Recommended author: The New York Times’ Donald G. McNeil, Jr. Terribly witty, he is. And a wonderful, wry sense of humour. Try him ๐Ÿ™‚ [I’m not forcing issues, am I?]

An arresting view of randomity

The European Film Festival was held in May of this year in Nairobi. And I watched several of the films (that is most definitely the understatement of the year being as the ticket guy (TG) learnt my name…and J’s….my housemate’s….)….some with X… The films with X were really a revelation… I’d talked about my desire to be touched by someone I like…leading to him holding my hand during the films… Where I’d told TG that he (X) had told me he’d meet me for the first film (an interesting documentary about water needs in 3 countries…including Kenya) an now that he was nowhere to be seen *cue ‘he has soo stood me up’ look* and TG had said that if the guy said he’d come he would….. Well, he did. TG wore a vindicated look, became my friend… and I learnt another lesson in trust (though, judging by my constant…oh, well, X likes me….statements, I still have many more to learn…..life…) ย Leading to himself, myself, J and her boyfriend then, P….all heading to a mall with many random occurences thrown in… ie long phoneversation with my brother (just my brother, not either of the parents), J calling me twice from less than 50m off to talk about how cute X and I looked (you don’t say, J) and discovering J on a magazine cover (thanks, P….my friend J’s a star…..and I mean it….) and X and I behaving like teenagers in love (trust me, between single-sex high school and my sheltered life pre-university, I never did get to act like one…)…

Oh, then there was a random dance/trance party that X and I were supposed to attend….which J, P and I did attend while X went off to a conference (well, more power to him) organised by an organisation he’s part of (well, that’s another understatement……..he is the organisation)… X and I had a debacle the other day about that organisation…with me saying how I felt he put it before me, and him saying that was not true (oh well, what’s a girl supposed to think when she rarely sees you but you’re constantly at that group’s meetings? Come on…) Though on the flip side, I joined Rotaract to counteract (I love how that came out…) the ‘I miss my baby’ feeling I used to get. Fun times… So, thanks X…sometimes it seems all I do is complain about the guy….but he’s pretty awesome (currently his favourite word…) I still miss my baby, though… But anyway, the revelation came afterwards when X revealed he wasn’t so keen on PDAs. I’m curious, now that he’s made himself boyfriend… is my hand going to be held again? Hey, I should ask him……but you know me, I shan’t… I’ll just drop hints that shall not be picked leaving me frustrated… Oh, well….if you pass this way X, I’d like to be touched. And that includes holding me on the streets (which only happened on the day I was wearing the small dress…..it felt good in the moment but I felt like a sex object after…..mostly because it was post-“I’m anti PDAs”……so why was he touching me? Because every other male is looking at me like I was some sort of sex goddess? *chuckle*)

Anyway, after the anti-PDA chatversation, X decides to spring some initiative. Asks me what I’m up to on the 1st of June (a public holiday in Kenya) and I say nothing (true…I’m always clueless during holidays….worse on the 1st this year because the family had moved so no randomness…) then he says; hey, we could go watch a movie. Now X and I have a long movie history. We first watched a movie together to get over the fact that I’d said I liked him and he was in a relationship so that was that…then we watched another ย in the week that he broke up with that girl leading to me being viewed as the rebound girl (oh, no, you did not!) by his friends but anyway, I’m losing focus.

There I am, wating for him at the mall. He shows up and leans in for a hug….I am perturbed by this (I’m an all or nothing girl) and look sufficiently strange moving out of the hug as I stand. Please don’t tell me no PDA then touch me in any way…Please… We get to the movie theatre lobby and find out that we’re late for what’s showing and we’re not interested anyway leading to us going to another mall in the same district (area in which I used to live…) that was showing Star Trek XI. I really did not feel the fascination that Trekkers feel (Star Wars any day….), even ended up sleeping (ha, no hand to hold….lol). Then we went down to a store to buy me phone airtime, didn’t get what I wanted…went to another store……queued for hour and ended up standing at the bus stop waiting for a bus…..which didn’t seem to be in a rush to appear. Leading to us walking to another bus stop while I told him about how my constant fault-finding was because I didn’t want to get less than 100% in my relationships…and asking him about the whole bisexuality business (no, he’s not bisexual…) while he asked me to stop referring to W as my boyfriend (an old joke stemming from the fact that W and I spend a lot of time together…) Hey, maybe that was his declaration of love…he he he…

So anyway, we get to the bus stop and spend ages talking…. and then, when we had decided we were leaving we see…..

A cop

Who arrests us for being ‘a public nuisance’ despite our protests. X gets handcuffed to some random guy and I’m asked to walk along. Mostly because I’m female. As we crossed the road on our way to the police post, I had a fleeting moment where I thought about running away… then it hit me that an arrest is easier to explain than a gunshot wound. So I decided; no GSW, I’ll just be a lamb… We had been told, at the time we were arrested, that we were a public nuisance because we were groping at the bus stop which was shocking then but is funny in retrospect because

1) we were not. 2) X had been pretty vocal about the no-touch policy 3) this girl has some class…..bus stop??!!

Anyway, the friendlier cop (aka the AO-arresting officer) decides to quiz me (after deciding that X is the worse of our two evil selves) about my name (pretty special) and what I do at school. X is the worse one because of the school he goes to….he he he. Somewhere in there he asks X to call home so we can fix the situation (by this time, they’d decided we were being held for prostitution and solicitation (P&S)…..the horror…). I notice how no one tells me to do the same. Anyway, after the call (where X’s mum says she’s coming to the rescue…) I have an interesting talk with the AO about naming systems in Africa…

We get to the post, I’m given a seat (ah, ’tis so nice to be a girl…), X is made to sit on the floor with random guy as he fields more calls. On the way there I’d been going through my ICE (In Case of Emergency) list in my head:

1) the parents-out because they were so far 2)my cop uncle-out because he’d tell my mum

Ther are usually other people on my ICE list but those were the only ones that came to mind then. Anyway, I had decided that I was just going to ย move with the flow. In between X handing the phone to me so the AO could speak to his people, me being smart with a lady cop (LC) and X being placed in a cell while I was put in a random room (X later told me it was the records office *chuckle*)…..LC insisting that AO should search me…..(weird female person!!!); X’s people arrived. His mum’s best friend’s husband (phew! let’s call him BFH) came to speak to me and to reassure me that things would be fine while I gave up the magazine I had found in my little room (nice Adventist one…). AO had made such a big deal out of the whole event so there was some talking (he’d only hang around because 1) X’s people were coming and 2) X had pretty much made it obvious he wouldn’t leave us there-aww, he’s so *hot* when he’s all assertive…. ๐Ÿ˜‰ ๐Ÿ™‚ ….) and then we were free to go…

I ended up meeting X’s mum (XM), her best friend (BF), X’s brother (XB), and the said BFH, who I’d already spoken to. We were told to calm down, it would all be fine and I had a weird break in conversation when I revealed that there was ‘no mum’ at home….BF & XM were shocked till I explained that I lived away from home…. After helping me calm down (I was shaking like a leaf….loove that expression…), XM drove me to my residence as she 1) spoke about the need to let people know where you are (apparently X had told XB a totally random story as he left the house…) 2)asked me about myself, my family 3) told me how, despite my constant statements that I’d have preferred a better meeting, gladย she was to meet me (She and I love Oliver! the musical so it was a nice thing X told me…bonding…) [edit 12 October 2009; here’s her favourite song…according to X, anyway]

4) played Beyonceย and Jason Mraz (‘I’m Yours’ will always make me think of that arrest….) [edit 12 october 2009; see the man perform…love the song ๐Ÿ™‚ ]

5) said we all needed to meet and talk….they’d all been there before (not a police post, I bet ya <BFH, I know for a fact, had never been in one before>…..maybe in love…)-story for another post… 6) took my phone number and ย 7) got me to my residence safely.

I was shaken by my arrest. I spoke about it to my friend E the next day (whose daughter’s godmother I am) and then with my friends M and B. I especially told M how the P&S charge had hurt me…..as I cried… B had no clue what to do with me, I am always so bubbly. My virginity pledge, decency….I felt so trashed by the things AO had said. I told her about these feelings after we left a club and I was super-depressed after sending X a message. I read the other day that the things I displayed (shaking, crying..) were classic post-stress symptoms. B had a long talk with me as he walked me to my residence; if being with X made me so sad, he said, then I should walk away from him. I told him I would think about it, felt glad about the hug I got and went on to message X to say I was sorry about being part of the reason he got into trouble and ignore the last (sunny) message. He said ‘Hey, you don’t have to be all sunny for me’….and that I was worth so much more than any trouble I could possibly cause. I love him ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚

I ended up telling my mother (who I’d originally said I’d tell post-uni) as we had a laugh about the P&S charge (tsk! We both thought, the poor child’s a virgin! he he he) and my dad (via his friend who’s #2 on my ICE list) who was unmoved by it all. His friend, though, was transfixed; asking about X and saying that he could see I’d never liked a guy like that before (well, am I so obvious?). As well as asking for a follow-up talk about the issue (I told X, in my letter, that he should meet my dad’s friend….. ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚ ..) Slightly better than meeting my dad who ignores any talk of X as boyfriend (X as Linux afficionado, yes. As boyfriend, no)…. I had moments of shame about it (like telling my twin not to speak about it to a guy we both know & like) as well as paranoia round cops (such as the last time I saw X, in my short dress) leading to a strange feeling as I walked/drove past police stations and refusing to be close to X when E and I were dropping him at a bus stop (short dress day) because I had seen a cop walk past…. Also, I felt concerned by X’s claim on Facebook of being arrested for ‘holding a girl’s hand’ because 1) that wasn’t how it happened, ย 2) I’d had physical contact with himย say once before that episode and 3) he’d been in his anti-touch phase then. My obtuse self told him this in such a round-about way I bet he didn’t realise that I’d have preferred he not talk about it than he misrepresent facts. That’s something I want to get the courage to tell him…..to be honest to the world about what we have (it’s not enough to tell me we are in a relationship and stay ‘complicated’ on Facebook……rich coming from me <single> but still…) or be all private…

Longest post ever but there, that’s the story of how our random foray into the world of movie theatres led to a story for my children. And now my darling X has lost all incentive to watch movies because he has no company (read me)……..I feel honoured, being a motivating factor & all ๐Ÿ˜€ (told him, too) and so, if he comes this way, I want him to see this:

I miss you terribly, X. Hugs and kisses.. ๐Ÿ™‚