THIS MAN IVAN SSEMWANGA

Over the weekend there was a lot of buzz about Ivan Ssemwanga he died and there is something about death that just brings about reflection. Some of you will judge me but until his death, I knew nothing about him but he was everywhere so I decided to go around and my dear friend Google and many other tabloids helped me around and now I know a few things about him. He is one of those people that inspire me.

From this man’s story I learned one or two or more things that I will share with you.

  1. If you really want something you will get it if you focus

So the story goes, Ivan was in high school with another guy and his friend and after high school his friend came back to Uganda from South Africa and Ivan begged him to show him the way and his friend told him come to South Africa.

The guy went via road through Zambia; he was arrested for illegal documents and after being released, guess what? He continued to South Africa he never even looked back he just went. He got there and he was shown the trade and he broke off from his mentor and started on his own, he was a Sangoma or rather, spiritual healer, mganga in Swahili. He had no training but money was on his mind and he would make it no matter what.

  1. Use what you have, there is opportunity everywhere if you look hard enough

When he was in high school Ssemwanga (I have never quite got the concept of the same consonant twice in the beginning of a word but oh well) used to hoard and sell sugar to fellow students at a profit, it is said he even made supernormal profits at times. He saw that opportunity that nobody else had seen and he actually reaped.

  1. Success is on the other side of your comfort zone

He could have made it in Uganda but he probably would not have made it far if he hadn’t followed his friend to South Africa.

He abandoned his comfort and went for gold and he did get it.

  1. Sometimes we need help and getting it will take us far

So, Ivan had this Sangoma practice in South Africa but he was allegedly not a real Sangoma. At some point in his career he was visited by a very rich client, he knew that the client could change his fortunes for better or for the worst.

Since he had no expertise himself, allegedly; He consulted a real Spiritual healer in Uganda and sneaked him into South Africa and the client got the results she wanted and hence she referred other rich clients and his name became something. He also did pay the native doctor a lot for his services.

Had he been selfish or had he believed he was self-sufficient, he might not have gotten the results he needed and he would have destroyed himself. There is no shame in asking for help sometimes.

Those are some of the insights I got from his life. In my opinion he did live a full life for it is not the years in life that determine life, it is the life in the years and though young he will surely be remembered fondly.

Fare thee well, Ivan Ssemwanga. I am inspired

EDITH: PART FIVE

Edith could not hold herself. She just had this itch to talk to Antony she really wanted to meet him out but she really did not know how long to wait. All day after getting his number she wondered how long she could wait. She felt excited every time she thought about it. She felt like a current run down her spine every time she imagined spending time with him in a casual environment.

The following day she had a minute and she decided to text him. Impatience will be the death of me, she thought as she looked for his number to text him.

Edith: Hi. I was wondering if you could fix me in your schedule tomorrow.

Antony: Tomorrow is not bad. What time do you prefer?

Edith: Eleven ish

Antony: How about two ish?

She stopped texting for a minute, or maybe it was twenty.

Antony (after she did not respond for the about twenty minutes): What say you?

Edith: I say, I think I can compromise.

Antony: Ati compromise? What do you mean? How about now?

Note to self, this man was high on something that I need to know ASAP, am I really all that?

Edith: Now is good.

Impatience

Antony: I am behind your place. I was taking my mum shopping, she just left and I thought maybe I could see you.

Edith: Give me about ten minutes, I will be right down.

Edith was dumbstruck she just could not get herself together try as she may, but, she had started this and now she had to go through with it. The man was just downstairs and they were going to lunch. She did a little touch up, she really did not wear much makeup so a little powder and some lip gloss was all she did. Her tummy was so full of butterflies she did not even think she would make it down but miraculously, she did.

She got outside the building and there seemed to be a whole sea of cars, it had not even occurred to her that she did not even know the make and model of his car until now but she was not going to call simply for that, he had to be close and he would be in the driver’s seat. She circled the building and just about halfway she saw him, on his phone and my, did he look good all serious and unaware he was being watched. She straightened herself and walked over. He saw her just as she approached,

“Zunguruka,” (go round) he said to her.

She obeyed and went to the other side, opened the co driver’s seat and let herself in and felt like she was in a dream and wondered if she was crazy, it was a rollercoaster for her.

They started on their way and well,

“So where are we going for lunch?” He asked

“I set this up, I thought you would surprise me,” Edith replied, actually surprised the burden was on her.

“You will just have to pick a place,”

“Why don’t you pick it this time and I will the next time,”

“You pick a place this time. I picked you up and it would be wrong to pick you and still pick a place. Anywhere you want within town.”

She ended up picking a nice classy hotel in town. Quiet but with the best food she had tasted in the town so far and the best portions too.

Ten minutes later they were at the Restaurant. He let her get off and go in as he went in search of parking, seeing as it was lunch time it was a hustle to find one just at the restaurant.

The restaurant was nice place. The décor was simple, the walls were white and looked rustic, rough but beautiful, the ceiling was moderately high and the wooden floors were well polished and carpeted.

She sat at a corner and admired the décor and begun wondering what she would take, normally when she was anxious her appetite reduced but if past meetings with the guy were to be believed she would have an amazing time and maybe she really did not have much to worry about. “Just be yourself and you will be okay,” she said to herself.

He came in and tried to locate her she watched from the corner of her eye. She liked how confident he looked and she did not know what it was about him but he just made her feel at ease. With another person it would have taken forever to connect to that kind of level but this just happened so fast and yet he was not demanding. It was completely amazing and rare.

“I am sorry for keeping you waiting,” he apologised

“No problem,”

“Have you ordered?”

“Just a drink, I was waiting for you to order food,”

He signalled for a waiter for her to order which she did.

“How has your day been?” he inquired

“It has been good but slow, very boring,”

“At least it is not bad,”

“Yeah,”

The anxiety was setting in on her and this small talk was not helping matters, faster conversations give less time for musings and time moves faster. Her drink arrived and she was happy by the distraction of its setting and that she now had something to take the edge off a bit.

“So when I asked you about honeymoon, I saw it’s like a clock wound really fast, rrrrrrr,”

“Kinda, there are things I just do not think about; you just caught me off guard.”

“Ok,” he said, “Then the other day you said, you were trying to be a lady.”

She smiled, ‘You just had to remember that?”

“Yeah,”

“I just meant that I couldn’t have asked for your number first,”

He laughed, a real hearty laugh, she loved that laugh it almost reassured her. This day was getting better and better than Edith had expected. She liked Antony’s company; she was having more fun than she had in the past.

“Welcome,” he said when the food came.

“Thank you, it looks really good.”

“Yes it does,”

“I really love the chicken in this place,”

“Their food is really good, eat up,”

“I definitely will,”

As she finished eating she felt his hand on her’s and at first she did not know how to feel. He looked into her eyes and she felt comfortable, she smiled. There was something about the confidence he exuded. They held hands for a minute. It was one of those moments that just spoke for themselves where hearts and eyes say more than words ever could.

I AM ALL ‘FUNERALED’ OUT

Last weekend I was in western again. I lost my paternal grandmother and for the second time in two weeks I saw a parent lose a parent. For the second time in two weeks the priest, the same priest coincidentally, called for family to drop soil into the grave, for the second time in two weeks, I wore a black T-shirt with my grandma’s photo and I am drained.

There is something about seeing the body being lowered into the ground that brings such finality to all situations. It signals an end of that person and reality hits you so hard and all the things you wished you had done for that person or with that person flash past your eyes and then the tears, the somberness, the disbelief and oh yes, the realization that it comes to  everyone that death has no respect for humans, that death does not care who you leave behind, it does not care what else you have to do it just comes.

My paternal grandma, Paulina Nassubo Ogema, God rest her soul. Had lived to a ripe old age but that only made the loss worse. She lived to be 94 but she touched so many lives, mentored many people, raise children, grandchildren and great grand children the loss was all the more damning. She was a christian, a catechist’s wife for that matter and she spread the good news. She endured a lot and in her last days even suffered memory loss that broke hearts, she couldn’t recognise people and her body just gave up. She could not leave the bed, she could not walk, could not eat and she withered. Nothing prepares you for how to deal with death. You just  have to find a way.

Over the last month since all this started, I have found myself thinking a lot about life in the present and in the afterlife. I am a christian and I personally believe in heaven and hell. Over the past month I have wondered what it would be like to be dead. Do you hear everything like people say but cannot do anything, do you see your body while you are in spirit form and watch people cry for you? Or are you just gone until the day all the dead will rise for judgement.

I have wondered where God’s mercy ends, and where hell begins, I have wondered if I am a good person, I have wondered whether I am good enough for heaven. I have been terrified of hell. I have judged myself harshly, maybe I am mourning, maybe I have just had an awakening.

Losing two very strong and influential women has made me wonder how it will be when I die. I have imagined a small intimate ceremony, I don’t know what people will say about me. I don’t know who will cry and who will not. If it happens now, will I have done anything worth mentioning? Have I lived a full life? Have I even lived at all?

I am drained, I am down and so sad right now but I hope I will snap out of it and will have a break from all the funerals. I am really all ‘funeraled’ out.

 

MY HEROINE IS GONE

Yesterday to me was one of those days, I woke up worried because things were not going well at all. I had no appetite, later I got so busy though and at least the day moved along and the nerves were gone, I met a friend in the place I least expected then I looked at my phone and my heart sank, it was a text from my sister it was short and to the point, have you heard Grandma has passed away?

It was shattering, I called my mum and the only thing she could say is “Mum is gone,” my mother was actually there, they had taken her to hospital and she died even before being admitted. There is something about death, you never quite know how to feel about it or how to console those most affected, it just makes you numb sometimes, it shocks and then there is pain, pain in the realization that they are never going to make you laugh again and in an instant all that you shared flashes in your mind and you hope it is a dream that you will wake up from then you realize it is not.

Instead of mourning by crying, I want to eulogize my Grandma Hendrica Wandera. Nahayo, we will miss her, I remember her for he resilience, she one day was a strong hardworking beautiful woman with working legs that arthritis took from her. She was later confined to a wheelchair but she would make you feel ashamed for complaining about your life because despite that she was the most hopeful person you ever saw, she never slept without praying and it’s not a five minute prayer, there would be reading the bible and saying the rosary. Whenever she called and you spoke to her, she would always end with a bible verse for you to read, she never lost faith despite all she went through.

She had a sense of humour too, once she called and we talked and I was in college, she said, “Soma kwa bidii, soma kabisa mpaka ufike mwisho, Onyango asikuje akudanganye uwache kusoma, siku hizi hata wasichana ndio wanasoma kabisa,”(Study hard, study very hard until you finish, do not let Onyango lie to you to stop studying, now days, it is actually girls who study a lot) I cracked up about the Onyango thing and it is unfortunate, she died before I found my Onyango. My grandmother made the most moving speech during my uncles wedding, I was sobbing not even just crying, I am sure she would have made an even better one at mine.

She did not go far in school but she was a linguist she knew how to read swahili very well, she could speak good English, she spoke Khayo, Luo, Teso all fluently. Imagine what she would do if she learnt French, German and the rest.

She inspired me and if I had half the faith she did, I am sure I could do a lot, if I had half the resilience she had, believe me you, I would be President if not more. That is how strong she was, nothing weighed her, through her sickness she fought with all she had and was even the one encouraging us instead of us her.

I could write all day, I just hope I have eulogized her enough for now, I know she is in a better place. May your soul Nahayo, rest in peace. Say hi to Grandpa. Peace be with you.

You have fought the good fight, you have have finished the race and kept the faith. until we meet again sweet grandma.

 

 

 

TO NEW BEGINNINGS

So, finally, we are in 2017 and I am elated. I am very happy because even  though it just a continuation from where I was in 2016 at least it gives an illusion of new things to come. It gives the illusion of a new start and 2016 being the shitty year that it was for me at least, I needed the New Year to give me hope and a new push.

So in 2017, I just want to do a few things, we could try them together

  1. Not be too hard on myself

So many times I wanted everything to go at max speed in 2016 and I ended up not cutting myself any slack, well, no more of that in 2017

  1. Get out of my comfort zone

This one will definitely be my challenge. I am a person that once I get used to something I get very comfortable, I am also very lazy which does not help much but I plan to put effort on that a little more this year.

  1. Live a little

Many times we let the struggles and events of this life depress us and become our lives. This year as I make my goal to enjoy the little moments I hope you who has the same problem will try to as well, let us not just exist but live in 2017

  1. Let go and let God

I plan to work on my spiritual life. I just want to cast all my burdens to Him who promises he has a lighter York. Grow my faith and have my burdens carried for me.

I will not give myself too many resolutions hopefully these will chart my path this year.

Have a fulfilling 2017 and thank you for continuing to journey with me this year.

TIMING

So I can imagine every one of us at some point were somewhere they did not want to be. There must have been a time when you wanted more and wished you were doing better or was having better. If you are ambitious, you feel like this every day or maybe once a week or once a month but you do.

You might have someone to talk to and everyone has heard this, “God’s time is always the best time,” Sometimes you listen; sometimes you get irritated and wonder why God is always late with just your time whereas others just get what they want. Sometimes you wonder if it’s just that God doesn’t want for you what you want for yourself.

Here is a short lesson I get at the matatu stage in the morning. I am normally a person who does not like crowds or fighting for space. I always wait for there to be a matatu without too much of a hustle.

This morning, I had a late start; you know monad blues and all. When I got to the matatu stage there was no vehicle and they kept coming very full and hardly stopping, time was moving and I also did not have my earphones and Lord knows music makes everything better.

Some time passed and full cars continued to come.  After a few of them passed some had that space in between seats that I never fit in seeing as I am horizontally challenged. I waited until there was enough space for me. At some points I felt like a car with space would never come so but I still decided to wait and eventually a matatu with the front seat came up and I got the best seat in the house, front at the door.

As with the matatu life also does things that you can never really explain, there were people who got in before me but when we got to town their matatu was just in front of ours, what could they have gone through, sometimes we may think some people have it easy but what is a challenge to you may not necessarily be a challenge to the next person and so we may never know what is really going on.

Some people have what you want but it is not what they want and really comparing is the best way to eternal misery. Like our fingers we all cannot be equal but we each are unique and have our own special talents that make us who we are. Our fingers are not equal but if you lost one, you wouldn’t find it the same doing things as it was before you lost the finger. Like that every one of us has a purpose and do not for a minute let anyone tell you different.

Once in a while, you feel down and wish you were somewhere different or doing something different and that is okay. It is good actually, it means you have more potential just do not let it get you overwhelmed. Get over it, pick yourself up and tell yourself tomorrow will be a better day and even if at first you do not believe it if tell it to yourself enough times, you will come to believe it.

There is a time for everything and just as the seasons change your circumstances will also change and sometimes you want to do something but it is not your best yet and a nudge to a different road gets you to a place that gives you so much fulfilment it is unbelievable.

Okay, so I am not an expert I just thought someone might need a little pick me up seeing as it is Monday and all.

Have an inspired day and don’t forget you are as fabulous as they get.

EDITH: PART FOUR

Edith was really enjoying this Antony fellow’s company a lot. She spent time talking to him about many things but they had not gone out yet. She kept looking for reasons to go to the agency. She really did feel connected to him and she just sat and smiled to herself about some of the things they talked about. He was witty, funny and yet they could just have nice intelligent conversations sometimes.

He had asked her out but she had chosen to take it like one of those things people say to keep conversations going and then just stop at that, nothing serious.

One day she walks into his office, now accustomed to it

“He! Nakwambia utaniona hapa mpaka uchoke,” she started sitting down (you will see me here until you get tired)

“Hata weight yako pekee haiwezi nichokesha,” he answered (your weight alone cannot tire me)

To say that she was shocked would be an understatement.

Kumbe anaweza ongea? Sawa, she thought (So he can talk? Okay) she just smiled. She had a clue why they were becoming good friends.

She sat down and they talked about work and many other life issues, when they began to talk, they just went on and on and got lost in their own world. She asked questions about investment since she was concerned her firm could be in trouble because of financial issues and while her management was not supportive of her efforts to make sure they stayed afloat she still wanted to find out if there was anything she could present to them is they ever wanted to listen.

They sat there for hours but she felt like it had been five minutes but she had to leave. As she stood to leave,

“Why don’t you just take me somewhere and extract all you want from me and then set me free like a bird?” he asked

“Not yet,” she replied, “it is much more fun this way”

He smiled, a wry sweet, affectionate smile and she walked away.

It was now coming to her; maybe he really was attracted to her. Maybe he was not just trying to be polite but was in fact very serious about it.

She went back to work smiling to herself, nothing could take away the happiness she felt. May be because he was a little older, maybe that was why he was able to keep his cool and not just jump at her. He just left hints and waited for her to be ready and she had to admit he really was drawing her in. He had no idea just how much.

“I know that smile,” Suzy said dropping files on Edith’s desk

“Which smile?”

“The; I have been to someone’s office, and I am very happy smile,”

“You might be right,”

“So when are you guys going out?”

“We haven’t planned yet but I have a feeling it might be soon,”

“I hope so too. He better be good to you,”

“I believe he is. I have never connected with anyone at this level. He understands me, we can talk about everything, I lose track of time when I am with him. I think he is really nice.”

“Don’t over think this though, just have fun and see where it goes,”

“That sounds like a pretty decent idea,”

They both laughed. Suzy was happy her friend had found someone to take her out of her cocoon, she looked herself in too much, not many people knew her but she was a great person if you knew her. She was loyal and kind and lots of fun. She just hoped this Antony guy was not a joker.

That evening Edith went to class but just could not concentrate, she just heard a word here and a word there but most of it she would study later. She just had never met a man so playful yet as respectful as Antony, she did imagine his being older played a role in it. Whatever it was about it, she wished he would be her friend for a time because she really enjoyed his company and really enjoyed their connection.

On a particular day in late February Edith went to Antony’s office as had become a habit and as usual she enjoyed it. As she was leaving, they shook hands and they just kept that shake going and none wanted to leave the other’s hand. They stared at each other.

“What?” Antony asked smiling broadly,

Edith could not for the life of her speak, it was all too intense. She simply smiled and lowered her gaze from his.

“Go,” he said. Only then did she let go of his hand and started for the door. “Or did you have my feedback?” he called as she opened the door. I held it open for a second. “Feed back?” she echoed. She felt flustered.

“Come,” he said. Edith walked back and her hand was in Antony’s again.

“I gave you an assignment, have you thought about it yet.”

She had in fact been thinking about his assignment a lot, in fact sometimes she hardly thought of little else but in pure lady fashion, she really struggle with this lady things, she acted like it had never occurred to her and he was just reminding her of it presently. But she was having a feeling he was not being fooled. Come to think of it, he was holding her hand and there was a possibility that he could feel her overzealous pulse.

“My schedule is tricky,”

“I want to hear the trick. Tricky things only come from tricksters.”

I have never met somebody who makes me smile and laugh all the time like I am ticklish, she thought. She just stood there smiling sheepishly and wondering how they had even gotten here.

“Well, I go to school on weekday evenings and Saturday mornings, so I am only available Saturdays.”

“Saturdays for me are not good. I normally have lots of events on Saturdays and when I do not, I know that morning so I stay here and then later I go watch football if my team is playing and then I go home.”

“Ok,”

“So, where do you go to school?”

“Saint Louis,”

“So you just walk through here after work,”

“Yes, I do,”

“Interesting, so I can see you when I go up to the rooftop,”

“I guess, if your sight is good enough,”

“My sight, is good enough,”

“I guess we are at a deadlock but maybe I will make you a deal,

“Yeah, really? What kind of deal?”

“If I get a spare minute, you will be the first to hear about it.”

“Promise?”

“I promise,”

*********************

Suzy and Edith left work that day to have a coffee, work had been hectic and they hadn’t really just sat and talked. One of Edith’s lecturers had had a premonition he would be sick this week so she had a day.

They walk into this restaurant in town that they really love and Edith especially loved the chicken and they get a corner table. Edith always loved to sit at the corner so she could watch people but at the same time be invincible, people could look at the corner but it was the vantage point where she could watch everything happening.

“Girl, I am so tired, sometimes I just feel I should quit and lay around and something else will come up,” Suzie complained

“Well I feel you girl, it always happens to me too and I just wonder why I was not born royalty. I mean I love my parents but a little or rather a lot of money never killed anybody,” Edith totally agreed as well.

“Amen to that sister,”

“But tonight, I love me some cappuccino,”

“Speaking of love, how is a certain Antony doing?”

“Antony is fine, at least he was the last time I saw him,”

Suzy rolled her eyes, “Hey, I know you have good taste.”

“This was really not my choice, I just found myself pulled into something and I just could not resist going deeper,”

“So it is serious?”

“I really cannot say, it’s too soon; right now I am just enjoying a good friendship,”

“To friendship,” Suzy said raising her tiny cup

“To friendship,” Edith said clinking her tiny cup with Suzy’s

They both really loved these times they spent together but things had gotten so crazy. It amazing how much of life can pass you by as you do very little and soon you just realize you lost so much o the way and have very little going for you.

***************************

It had been a few days since Edith had seen Antony. She had gotten engaged in some things planning a trip for some officials getting reservations to for them in another town. She really, had been swamped and for her Antony was her reprieve, talking to him made her feel better about her situation all the time.

She walked into his office and he smiled, she was not sure if it was because he saw her though.

“Hey, you, you look like you are in a very good mood,” she greeted

“I am well, and you are looking lovely today,” Antony replied

“Why, thank you. You don’t look too bad yourself,”

“You are welcome,” he replied with the biggest smile she had ever seen.

See statements, like these were the ones that made her just go crazy; he had a sense of humour like no other in a very good way.

“How have you been for the last couple of days?” Antony asked

“I have been okay, I have been planning a trip for a couple of officials and it is exhausting. There is a seminar around their so there are no hotels in the area with a bit of a reasonable price list.”

“Really? Where to?”

“To Naivasha,”

“Oh, Naivasha, there are so many very nice hotels in Naivasha by the way, there is the Sopa lodge, the Great Rift Valley, there are lots of beautiful places. Very nice places for someone to go for a honeymoon,” he paused for a second, “by the way, what are your plans now that we are on the topic of honeymoon?”

“I do not any plans for any honeymoon at the moment” Edith said not sure where this conversation was headed.

“Well, when the time comes, it is a really good place to go,”

“I will think about it,”

“We should really meet out; we have a lot to talk about,”

“I will tell you when I get a minute,”

“Do, I have your number?”

“No,”

“Okay, give me your and I will call so you can get mine,”

“That is okay,”

“By the way, why did I not have your number?” he asked

Edith wanted to say, well, you did not ask. But instead she said, “I really do not know,”

“Maybe the opportunity had not presented itself,”

“Most likely,” Edith agreed, “yet here I was trying to be a lady,”

“Whaaaaaat?” he asked laughing

“I will text you when I have a second,” she said.

The number exchange really excited her for some reason. Little things sometimes really got to her. She did not know how exactly she felt but she was really looking forward to knowing how she would use the number.

EDITH: PART THREE

For a few weeks Edith has had a new friend, a marketing manager she had initially not liked at all ended up being the friend she had been looking for, or at least she thought.

On February 16th she walked into his office, she was trying to write her term paper and had very many questions she was glad she had this chance to go to her new friend’s office. He had other guests but Alex was free.

“Hey you,” she greeted

“Hey girl, we missed you, it’s been a while,” Alex replied motioning her boss’s office and smiling cheekily.

Edith half blushed, “What are you talking about?”

“Well, if you must know, I see you, I see how you smile when you leave this office, I see him too, I go in there and he is smiling from ear to ear, he is always in a good mood when you come over.”

“Well, Alex, I am glad you think I am responsible for your boss’s good moods but I don’t think I am,” she honestly just thought Alex was playing; she and Antony were just friends.

A client came out of the office and nodded to Alex as she went.

“He is all yours,”

Edith walked into the office holding back a smile. She did not know what to think about what Alex thought she knew, oh, how people can misconstrue things, she thought.

He did not help matters he smiled at her as she walked in and she felt like she was in the middle of a conspiracy.

“Happy, post valentine,” she says stretching her hand to shake his

“Oh, you decided to come after so there would be no demands. Smart girl”

She smiled and sat down.

“How was your Valentine’s he asks?”

“It was nice, I cannot complain.”

“Wewe ulikataa kutokea na vile nilikuwa nimekupangia,” he says (you did not show up yet I had plans for you)

“Ungenitafuta kama ulikuwa umenipangia,” (you should have looked for me)

He smiled, he always smiled like that, in a way that just made her smile as well.

“I have two issues for you today,” she continued

“Let us hear them,”

“You know how I have been telling you; we have been facing challenges at work?”

He nodded.

“I need your input. Do you think there is any short term investment we can invest in that will keep us from getting into this kind of trouble all the freaking time? Frankly, it is boring.”

He smiled, that sweet infectious smile, it always did something to her. He rubbed his hands together slowly; he always did that when he put his thinking cap on.

“Well,” he began squinting as if he was reading from something illegible, “your situation is already far gone and the most viable option would be to get a credit limit that would help you out for some time and stop spending too much on capital items. It is cheaper to get long term debts rather than taking emergency debt all the time.”

“I agree,”

“Because you see, I am sure even your financial institution is not happy giving you that kind of debt and charging you exorbitant rates because they also do not gain from your downfall.”

“I see your point. I am also doing my term paper and I would like you to look at it and tell me what you think, if you think I should present it as is or if it needs to be tweaked a bit.”

“I will look at it and see if I can help,”

“I really appreciate it,” she took it out of her folder and gave it to him.

He flipped through it for a few seconds, “I will let you know what I think of it,”

“Thank you,”

Their eyes locked for a second, he smiled. What just happened? She wondered.

“I think we should meet out,” he said.

“Huh?”

“We should meet out, at a place where we can talk more freely without any disruptions. You see here in the office, there are calls; people walking in and you can only be here for a few. If we met outside we could talk more.”

Say what? She screamed in her head.

“I will think about it,”

“You do that. Shall I release you now?”

Thank the lord, she thought, “Yes,”

He stretched out his hand to shake hers.

“Nime enjoy sana,” (It was nice seeing you)

“Mimi pia,” (Me too)

She walked out, as she left, she remembered what Alex had said and held back the huge smile that wanted to escape her lips. She was not going to give Alex the satisfaction of seeing it.

*****************

Back at their office, Suzy was observing Edith, she seemed awfully happy and smiley and her mind kept taking trips, they would be talking and suddenly she would go like, “I am sorry what?”

What is she hiding? Suzy wondered. She wanted to wait until Edith told her herself but for some reason she wasn’t talking.

Edith on the other hand was very happy, nothing was diming her joy. She felt a certain way, she couldn’t quite explain it. On one hand the invite by Antony to meet out came as a very huge surprise but on the other hand, even though she said she would think about it, she had already thought about it and she knew exactly what she would do.

“So what is going on with you, girl?” It was Suzy startling Edith out of her reverie.

“The usual you know, school and stuff,”

“Hmmm, is that why you have been smiling on your own and being distracted?”

“Have I?”

“Come on you are hiding something, I know you and I am not saying it is bad for you to be happy but why would you be happy alone and not share the joy?”

“Okay fine, maybe something did happen”

“Then promise me you will not laugh or make jokes about it.”

“Pinky promise,” Suzy said raising her small finger.

“What are you six?”

“You know the pinky is the best promise ever.”

“Fine,” they linked their little fingers

“Spill, spill then,”

“Well, you remember I told you about Alex’s new boss?”

Suzy nodded as if speaking would cut her concentration

“I think he might have asked me out,”

Suzy opened her mouth in an inaudible scream, “Girl, no wonder you have been smiling around here by yourself. So what did you say?”

“I said, I will think about it,”

“Fair enough, and have you thought about it?”

“I think so,”

“And?”

“I think I want to go but not just yet,”

“I guess you are right, are you excited at least?”

“I guess, you know I do not know what to think of it, but I like the idea of it,”

“Good! At least one of us is having fun”

I am indeed having fun with this one, Edith thought.

A LOOK BACK at 2016

I know, I know, it is not over yet, but it almost is and I just decided to take a look back and to be honest this year has been the worst I have had in a while. It has been one of those where my plans just never worked but that was mostly because sometimes I get too optimistic for words. This year has harassed and woke me up, sometimes even beaten me. It has been bad, but I am not here to talk doom. Bad things bring good things also. This year I have learnt;

  1. Things do not always work out and it’s ok

The surprises life has thrown me this year have made me learn a lot. I decided I must be very special, things did not work out most of the time but I learnt with every moment I was beat down to wake up and take another step and another and another until finally, I just did not give a damn about what anybody says and then again if people are always talking ill of you, girl or (how do I say it for men?), we’ll figure it out later, point is there is either something very wrong you are doing or you are just different and they wish they had the courage to take their own path. I chose my own path, I talk to God and one or two friends, I only call people who matter to me, trust me de- cluttering your life gives you so much peace and you end up with far less baggage and I love reducing baggage, it opens up your mind to so much more that this world has to offer.

  1. Being uncomfortable teaches a lot

I have also learnt that you have to get out of your comfort zone sometimes, I was talking to a friend of mine and he told me that resigning yourself to situations makes you lose out on life. Remember that good old saying about how eating only food that your mother cooks makes you think she is the only one that can cook?

Well, so is it with life, when you just think you could not find a different method, if you keep to yourself you will never ever find out how many there are out there. That however does not mean that you open up to just anyone, this world is full of Bad belle, Oloshi and Gbeborun (all three mean useless unhelpful people more or less) you do not want to even imagine. Not everything is meant for your consumption.

Getting uncomfortable does not only mean that you should learn new things it might also mean unlearning some thins and looking at them from a fresh perspective. And just because majority of the people around you do things a certain way doesn’t mean they are doing it the right way, you may have to find your own way and my will it  be uncomfortable

  1. Learn to fail

I have to admit this has been the biggest issue for me, not even just this year; it has been for a really long time. I have always been afraid to fail and sometimes I think it is part of the reason I have not moved as far as I would have wanted. I always get this gripping fear when I want to try something new but this year, I just tossed myself in and said, “so what if I fail?” I mean the only thing you will do is fail especially if money is not involved. That was how I started writing this blog and I don’t have a million followers but you are reading this and if you like it enough you will send it to your friend, or maybe you are in a situation that I will help you unravel with my two cents. So whatever it is you have been procrastinating on doing, my dear, start, do it, “so what if you fail,” even better, “what if you succeed?”

  1. Do not give a damn!

So this does not mean you can throw away your morals and walk along Kenyatta Avenue or any other street you have in your town naked. By no means, all I mean is, give up the idea that you have to explain yourself to anybody. If you are of age and all you want to do is better yourself do not limit yourself because people do not normally do that. The one thing I have learnt is that the people that love you and those that really matter will understand you; they will walk with you and support you.

Most of the people whose opinions we really care about are people who really have not moved anywhere in their lives and as a result all they want to do is keep you from moving too.

Do not give a damn and I repeat do not give a damn as long as your heart is in the right place and as long as you are not hurting anyone, except a hater’s ego. You are fine. Keep doing what you are doing.

  1. Do not layback your spiritual life

Actually this should have been number one, but since it is self explanatory, I will finish with it.

All I can say is put your God first. Read your religious books, pray and even when you do not have the strength you will have a reserve. I know some people me included only rest on Sunday but try and go to church if you are a Christian whatever Supreme Being you believe in, talk to him even when you are not talking to everyone else.

Level with him and when things really get out of hand, let go and let God. Do not worry what people say about how your relationship with your maker should be, have one first and you will know what you are supposed to do.

Listen to that still small voice inside of you, it is always right.

  1. Enjoy where you are at

This one has been hard for me but I am learning to just kick back and accept I am at point A and ask myself, am I doing all I can to get to point B? If so, relax and let everything work itself out. Somehow I always believe I will get there and all hard situations teach you what to avoid doing in the future.

I enjoyed your support to this part of the year and I want to say thank you for reading, liking, following, favoriting and all you support, Stay positive and enjoy the rest of 2016.

EDITH: PART TWO

 

Edith went into the office, it was neat and quaint. The man seated behind the desk was good looking but he did not seem at all like what Alex had said, he was distracted and did not seem as sweet.

“Hello,” she said almost not hearing her own voice.

“Hi,” now she was sure he was not very excited about her being in the office.

“My boss sent me, she said she had talked to you about new forms we needed,”

“Oh,” he said almost emotionless, he turned around opened a drawer and took out a stack of three or four papers and held them out to her, “here.”

Edith was confused, having a boss like the one she had, had made her develop an attitude. But then again, was Alex insane, or maybe he was just ok with people she knew and not strangers.

“Thank you,” she said and left. She really, did not know what to make of it, but why was she even worried anyway? “Maybe it is because I really do not get to have intelligent conversations with anyone in my life” she thought, “I need a new life”

She had to go back to work which really gave her chills; she had had a plan for her life that did not include her working with non-ambitious mediocre people apart from Sue, she really did not have anyone to talk to from a standpoint of understanding but she had gotten used to it, though sometimes it still bothered her, just a bit.

“Hey you, why do you look so confused?”

“Huh?” Edith was startled by Suzy’s voice, she had no even noticed that she had gotten back to the office, her mind had been so occupied.

“Earth to Edith, come in?” Sue teased cupping her hand to her mouth

“Very funny, “Edith said, “you will not believe what happened today?

“Try me,” I seen a few things in my day

“So, I go over to the Advertising Company right?”

“Mhhh,”

“And Alex is bragging about how awesome her new boss is and I am like, okay, stop bragging”

“And is he?”

“He definitely is good looking but has the coldest stare I have ever seen,”

“Maybe he is good to her,”

“I guess, I don’t know why it keeps bothering me though, I mean I work for a monster, why am I surprised?”

They both laughed and each went their own way but Edith couldn’t shake the feeling that there really could be a body snatcher conspiracy going on, how can two people see one person so differently?

*********************

The next day Edith had to return the forms and she really was not looking forward to it. “Oh well, at least I do not have to smile until my face hurts like with other people.” She thought, “Here goes nothing.”

She went into his office reminding herself there would be no pleasantries and deliberately forced herself not to smile. Boy was she in for a big surprise.

“Hello,” she said, standing just near his table

“Hello,” he said beaming and almost throwing her off balance, “please, have a seat,”

Talk about a 360 turn, she thought and sat down.

“How have you been since the last time you were here?”

Here I was thinking you did not even notice I was here, she thought of saying but instead, “I have been good actually,”

“Good, I have also been good, kazi kazi tu, (just work)”

For a minute Edith thought she was dreaming, how can one person be so nasty one minute and extremely nice the next?

“What is your good name?” he asked

She almost giggles, was he old fashioned or proper? She really could not tell, his attitude this day had really bamboozled her.

“Edith, Edith Obondo,” she said

He swung in his chair and looked at her curiously

“Obondo ule mmoja?” (The one Obondo?)

“Yes,” she replied. She always glowed with pride when someone asks her that.

“I knew your dad when you were very young.” He said.

She must have done something because he said, “Why are you looking at me like you have never been younger? Where were you in 1990?”

“Very little,” she replied.

“See?”

That day she went home and announced proudly as if she had done an extraordinary thing that she was in the Advertising manager’s office and he knew her daddy. Her daddy on the other hand could not remember him because he had dealt with so many people in the course of his work and he could not for the life of him remember most of them.

“He knew you in 1990,” she prodded wishing him to remember.

“1990? He!” is all he could say.

She was disappointed but just by her dad’s memory but not with the man she had met.

The man she had met that day was very; very different from the man she had met the day before. He was so nice she was beginning to see what Alex was talking about but he did have some extraordinary chameleon tactics that she wish she could learn, she was so transparent it was painful.

That night she went to bed happy and she had no idea why. Maybe finally she had met her match, someone with a sense of humour and who admired her dad as much as she did and also who she could be good friends with. But she wasn’t going to get herself carried away just yet.

Over the next couple of weeks they got to know each other especially professionally, they had the same interests in investments and the financial sector Edith felt like she had breathed a breath of fresh air, Oh, how refreshing it was. But how would it go?

TO BE CONTINUED……….