Keyboard Diarrhoea 1

Okay so I haven’t written here in a while so I intend to engage in keyboard diarrhoea for a couple of minutes just you know for the sake of it.

I am sad. Ish. I’d be lying if I said my life is hard. I mean it has its challenges but right now that’s not how I’d describe it. It’s just exhausting. This whole working full time and going to class part time is taking a physical toll on me but thank God for a lovely long Eid weekend. So I guess as I type this there is a non-positive feeling running through me and its not fatigue. I’ve had time to catch up on my z’s. And it’s not anger. I thought it was sadness but right now its fear. See I had a conversation a couple of minutes ago and it didn’t go the way I wanted. And without going into it I can say it made me scared because it alerted me of a battle I am going to fight. Not today. Not any time soon. But I know when the time comes, it will be hard. And I’m scared because

a.) one shouldn’t have to fight over love and I am seeing that happening

b.) I am scared of the impact of this impending war.

 

I’d pray but truth be told, this prayer is going to be conflicting with the prayers of a lot of people and I just don’t know how to deal with this.

And I think that is where growing up sucks. Because growing up is just dealing with mess after mess. Problem after problem. Like last week the thing clouding my mind were like a whole different set. Then this. And I’m pretty sure another totally different issue will be added to the mess of Adult problems by Tuesday morning and I just don’t like it.

If being an adult is like this then can I trade my freedom of *virgin* (wink wink) mojitos with dealing with playground drama?

Because this shit just gets harder and I JUST KENT DEAL!!!

But other than that I celebrated my first grad-versary (graduation anniversary) this weekend. And it has me in my feelings. I mean. A year gone. In that year I have lost friends. Made one or two new ones. Travelled a hell of a lot. Grown. Cried. Laughed. Its’ been crazy. Life has moved on. But one thing that has stayed constant is my education. Everything may have changed but the fact that I have a degree hasn’t. And that’s what education has been about for me. It’s that one thing which gives me pride. It’s that one thing which will always be mine. So I’m thankful for that.

I shared this post on my facebook.

today is my first grad-versary ( graduation anniversary gerrit?? Lol).
Among many other milestones, the dress I wore on this day doesn’t fit and I just dont know how to feel about that😯😯. But the major lesson learnt is that in life your education is the one thing that cant be taken away from you. Jobs come and go. Friends (though we wish they wouldn’t) come and go. Even your family may not always show up when you want to but your academic success is the one thing you will carry to your grave and beyond.
Getting a degree isnt about standing out its about getting something that will stay with you forever.
Its about the way your mind grows. Its about those little things you learn about yourself along the way. How you get exposed to a newer set of possibilities.

And when you realize that you come to a new point of self awareness that will give you what you need to take yourself to the next level.

So to my Strath class of 2016 colleagues ( some of whom I have tagged).This whole adulting and life thing isn’t easy but no matter what the past year has brought your way, good or bad, remember that on a cloudy day on the 24th of June 2016 you attained something no one will ever take away from you.

And to anyone struggling with this whole academic thing… keep fighting. Doesnt matter how long it will take you… dont quit. It will be worth it.♡

Lastly to the people who will read this and cant keep calm because they are graduating next Friday ( I see you on my feed class of 2017) DONT LET NOBODY TELL YOU SHIT!! Yes you are probably not the first to graduate and wont be the last but its your moment hunni.. You have done something for you so go ahead and flood our timelines with your pride!

Love from my little corner in Karen,

Kemunto. ♡♡♡♡♡♡

 

And it captures how about this whole scenario. It’s difficult. But its worth it. It was worth it on the 24th of June 2016 and it was still worth it on the 24th of June 2017. So if you’ve made it this far reading this and this education situation is just challenging every part of you. Don’t quit. It’s worth it.

So let me end this keyboard diarrhoea here. Really not sure why I ended up here. But yeah.

Life is hard. Being an adult is hard. But God got us and we will survive.

 

Eid Mubarak to any Muslim who stumbles across this. And to the rest of you… Keep shining.

 

Also I may be undergoing a re-brand so call me Kemunto aka the The Writing Heliophile.

Why? Because I am just a girl who loves the sun. A soft summer thing. Trying to find her light and sharing it wherever she can. Join me in my journey.

https://mayonde.bandcamp.com/track/closer-to-the-sun-interlude

 

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Source: Tumblr

 

Keep shining,

Love,

Kemunto.

 

June.

Lately, there has been a deficit of creativity in my life. Why? Because Post Grad life. Because being employed is the most exhausting blessing. Because writer’s block. And every paragraph I draft ends up in my trash.

But this space is what makes me me. In this space I have control. I get the kind of control I sometimes feel I lack because again… adult life. So my resolution for the remaining half of the year is to stay creative. To keep writing. To continue defining and re-discovering myself. But most importantly to LIVE INSPIRED. Because lately I felt like I have been just existing.

The first quarter of this year was a bit rough for me. I’ll be honest. My happiness was threatened. Or rather I allowed my happiness to be threatened. I allowed someone to get into my head and fuck up that space of positivity I have been consciously trying to maintain. And the thing about letting someone else’s energy get into a space as sacred as that is that you never get back to being the same. You try to live your life but once that particular part of you is compromised, it just isn’t the same. You don’t laugh the same. You don’t dream the same if at all you manage to. And that… that is scary. Because in your own indirect way you lose control of yourself and surrender it to that person. And sometimes you don’t even realize it.

But I am trying to get back.

I started my post graduate degree in May and in it’s own little way, that has helped me get back to this space of happiness.  Even though this… is basically how I feel every damn day now…

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My Masters class is what I look forward to every day because I get to interact with people who are inspiring. I get to trade ideas and having two or three friends in that class whose stupid matches mine certainly makes studying Market Theories much easier lol.

I am life lover. I love being happy. And I am determined to stay happy and inspired for the rest of the year. I’ve been investing more in self care lately. I unashamedly take a nice warm nap when my body is just done. Jumia food saved my life because it makes it easier to fill that burger shaped void in my heart when I need to.

I am also being deliberate in the kind of energy I allow around me. Meaning I do not have time for people who don’t bring positive energy and happiness to me, I just don’t . Even if these people are close to me and I can’t avoid them, I have started learning the art of minimizing contact. Or where I can calling them out on their negativity and walking away.  My energy is sacred. My joy matters. So does my peace of mind.

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The past few days there is this song (re-sang by Gladys Knight) I keep humming after work and I think it captures the essence of this new space I am in, or trying to get into mentally….

 

“I Hope You Dance”

I hope you never lose your sense of wonder
You get your fill to eat
But always keep that hunger
May you never take one single breath for granted
God forbid love ever leave you empty handed
I hope you still feel small
When you stand by the ocean
Whenever one door closes, I hope one more opens
Promise me you’ll give faith a fighting chance

And when you get the choice to sit it out or dance
I hope you dance
I hope you dance

I hope you never fear those mountains in the distance
Never settle for the path of least resistance
Living might mean taking chances
But they’re worth taking
Lovin’ might be a mistake
But it’s worth making
Don’t let some hell bent heart
Leave you bitter
When you come close to selling out
Reconsider
Give the heavens above
More than just a passing glance

And when you get the choice to sit it out or dance
I hope you dance
(Time is a real and constant motion always)
I hope you dance
(Rolling us along)
I hope you dance
(Tell me who)
I hope you dance
(Wants to look back on their youth and wonder)
(Where those years have gone)

I hope you still feel small
When you stand by the ocean
Whenever one door closes, I hope one more opens
Promise me you’ll give faith a fighting chance

And when you get the choice to sit it out or dance
Dance
I hope you dance
I hope you dance
(Time is a real and constant motion always)
I hope you dance
(Rolling us along)
I hope you dance
(Tell me who)
(Wants to look back on their youth and wonder)
I hope you dance
(Where those years have gone)

(Tell me who)
I hope you dance
(Wants to look back on their youth and wonder)
(Where those years have gone)

 

So this month. I hope anyone reading this chooses to dance. To shed the negativity and to embrace the beauty around  them. Most importantly. I hope whoever reads this chooses to LIVE INSPIRED. And if you are reading this and have been stuck in a rut like I was for a while, don’t stop fighting. Don’t let the dark place win. You’ll get back to shining. Just give yourself time.

Have a happy new month.

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Till next time.

Love,

Kemunto ♥

Fighter

I’m writing this for anyone who needs to read it.

Could be me. Or anyone really.

Because sometimes we face curveballs that threaten the good energy we have tried to cultivate around us.

Sometimes we fight forces that threaten our magic- our happiness, our dreams, and everything else that sparks that little light we try to radiate to the world.

Sometimes the forces are external, and we deal with those wars by cutting them off and blocking them out.

Sometimes, most times, the wars are within. And we use whatever arms we have at our disposal- internal healing or seeking the light of those who inspire us to keep shining to fight the threat.

But what do we do when the forces are both outside and on the inside?

What do we do when around us is a negative energy which will not go away and within us our minds are on overdrive reminding us of everything we have fought hard not to believe?

How do we go on when we feel totally and utterly helpless because somewhere in between the constant negative thoughts and people or circumstances constantly put a cloud over us that weighs down on our magic heavily?

How do we remember how to smile again?

For one thing, we allow ourselves to feel the rain. Because sometimes the only way to truly get over it is to confront that darkness and let it do what it needs to. Sometimes the only way to truly learn the lesson is to allow ourselves to feel the pain.

And then you keep fighting. Keep trying to get back to who you were before the storm came. Keep viciously trying to protect your energy. Keep trying to smile, even when the situation won’t let you. Keep trying to prove the storm wrong. Get out of bed and face the same battles that are yours to win. And just because they got you down yesterday, doesn’t mean you are any less a warrior than you who you were all the other times you overcame storms before.

Dear fighter, 

You, are magic.

You are a phenomenon bursting with gifts the world is yet to see.

The most rare and beautiful of flowers, 

Don’t surrender your right to bloom.

♥♥♥♥

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image from google images

On blooming: A quick review of Desert Flower by Waris Dirie.

Read this one wearing a loose flowing
dera under a tree on a hot afternoon in January doused in a dense cloud of all your favourite perfumes. The Somali are a very sensual people after all and this book demands the same of you. Be oozing raw beauty and sexuality. Get into character. Channel Beyonce’s fierce. Wear your beauty like Naomi, gracefully. Bathe yourself in Ajuma’s melanin. Then open this book and soak in Waris’s strength, line after line, page after page. That is how to read this book.
Read this book with your face cringing in shame. Because the world knows a side of Africa you would rather keep swept under the rug of mushrooming cities and dream holiday destinations. But the ugly reality of Female Genital Mutilation and early marriages is still as much a part of the African story as the funny and beautiful stories Mother Chimamanda writes about in her books.

In spite of that, this book is a true reminder that God took his time wirh African Women. Amidst a culture where women are constantly undermined and disrespected God made the African woman special and put in her all she needs to overcome this. He built us resistant to carry all the baggage we walk around with emotionally just as easily as we carry water and babies on our backs. He made us unbreakable. He built us strong. He built us with a fire in our hearts. A fire that cannot be put out until we succeed. Until we rise above the suffering we constantly face in our environment that fails to see us as man’s equal. Until we carve our own path even as constant road blocks are thrown at us as we journey along. Until the world sees us and recognises our greatness. Until we bloom.

And that is why I think you are doing yourself a great disservice if you haven’t read this one.

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Image from Pinterest

 

Side note: 

I got my paperback copy from Nakumatt

Showin’ off

Photography by Mutua Matheka.

 

Nairobi doesn’t quite show off until January.

Her resplendent beauty cannot be appreciated until you see her when the sun lights up every corner of her being.

In January every color becomes alive.

Every green leaf growing on the odd tree still surviving in Kilimani becomes more distinct.

The bright blue sky shining over the CBD looks deeper when viewed from the drying golden grass in Uhuru Park.

Sidewalks gain some life.

There is a way the sun hits those buildings just right and when you look down from the eighth floor of any building in Upperhill, it isn’t just concrete walls and human traffic that meets the eye. There is also the sprinkling of gold dust settling on the shoes of individuals with their melanin shining like rich melted chocolate. Every body running to this building or that street trying to squeeze an extra penny to get them through “Njaanuary”

Sunsets become alive.

The sun in January demands a grand exit each evening. So she forces you to acknowledge her while you sit sweating in a black suit in a stuffy bus in stagnant Ngong Road traffic. She wears faint stars as diamonds and kisses the hills with mellow pinks, blues and oranges blending magically into each other.

When Nairobi shows off in January she makes her presence felt… like that teasing lover she always is. She grants you a gaping hole in your pockets and heat that melts all your dreams as punishment then grants you the blessing of seeing the sun going down over the Ngong Hills as your pardon.

Showin’ off by Kemunto.

Image from Mutua Matheka (@truthslinger) website. Here:https://mutuamatheka.wordpress.com/dusk-to-night/

On removing the kinks from my mind not my hair.

How to go natural: A 10 step guide from a sister that wants to embrace her roots

  1. Mentally decide how you are sick and tired of undergoing continuous torture in the hands of some of that Dark and Lovely no lye creamy crack
  2. Google “how to transition” and “how to prepare for the big chop”
  3. Create a fierce Pinterest board filled with amazing twas and bomb twist outs and bantu knot outs.
  4. Follow a million and one naturalistas on the ‘gram
  5. Write a spirited blog post about how you are more than just your physical appearance. Share it.
  6. Research on the best barbers around your area.
  7. Buy a couple of Shea Moisture products in preparation for taking care of your new fro
  8. Download and create a playlist of all of India Arie’s tracks. Make Video your ringtone. This is a very crucial step.
  9. Wake up and plan to go get your hair cut. Dress the part: wrap your damaged relaxed hair into a lovely head wrap. Leave the house
  10. Get to hair salon/barber and instead ask him to retouch your hair :/

Greetings from this corner of Karen and welcome to my life 🙂

Oh let me add:

11. Delete post about going natural and act like it never happened.

That is the story of my life. In April this year I was in a very interesting place mentally, amidst the anxiety of job hunting I was evaluating the past 4 years in college and I was realizing how as much as I had grown, there were still a bunch of insecurities I was yet to let go of. In that moment, some of the body issues I had struggled with since my teenage years still seemed very apparent. I was sick and tired of being that girl. I wasn’t that weak bitch anymore but the opinions and perceptions of others regarding my appearance still mattered somehow. And I was desperate for a change. For me, finally cutting my hair was this change. It wasn’t just about the hair. It was about silencing those voices in my head that were constantly telling me I wasn’t pretty. It was about not giving a fuck about those voices that kept telling me I wasn’t gorgeous if I didn’t look a certain way. It was about proving to myself that I had not just grown mentally but emotionally as well. Also, I wanted to try something different, prove to myself that I wasn’t as lazy as I thought I am and I could manage to grow my natural kinks which are known to need a lot of TLC so that they can flourish.

But midway I changed my mind. I could lie to you and tell you it was because I liked my hair relaxed(which is true). But there is more to that. I guess those voices I was trying to silence just weren’t in the mood to be silenced.

For the next couple of months I was okay. I decided to just go with the routine, relax, protective style and retouch my roots. But sometimes your body sends you signals which you can’t ignore any longer. I got to a point where braids were starting to make my scalp itch, no matter what I did to take care of it. And I was trying as much as possible to stretch the period up to my next touch up. So my hair was all open and protective style free. But that didn’t work either. My scalp was still itchy and without any protective style on, my hair was becoming very brittle. It was getting hard to manage. Split ends, natural roots. I had two options: cut it or have it relaxed since the idea of braids literally gave me a headache.

I toyed with the idea of cutting it. A part of me was ready to stop giving a fuck and just do it. But I was hesitant.

How would I look?

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My hair before the big chop. This was in April, my hair looked a bit healthy and this was before I had gone to have it braided… at this point my scalp was also having the same issues that made me want to cut it.

How will people think I look?

So I filed the idea for a few days.I was also considering coloring because some of my favourite bloggers and creatives spot colored twas and they look amazing. I figured that if the cut wouldn’t make me smile, then having a fierce hair color would.

For the next few days, my excuse was that I didn’t have enough money, it was mid month after all.

But a couple of days ago, I decided to do what I had to. I’d been out and about, doing stuff and the thought of fixing my hair had been weighing heavily on my mind. I wanted to cut it but I was scared. On my way home, I took the chance and called my stylist, all the while praying that I wouldn’t regret my decision. To cement my decision I decided to also buy a packet of hair dye. I opted for a radiant copper (thinking it would come out like a dark brown with a slight red undertone).

It was officially too late to back out.

That night, I went to bed praying that it would turn out okay. I was also scared of my scalp burning because it had been very irritated and it’s never a good idea to process hair when the scalp is in that state.

So anyway fast forward to the big chop.

I showed up, butterflies in my stomach and had a seat at the station that would change my life. At that moment, my palms were sweaty and I was scared. As each strand fell to the ground, I was praying desperately that I had made the right decision.

But by the time I was done (cut and dyed), my feelings had quickly dissipated. My hair color of choice ended up looking more brown with a very strong golden undertone. Basically my stylist came through for me all the way. Quite frankly, if ever there was a time I got out of the salon convinced I looked like something out of a page in Vogue, it was at that moment.

Hashtag… Tall brown haired natural melaninanted goddess!!!!!

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My hair. Short. Glorious. Natural. This overly filtered photo was posted on my personal Instagram page about 3 days after my big chop.

But now a couple of days into my new look, I realize that some decisions we make outwardly still have a lot of repercussions on how we feel. For a lot of naturalistas, it starts as a mental revolution marked with an outward transition. For me the revolution was outward and it is now that I am feeling the ripple effects of this act.

It wasn’t until I cut my hair that I realized that honestly people’s opinions are starting to mean less and less to me. There was a time I cared. Even when those same opinions were poison to my emotional and mental state of mind. But every day I wake up and comb my honey blonde/copper TWA I feel like those fucks I used to give fade away a little bit. I feel lighter…because I am not carrying the dead weight of opinions that do not add value in my life.

It wasn’t until I cut my hair that I realized that I am capable of doing so much more with my life if only I pushed myself a little harder. Every day feels like a new day for me to do so much more. Because just like my hair which in the right light shines golden like the sun, I have this feeling that I was called to greatness and now more than ever I want to radiate this in all spheres of my life. So I wake up every day determined to improve who I am and be the best I can be. I cut my hair when I felt I wanted to do more with my life. And I’m glad I have this new hair to motivate me that I can turn over a new leaf and stop the mediocrity I used to dwell in.

It wasn’t until I cut my hair that I also realized that the revolution starts in the mind. Mind over matter. Everything is possible if I allow myself to explore the vast infinities around me. In the simple act of mentally deciding that I can change my hair and still love myself unconditionally, I have been opened up to a new way of living. A lifestyle where I seek happiness, freedom. By deciding to rise above insecurities I have fought with for years, I was finally able to silence the voices of doubt and disapproval that have always haunted me. So its on to the next victory, and I now know how I will win it- by winning it in my mind first and letting that and my heart guide me.

I am loving my new hair.

But most importantly, I am loving who I am right now- both on the inside and outside.

When I cut my hair, I experienced a revolution… and I can’t wait to see where this shift in my mental state will take me.

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(image from Google)

Thank you for reading.

I sincerely pray that all of you get a chance to conquer your mind and bask in the glorious feeling this season.

Remember…. THE REVOLUTION STARTS IN THE MIND.

I heard a voice that told me I’m essential. How all my fears are limiting my potential. Said it’s time to step into the light and use every bit of power i have inside.- India Arie

Love always ♥,

Kemunto.

PS… As you turn all the way up this Christmas remember that aside from the festivities December, is a great time to do a pilot test of the person you want to be in 2017 so do that darling!

Happy December :)))

And enjoy my early Christmas gift… some of that good good India Arie :))

November 5th

I swear there have been moments when I thought my problems were catatonic.I tarmacked for like a month and thought the world was going to end because I could not find a job and my dream employer was ignoring my emails. I thought that was bad. I even sunk into a depression cycle made worse by PMS and those feelings of inadequacy it brought. But life changed. I got a different set of issues. Looking back I thought my world had come to an end just because of one document that broke my heart and I would go to work with this heavy load. And maybe it was big. But then again. Not really. Because documents and contracts are just pieces of paper but in my head I had given them so much power and my mind was uninhabitable for a few days. I thought that was bad.
But then last night my problems became first world and I couldn’t sleep. So I used my precious internet bundles to shamelessly watch every episode of Nairobi Diaries Season 2. By the time I convinced my eyes to shut down my problems had shifted to whether I was team Pendo or team Yola. Because that was the baggage I was in the mood of carrying. And I know it sounds painfully vain. I lose ounces of respect for myself just reading that statement. But when life is good let it be good.
But life does this thing at times where it reminds you to stop getting so comfortable every so often. This planet is just a stop over and was never meant to be treated like a permanent home. Don’t you dare get too comfortable. Your stay is short. And sometimes life serves you this reality in a manner that has you weak, shaken, hiding in a corner and pleading for mercy. That’s just how it is.
I accept this reality. Not really.
But it gets more fucked up when you have to see someone get the hurricane of their lives and you can do absolutely nothing about it. Again. I have been that person, standing on the sidelines, watching. But not lately.
But then that changed.
What do you do when you can’t take the pain away? What do you do when there isn’t a word you can say that can make someone’s cup disappear?
For a minute, I thought I was religious. Sort of. Not church every Sabbath, starting every convo with a prayer type of God fearing but I prayed. I prayed a lot. I thought nothing could ever keep me from saying a little thank you to God when it was good and a little help me every time it wasn’t . But again, the truth was exposed. And what do you do when you suddenly forget where Heaven is?
What do you fucking do when all you can do is spectate?
When words fail? Where do you source comfort?
Tonight I am remindned of my flaws. In the wake of a disaster some of us become enlightened and we see our flaws.
So here’s my confession: I am one flawed human being. So terribly flawed.
And what’s my imperfection?
I suck at showing up for people. There I said it. It isn’t a secret anymore dear world.
I am so fucking bad at handling my own pain that I cannot share the same space with someone else’s hurt. We can’t co-exist. Your pain and I. At least physically. I don’t know how to be there. For anyone.
I carry the loads of my loved ones. Most of us sensitive, overly emotional type of humans do. I cry. I shake. I lose sleep. Lord knows I ache. My keyboard is even dangerously wet now as I type this.
But what do you do when you are so horrible at being there?
And yet somewhere in the wake of this, I am finding clarity. In pain there is truth. And my truth today is that it can end at any minute. But if it ends, I really hope it is nowhere near ending. Inn fact please don’t let it end. Not yet.
If it ends I want my story to be that I travelled this journey without the baggage of things that don’t matter. I want my journey to be free of stuff that only mattered for a moment. I want the lightness of beautiful memories to follow me forever through my journey. When I get to infinity, I want to be carrying only the memories that were beautiful. Because that is what matters. Everything else is temporary: jobs, fights with friends, bad people.
So I guess tonight I want to forget my problems just this once.
Tonight I want to carry only the memory that for once in my life I showed up. Tonight my person is carrying a load and I have know idea what to do to make it lighter.
So I’ll write this while I figure that shit out. For the first time.
Because honestly what else is there to do.
What do you do when someone is hurting and you have no idea what to do to make someone’s cup a little less painful?

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image from Google.

I’m too unhealthy for this place! My experience at Tin Roof Cafe at the Souk.

I present to you a non-foodie review of Tin Cafe at the Souk, Karen.

( The place is located along Dagorreti Road, right opposite the Hub Karen). If you do not know where the Hub is and you live in Nairobi I don’t know what you are doing with life in this planet so kindly move to another planet, priss.

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We can begin this post by a confession… I am unhealthy as fuck. Unhealthy in the sense that as much as I try to drink a litre of water daily and try to exercise by taking a walk at least 5 times a week, my eating habits are bad. I love meat. Red meat. And a meal to me is not complete without carbs. Oh and did I mention have a sugar addiction. A real one. The kind where I cannot go a week without eating chocolate and I eat some sort of candy daily. So basically healthy eating is not my thing.
Which is why when I found out about a cute little cafe in Karen that serves healthy food I wanted to try it. Not because I was excited about the prospect of eating healthy but because it’s good to take a break from KFC and pizza every weekend.
Anyway, first impressions… it definitely is simple. My guess is it was someone’s old house which was converted to a restaurant. Right near the entrance was this cute little gallery. When we came in the artists seemed to be organizing it so we didn’t see much but based on my initial impression, a piece of art there would definitely put a dent in your bank account.

Upon entering the cafe I was sort of shocked because it was soooo tiny. As in my room seemed bigger than the indoor eating space. But I did see their cute little book exchange shelf which sort of added a cosy feel to the place. Also books! I’ve been to a few coffee shops in my time and I have never seen anything quite like this.

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So anyway, we (mummy and I) sat a tiny little corner of the cafe right next to a wall decorated in these beautiful black and white photographs.

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A waitress (Rosemary was her name I think) came and took our orders. As expected, although much to my disappointment, there were no starch dishes on their menu. And honestly, there wasn’t too much variety either. Mostly fish, steak and grilled chicken. So we decided to order grilled chicken breasts which would come with salads from their salad buffet. That seemed acceptable. But I did like their beverages selection, there was a wide array of smoothies, fresh fruit and vegetable juices. I was excited because who doesn’t love a fresh smoothie on a Sunny Saturday so I ordered a strawberry smoothie with yoghurt, while my plus one ordered carrot and orange juice.

While we waited, we decided to take a stroll around the venue. Right next to where we sat was a designer shop, (which I didn’t pay much attention to.) What caught my eye was a bookshop. And it had every book imaginable. Okay sort of. There did seem to be a collection of everything I like from Africana works ( I noticed they had all of mother Chimamanda’s novels) to colorful story books for kids to cook books and other really awesome novels and biographies. I didn’t bother to ask about the prices because novels waer in my budget for the day but the shop, which was well arranged did impress me.

Afterwards, we decided to go and have a seat outside because well, the weather was nice and remember my earlier point about my bedroom being bigger than the space inside.

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The garden seemed a tiny bit more spacious. There was also a large play area with swings and I guess that sort of made it a bit more family friendly. And I did like their garden chairs which were really colorful.

Also side note, if you, like me don’t do dogs you better stay away from here. There were two black little guys running around. One kept coming right up to my leg… (gasp!!!) They were friendly and Rosemary informed us that they sometimes stray from neighbouring houses but again, I don’t do dogs. Most times, I am actually straight out terrified of them, friendly or not.

And now let’s talk business. FOOD. 

When our meals were ready, Rosemary requested us to proceed to the salad bar where we would be handed our plates and served our salads. The chicken looked delicious, well grilled and all generally appetizing. But the salad bar was a disappointment. The selection was very limited (5 items to be specific). And they didn’t seem very unique. I remember they had a sweet corn salad, couscous salad, another salad which had red cabbage and another one which had lots of colorful bell peppers and string beans.

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sorry for the shitty pic, bad lighting and awkward shadows happened ://

I was disappointed.I won’t even lie. And there wasn’t a large collection of dressings either. In fact I only used olive oil on my plate.

The taste was rather bland as well. My chicken, though tender and moist seemed a bit too plain.I would honestly have loved it if they had seasoned it more. Same for the salads, although they were really fresh, the taste was just basic ( maybe due to lack of dressing options). And I know salads are meant to be well, salads but maybe the chef could have done a bit more to add flavour to the veggies. That’s just my opinion anyway. I certainly expected more for a shs 2800 price tag.

The only redeeming item was my smoothie. It was fresh and naturally sweet and quite frankly the only thing that would take me back there.

So anyway that was my experience, I know a bunch of other people have been there and praised the place but for me minus the cosy ambiance and friendly wait staff, it was a no. Maybe my palate is a little too greasy and KFC for this place.

by Kemunto.

23

For my body and the moments I’d look in the mirror and feel like a goddess.For being okay with my big nose and that tinge of excitement I get when I am wearing a pair of jeans and they feel a little tighter.For accepting how I look and feeling beautiful.And for learning to believe I am even when no one tells me this.

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For my deeper desire to pray that good happens to others.For not letting people who do not seek this dim my shine.For that feeling of seeing this good manifest in the lives of others.For that friend who is excited because a little text helped him get a job and that other friend who knows when they need someone to hang with, I’ll be there even when everyone else bails.For my mother’s smile on my graduation and the way I learnt that sometimes this life we live isn’t just about us but is to be lived for those around us.

For the way I fucked up. For the way I fucked up a lot. For a bunch of bad decisions that are still haunting me. But also for the way I am learning to accept my mistakes. And most importantly for my new never-ending resolve to do it better.

For writing, and the way Story Moja Festival 2015 was an experience I will never forget. For the creativity I surrounded myself with during the first 2 months of 22 and this being a permanent reminder that my writing is awesome. For writer’s block that has kept me from creating. Yet I know that even though I haven’t written as much in the past few months I am and always will be a writer.

For the things that made me happy this past year. Because happiness isn’t a one time destination that you will only attain once. It is a constant choice that I feel I tried to make most days at 22. For all the new things I am discovering make me happy: putting a smile on the faces of neglected teenage mothers, lounging in the house in cute pink socks, stroking the soft fur of my kitties, food and random conversations with him and his friends,buying new lipstick, doing something right at work and drinks with the girlfriends. This isn’t everything. But every day is a new day for me to discover another way to smile. For the way during 22 I showed my gap-toothed smile a little too much.For the way this is one thing I am determined to carry into 23.

 

For writing that changed my world. For discovering new blogs and new books that seem to speak in that same language my soul understands. For words by Tabitha that kept me sane when I wanted to quit my degree.

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For my beautiful Warsan, Yrsa and Nayyirah whose anthologies soothed my soul through a transition that was harder than expected. But also for my dearest Alexandra whose positive vibes and message of healing and living life to the fullest has fueled my 2016. But I cannot forget the unspoken bond between artistic souls. So this is also for my writer friend who joins me in moments when I am shamelessly obsessing over Nayyirah and Warsan’s artisry.

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For all the people doing something right that encourage me to be a better person. For my lawyer family friend who is enjoying the hell out of her mid twenties and who does it so stylishly that I want to be her- A young, stylish yet learned professional breaking ceilings and living life to the fullest.

 

For the strength it took to end a chapter that extended longer than it should have.  For the poetry it gave me and how I could write countless anthologies about it.  For a wound that took a little too many conversations with Jamie, Lawson and Jack to heal. For the way after the storm had subsided I am proud of the girl that emerged. For that season. And that prayer I say every night that someone is doing better where they are, just as I am.

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For so many memories. For the best view to wake up to on a Monday morning. For that Kili Sundowner. And all the things we downed after. For infinities that have a genesis somewhere at the intersection of Kinyanjui Kombani’s novels, fantastic views and a shared love for Wale’s The Album About Nothing. For pizza and so many stories I associate it with. For the tears I cried on graduation because baby girl finally did it. For lunches with my girl pals. For that time we went to Hemmingways and I promised myself that next time, I’ll be the one to pay that bill. For Mama. Because my favourite memory is the way she worked tirelessly to make sure her baby ended up somewhere nice.

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image from Pinterest

 

For embracing positive energy. Because I am naturally an optimistic person. For the way I am determined to shine this to those around me as much as I can.

But also for dreams. For accepting that where we ended up is a place filled with black suits and lots of numbers and boardrooms and clients that can be scary. Sometimes. But also for the way we have come to terms with this and now just look at planes and cockpits with admiration accepting that they wont be my reality, at least for now. For my new dream of succeeding in this corporate jungle.

For new passions. And at this point in time. They are tied to food. For all the nice restaurants I have tried in the past year- for Java Karen which is my new weekend office. For being able to dial a delivery, the other best thing to happen to me this year. For exploring these places with my favorite people.

 

For my corporate career. And the way each new day is a challenge. But for the way I feel I have grown so much. For the way chasing a corporate career is the scariest thing ever but for the way a simple achievement like balancing a Statement of Financial Position gives me so much satisfaction.

 

For the days when I felt on top of the world but also for the days I locked myself in my room and cried. Shit. I did that a lot this past year. For the low moments. But also for the way I was still able to pick myself up and move the fuck on.

For the way mum and the brother hold me down.And the way they love me. Even when I don’t feel like it. For the strength of my mother and the brightness my brother brings. For the strength of my mother. My pillar. For the one person that keeps me surviving. For making dad proud. For making dad proud.

But this is also about remembering the ways I broke out of my comfort zone this year. For the courage it took to keep sending those emails and CVs. For doing extroverted things like showing up. For trying lip stick shades which before would make me overthink my appearance. For the same lipstick shades that are now my favourite thing. For all the other ways I challenged myself. Talking to that stranger. Asking for that thing I desire. For the way I still survived.

 For graduation 2016.  For that feeling that is priceless. For the excitement over gowns and shopping for dresses and the perfect lipstick. For the graduation rehearsal and the way putting on mascara on that day was the most pointless thing. For a million selfies and congratulations all around. But mostly for the way I did not think I would get that far. And yet I did. I did it.

 For good health. And that time we got H. Pylori and I realized antibiotics are not my favourite thing.At all. For the way I take this for granted sometimes but really it is a blessing. And the way God was generous with this one. Not just to me but to those around me.

There were also things that scared me. For the people who died and made me afraid. Because the truth is we never know who is next.But for the way God heard me every night when I asked him to keep my people for one more day.

For the queen Bee. And these lyrics…

This is for them 20 somethings
 Time really moves fast, you were just sixteen
 This is for them 30 somethings
 That didn't turn out exactly how your mom and dad wanted you to be
 This is for them 40 somethings
 Well raise up your glass and laugh like a motherfucker
 This is for them 50 somethings
 Hell, you're halfway there, baby take it to the head

Mom and dad tried to hide the world
 Said, the world is just too big for a little girl
 Eyes wide open, can't you see
 I had my first heels by the age of 13
 Mom and dad tried to hide the boys
 I swear that just made them want me more
 At 14 they asked me what I wanna be,
 I said "Baby 21, so I'd get me a drink."

I'm not a teacher, babe
 But I can teach you something
 Not a preacher
 But we can pray if you wanna
 Ain't a doctor
 But I can make you feel better
 But I'm great at writing physical love letters
 I'm a freak, all day, all night
 Hot, top, flight
 Boy out of sight
 And I'm crazy, all day, all night
 Who needs a degree when you're schoolin' life?

This is for them pretty somethings
 Living in a fast lane, see you when you crash babe
 This is for them sexy somethings
 That body ain't gon' always get ya out of everything
 This is for them bitter somethings
 Stop living in regret, baby, it's not over yet
 And this is for them trippin' somethings
 That's high on life, baby, put me on your flight

 

But this is also for the way I don’t feel I have to hide myself anymore. For this woman who trips over things and doesn’t wear high heels. For this woman who can be shy but also forgets how to shut up at times. For this woman who once ran into her boss a day before she reports for work sans shower wearing bathroom slippers, the heart run t-shirt she slept in,jeans and a dirty jacket. But also for the woman who slayed the freaking universe wearing a tiny black and white dress and statement neckpiece on her graduation. For this girl who smiles a lot. But locks herself in her room for hours when life gets hard. For the way I am fiercely unashamed of her. But even more for the way I am so deeply in love with her.

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 But 23 couldn’t have been 23 without the people who made it a little more beautiful. For my girlfriends old and new. For these special ones that love me through the PMS and distance. For how I don’t deserve their friendship but they bless me with it anyway.  For Him, one of the best decisions I have made in recent months. For being my cheerleader and encouraging me that I got this, even when I am 100% sure I cant. For my mama and brother.For the way we are all each of us got. For my classmates whose success I pray for and my colleagues who are pretty decent people.For my extended family for just being there. For my writing buddies, those I have met and those who we communicate on virtual spaces. For anyone who touched 22 in one way or another.

 Above all,for God. Because the truth is I am utterly undeserving and no words can express how truly thankful I am for the way he has been exceedingly good to me.

I couldn’t have asked for a better year. And here’s to hoping 23 will be even better. <3.

 

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The beginning: Where We Are

#misimuzangu

If I am to talk about what the situation is at this moment, I’d say fear is my unconventional driving force. I live in fear of not having money and having to go back to mummy and asking for help because I went a bit too crazy and overindulged in impulse shopping. So I work hard at my job. And I hope that someone thinks I did enough to warrant payment at the end month. But there is more to my employment situation than an irrational fear of being broke. It’s that constant fear of what they will say if I get fired. It would be such a shame because I honestly didn’t deserve this position. Well I did. I worked my ass off for an upper second class degree and I am almost finished with my professional qualifications. I am as sharp as they come but the truth is so is everyone else. Maybe my biggest fear is having them think they made the wrong choice in choosing me.

This work thing.

It is so fucking hard. I sit in boardrooms with mahogany tables and orthopaedic leather chairs and colleagues in black suits and clients with faces full of expectation and my knees tremble and palms sweat because of the same feeling. Fear. I don’t know half of what I am doing most of the time. And I’m scared that they see this too. In this field I am an amateur. The most novice of the lot. And I have a long way to go.
Our partner- I look at him with admiration. He has earned his position and that air of respect that follows him. Was he ever scared that he wouldn’t get the hang of everything? Was he ever afraid that after all the years spent practising he would never be good enough? Because honestly, that kind of shit keeps me up at night.

I am afraid. Of the journey. Yet it has only just began.

But the other demon haunting me lately has this nasty habit of creeping up every time I find myself picking up an annual statement to read instead of a work of fiction. When I look at that WordPress that is still yet to be shared to the world. When I stay up at night and the best I can come up with is a sentence that doesn’t even end up getting saved.

Writing was my first love.

But lately these words just haven’t been coming. I used to write. About everything. But I just dont do that anymore. The pen dried. The words aren’t there anymore and lately that writer’s spirit… I feel its dying too. And with it the infantile dreams of winning that Cainne and going on book tours and meeting all these uber cool novelists I adored. Once upon a time I swore I was going to live well because of my writing.

But I am just not in that space anymore.

Did I sell out?

Am I offending the dreams of a younger innocent self everytime I find myself pushing the idea of turning writing into a career further and further away?

How did I let myself become this stranger? Why did I become this person? When I wrote I was master of the various worlds I create. I was the boss. I had the power to take myself and the reader wherever I pleased. I called the shots. And I was fucking good at it. But in this new space, I am just an assistant. Just a nobody at the bottom of this scary ladder. A girl had 2 options. Yet she picked the one where she is servant.

Did I sell out?

Will I regret this move twenty years from now when my peers that stuck to their dreams are closer to self actualization than I ever will be in my corner office?

I am happy. Sometimes. Fear comes in waves. And when I am not paralysed, questioning every decision I am making. I am at peace. I am surrounded by optimism: colleagues at work who believe in my amateur abilities enough to trust me with assignments. I am surrounded by patience: that boss who corrects me knowing I am learning. I am surrounded by belief: a special someone who sees a light in me that is much brighter than I could ever imagine.
I am really not that perfect by the way. How have his friends not helped him see this?
I am surrounded by love: old friends who still insist on being in my company. Although frankly I am not the most interesting person in the world.

Where I am right now is a place where I am unsure of a lot of things. I am scared of everything. Because adulting is hard and I will never fully get the hang of this thing. But I believe that any day above ground,no matter how it turns out is still a good day. And when I get over my worries, there is always a calming peace that comforts me and tells me that it’s not really as bad as it seems. I’ll figure this shit out. Somehow.

So if I’d sum it all up I’d say that in this season… I am finally in a good place.

 

 

 

 

SIDE NOTE

 

This post was written after forcing one Andanje Wobanda (read her work here) to nominate me for the Misimu Zangu Challenge. I don’t know much about it other than it was a challenge urging people to share their stories through the hashtag #misimuzangu in celebration of the various seasons we go through. It was a struggle to write this. I had so many feelings and for the first time the words just weren’t coming.

 But this is me starting over. One dream down. We are onto the next thing. New blog. New space. Same old emotion. Same old desire to tell my story.

So please subscribe and share and tell your friends who wouldn’t mind the musings of a young one figuring out this adulting thing to subscribe as well. 

Love always,

Kemunto❤.

 

 

SIDE SIDE NOTE:

I dont know much about this guy Gufy Dox whose poetic album is the reason behind this beautiful hashtag but I know I want his work. And the album. So if you know where I can get it once it launches please tell a sister. Thanks. 

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