I look back at the last 26 Years today.
I see mama in tears of pain, supporting her back cursing at each bout of her labour pains. She was only a teenager in the process of birthing her first child and I must have been such a pain for her youthful belly and I don’t know whether to pity her or be excited for her.But she is a strong woman and I am sure she must have been strong that night.
I dont remember most of my childhood but looking at how far I have come I must have had some really exciting times (and I use exciting rather loosely). I know how far my family has come, I have a preety good idea what they have been through and I am happy that times are kinda different now.
Mama and I have come a long way.We have loved and not loved each other in equal measure while we were both growing up. Our relationship has been an interesting one but I love what we have both become over these many years. I love her now more than I ever have and I know she loves me too. I say this here and I tell her often if only I could make up for the many years of my childhood that I never good to tell her that I love her. Nor did she ever had time to tell me but I understand that I came into her life too soon and perhaps she was overwhelmed with motherhood that she didn’t know to handle. She is now a woman, a mother of 6 (5 of us birthed by her and we have recently adopted one), she loves all her children and and I can testify that she would give her life for us. She struggles, and even though she barely manages to make ends meet she is able to put food on the table, give shelter to her children and be our guardian angel. She inspires me and I dare say that my mother Beatrice Akinyi Otieno is my greatest role model and as I turn 26 on this day, I could never be more grateful than I am today to have this great woman of God for a mummy.
Baaba has been gone for a while now. The lord decided to take him home just a few months after I had joined university. I guess the lord felt that he (Baaba) had accomplished his assignment in my life and it was time for him to go have some rest. I miss him, and even though he is gone and life has to go on I still love him and look to him for much of my inspiration.
Baaba had a simple story. He was never very lucky to get a good education but he had a dream. Many years before I was born he,like many young men from his village put his dreams in a small plastic bag and took a bus to Nairobi to try out the city life. I still have photos he took of himself during his early days in Nairobi. He was in sandals,a faded T-shirt and some tight polyester pants. He was never able to get a decent job and he took to stone masonry before becoming a stone digger at the famous Njiru quarries. He worked in the pits for nearly half of his life. I went to see him at work a couple of times and to date I still see images of him bending shirtless in the pits with beads of sweat dripping down his body. I could never be prouder because while he was alive he swore never to let his children lack even if it meant him giving his life.
There is so much of my Baaba in me. I walk in his frame, I dress like him,I have big dreams and I work hard. Just like he did those many years ago, a couple of months ago I also packed my dreams in a suitcase and came to Lusaka Zambia to pursue my great ambitions. I have been here 3 months already and for the 1st time in 26 years,I didn’t get a public holiday for my birthday.
Lusaka’s life is different from Nairobi’s. Life is slower here unlike in Nairobi where everyone seems to be running after something or chasing someone. There are beautiful women and the food is good too but the cost of living is off the roof.Zambia’s population is just slightly more than a quarter of Kenya’s population and the people here a more patient and kind with each other. There are 73 tribes but Zambia is not nearly as ethnically polarised as Kenya. Kenya could actually learn a thing or two from this country.
I love what my job at the Commonwealth, it challenges and stretches me and offers an opportunity to learn and gain some invaluable experiences. It also has some nice prospects but I guess its safe to let the lord lead the way. I work with an a mazing group of people. This is the most diverse group of human beings I have ever worked with. I also have a roommate from Nigeria and another one from Malawi. They are both great to be with. Wale Salami from Nigeria is funny,intelligent and quite unselfish. Bertha Chiotha from Malawi is such a darling, she is charming, hardworking, funny and she likes to look after me. She makes the best chicken.
My brothers and Sisters;Pauline, Tobby, Ben, Liz and Waithera mean the world to me. I love them so much and I hope that as a big brother I have been able to set a good example for them. I wish the best for each of them and I try as best I can to help mama out with them even though I am not ble to give them much.I hope some day I am able to make life better for them than it is today.
I miss my bestfriend and brother, my house mate and my partner in everything saint and sinful one Jim Thomas Agunga. Our friendship goes back a long way he and I make such a perfect pair, he is always the beaty and I the brains and to our other friends who like to point out just how different we are, I would like to say he is my better half and he makes up for what I am not and I for what he is not. Over the years I have been blessed to have his friendship I have learnt a great deal from him.
I miss my friends Joanne and Nuella, I spent three months working next to these two beautiful ladies and they filled my life with beautiful memories.Karen and her boyfriend Robert (my small sis and bro) have been my closest link to home. They check on me every single day and tell me whats happening around. I love this beautiful couple and admire their relationship. Martin Matabishi is my Zambian friend in Kenya and it looks like I was sent here to take his place among the Zambians for sometime. Kennedy Krezi, continues to inspire me with his passion from a far. I admire his enthusiasm and resolve to make it and I am proud of his achievements.I have so many friends I wanna talk about, I am thinking about you all and even though I haven’t written your names here, I have them etched forever in my heart.
My name is Bob and these are my Soul Reflections….