Posted in challenge, communication, economy, energy, finance, humour, Lifestyle

Ask Wanjiku

via Daily Prompt: Survive

Wanjiku is knocking….

Pardon me but Wanjiku is the suitable name they came up with when they wanted to refer to the common Mwananchi (i). The mastermind behind the coining is not known but who cares Wanjiku reigns! Inflation has been pinching and emptying my pockets at the same time in the name of living. Unfortunately, it decided to pick up during the cold weather when everyone complains of this or that.

My love for food as you already know though never showcases itself in the outer being usually gets higher in the cold season. Reproduction was my favorite biology segment so am not going to dwell on the metabolism part since am no teacher. Anyway, it is during this season that my worst meal that I loath to cook, Ugali (ii), becomes the wanted. It just satisfies the belly and makes you warmer in case there are no shoulders to rub you throughout. Problem is I hate buying the various maize flour brands that make one shift to a cock, hostess and kick off the market at the same time as they never cook to the desired taste no matter the amount of heat and time geared upon. Am the posho mill fanatic that awaits the maize harvesting season and grinds maize to flour making it a win-win game as i get “makore (iii).”This is actually the best Ugali more so when cooked using a jiko (iv) and not gas (how many times will i tell people this? My Western peeps enlighten this ones) and makes me go gugugaga. Drought has made this nearly impossible since no harvest was made and now the Ksh190 packet of flour is skyrocketing screaming “stick to your chapatis. (v)”

Funny enough the government subsidized the prices after a ship docked the country with tons of maize causing controversies as some said it was from Mexico and the rest from South Africa. Talk of another unresolved scandal! The prices came down to Ksh90 for a packet of maize flour and one could say the world was coming to an end as shoppers flocked their favorite outlets for purchases.

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The GOK Ksh90 subsidy pack

But you couldn’t keep the entire stock to yourself as managers warned shoppers with the “do not pick more than 2 packets” notice. Then the flour went out of stock and we back to square one. Sigh.

Morning breakfasts got better with my usual traditional meals of sweet potatoes and arrow-roots not deleting my brown bread  till I upgraded to cornflakes and Weetabix’s that needed milk.

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testing my middle middle class upgrade

This crossover was me testing the middle middle class if such a thing exists since it is not just the elite who take this stuff. At first I was disappointed by the number of flakes in a pack yet expensive for who? Milk was not an issue since the Ksh25 small pack or the Ksh30 ‘straight outta cow’ from my regular mama kiosk was always trickling in. I was getting accustomed to strong tea (water mixed with tea leaves) and my fake cocoa that was made of hot water and cocoa as I started my hustling journey till I also upgraded to milk drinks. Then the worst happened. Milk also hit the roof! Now I think I should just sit down and be humble as I trace my humble beginnings that never were a bother. Goodbye cereals, hello…..

I almost went berserk when my mum told me the monthly electricity bill was Ksh 3,000. I mean since I have lived in that house we have never paid such a hefty bill. This was a first. She lamented how the KPLC providers never come to do their readings and end up with estimates. So keen to confirm that indeed it was true, I went to my Facebook where I love hitting inboxes of companies that I got issues with. I read the current meter bill , gave them the account number and voilà we were chatting till they confirmed the dreaded. My mum started blaming us on how our gadgets were consuming electricity, how we would boil water using the jiko blah blah and all I could say was ” we rarely here.” Last month the KPLC guy just came in time when I was around but not to do his meter reading but cut us off! Yes we had neither received the bill nor the famous SMS.  Luckily, the entire neighborhood was going to get the cut since no one had received their bills. For the first time in history, I the never no bribe lady did it. There was no way my vacay would be ruined by electricity and who was going to pay the reconnection fee? Me? No. That settled I inquired why the high cost and not that we owned a factory in the house! Drought, no water he assured me. Then as if to test my patience he added that the next bill would also be high!Lucky are the tokens in the urban areas that all signal red as if danger awaits an entire building.

Yes I hate sugar. In fact I joined the Granny’s club way back as I enjoy sipping my tea sugar free. The hike in sugar is not affecting me at all that is the ONLY thing am at peace with and y’all freaking over it should join my club.

All this hullabaloo brought in the external factors debate. We blamed drought, the government that others decided to take the situation as their campaign mantra but did we really blame ourselves? No since no one wants to accept reality. Truth is our sugar is the most expensive in the world yet we got sugar companies that go under now and then. Can’t these people make sugar cheap for us? We continue to depend on rain fed agriculture no matter how many times the weather man warns us. Year in year out, drought happens at the same time, same months but do we really learn? No, we wait for drought to kick in, wait for relief food, wait for media expose then come up with a campaign to help drought affected populations. Then the cycle continues. We see big chinks of uncultivated lands as we tour the country that have turned into forests. This are not bushes but fertile lands belonging to some inhuman humans who would rather see a forest than food. We run to the city leaving our lands to be cultivated by God knows who. Then we rant hunger yet your land that could have helped gap this food insecurity is barely clothed. We see how desert countries like Dubai are food secure but we would rather exploit their aquarium malls and desert rides rather than imitate them.

The rains are here but how prepared are we? Shall the hashtag #WanjikuDecides be the trending topic come 2months time? Wanjiku has cried, cursed and lost it. Jumping into the Wanjiku bandwagon is not me. Am a survivor, I will survive this turmoil.

(i)Citizen

(ii)Dish made of maize flour

(iii)Chicken feed made out of maize cobs

(iv)Type of stove that uses charcoal

(v)Unleavened flatbread made of wheat flour. Roti/roshi

Posted in book review, challenge, children, humour, inspiration, Kenyan Literature, love, my library, reading, short stories

Are you a dare-devil?

There lived a very beautiful princess who wanted to get married. From all walks of life came the princes, rich and poor men, handsome and ugly men to try their luck. However, they were not aware of what was in store for them as the princess wanted a brave, wise, courageous and good man for her hand in marriage. She put a test on them where each was to drink hot boiling water but none of them was bold enough for the test.

Hare heard what was happening and his long unnoticed admiration towards the princess gave him the confidence that he would pass. He alerted his family and friends who accompanied him to the palace. He lifted the pot, walked towards his family and friends where they discouraged him with the death talk. They all thought he was stupid and he should let the princess be. Luckily, he never bought their dismay and took sips of the hot water slowly then in gulps and when he was almost done, princess told him to stop so that she could have her share.

The king was a feared man and this made the hare and his mob run away though the king ordered his guards to fetch the entire family. Princess loved the hare for his wisdom, brevity, courageousness and goodness. They got married and lived happily ever after.

 

Moral Lessons:

  1. Always go for what you want with the needed strength and brevity.
  2. Never listen to negative comments or discouraging naysayers.
  3. Risks are worth taking.
Posted in advocacy, challenge, community, development, family, gender

The Forgotten Sheep

Today marks the International Day of the Girl Child with the theme “Girls’ Progress = Goals’ Progress: A Global Girl Data Movement.” Over the years this female gender has been cried for, supported, empowered and now she is running the world shoulder’s high. From child marriages, rape, slavery, domestic violence, female genital mutilation and other cultural vices that has diminished her worth, she now can boldly say NO. She knows her rights, she knows she can get support from every corner and dare you mess around with her hell becomes your new home. In policies been implemented she is everywhere to the recent Sustainable Development Goals: No.5: Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls. Advocacy on her has been beefed up and truth is she has been the most vulnerable but now tables are turning to the boy child.

Who is fighting for them? Where is their advocacy? Are we really achieving gender equality? As am writing this am chatting with my workmate and i alert him that  there is need for boy child advocacy but he tells me that the boy child is strong, they don’t need all this happenings in their world and i’m like “excuse me?” Back to where i was….Yes the male gender needs someone to voice out their concerns too with this big local and  international bodies. He is prone to rape, he has been dropping out of school at an alarming rate and look around you, who are the most uneducated in your area? In some cultures education has been robbed off so that he can look after cattle and practice pastoralism. In the fight against crime he has been at the forefront carrying firearms, been radicalized into gangs and look even at child military in countries like Liberia, DRC just to mention but a few where the boy child terrorizes his own nation.

Drugs and alcohol abuse has infected him and as we empower our girls, look at the boy to marry her tomorrow all addicted to substances. Then who shall we blame? At homes domestic violence has seen him run away into the streets and those who stay put become affected psychologically which hinders their inability when they grow up. In schools bullying has become the norm and we have witnessed death cases as a result of it. He has not been left out in child labor where poverty has modified him to early hustles and bustles to meet his family needs denying him of his childhood rights.

He is the most sensitive to deal with. He is the father and leader of tomorrow but who is there to let him know that he is indeed remembered? As we mark our calendars to this occassions i hope my son shall not ask me “mummy why is it it is women and girls we remember on calendars. When am i remembered?” How shall i respond?

Let us not neglect the boy child.

 

Posted in challenge, community, culture, Lifestyle, management, personalgrowth, planning, sentiments

Desperados

We live in a world where nothing comes easy and if it does lady luck must be on your case. Some of us have never had the savior fair of linkages to accessing opportunities in this demanding life. So what do you do? The devil is a liar and he comes knocking at our door steps so hungry to devour the little left in us.

One moment you looking at a “too good to be true” deal that takes you to a Disney fantasy. Of course there is an organization by that name, the data spelled out is so accurate but how coining takes place to be a hoax only cons know best. Then word goes out that it is a SCAM!!!

So how did one get duped? It is easy…fraudsters like psychologists know the demands of frustrated people who have hustled office to office, who need capital to jump-start a venture without any collateral on their name, the likes who are stressed up and ready to grab whatever comes their way and those who like having an easy way out.

There was this chat on a Whats App group and everyone was too keen to share their swindled experiences and the last comment was “if you haven’t been deceived, your turn is coming.” That sounded more of horror than a warning and since I’ve never been in the hands of con-men I pray the angels shall continuously watch over me.

I assessed the game con-men like playing on us and only an alert mind can save you. First of all, how do they ask for an application fee let’s say for volunteering in an organization? Secondly, how do they send the same message over and over again using the same lame number? Thirdly, how do they sell the most expensive gadgets like a give-away toy? Fourthly, as the fooled how do you even leave your belongings to strangers? Lastly, why do you believe everything you told or see? You got to trust your instincts-they never let anyone down.

Having looked at that plot used man, I got to say their game is so down low! The bottom line is, no matter how desperate you can be never ever rush to actions that might cost your life big time. We all want to make it but it starts from scratch going to the top. Let the hunger in you burn for the appropriate measures and not for silly excitements that last for hours. BEWARE OF SCAMS.

 

 

Posted in blogging, challenge, sentiments, writing

1,000+ Hits

While I was away in the land of the “herb” since Friday something happened….my statistics hit 1000+….yeeeessssss or is it waaaaaattttt! I had to open my eyes so wide and confirm this forgetting the hangovers am nursing. Speech moment shush (clearing throat ooh no preparing my knuckles). How does one even say this…..?

My followers without you rating, liking, sharing and commenting then this would have been one boring episode of 8 months but thank to you this journey has been thrilling. My stalkers those who go through my blog, complain to my face that I need to write that morale gave me the energy to share my mind out and voila here I am. Salute.

Then there are those who constantly ask the link to the blog and take their time to peep through I really appreciate and if you have noted my WhatsApp status has never changed till June last year and it’s not changing any time soon; so those who used it to sneak through, Asante Sana.

Lastly, if you thought writing was easy then you got it wrong. At times the psyche just vanishes, time consumes up what is supposed to be your daily dose, thinking of a prose to write in just confuses one further and you even think of shutting it all down. However, make it a habit of finishing what you start as quitting only makes you a loser. Looking forward to more exciting memories.

Let’s make a toast to SENTIMENTS for reaching 1,067 views…CHEERS.

imagesimage source:carryurswag.wordpress.com