Books and Memories: Mourning a good friend

Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi

americanahThis was the first review that our book club ever had. I got to the venue and found three members already there.

You must be Diana, I am Viv.” Those were the first words that she ever said to me as she hugged me. She was beautiful in a classy way. Her makeup was well done and she was wearing green fitting pants and a black top. Her glasses were chic. She reminded of what the Late Grace Ogot used to saw, a woman of great Nyadhi meaning a woman of style.

During the book review I learned a lot about Viv. She was a feminist and this made her connect more with the protagonist, Ifemelu and the author Chimamanda. Viv gently lectured me when I expressed my fears of turning 30 and still being single with no kids. She didn’t believe in the ever so loud ticking biological clock or the self-declared shelf life of women hitting 30. We talked about the book in-between catching up and swapping stories about our lives. I met new friends that day, Wambui, Eddah, Esther and Viv. We stopped being strangers while discussing Americanah, sampling dishes at the café and of course, Viv having her wine. Everything she did was so graceful.

It was evident from that day just how much Vivian loved life and the good things that it brings. She had traveled to almost all countries in the world but still remained humble. She would casually mention a date in Paris, book stop in Amsterdam or a beautiful meal in Morocco. Vivian lived a beautiful life.

Memoirs of a Geisha by Arthur Golden

geishaI loved this book and really looked forward to the review. I got to Reata where we were to meet and found Viv already there. She had a glass of wine and her laptop open in front of her. She explained that she was working on her thesis. She had started doing her Masters a couple of years back but had to defer for personal reasons. Years later she was now ready to submit her thesis with the hope of graduating in December this year. We sat in silence as I also worked on my assignments before the others arrived.

At the end of the review, Viv dropped us (Esther and I) in town and she rushed off to another event.

The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins

GOTShe arrived late for this review. As usual, Vivian looked stunning. She had just cut her hair short. That was Vivian, confident enough to chop off all her hair and of course she looked exquisite. She was on a new diet and the first thing that she did was place a big bottle of smoothie on the table informing her that was her lunch and dinner. She wasn’t tempted by the Ethiopian food that we were eating or the wine. She had a plan to lose some weight. She mentioned a new guy that she had met. A tall handsome man. Vivian had all sorts of plans. I had to leave the book review early and the last thing that she told me was that I looked great in the African top that I was wearing. ‘I need to get your tailor’s number,’ she added as we said goodbye. I never gave her the number because I assumed that she was kidding. That was the last time that I saw Viv alive.


Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins

annaI was in a bus traveling home from my Easter vacation. I had just started reading this book. Four hours into our journey, our bus broke down and everyone got out as the mechanics came to fix it. It was too hot outside so I stayed in the bus reading. Soon I got distracted and switched on my internet to check my messages on Watsapp. I immediately got a series of messages.

‘OMG, this can’t be happening’

‘It is not true’

‘I can’t stop crying’

They were a couple of messages in the book club chat group all expressing shock. I scrolled up, trembling, heart racing. I knew it was something bad but I tried to comfort myself that it could be book panic. Maybe a character was killed off or did something happen to an author? Was the next review cancelled? I knew it was something worse but nothing could ever have prepared me for the news of Vivian’s death. I was confused. I couldn’t even make sense of the words. Thought it meant something else. However, Vivian had died in a road accident. I wept alone in that bus though I was still confused. I checked her Facebook page and she was just talking about her vacation. She was happy, having fun and she even wore a bikini at the coast (her weight loss efforts worked out after all). I went back to the messages convinced that I had gotten it wrong but it had been confirmed. Viv was gone.


Beloved by Toni Morrison


This is the book that we are supposed to be reading this month for review on April 16th 2016.  I can’t imagine a review without her. I keep trying to run away from conversations about her because they bring back the pain. I am afraid that I will see the other members of the book club and breakdown crying like I have been doing each day since I got the news. I don’t want to let her down because she was committed to the club and I guess she would have wanted us to keep reading and reviewing books (does that make sense?). I don’t know how to act, what is the right thing to do? What will help ease the hurt? I honestly don’t know what to do to stop crying every time her name comes up.

Viv loved life. She loved traveling, reading books and was passionate about her job. Above all, Viv loved children especially her nephew Shawn and the loss of her son, Hawi had been devastating to her. She loved her family and friends and the book club.

I don’t know how to cope with her being gone. She was too young. I will miss her terribly.


Today on April 6th 2016, we laid Vivian to rest. I still can’t believe that this is happening. Not out Viv.



Christian Fiction: Short Story of the Month

The Easter holidays were really tough for her. She had expected that they would be but had always assumed that they would get easier with time. Nonetheless, being in church on Good Friday had taken all her strength not to break down and cry. She had little Freddie seated next to her and so had to keep it together. Nevertheless, with a heavy heart, she watched young couples seated together, sharing secret smiles during the service and leaving church hand in hand. She watched as the family cars drove away as she got in behind the wheel of her car with Freddie by her side.

Maggie and Little FreddieIt was nice to have her son but still, she still wished her husband Mark was still around.
It didn’t make sense to her the way he died. He was a young man, only 30 years old and they had only been married for two and a half years. One day, he had woken up in the morning complaining of a severe headache. A few hours later, Maggie was standing at the hospital in utter shock as the doctor sorrowfully informed her of her new status as a widow. Brain aneurysm was the documented cause of death. It just didn’t add up. Mark had always led a healthy lifestyle, eating well and working out. In addition, Maggie didn’t understand why his case was untreatable yet there were people living with the same condition. Doctors explained that his condition had been diagnosed late but still, it didn’t make sense to Maggie. Mark had been fine. They were expecting their first baby and had just moved to their own house. Life was looking up for the young couple then suddenly, everything changed.

man plus paged woman
Two years later, Maggie was still grieving. She was having a very hard time trying adjusting to life as a widow. In addition, it broke her heart that Freddie was growing up without ever having met his dad. Family and friends had always tried to be there for her and help her out but it just wasn’t the same. She still slept on her own side of the bed, sometimes in Mark’s t-shirt and would breakdown in tears every time she heard some of their favorite songs playing. grave image
Maggie was lost in her reverie relieving her pain and shock at having lost Mark. The holidays seemed to have brought it all back.
“Maggie… Maggie…” She heard someone tap on her window.
Maggie quickly wiped away her tears and rolled down her window. It was Martha, an elderly woman from the church who had always been so kind to her.old woman
“Are you okay?”

Martha asked as her face creased in concern.

Maggie answered feeling embarrassed at being caught crying

Martha went on to invite her to a special seminar for ladies to be held in the church. Maggie assumed that it was just one of those ladies meeting but she got curious when Martha told her that the seminar was called ‘Ruth’. She knew the Biblical story of Ruth, the widowed Moabite woman who later got married to Boaz. This definitely caught her interest. Maggie promised to attend the seminar.Ruth and Boaz
Saturday was a quiet day for Maggie and Freddie. This was the day that has always been described as the “waiting period”. Christ died on Friday; Saturday was the waiting period before Sunday when he rose again. Maggie quietly wondered if she was going through her own waiting period before things get better again. She couldn’t wait for her Sunday to come.

Life had really changed for her since Mark’s passing. Being in her late twenties, all her friends seemed to be at the stage where they were getting married or starting their own families. Every weekend, there were baby showers and also weddings to attend. However, people seemed to be uncomfortable inviting Maggie to the occasions anymore. Maybe they just felt sorry for her or perhaps they just didn’t want a reminder of how things could just turn around abruptly.


Some people also just didn’t know what to say to her. Whenever they tied to talk to her, they would end up saying the wrong things.

“Wow, I still can’t believe that Mark just died!”
“I wouldn’t be able to live without my husband; I would really rather die honestly.”
“Poor Freddie, being fatherless and all…”

Their pity and sometimes misplaced consolation sometimes made things worse for her and there are moments when she just preferred to be on her own.
She also had a difficult time facing life’s challenges alone. A year after Mark’s death, her mother had a stroke and died. She had been a rock for her during the difficult months after Mark’s death. Having been widowed herself years back, her mother was able to walk with Maggie and encourage her. When she died, Maggie was left feeling alone, confused and angry at life. She was heartbroken and wished that there was someone with her to help her deal with the loss of her mother. She thought of how Mark used to make her feel better during her tough times but now, he was no longer there. Maggie feared that she may not be able to weather life’s storms on her own.index
Now having spent her Saturday indoors, Maggie felt that she and Freddie deserved an outing after church on Sunday. There was a lovely little restaurant with a playground right around the corner from her house. She knew that there would be other families and it may be a tough scene but just the thought of being able to do something fun with Freddie gave her the strength to go out.
They sat at the corner for a while having their lunch. Freddie looked excited to be outdoors and soon Maggie had him at the playground playing with other kids. After a while, she sat down at the bench and watched Freddie with another little boy playing and laughing like with no care in the world. Watching Freddie always made her happy. It was a reminder of the good life that she once had with Mark. He would have been proud of their little handsome boy had he still been around.

“That’s my little Mike…” A voice said interrupting her. “And my name is Tony.”

“Maggie and that is Freddie.”

She said politely pointing at her son who was now chasing little Mike around the park as the pair laughed and screamed happily.
She stole a secret glance at the stranger. He was tall, a little on the skinny side but had nice kind eyes and a lovely smile. He was definitely charming too. Maggie was wary of men ever since Mark died. There were always men hitting on her but she didn’t feel ready to date yet. In addition, she had met all kinds of men who wanted to take advantage of her loneliness, some who were even married.

Man and woman at the park
“Where is his mother?” Maggie blurted out immediately regretting her bluntness.

“I lost my wife a few years back, just me and Mike now.”

He answered without flinching. Maggie was so embarrassed at having asked a stranger such a private question.
They sat for a while watching their children playing and engaging in small talk. They talked about the weather and just random things. He made her laugh and she enjoyed watching him fuss over little Mike every time he fell or called out to him. The afternoon went quite well and Maggie was surprised at just how much she had enjoyed Tony’s company.woman-talking-to-man-happy-faces-54693636
“Hope to see you again Maggie,” Tony said as they parted ways.
Maggie smiled to herself embarrassed to admit that she also hoped to see him again soon. She still felt guilty at times like she was being unfaithful every time she noticed a handsome man. An afternoon with Tony made her feel both guilty and a bit excited at the same time.
However, every time that she thought about dating again, Maggie always assumed that she would have to settle for less. It was hard for a widow to meet great guys especially with a child in tow; well that is what she assumed anyway. She just felt like she was carrying a lot of emotional baggage for someone else to want to be with her. She also couldn’t imagine ever meeting anyone like Mark. He was her soul mate, the man who had always made her laugh and had been her best friend for years. However, she couldn’t help but smile when she thought of little Mike and his dad.huge.1.7909



“Mike is a great playmate, isn’t he?”

She asked her little companion who rewarded her with a chuckle. It seemed that Freddie had also enjoyed his afternoon out and Maggie couldn’t be happier.thumb_COLOURBOX7750874

On Easter Monday, Maggie went back to church and registered for the “Ruth” meeting. She didn’t think about it much after that.

It was in June when the ‘Ruth’ meeting was scheduled. Maggie woke up that day feeling excited about it. She had organized for a babysitter for Freddie so that she could attend the meeting. At the church, Maggie was surprised by the huge turn-out. There were so many ladies at the meeting, all dressed up and looking excited.women talking.jpg

“Good morning ladies…” Martha was there to welcome them all.

The meeting was great with a lovely fellowship that really lifted Maggie’s spirits. The sermon was about ‘second chances’ and it was based on the book of Ruth. The ladies were encouraged about being women of virtue even during their toughest times. The speaker reminded them of how Ruth had stood with her mother in law during her difficult moments after being widowed and loosing both her sons. Ruth was going through her own difficulties of having being widowed but still put her pain aside to be with Naomi. She was ‘hesed’. Her being a woman of virtue with such a great things is one of the things that Boz noticed about her.

illustration_8 by Mike Fentz.jpgThis wonderful illustration was done by Mike Fentz

Ruth 2:11 Boaz replied, “I’ve been told all about what you have done for your mother-in-law since the death of your husband—how you left your father and mother and your homeland and came to live with a people you did not know before. 12 May the LORD repay you for what you have done. May you be richly rewarded by the LORD, the God of Israel, under whose wings you have come to take refuge.”

Maggie also liked the encouragement that was given to women especially those who were single for whatever reasons. They were told that when they meet the right man, he would come to look for them. He would be unattached and would treat them like they were special.

Ruth 2: 5-8
5 Boaz asked the overseer of his harvesters, “Who does that young woman belong to?”
6 The overseer replied, “She is the Moabite who came back from Moab with Naomi. 7 She said, ‘Please let me glean and gather among the sheaves behind the harvesters.’ She came into the field and has remained here from morning till now, except for a short rest in the shelter.”

8 So Boaz said to Ruth, “My daughter, listen to me. Don’t go and glean in another field and don’t go away from here. Stay here with the women who work for me. 9 Watch the field where the men are harvesting, and follow along after the women. I have told the men not to lay a hand on you. And whenever you are thirsty, go and get a drink from the water jars the men have filled.”

The message made her feel uplifted. Maybe there was someone out there for her. A second chance at love and she wouldn’t have to settle for less than what God had planned for her. After all, Boaz was a good man, wealthy, kind and a good husband to Ruth so she also had hope of meeting her own Boaz someday.

The rest of the meeting went well and the ladies had a great time sharing and laughing together. Maggie was surprised to meet other young ladies some who had never been married while others like her who had been widowed. They all had their own struggles but still had faith of someday meeting their own Boaz. She was glad to make a few more friends who were in the same position as her.

“Did you enjoy the meeting?” Martha asked her afterwards.

“Thank you so much for the invitation, I’m really glad I came.”

“God is with you Maggie and you just need to trust Him more and let him know what you need,”

Martha then surprised Maggie by revealing that she had also been widowed at a young age. It had taken her years before meeting her current husband, Frank and now they were happily married with two children of their own. She encouraged Ruth and prayed with her before leaving.

Leaving the church, Maggie found herself smiling and thinking about the sermon. Mark was her first love and the father of her child and she would always hold his memory dear. However, for the first time in over two years, she felt lighthearted and encouraged.
She also found herself thinking of the past Easter Sunday and the afternoon at the playground. Maggie decided that she would be open to the idea of another play date some day soon. Hopefully, Tony would also be at the playground with little Mike.

Ruth 4:14- Then the women said to Naomi, “Blessed be the LORD, who has not left you this day without a redeemer, and may his name be renowned in Israel!

NB:All illustrations were from google images. All the artists are acknowledge and appreciated. I have also attributed Mike Fentz, whose amazing illustration was not watermarked.


Old Ladies, Fancy Hats and Beautiful Cars


I like small old cars.Sometime back in 2009, I was looking for Beetles, Starlets and Duets.However, when I shared my idea with others; I was told about spare parts that will be difficult to find, poor re-sell value, multiple-garage trips and a whole lot of things that dissuaded me from getting my own  lil’ machine.I still dream about getting one some day though.

Concours D’Elegance


Concours D’ Elegance 2015 took place last Sunday on September 27th 2015. My big bro, Allan never misses the show and this year he mentioned it to me a week prior to the event. In turn, I mentioned it to my gorgeous partner in crime, Yvonne who is always great company and I know she loves cars. So on Sunday morning, Yvonne and I went and joined Allan at JCC for the Church Service before the event. The service was wonderful and the message was on ‘Forget the past and reach forth’, a powerful message. We also did a lot of turn to your neighbor manenos during the service. Always nice turning to a stranger with a big smile, holding hands and saying stuff to them especially when its turn to your neighbor and tell them, ‘you look stunning today!’ Anyway, I digress. Beautiful service, left at 11:30am and then encountered the mother of all traffic jams.


Yvonne and I at the event. Yes of course, we had our hats on. We knew the silent dress-code 🙂

Old Age and Traffic Jams

It took us about 15 minutes to get to Ngong Road from town. However, after Prestige Plaza, it took us about 3 hours in very slow moving traffic to get to Ngong Race Course where the event was being held. We tried singing some ol skul to pass the time.At  some point we even go to “Me and my frenzy, on the enzy, Smokin’ sensi sippin’ on some Hennessey…” Come to think about it, what was Sanchez singing about? We were also starving and it was so hot. At some point, we saw an ice-cream vendor and forgot all decorum as gobbled down the ice-cream. There were a dozen police officers around but still traffic was crawling. We passed the time by watching traffic drama. People being pulled over for over-lapping, matatus literally running the streets, breaking all rules with no apologies. Every time boredom started creeping in, a souped up motorbike would zoom past us, getting us all psyched up again. However, we  waited for so long that at some point, I caught my reflection in the mirror and my hair had started graying.


Smile(before the jam started), frown(an hour later stuck in traffic) then old age( 3 hours later). This is what traffic jam does to a person.

Fancy Hats

stunning lady

At about 3pm, we finally arrived at the event. There were hundreds of cars and people milling around. One thing that clearly stood out was the fancy hats worn by both men and women. I am unsure whether it’s the sun or an unwritten dress code but women especially came out in all kinds of hats. I didn’t matter whether they were in jeans, dresses or skirts;the hats were adorned with finesse with each outfit. Some were huge and flapped in the wind while others were so fancy that you would think the ladies had a date with the  Queen.

We saw a lovely chariot at one of the showrooms. I was so enchanted by the chariot and couldn’t stop staring.Well that is  until i saw what was right next to it…..



IMG_20150927_174551Next to the beautiful chariot were 2 ladies who looked like they had stepped right out of the Victorian era. They were chatting and laughing away. I stood and stared, took a few photos, tried to eavesdrop obviously. It was all quite interesting. Like stepping into a story book. I tried to distract them by making faces at them and somersaulting as i photographed them but the ladies were lost in their own world. A world that i was dying to get into.

car 3

The Parade( Beautiful Cars)

We arrived just in time to watch the parade. I struggled to take the photos over the shoulder of this burly man who was acting as a barricade to keep the fans away from the cars. There was great music and excitement all around. Here are some of my favorite photos from the parade.


This Mustang was way too cool. When it drove by, the crowd went wild, screaming and cheering. The driver decided to show it off but displaying some hydrolics and the crowd went wild again. Watching him do the stunts made me think of the 90’S hiphop videos, stuff that Dr.Dre used to do.


car 4

And the parade went on



fancy car


car 5


This car is so beautiful.The color is perfect too.

Other Beautiful cars

After the parade, we went round checking out the cars and I got to take some more photos.




IMG_20150927_163748car bonus bonusCar 2

IMG_20150927_163812bonus car


According the CBA official page

Winners from the CBA Concours d’Elegance 2015 Edition.
Updated on Wednesday
Car Category, overall
1. Phoenix Aviation with a 1928 Ford Model A Tudor
2. Phoenix Aviation with a 1958 VW Beetle
3. Diccon Wilcock with a 1934 Railton


Hope to catch the event next year again.

Last Chance

She gets on my last nerve. Wandia my sister really does.

 I love my Saturday mornings. Actually, I live for these mornings. There is always something exciting about not having to wake up early after a long week. So it is quite annoying to be woken up so early in the morning. When I first heard the knocks on the door, I decided to ignore them. After a few minutes, they stopped and I assumed that the early visitor had left only to be rudely awoken by more knocks on my bedroom window this time.

“It’s me Njoki, please open up”, she said.

“Its so early, can you come back later!” I responded angrily.

“Please Njoki, open up” she pleaded. “I just want to talk”.

Clearly, I wasn’t going to get any sleep. I pulled my covers over my head feeling so frustrated. That is the problem with Wandia, two years older than me but one of the most selfish and immature people I know. This was so unfair. I only get one day in a week to sleep in and she had to ruin it!

“Okay Wandia, am coming!” I yelled as I dragged myself to the door.

“Oh my God, what happened to you?

I was shocked when I first caught a glimpse of Wandia. She looked terrible. Her hair was messed up, half of it was up while on the right side of the head, it was matted on her head with something that looked like mud or dried blood. She had a big cut on her forehead extending all the way to her left eye. Her lip was cut and still bleeding and her whole face was deep purple and bruised. The mixture of blood and traces of makeup made her look like something out of a horror movie.

She was wearing a short skimpy white dress which was now torn and covered with blood. She did not have any shoes on.

“There was an accident, two people died”, she muttered under her breath as I led her into the house.

 I didn’t see her car and wondered how she had gotten to my house in that state and with no shoes on. However, being more concerned about her wellbeing, I brushed the questions aside as I tried to clean up her wounds. The cut on her head was so deep that I could see what looked like a bone through the gush of blood. I quickly got a few bandages and tried to clean it up. I then took her to the bathroom and washed off the rest of the blood.

Once she was clean enough, we went to the kitchen and I fixed her a mug of coffee as we talked.

“What happened to you Wandia”

“There was an accident, 2 people died”, she repeated as she tried to sip the coffee. I could tell that she was still in so much pain although now the bleeding had stopped.

“You need to tell me more than that Wandia”.

“We had gone clubbing at Westie….”

I knew it! Once again, Wandia had done something stupid because of alcohol. I remember the last I had seen her. It was at Central Police Station where I had gone to post her bail after she had been arrested for being drunk and disorderly. It had been on a Monday morning and I had had to report to work late because of her. I had been so furious but then again, she had promised to change and never be a nuisance again. That had been two months ago and we hadn’t spoken since.

I couldn’t believe that she had done something stupid again and actually came to me for help, AGAIN! I was so tired of taking care of her. This was getting so irritating now.

“I can’t believe how selfish and stupid you can get at times”, I yelled at her. All the pity that I had felt for her was gone now. I was done cleaning up her messes.

“I am so sorry Njoki”, she pleaded as her eyes welled up with tears.

This is what she always does. She makes mistakes and then bribes her way into getting forgiven by crying. However, I was just done with all her drama. I had spent so many years cleaning up after her. She had been the wild child since her teen years and we had bailed her out of jail numerous times. We had also made so many trips to the hospital emergency room because of all her drama, from injuries to alcoholic poisoning. In addition, she had done three stints in rehabs both in and out of Kenya. We had done our best but she was hell bent on ruining her life and I planned on letting her do it.

“Please leave”, I shouted at her as I took her coffee mug away.

“But….I know…”

“Wandia you have to leave my house now and forget that you ever had a sister”, I yelled once again. All those sleepless nights, tears, thousands of shillings, hours spend fixing her messes came crashing down on me. I was done giving her second chances.

She stood there in my kitchen, crying and I almost felt sorry for her.

“You have done so much for me Njoki and I always let you down but I need your forgiveness now”, she replied in between sobs.

My heart softened and for a minute I contemplated giving her another chance. She was my sister and I knew that I would have to forgive her at some point. I still loved her but I decided not to make it so easy for her this time. She had to realize that what she had done was wrong.

“Wandia this is one mess that you have to clean up yourself”, I said.

“Please Njoki, just this one last time”, she pleaded. “There was an accident, two people died”.

She was starting to get on my nerves now and I was feeling quite irritated. It was clear that she was trying to get me to feel sorry for her because of the accident. I just hoped that she wasn’t the one behind the wheel of the car that had killed those two people.

“I will never forgive you!” I yelled.

I knew that wasn’t true but I wanted to hurt her just like she had done to me so many times before. I grabbed her by the elbow to show her how serious I was and practically threw her out of my house. I remember looking at her standing there outside my door, staring at it as she sobbed loudly. She looked so helpless but that was Wandia, the drama queen. I just hoped that she wasn’t in too much trouble due to the accident.

I walked back to my bedroom and looked outside the window hoping that she had left. Good riddance! At least she had so now I could go back to bed. It was really unfair how she always did that. Mess up and expect her family to fix it every time. I was still fuming when my phone rang.

“What is it mum?” I rudely asked as I answered the phone.

Of course I knew why she was calling. Every time Wandia and I fought, she always got in the middle forcing us to reconcile. I didn’t want her meddling this time around.

“Its Wandia”, she replied confirming my suspicion.

I could feel anger welling up and was tempted to hang up on her.

“She is dead Njoki……………… she is gone”, mum went on as she started sobbing loudly.

My head started spinning, tongue went dry, and hands started shaking. Perhaps I had heard wrong.

“She had an accident last night”, mum continued.

I wondered just how bad her injuries were. She didn’t look so bad when she left my place especially after I had cleaned her up. Wandia couldn’t have been dead. Hadn’t I just seen a few minutes ago?

“Mum I don’t think she is dead”, I answered.

Wandia was always trying to play tricks on us especially when she was trying to get sympathy after she had messed up. I thought that perhaps she had a friend call my mum and lie about her dying. I wouldn’t put it past her to do something like that.

“She was pronounced dead at the scene of the accident Njoki, I just saw her at the morgue lying there with a huge cut on her forehead and her white dress covered in blood”. Mum went on.” Njoro was driving and he is also dead”.

Did I just chase my sister from my house with injuries that killed her? But they didn’t look that bad. I remembered her crying as she stood outside my door. She looked okay. This couldn’t be happening!

Wait! Did mum say that she died at the scene of the accident? That can’t be right.

“She was here mum at around 6:30am”, I tried to explain.

“No Wandia, the accident took place around 6:00am and died on impact”, mum answered sounding confused. “She was taken from the scene right to the morgue”.

My sister was dead. What had I done?

There was an accident, two people died!

“I had my chance.’ He said it, retiring from a lifetime of wanting. ‘I had my chance, and sometimes in life, there are no second chances. You look at what you have, not what you miss, and you move forward.”
Jamie Ford, Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet

That stupid husband of mine!

My husband is a stupid man. I am neither kidding nor exaggerating. I really mean it. I mean look at him now. We are in a room full of people and there he is, right in front of everyone and what is he doing, he is crying. To add to the drama, he is actually holding my picture in his hands looking at me like I am his best friend and of course, the waterworks are there. 64 years old and still so dramatic. He disgusts me honestly!


My mind wonders away from the dramatic scene and back to the day when I met him. I was 24, fresh out of campus. I was so ambitious and just hungry for it all. I wanted the good life! The cars, the big house and of course the wardrobe to die for! I wanted it all and fast.


I got my first job just within weeks of graduating. It was low paying and I hated it. I worked hard and barely made enough to feed myself leave alone afford the lifestyle that I wanted. I tried to work harder and even get a side job but still, I couldn’t even make more that 40,000 shillings per month and I was devastated and impatient. Some of my friends from Campus were already living the good life. Some of them were already driving. There were others who were already married too but forget about that, what I wanted was the money, not the ring just yet.


When I met him, I just knew. There was that air around him. He had that look, the successful look. He drove a Range Rover and seemed to be doing well in life. Of course the size of his wallet completely blinded me so much that I looked past his age, big belly and just the overall old man appearance. I wanted to get to riches and well, I had just found my ticket.


His name was Kamau although he liked to introduce himself as Jack. I know what kind of man he is. He is one of those who like to think that they are still young and still got it. I could tell by the way he dressed, the jewellery and just how he carried himself. Jack was definitely over 55 years old but he was trying to act 25. I told you that he is a stupid man. Well now you see!


It wasn’t hard to get him interested in me. He was flattered by my attention and always seemed too eager to please. Jack had a family, a wife and five grown children who were already working. He told me that he had divorced his wife. He accused her of being lazy, boring, insane and too ambitious. She sounded like a piece of work. However, I was so sure that he left her because she didn’t fit into the idea of the kind of wife he wanted. He wanted someone younger to boost his ego and the poor old lady couldn’t do that anymore. Stupid man couldn’t even sit back and enjoy his retirement. He had to go around chasing a life that wasn’t his anymore.


We got married within the first year of meeting. I had hit the jackpot. He was really a rich man. He had the lifestyle that I wanted. I moved into his very big house and soon, he bought me a Mercedes Benz. I got everything that I ever wanted in terms of my material needs. 


I remember the excitement that I felt when I first went shopping in London. Then I went to Paris and in Italy, I actually got a pair of shoes right off a Milan catwalk. That was the good life. I also got to travel extensively and visited every place I ever wanted to. The best part of it all, I was a trophy wife! I never had to lift a finger and do anything since Jack took care of me.He showered me with so many gifts. Not one of my wishes was ever denied and I have to admit, it was the good life. 


One thing that I used to really resent about him though was the fact that he never used to actually give me the money. If I wanted to go anywhere, he would pay for all the expenses. He bought me the cars but still had his name on the log books. Everything that we had bought together was in his name. When I say together of course I don’t mean that I contributed any money to the purchases but rather he bought them when we were married. I thought he was very selfish and controlling.


I wanted to have my own account where he would deposit a certain amount of money for me weekly or even monthly. This would then help me get access to money whenever I needed it instead of having to ask him each time I needed to buy even the smallest things. He was a peculiar husband that Jack.


I loved my lifestyle but soon I started getting bored. Lying by the pool every day waiting for Jack to come home after work was too tiring. I was so bored. I couldn’t travel without Jack so I had to wait until he was able to take time from his work. In addition, I had to go everywhere with a driver when alone so I couldn’t really hang out with my girlfriends and do fun stuff like going clubbing or anything. I had to just laze around and do nothing all day when he got to go to work and have a great time at work with workmates and all.


It was during one of those boring afternoons when I was seated at the pool, doing nothing as usual when I first saw him. Jack had decided to turn our garage into a guest house and then get a carport for the cars. There were construction guys everywhere. Normally, I wouldn’t notice men like that since well…. They don’t make much money from their jobs I know. There was something about him though. He was around my age and he was one of those guys who are just confident. I was the Jack’s wife and so most men wouldn’t even look at me at all. My husband was powerful and rich and so by default, I was also considered powerful and rich. However, there was something about the young man who I later came to find out was called Saidi.


I started hanging around the construction and soon, I started talking to Saidi. Right off the bat, I realized something. Saidi was actually my male version. He had the same hunger and yearning that I had for the good life when I first met Jack. I could see by the way he kept looking at my phone and openly admiring my car. He kept asking for the prices of different things around my home.


I loved the attention and shamelessly flaunted “my” wealth. I told him about all the places that I have been to and exaggerated on the people that I have met. I told him about famous people that I am friends with. Okay to be honest, I don’t know anyone famous even in Kenya who I can really say is a friend. However, I loved the attention that he was giving me and I knew that in his eyes, I was a super hero of some kind and I loved it.


Long after the construction was complete, I kept seeing Saidi. We came up with a plan where I would pay my driver to take me to the rendezvous. Our relationship grew and for once since I got married, I really started to enjoy life. I still had the lifestyle that I wanted and Jack seemed to have no indication that I had strayed out of the marriage. Saidi was exciting. We had so much to fun together and I actually enjoyed being with people my age again. He was a wonderful companion. We came up with a plan on how I can start getting some money from Jack for my own personal use.


Saidi came up with this genius idea of me telling Jack that I wanted to start a business. It was perfect and I don’t know why I had never thought of it myself. I told Jack that I wanted to set up a clothing stall in town but on the upper side. I told him that this would give me something to do and I knew I would be good at it since I loved shopping so much and I knew about clothes. To my surprise, Jack bought it! He accepted my story and immediately told me to start looking for a stall and get the budget details. Saidi helped me come up with a much exaggerated budget that allowed us to start the business and still get a lot more money to spend on ourselves.


Right from the start, the business was the best cover up. I got a lot of time outside the home and managed to earn some money for my own use. I still used Jack’s money for my personal expenses and upkeep and used my business money to have fun with Saidi.


I told Jack that I would need to go buy stock in Dubai and he funded the trip. I told him that I would be travelling with a friend who also owned a business and so wouldn’t need to travel with my driver or any other person really. Once again, Jack did not suspect anything. He actually offered to meet my friend’s expenses so that we could stay together. Of course the friend that I was travelling with was Saidi!


I will never forget that weekend in Dubai, we had so much fun. For once, we could be a couple in public without looking over our shoulders. We dined, shopped and went dancing.  I had never had so much fun in my life before. It was great being around someone young and fun again instead of old Jack.


While in Dubai, Saidi and I discovered that this is the lifestyle that we wanted. Most importantly, we wanted to share this life together. The only obstacle to our dreams was Jack, that old fool. I knew that if I divorced jack then I wouldn’t leave with much. He had a good pre-nuptial agreement that I had signed before we got married and that pretty much meant that I would walk away with absolutely nothing. The more Saidi and I talked, the more it became apparent to us that we would have to get rid of Jack, the old fashioned way, by killing him.


Saidi promised to ask around and see if we could hire someone to do it and make it look like a robbery gone bad. We had heard stories before that there were people who do that kind of thing for a mere fee of Kshs.20, 000. We were excited as we planned our life together. I could imagine taking over all of Jack’s properties. I knew he had cut off the first wife and her children and so I wasn’t expecting any problems from her. We had a bright future head of us.


However, when we went back to Kenya, we quickly realized that it’s not that easy to hire someone to commit a murder. We simply didn’t know who to ask or even where to start. Saidi also hit a wall when he approached people he assumed would take up the offer. We were back to step one with the perfect plan but no idea on how to carry it out.


One day, I got the idea to include my driver in the plot. We figured that if we offered him some money then he would help us. I remember that night; I left with the driver before Jack could get home from work. We agreed to switch off our phones and pretend that there was no network incase Jack asked later on. We then left for a joint at Parklands where we were to meet Saidi.  To my surprise, breaking the news to the driver was actually easy. He quickly jumped at the idea although greedily asked us for Kshs.100, 000 for his participation. Knowing how much I was going to get once Jack died, I knew that I could pay the fee that he had asked.


Then the driver told us something quite shocking. He knew of another woman from his hometown that had successfully killed her husband. The answer was pretty simple; just mix his food with rat poison. Saidi and I almost kicked ourselves, seriously how had we not thought of that! However, I congratulated myself for at least having thought of involving the driver. That night, we threw all caution into the wind and started an early celebration. We had a number of drinks, some nyama choma and danced the night away. The driver agreed to buy the poison the next morning and then I was to execute the plan that same evening.


We then made plans on going to Mombasa just the three of us to celebrate our freedom from that monster Jack. We were not stupid people so of course we ironed out the plan for the murder to the teeth and even worked on the mourning period. I was to learn how to dress, what to say and all that is expected of a grieving widow. It was all too exciting.


We left the joint at around 11pm and started driving home. We agreed to drop Saidi at his place and then rush home. We came up with a plan to tell Jack that I had gone out to meet a major client and then we got car trouble and had to stop at a place where there was no network and looked for someone to fix the car. I told you that we were a bright bunch, that plan was genius you see.


We quickly got into town and were soon on Uhuru Highway heading to Saidi’s place at Kikuyu town before proceeding to Runda through Limuru. I remember the mood in tha car, the joking and laughing. We had so many “Jack jokes”, that old man gave us plenty to laugh about. His dressing and his attempt to look like a young man left us in stitches. We were still doubling over with laughter when it happened. The truck seemed to have come from nowhere. It had full headlights on completely blinding our driver. The impact that followed was deafening. The next thing, we were being pushed by the truck off the road. It all happened in a matter of seconds.


The next thing, there were people everywhere. At first, there were hands grabbing things from the car, my purse, our phones, they all disappeared. Then there were other hands pulling us out from the car. I wasn’t feeling hurt; I was actually feeling quite fine. However, I tried to talk, even shouted but people seemed not to hear me at all. This man actually put his ear right next to my face but for some reason, the fool couldn’t hear me say a word. Next thing I know, I was watching the scene and not really being part of it. I mean, I could see myself lying on the ground, eyes wide open; head spilt open, legs twisted at an odd angle and soon someone placing a blanket over my head.


I looked at Saidi and the driver and they were also covered up in blankets. This was all so strange. We were then piled into a police land cruiser and just placed on the floor and rushed to the mortuary where we placed on these steel tables, lying side by side. We were still so young, not even 30 years old and this is what it had come to. I was so angry and I definitely knew whose fault this was, Jack’s! It was his all his fault! If we hadn’t been plotting to kill him then we wouldn’t have been out that night. We wouldn’t have been celebrating by having those drinks. This Mercedes that we had died in, wasn’t it the one Jack bought for me! It was all Jack’s fault and I can’t believe he wasted my life like that. I had dreams; I still had things to do while he is almost 70 years old and has done everything for himself. That man was so selfish!


Now here I am, watching my funeral proceedings and there is that stupid man weeping in front of the mourners. First of all, they used a bad photograph of me. I had other better photos that they could have picked in which my face was well made up and I was looking fabulous. Jack picked a photo where I didn’t have any makeup on! Why am I not surprised? That man annoys me all the way to my grave.


Say what you want, the wages of sin is death, and maybe I deserved to end up like this, its Karma and all that… All I know is that I had dreams and Jack ruined everything honestly.


This is definitely not that the plan that I had for my life and I can’t believe that it has ended this way. That stupid husband of mine!

ImageThe wages of sin is death

NB:The pic is from Google images…

Everyone has a story to tell…….

Part 1


Everyone has a story to tell. I have always heard this statement but it didn’t mean much to me until I met Martha Kamau.  Martha is the cleaning lady at my apartment building. I always bump into her as I go to my house and we exchange a few words of greetings. I like her but can’t really say that we are friends. 


One Saturday morning, I woke up to find the whole building without power. As luck would have it, my phone and laptop were low on charge. I had the option of reading but then again, I didn’t have interesting books. As I had my breakfast trying to come up with a plan for the day, I heard Martha singing. I don’t know why but singing just annoys the hell out of me. Especially loud singing that is off key and you are subjected to it without your consent. Anyway, being the mean person that I can be, I stormed out of my house with every intention of telling her to pipe down.


She was right there, head bent, a mop in hand cleaning the stairs. As I was thinking of a polite way of telling her to lower her voice, I suddenly stopped midway. Shock on me, she was singing some taarab song. How would Martha know such a song? (Sounds ignorant but hey, I don’t know any taarabs either. I listened to her for a while, the song sounded so sorrowful that I felt myself engulfed with a sadness that I could not explain. I listened for a while before she noticed me and cheerfully said hi. I walked over to her and asked her about the taarab. She smiled, sighed and then told me the following story.


I grew up in the Coast that is why I know taarab. It is the music that I grew up listening to and my mum used to really love these songs so it was a point of bonding for us. Actually, Martha is not even my real name though it’s on my ID. I grew up as Faridah Atunde but changed to Martha years later just before I settled here in Kiambu County. I know you are curious about the change of names so I will tell you how it happened.


In 1998, when I finished my form four classes, I started looking for employment around Mombasa. I am an only child from a poor single parent family so I knew that going to college was out of question.  I looked everywhere but then again, nobody wanted to hire a form four leaver with no college education or work experience. I tried to sell some fruits at the Kongowea and Mwembe Tayari markets but this also did not work. There was too much competition and I was forced to lower my prices so much that I couldn’t make any profits. Soon, I went into debt trying to buy fresh produce every day and hardly making any sales.


In addition, the same year, my mother fell ill. She grew weaker every day and no medication seemed to work for her. We used up all our savings trying to get her treated but nothing worked. All tests came back negative and so each time, the doctors would prescribe something to help her deal with the pain and then send us home. She had frequent migraines that would have stay in bed all day.  It was so painful watching her suffer and knowing that there was nothing I could do for her. I tried to get our priest to pray for her and though she seemed better for a little while, the migraines soon came back. She used to cry so much and I would try rocking her in my arms like a baby to get her to calm down. Sleeping and eating became so difficult for her that soon her weight dropped drastically. At some point, I could hold both her hands using just one of my own and completely wrap my fingers around them. I stopped looking for jobs and stayed home to take care of her.



One day, the migraine was so bad that she kept holding her head in her hands squeezing tightly trying to get relief from the pain. I sat in bed with her and cried softly while whispering a prayer for her. Relief swept over me when she finally quieted down and slept. I continued holding her and rocking her in my arms, with her head softly lying on my chest. At some point, I decided to let her lie on the pillow so that she could sleep well. When I tried to put her down, her arms wouldn’t move. They felt very stiff that I had to practically pull them off me. Panic rose as I noticed that her skin felt too cold and I couldn’t feel her chest moving. I screamed calling out to neighbors. I kept shaking her, trying to wake her up.


 That is the day that I lost my mother and ended up completely all alone in the world with nobody to call my family.

Beautiful Mum….

 Beautiful Mum…..


 ImageMy Beautiful mom


A mother is the truest friend we have, when trials heavy and sudden, fall upon us; when adversity takes the place of prosperity; when friends who rejoice with us in our sunshine desert us; when trouble thickens around us, still will she cling to us, and endeavor by her kind precepts and counsels to dissipate the clouds of darkness, and cause peace to return to our hearts.  ~Washington Irving


I love mothers. I mean, what is there not to love. They are kind, loving, caring and genuine (most are). Mothers are simply selfless. Growing up, I watched my mother make numerous sacrifices for me. She paid for my education all the way from primary school, to high school (private) and to University (I didn’t have HELB loans). That is how selfless she is. She always gave me whatever I needed to be happy and helped me as much as she could.

When I am sick or hurt, mum is who I call first. There are nights when I have fallen very sick and had to call her. I recall one time she actually took a cab at 2:00am to come to my place to take me to hospital. She has been there for me a lot. Years back, I seriously ill and I honestly thought I wasn’t going to make it but it is mum who was there to fight with me. She stood by me and made sure I regained my health. I remember being scared and crying a lot since I truly thought I was a goner. All the while, my mum was calm and confident. “Hiyo si kitu ya kukushtua, we will get through this too”. She used to say that to me. When I fully recovered that is when she confessed just how worried and scared she had also been too. That is a mother, staying strong for her kids even when she doesn’t feel that strong.

Pour out some liquor and I reminisce, cause through the drama
I can always depend on my mama
And when it seems that I’m hopeless
You say the words that can get me back in focus
When I was sick as a little kid
To keep me happy there’s no limit to the things you did
And all my childhood memories
Are full of all the sweet things you did for me
And even though I act craaazy
I gotta thank the Lord that you made me
There are no words that can express how I feel
You never kept a secret, always stayed real
And I appreciate, how you raised me
And all the extra love that you gave me
I wish I could take the pain away
If you can make it through the night there’s a brighter day
Everything will be alright if ya hold on
It’s a struggle everyday, gotta roll on
And there’s no way I can pay you back
But my plan is to show you that I understand
You are appreciated 
Tupac Shakur “Dear Mama”


My mom always has great advice and a fantastic judge of people’s characters. I don’t know if it is a cop thing but she always has people figured out. When in doubt about anything, I turn to her for advice. She has always been spot on. If she says that a person has bad intention towards me, she is normally dead on. Soon enough, she gets proven right. My mom is everyone’s confidant. Even my friends and cousins turn to her for advice. She is a relationship guru, a financial advisor, career counselor, a friendship consultant and a wardrobe adviser all in one.

The heart of a mother is a deep abyss at the bottom of which you will always find forgiveness.  ~Honoré de Balzac


Mum is strong and patient and forgiving. There are many times that I let her down but she forgives and moves on. She has been through so much in life but she remains so strong that you wouldn’t even know what she is going through. Sometimes I wish I could build a separate world for here where everything is just perfect. A world where she would never cry or be sad again. If I could give her that, I would in a heartbeat. An amazing woman she is.

She’s been there, God knows, she’s been there
She has seen and done it all
She’s a woman, she know how to
Dish it out or take it all
Her heart’s as soft as feathers
Still she weathers stormy skies
And she’s a sparrow when she’s broken
But she’s an eagle when she flies 


When she flies” by Dolly Parton

She is a cool mum too. Mum has a great fashion sense. Up to this day, mum still gifts me with clothes. She has this ability of getting my size right and she does the same with my brothers. Whatever, she gets us is always awesome. She knows what we like and what we would look great in. Plus ill admit, am always stealing from her wardrobe. Mum is on facebook. Most people are afraid of adding parents on FB but I am not. She always makes me smile when she calls me up to ask about something I posted on FB. She always starts with “I saw your update on fb…., bored at work? What’s up with that?” LOL. Other times, she is always telling me to like pages on the Bible and those that have inspirational information.

Imagefull wardrobe courtesy of mum

I love my mom to bits and I would be completely lost without her.

ImageYvonne, looking good with her son Keith, tattoo of her son of her arm, now that is love


Today, I salute not only my mum but all my friends who are new moms too. Yvonne, one of my best friends is a young mom continues to impress me on how well she is taking care of her son all alone. I remember when I first saw her with her son and at that moment, I didn’t see her as this fun loving, stylish chic that I knew. I saw her being a responsible and loving parent and a good mum at that. She is always working hard to provide for her little boy. When Keith is sick, Yvonne is sick too. Being so young yet such a good mom, I salute you Yvonne. Good job Yvonne and may God bless you as you raise Keith to be a wonderful son.

ImageYvonne and handsome lil keith….

The moment a child is born, the mother is also born.  She never existed before.  The woman existed, but the mother, never.  A mother is something absolutely new.  ~Rajneesh

Image Angie and Juelz, two of my pals who are super moms 🙂

This weekend, I visited my girl juelz who is a proud mother of the most adorable twins in the world.I am not saying their adorable because they are hers but simply because that is what they are. Jade and Jabali are so so cute. They smile and giggle and make these adorable sounds that are just so awesome. They also love to watch people and things around them. I swear those kids are deep. I can already imagine what is going through their minds.

ImageJade and Jabali, listening to their mum and seriously internalizing what she is saying. Wise kids I tell you!

In How I met your mother ,there is a line that Ted Mosby said when talking about Lilly “Thinking back at the friend who you once knew when you were younger and suddenly it hits you, that girl is now a mom”. That is how what I thought when I looked at Juelz taking care of her babies. I remember how she would stop mid sentence and then she would be like “ssshhhhh naskia mtoi ni ka ameamka analia kwa bedroom”. All the while the rest of us heard nothing. I guess that is a super mom secret power or something. Amazingly, she even knows how to tell which twin is up by just hearing them cry.

Then she would rush to get them. Juelz was like a big sister to me in Campus, although we were age mates so I know how caring she can be. Still, it is amazing to see how natural she is kicking ass at motherhood. Those twins are lucky. And by the way, even as a mother of two, that girl still got it, she still looks gorgeous as always like the model she once was.

I congratulate all new moms that I know and wish you all the best as you embark on this remarkable journey of motherhood. May God guide you and bless you now and forever. At least when I become a mum, I know I have so many role models to look up to.

Image Me trying to hold lil Jade who could tell am an amateur,so she is looking at Juelz  and Angie for help 🙂

Image Carol also getting a few lessons on motherhood. “This is how you hold them both at the same time”….