Book Review: PS: I Love You by Cecelia Ahern

Ps: I Love You by Cecelia Ahern is a lovely, light read. The book is big, it has about 500 pages but the flow of the narration is simple such that turning the pages was easy.
The protagonist of the story is Holly, a 30 year old woman living in Dublin. The story starts three months after death of her husband, Gerry, which left the young widow feeling, lost and devastated. However, she soon finds a series of letters from her late husband. Gerry had written letters for each month with different instructions for her. She can only read one letter each month but this helps in giving her something to look forward to. The letters help Holly get back on her feet as she tries to get over the death of her husband.
The other characters in the book include Holly’s best friends; Denise, Sharon and John. Holly’s family also had some interesting characters. My favorite sibling was Richard, the awkward, misunderstood big brother. Gerry was also an amazing character. He knew that he was dying from the cancer but made plans to help his widow get through the loss.
What I liked about PS: I Love you by Cecilia Ahern is the theme of grieving and healing. I enjoyed reading about Holly’s journey. The fact that Gerry was helping her get through her loss was also an interesting angle to the story.

What I didn’t like was how the characters seemed shallow at times. It was all about drinking at the trendiest parties and getting wasted, expensive clothes, beautiful people. Things also seemed to be way too perfect and conflict resolution was over simplified. Holly looks for a job, it’s a great job but she has no experience but of course she lands it. Gerry is portrayed as the perfect husband. Ciara and Mathew have fallout and they just make up months later in some sappy romantic moment. Everyone seems to be falling in love and living perfect lives. There were bits in the plot that made it quite unbelievable.
Otherwise, if you are looking for a nice, easy read then you should check out PS: I love you by Cecelia Ahern.


Book Review: The Book Thief by Markus Zusak

I don’t even know what to say about The Book Thief by Markus Zusak. Are there really enough words to explain just how amazing this book is? Are there words to describe the emotions evoked by the story? Anyway, if you haven’t yet read this beautiful book, read on and I will tell you about it. If you have read it already, I would love to hear your thoughts about it.


One thing that is quite unique and fascinating about this book is the narrator. This year I have come across a child narrator in Room by Emma Donoghue and a posthumous narrator in Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold. Now for the first time, I have met death as a narrator. Yes, this story is actually narrated by death who is personified.


The Book Thief by Markus Zusais is a story about a young girl, Liesel Meminger who ends up on Himmel Street after the death of her brother on a train. Liesel is adopted by a lovely couple, Rosa and Hans Hubermann. Himmel Street is a simple neighborhood where kids play soccer, everyone knows everyone on the street and in times of crisis, the neighbors’ stick together.Liesel’s father adores her. He is always at her bedside whenever she has nightmares. He was the one who taught her to read( and  roll cigarettes). I think it is also correct to say that he also taught her how to be human and how to love.

Liesel is the book thief, she starts by stealing a  gravedigger’s manual and then proceeds to steal another book from a Nazi book burning ceremony and after that, she steals from the mayor wife’s library. The little girl finds comfort and hope in the pages of the books that she reads. She uses these books to get through all situations.However, The Book Thief by Markus Zusak is not just about the little girl living on Himmel Street. The setting of the book is Nazi German in 1939 as the holocaust takes place. One day, a Jew turns up at the Hubermann resident seeking refuge. Years before that, another Jew had saved Han Hubermann’s life at war and now Hans has a chance to save this young man. It was definitely risky for Hans and his family to hide the Jew. However, the family was really drawn to him and especially Liesel, she learned to love him like a brother.


“I guess humans like to watch a little destruction. Sand castles, houses of cards, that’s where they begin. Their great skills is their capacity to escalate.”
― Markus Zusak, The Book Thief

One thing that you need to know about this book is that it will break your heart. The final pages will leave you in a state of confusion. You will feel lost and like me, you may find yourself thinking about the whole story from the beginning to the end. You will grasp at the memories, trying to hold on to them to make them last longer. Although categorized as a YA, I think that this book is suitable for adults too.

The character development is done really well. I also loved the well defined relationship dynamics. In particular, I enjoyed reading about the relationship between Liesel and her father, Hans. I also loved the friendship between Rudy and Liesel. Death as a character is also quite….endearing.


8398761The Book Thief is definitely a moving story, one that I will never forget. There are many powerful scenes in the book. I think one of the most moving narrations is about Liesel and her encounter with Max when the Jews were being marched on the street. Another one was definitely the aftermath of the air raid on Himmel Street.



“Goodbye, Papa, you saved me. You taught me to read. No one can play like you. I’ll never drink champagne. No one can play like you.”
― Markus Zusak, The Book Thief

About the book
Title: The Book Thief
Author: Marcus Zasuk
Year of Publication: 2005
Pages: 584
Adaptation: The Book Thief movie (2013)
Number of Weeks on the New York’s Bestseller List: 230


this one

Book Review: Abducted: The Fourteen Year Fight to Find my Children by Jacqueline Pascarl

About the Book
At seventeen, Jacqueline Pascarl married a royal prince and embarked on what she believed would be a fairy-tale existence. But it soon became a nightmare. After years of abuse at the hands of her husband, Jacqueline escaped with her children, hoping to leave her past behind. But what followed would haunt her for the next fourteen years. In this heart-rending story, Jacqueline describes how her husband kidnapped their two young children and forced them to cut off all contact with her. She tells of the pain and helplessness she felt at their loss but also of how she channeled her grief, forging an existence as an aid worker and humanitarian ambassador, all the while desperately hoping to hear news of them. In 2006, she was reunited with her long-lost children, and in “Abducted” she reveals the dramatic events that led to their meeting. This is a candid, compelling account of living under the shadow of child abduction. It is an unforgettable ride through tragedy, loss and, finally, triumph.

This was another great find from my Inama Bookshop. Surprisingly, the copy that I found was in great condition. It looked new and so I carried home in glee.
Abducted: The Fourteen Year Fight to Find my Children by Jacqueline Pascarl is a moving autobiography about a mother’s love and heartbreak after losing her children. The author tells of the abduction of her children by her ex-husband. The first pages are fast paced as the author narrates about the abduction. She writes about the harrowing ordeal of dealing with media and her husband’s publicists after the loss of her children. All her attempts to find her children seem to bear no fruits.

“A mother knows what her child’s gone through, even if she didn’t see it herself.”
Pramoedya Ananta Toer, Gadis Pantai

After the first few pages, the author then starts talking about her life as a relief worker. It was interesting to read about the effects of war and get firsthand experience of what the relief workers have to deal with. There were sections that were too sad as the author narrates the stories of the refugees and the hurdles that they faced in the camps. At times, the perspectives in the narration changed too abruptly and this affected the flow of the story. In addition, I felt that this section was dragged out, perhaps this was done to show the passage of time. Nevertheless, it felt as if the author spent too much time on it.


“She is the creature of life, the giver of life, and the giver of abundant love, care and protection. Such are the great qualities of a mother. The bond between a mother and her child is the only real and purest bond in the world, the only true love we can ever find in our lifetime.”
― Ama H.Vanniarachchy

The last part of the book is again exciting and fast paced. After 14 years, her children finally make contact and now Jacqueline has to do everything in her power to bring them back home. This section of the book is quite nerve wrecking and I kept wondering whether she will finally have the kids back. Each rescue plan brought new hope but every time that a plan failed, I could  feel Jacqueline’s despair and devastation seeping through the pages of the book.

Abducted: The Fourteen Year Fight to Find my Children by Jacqueline Pascarl is an interesting story. As I already mentioned before; it is based on true events and so does not have the twists commonly found in fiction. However, it is a heart wrenching and inspirational story that will move each reader. It also contains a number of lessons about child abduction. This is a heartrending story of a mother’s love, bravery and relentless fight to find her children.

once i was a princess
I am now looking for Jacqueline Pascarl’s other book, Once I was a Princess. Below is its synopsis:


Can you imagine what it would be like to be swept off your feet by a royal prince to live a charmed life in the marble palaces of an oil-rich nation – and then to watch your fairy-tale romance turn into a nightmare of Islamic superstition, isolation, betrayal and abuse? What would you do if you managed to escape your life of torment – and then your children were kidnapped by their own father? This is what happened to Jacqueline Pascarl. In Once I Was a Princess, Jacqueline recounts her part in this controversial, headline-grabbing international drama with heart-rending honesty.

Book Review: The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold

“My name is Salmon, like the fish; first name, Susie. I was fourteen when I was murdered.”
― Alice Sebold, The Lovely Bones

The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold has a number of good reviews online. I became interested in the book after reading reviews that compared it to Room by Emma Donoghue.  I can’t even explain  how excited I was when I stumbled upon a copy of the book at the library at my workplace.

Bones 3
The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold is narrated by a 14 year old girl who was raped and murdered. Susie is now in heaven  where she is watching events unfold on earth as people try to move on after her death. The book starts out really well and I was hooked right from the first page. Susie has such a strong and compelling voice as a posthumous narrator. I held my breath whenever she talked of Mr. Harvey who killed her and her family’s attempts to get justice for her. I kept hoping that the killer gets caught. My heart also broke for Susie whose life was cut short at such a young age before she had a chance to really experience life. It was heartbreaking to read about her longing as she watched the boy who once kissed her. It was also sad to read about how she was struggling with letting go of her family especially when she watched them struggle with their grief over losing her.

“When the dead are done with the living, the living can go on to other things,” Franny said. “What about the dead?” I asked. “Where do we go?”
― Alice Sebold, The Lovely Bones

I loved the description of heaven whereby everyone has their own heaven which matches exactly what they want. It got me thinking about life after death and what heaven is like. I also loved the narration whereby being in heaven, Susie was able to observe different character’s lives and thoughts and so as readers, we found out what was happening immediately she saw something.

“His love for my mother wasn’t about looking back and loving something that would never change. It was about loving my mother for everything — for her brokenness and her fleeing, for her being there right then in that moment before the sun rose and the hospital staff came in. It was about touching that hair with the side of his fingertip, and knowing yet plumbing fearlessly the depths of her ocean eyes.”
― Alice Sebold, The Lovely Bones

At some point, I felt as if the story was way dragged out. There were pages that I rushed through, trying to see if anything was happening. Maybe this came from wanting to see if the killer ever got caught but whatever it was, I grew impatient reading through some sections of the book.

Apart from that, I enjoyed The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold. The author took a number of risks that paid off. For instance; the narrator is killed right at the start of the narration. The identity of the killer is then revealed just as fast. However, this does not take away the suspense. The book was also quite moving; it made me think about life after death and especially about what happens to those who are no longer on earth with us.Are they out there watching us?


The Literary Gems

Benefits of being in a Book Club

book club 2

I joined a book club early last year. It started with a conversation of facebook,  a watsapp group then the first book review at Java. It’s an awesome book club with unique members who I may never have met if it weren’t for the book club. The book club went beyond the shared  interest in books and soon, friendships were formed. These are women and men(there are 3 in the group) that I can talk to about (almost) anything. We have been there for each other through the laughter and the tears and of course through some awesome books. Honestly, they are the coolest people that I know. Our book club is called, The Literary Gems.

So why should you join a book club:

“Book clubs are totally dope – like English class if you were allowed to read only books that you actually like and snack and sip while discussing them.”
Sam Maggs, The Fangirl’s Guide to the Galaxy: A Handbook for Girl Geeks

Book club
1. The Friendships: As I have already mentioned, I got to meet new people and form beautiful friendships through the book club.

2. More Reading: Being in a book club has definitely helped me read more especially in preparation for book reviews. I also have to be more conscious of the books that I read. Each time I read a book, I have to think about the plot and the characters. Sometimes I smile as I read because I already know what certain members of the group will say about certain characters 🙂


book club 4
3. The Discussions: As a reader, Many are the times that you come across a great book that you just want to talk about. The good thing about being in a book club is that you all have a shared interest in books and so can discuss books all day long. It’s always interesting to find a book that everyone is excited about.  I love talking about books and so I am grateful that I found people who enjoy the same thing.

Book Club 1

“None of us had any experience with literary societies, so we made our own rules: we took turns speaking about the books we’d read. At the start, we tried to be calm and objective, but that soon fell away, and the purpose of the speaker was to goad the listeners into wanting to read the book themselves. Once two members had read the same book, they could argue, which was our great delight. We read books, talked books, argued over books, and became dearer and dearer to one another.”
Mary Ann Shaffer

4. Interesting books: Well I think that a book club can help you find out very remarkable books that you probably wouldn’t have found on your own. Some of the interesting books that my club has read include;

  • A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaleed Hosseini
  •  Memoirs of a Geisha by Arthur Golden
  • Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi
  • The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins




5. Challenging Books: I do not read science fiction, slow or complex books. I love reading books that have simple and fast story-lines. However, the beauty of being in a book club is that you get challenged to read books out of your comfort zone. Some of the challenging books that we have read include:


  • Adultery by Paulo Coelho– I did not like the protagonist. I didn’t understand her, I thought she was irrational and would have quit reading the book if it weren’t recommended by the book club. Well, I’m glad I was pushed to read it because that is one book less from my unfinished books pile
  • Moon Tiger By Penelope Lively– This is my only ‘ Digehota’ book. I didn’t even try. Something about the English and the complexity of it and plus I was doing my exams but maybe someday I will get to it.
  • 11/23/63 by Stephen King– This book has aspects of Time Travel so it’s not something that I would have picked on my own but I am glad that the book club picked it. I also learned an interesting phrase, the past is obsolete!


6. Discovering new places: Okay, I must admit, I always get excited about the meeting places. They are always new places for me. We met at some Java that I have never been to. Another discussion was held at a quaint restaurant called Reata. This month we are meeting at Habesha. It’s been an adventure not just about reading and discussing books but also discovering delightful new places.

“What’s the point of having a book club if you don’t get to eat brownies and drink wine?”
Jami Attenberg, The Middlesteins

Cheers to the Literary Gems for the wonderful books, discussions and the friendships.


The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins- Book Review

“let’s be honest: women are still only really valued for two things—their looks and their role as mothers.”
Paula Hawkins, The Girl on the Train

use this

The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins has so many good reviews. I am yet to come across any reader that didn’t like the book. My book club chose this book as our first read for 2016. I must admit, this was a good choice, one of the few books that I have read in just two days.

About the Book
A debut psychological thriller that will forever change the way you look at other people’s lives.

Rachel takes the same commuter train every morning. Every day she rattles down the track, flashes past a stretch of cozy suburban homes, and stops at the signal that allows her to daily watch the same couple breakfasting on their deck. She’s even started to feel like she knows them. “Jess and Jason,” she calls them. Their life—as she sees it—is perfect. Not unlike the life she recently lost.

And then she sees something shocking. It’s only a minute until the train moves on, but it’s enough. Now everything’s changed. Unable to keep it to herself, Rachel offers what she knows to the police, and becomes inextricably entwined in what happens next, as well as in the lives of everyone involved. Has she done more harm than good?

Compulsively readable, The Girl on the Train is an emotionally immersive, Hitchcockian thriller and an electrifying debut.

Girl on the Train reminded me of Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn. It’s a fast paced thriller that will keep you at the edge of your seat. The story is narrated by three women, Rachel, Ann and Megan. However, Rachel is the main narrator. One thing that I didn’t quite expect when I started reading the book is the insight that Rachel gives into the workings of the mind of an alcoholic. She has numerous memory gaps and sometimes her memories are all crumbled up and inaccurate. Her battle with the bottle is also quite heartrending.


Rachel is not only battling with alcoholism, she is also jobless and divorced although still in love with her ex husband, Tom, despite his betrayal. She is at a tough time in her life and so she escapes this by creating a fantasy about a glamorous couple that she sees everyday while on her daily commute. This couple lives near her ex husband, Tom and his new wife, Anna. The seemingly perfect couple who she nicknames Jason and Jess is actually Scott and Megan whose lives are far from faultless.

“When did you become so weak?” I don’t know. I don’t know where that strength went, I don’t remember losing it. I think that over time it got chipped away, bit by bit, by life, by the living of it.”
Paula Hawkins, The Girl on the Train

The lives of these three women are tragically intertwined mainly because of the men in the lives. Although they seem to be very different, the three women all carry baggage. When Megan goes missing, Rachel is convinced that she can solve this mystery because of something that she saw from the train. In addition, she happened to have been near Megan’s home the night that she disappeared and thinks that she might be holding an important clue. However, as it turns out, Rachel can’t remember the events of that night because she was too drunk. She forcefully immerses herself into the investigation but then again, due to her alcoholism, nobody believes her and the police dismiss her immediately. In addition, every move that she makes seems to be the wrong one.

“I am not the girl I used to be. I am no longer desirable, I’m off-putting in some way. It’s not just that I’ve put on weight, or that my face is puffy from the drinking and the lack of sleep; it’s as if people can see the damage written all over me, can see it in my face, the way I hold myself, the way I move.”
Paula Hawkins, The Girl on the Train

The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins has very good twists as the secrets of the characters are revealed. Rachel’s attempts to put together the events of night that Megan disappeared add to the suspense as readers will keep guessing whether she will regain her memory or not. Of the three women, I found myself most drawn to Rachel due to her struggles. This is one thing that Paula Hawkins did very well; she ingeniously created a character that is likable, memorable and easy to connect with.

“She must be very secure in herself, I suppose, in them, for it not to bother her, to walk where another woman has walked before. She obviously doesn’t think of me as a threat. I think about Ted Hughes, moving Assia Wevill into the home he’d shared with Plath, of her wearing Sylvia’s clothes, brushing her hair with the same brush. I want to ring Anna up and remind her that Assia ended up with her head in the oven, just like Sylvia did.”
Paula Hawkins, The Girl on the Train

I loved the book and highly recommend it. It is well paced right from the first page and keeps readers engaged all the way to the very last page. It’s the kind of thriller that readers will keep talking about long after they turn the last page.

“It’s impossible to resist the kindness of strangers. Someone who looks at you, who doesn’t know you, who tells you it’s OK, whatever you did, whatever you’ve done: you suffered, you hurt, you deserve forgiveness.”
Paula Hawkins, The Girl on the Train

This is for Our Fallen Soldiers

#IStandwithKDF- I wrote this post  in 2012.However, when I heard about the Kenyan soldiers who were killed last week, I was reminded of this and decided to re-post it as a tribute to our fallen soldiers.May they rest in peace and may God comfort their families.Thank you for your service to our country.

In the Line of Duty

 “We come, not to mourn our dead soldiers, but to praise them.” — Francis A. Walker

I liked it when he was home. We always had so much fun with the kids. I remember watching him play with our five year old son as our daughter sat on his lap. He was a good father and I loved our family and our life together. When he first brought us here, I was not too thrilled. I knew he was a Policeman but I never really thought about life in a Police Line. I preferred living in the countryside with his mother and the kids. I was even okay with seeing him only once a fortnight when he would visit us for a weekend. In addition, I always looked forward to the 30 days that he would spend home whenever he was on his annual leave.

One weekend, he came home and told me that he had been allocated a bigger house. He was no longer sharing his place with another policeman. This meant that we could all move to Nairobi and live with him. At first, I was thrilled. However, once we settled into the Police Line, I realized that I was now exposed to his life. I learned about spending sleepless nights every time he would be out on night shift. I learned about watching the TV in fear and anxiety every time it was reported that a police man had been killed. The sounds of gunshots also became a norm for me. There was always a gun going off by mistake and at times, there were gunshots as a result of suicide. For some reason, the suicide rates in the Police Line were very high. Another thing I got to learn to live with is the sirens and alarms. Whenever, they went off, the police would quickly dress up mostly in the anti-riot gear and run out. These alarms, I hated. Another thing about life in the Police Line is that you get to adjust to the number of deaths and injuries in the line of duty. You may see someone in the morning only to be told an hour later that they were killed in the line of duty. This is a nightmare and a constant worry for most of us married to law enforcement officers.

I remember that fateful day just like it was yesterday. He had worked the nightshift and so I knew he had the day off. He came home at 6am, had his breakfast and went to bed. That is his normal routine, he would sleep for a few hours until lunchtime and then he would spend the afternoon with me and the children. I did not go to bed once he got home, instead I started cleaning up. I also wanted to get enough time to make his special meal. I quietly let him sleep as I embarked on my duties.

It was just a few minutes past 10am when I heard the dreaded sound. It was the alarm! I knew something had happened and so all the officers were being called out. I hadn’t even reached the bedroom door when I saw him already up and dressing. He had heard it too. He quickly wore his anti-riot gear and came to the living room. He said good bye to me and the children and then ran out. Two minutes later, he was back. I asked him if he had forgotten something but he said that he couldn’t even remember why he had come back. He hugged me and each of our child and said goodbye. This was a bit odd since he never hugged us unless he is going away for a long time. I suddenly felt engulfed with a feeling of sadness that I couldn’t quite explain.I brushed the feeling away and went back to preparing lunch.

In most cases, when the police go out to deal with the riots, they normally come back within two to three hours. Due to the running battles, they normally come home exhausted, so I wanted to be ready to take care of him when he got home. In some cases, they come home injured or sneezing and coughing from the teargas. Since you can never be sure about what to expect, it is always good to be ready for anything.

At 2pm, they were not yet back. I went outside my house and tried to be on the lookout to see if ill see their truck coming back. Suddenly, I heard a voice behind me, “Leo inatakikana we pray,naskia ni kubaya kabisa town”. It was Mama Morgan, my neighbor. She explained that she had seen something on the news about the riots. I thought about going back home and switching on my television to watch the news but for some reason, I couldn’t bring myself to do it.

I went back home and stayed with the children. I tried to read to them and tell them stories so as to keep my mind occupied. All the while, I kept on looking at the wall clock. By this time, my husband had been gone for 12 hours. I fell asleep on the couch for a while as I held the sleeping kids close to me. Suddenly, I woke up in shock. I do not even know what had woken me up, I felt like I had been slapped, but then again, there was nobody around. I was sweating and my heart was beating rapidly. The children were still asleep. I covered them with a shawl and decided to go outside. It was dark already.

When I got outside one thing I noticed is that there was a lot of movement. This meant that the police were now back. However, unlike the other times, they did not seem in a hurry to get home. They were standing around and talking in small groups. I looked around the groups trying to find my husband but I couldn’t see him. I started running towards the police station, all the while ignoring the people around me. Most of them stared at me while others simply avoided making eye contact with me.

I arrived at the reporting desk and immediately saw my husband’s friend. He was seated down with his head in his hands,he still had his anti-riot gear. A police woman was seated next to him with her arm around him. I looked at his blue work shirt which was covered in blood. When he saw me, he started crying. I simply stood and stared at him. I did not even need anyone to tell me what had happened. In my heart, I knew it, my husband was no more. He had died in the line of duty.

I thought about my two young children and myself. I wondered what would happen to us. We would have to leave the police line but then, what next? I thought about my husband. I wondered if he knew that he was not going to come back to us. I thought about the person or people who killed him and wondered if they thought about him or the fact that he had a young family back home. Even if they found out about us, did they care? Maybe they are already celebrating the fact that another cop had bit the dust.I know the way most people felt about the police and it broke my heart to think that my husband had died serving people who probably despised him because of his uniform.I cried and wanted to die and join him, but then again, I still had two children depending on me. I thought about his death and wondered if at all he really had to die. He had chosen this career and he had once mentioned that he knew he would probably die by the gun. I had a million questions but the only thing i knew for sure was that, he was gone forever.


Growing up in different police-lines, I saw many families destroyed by meaningless deaths of officers. Most of these men and women were dedicated to their jobs and their country. They sacrificed so much. Unfortunately, most end up dying in the line of duty, losing their lives in the hands of those they try to protect and serve.



For all the men and women in uniform who have died in the line of duty, Rest in peace.


Dreadlocks, Degrees, Old Friends and Childhood Dreams

Dreadlocks Down
A lot of things have happened in my life this year. For instance, at some point in July, I cut my dreadlocks. I had them for 3 years and I loved them. They represented freedom to me and I liked the natural look. However, I woke up one day, looked at the woman in the mirror and I didn’t like how she looked. The locks represented some kind of oppression at that point, I was sad, I no longer liked how they looked and so without much thought, I went to the salon and had them chopped off. I remember the first time that I cut my hair in 2009; I couldn’t even watch the saloonist cutting my then really long hair. I was emotional and felt a sense of loss. However, cutting my locks this time was like catching a glimpse of the sun after months in solitary confinement. I wanted to look up to the skies, arms wide open and feel the sun on my face. I felt lighter and free. After the excitement of the new change, I am now back to the dilemma of what to do with my hair. I am thinking about having  short hair but then again;  when I was a kid someone once told me that I have the Will Smith ears so I’m not sure if i can rock a short haircut. Perhaps one day I will get the confidence to chop it all off and then I can finally enjoy the feeling of water hitting my scalp when i shower.

This was at the salon, took one last pic


The haircut that i got. still getting used to it though


IMG_20150927_161445In a hat for the first time, experimenting with different looks

Need My Smarts Back
The second big thing that I have done this year is going back to school for my Masters degree. It has been 7 years since I got my first degree. I was excited a bout being a student again. However, I never anticipated just how hard it would be. I don’t know if I lost my smarts, I have always been book smart or maybe I’m just an old lady now with a lot on her mind. The routine of working all day and then rushing off to class from 5:30pm to 8:30pm has been quite a difficult adjustment. The class work seems hard and demanding. I wonder how it will all end. I hope to do well and I do hope the feeling of constant fatigue will soon go away.


The Reunion
Now with the fatigue, I definitely needed a break, something to relax my mind. Luckily, my former classmates had just formed a watsapp group and  planned a reunion. I was excited about catching up with old friends and just getting out of the house for a while and forgetting my books which were getting me all kinds of upset(I’m being dramatic now…lol). The reunion was taking place at Sharks Palace and as usual, I love going to new places.


Sharks Palace
Immediately I got to Sharks Palace, I bumped into Penina who I hadn’t seen in 7 years. Every time I look into the mirror, I see how I have changed with the passing of time. However, looking at her, I’m struck by how much she still looked the same. Next I see Loise and once again, I wondered if I am the only person who has changed with age. She looked stunning, trim figure as always and could easily be mistaken for a 25 year old. We realize that we were the first ones to arrive at the venue and so we take time to look around the place and find a table for the group. At first glance, Shark’s Palace looked like an ordinary nyama choma joint with people around, eating and having drinks(such a Kenyan habit 🙂). The place was quite huge. After the girls and I found a table, I went outside to explore and take some photos of the place before the rest of the group joined us.

A 31 year old child and an Amusement Park
And that is when I saw it, a huge amusement park with all kinds of slides. I literally lost my mind. I couldn’t stop smiling and at first even forgot about taking photos. There were roller coaster/360 rides, merry go rounds(not sure if that’s what they are called these days), 180 swing boat and a lot of other stuff. I can’t even explain the joy I felt at that moment. You need to understand one thing, I had never been to an amusement park before. I envied the kids that were playing on the different rides and at first i was unsure whether i was too old to be allowed to join in on the fun. Nevertheless,I decided to ask the attendant if adults could go on the rides. “Hizi ni za watu wazima kwanza.” He said the magic words. I went back to my reunion with plans to get back to the park at some point.

360 ride


Something for the kids



This is how the merry go round looks like from the ground


Kids have a lot of stuff to do at Sharks Palace



Old Friends and Inspiration
At the reunion, more people had joined the group. We spent time eating, reminiscing, catching up and having a good laugh. It was the best time that I had had in a while. One thing about meeting old friends is that you get some inspiration from them. Learn what others do and this motivates you. That is exactly what happened at the reunion. I was challenged and motivated to do more with my life.

I saw this car at the park, simply beautiful. Old is beautiful.


Ruined Childhood Dreams
At some point, I sneaked off and bravely went for my first merry go round ride. I was so excited as I got buckled in. And then, without warning, my seat was flying off into the air. I looked down and could see the trees and rooftops under my feet. I wanted to get off the ride, I was queasy and scared and without realizing I started screaming, “This was a bad idea, this was a bad idea, bad idea, bad idea.” I imagined the chains breaking and me plunging head first to my death. That is not how I wanted to go out.” 31 year old falls off a merry go round and break her neck!” I won’t lie; I couldn’t wait for the ride to stop.I took some time and was once again seduced by the 360 roller coaster. It looked stable enough unlike the merry go round.  The first ride was terrible, again I got queasy as I clutched on the handles, sitting stiffly singing Amazing Grace silently. However, by the third ride, I was able to loosen my death grip enough to take a photo. Shaken, I went back to the reunion disappointed that my childhood dreams of going to an amusement park had ended in such disappointment.


A picture from on-top of the 360 ride

Daredevil Manenos
Interestingly, at around 8:00pm after most people had left, my friends decided to try out the rides. I have no idea why but I was the first one up there. We got on the 360 boat ride which is the scariest thing that I have ever experienced in my life. We were screaming at first with excitement and at some point everyone was screaming, “STOP ,STOP, STOP.” I don’t know whether he heard us but the attendant actually increased the speed and so the boat rocked so hard that at some point it was all up in the air and we were staring down at the ground. I was glad when that ride ended.



The 180 boat ride with friends


On top of the 360 ride having some real fun finally


Enjoying my second ride


This is how fast the merry go round was moving. Yes i was on it at this point.

A Child’s world
We went for a ride on the 360 ride and this time I had so much fun. I stopped holding the seats and screamed in joy all through the ride. Then came round 2 at the merry go round and again it was a blast. This is what I had dreamt about since I was a child. At that moment, I forgot everything else and I was lost in this new world. I took a tour to a child’s world and I loved it there because there were no worries or concerns.
My reunion was one of the most memorable events of my life.