Wednesday, 23 November 2016

Less change, more growth.


We’ve all heard the saying that change is the only constant and if you don’t change, then change will change you.

I have been a conformer to this mantra for a really long time until it hit me; this does not apply to our characters. It may apply to techniques, strategies, technologies and so on but not to our characters.
The Bible says God is the same, yesterday, today and forever. As Christians, what you want to do is be transformed to become more and more like Jesus daily.

What you want to do instead is GROW. Call it change that is positive and personal.

 There must be some things that you wish were different about you. If you are absolutely content with the way you are now, know also that no one is perfect and if you ask God to, He will show you which parts of you can be improved [and how], not because there is something wrong with you but because it is His will that we move from glory to glory, that we graduate from milk to food.

I recently said that prayer. I didn’t particularly say ‘God make me see all my weaknesses’, mind you. I was mostly focusing on asking Him to make me and my situation/circumstances even better, you know, the usual safe and general prayers... But being God, He instead showed me something in me, a certain habit that needed to change. I didn’t  bother to fight it or defend myself because I know better than to fight God. To be honest,I hadn't even realized that I'd been doing it and I wasn't even aware how wrong it was before then.

Instead, I’m working on it with prayer and the strength that God gives me. I can actually tell you that I will probably never be comfortable again with that habit. I will continue to work on curbing it till the day I die. Funny thing is, my circumstances have become better through doing this.

So the next time you feel the itch to make a change, maybe simply because you feel you have been doing the same thing for too long, consider growing instead.

Monday, 14 November 2016

What's on replay already on my playlist



No, its not too early to be feeling the christmas spirit. To be honest, I've been counting down since say...May. I know you would like to think that being excited about the season is for children and that the older you grow, the more like-any-other-day it becomes. For me, it's the opposite. You know how they say there is a little child inside of every one of us, my little inner child comes out during Christmas; and she is a happy, giddy, dance-all-over-the-place kind of girl.

If you asked me about what it is exactly that makes me excited, i'll give you four good reasons why;
1. Jesus died for us (Surely I don't have to explain this but if you need some more info on this, I'm willing to take you through it)
2. There's just something warm and fun and pure about christmas.(Think hugs, pies, hot chocolatey drinks, warm clothes, presents, smiles etc)
3. We get to stay home (If you work, then I don't have to say anything else)
4. Hope; If you lost everything else but kept your hope, there's no stopping you. Christmas is all about hope, about reconciliation and starting over, about believing for better things. 

So here's what's already on replay on my video playlist; my five favorite christmas songs this year.

1. One more sleep -Leona Lewis
I got hooked on this song while I was in a long distance relationship and it's stuck with me ever since. I particularly love everything about the video.

One more sleep


2. So this is Christmas- Celine Dion
This one is more of a reflective song for me. It makes me want to sit back [ preferably with a cup of something in my hand :-)] and look back at the year that just passed and all the great memories made. Making it through another year is not something you should take lightly

So this is Christmas


3. All I want for christmas - Mariah Carey
This is a christmas love song. It's bubbly and playful and fun and happy; the way I figure love should be. It's a bit old and I'm sure there are newer versions but I'm an old soul...

All I want for Christmas


4. Have yourself a merry little christmas- Michael Buble
This may not be my most favorite version but after number 3, you may want something slow and smooth to calm you down.

Have yourself a merry little christams


5. White Christmas
This one is for hoping. We have all seen those movies from countries with snow, with gigantic christmas trees decorated extravagantly. The people wear cute winter green and red clothes and start a nice fire. Yes, I'm a dreamer and probably a romantic too this time of the year but a girl can wish, right? When I finally get to have a white christmas, then I'll take this off my list.

White Christmas




Monday, 31 October 2016

Tumz, My Forever Love!

Let me tell you the story of my first major crush. I was in Primary Seven and two years away from being a teenager. We will call him 'Tumz' for lack of a less revealing name.

Tumz was my end-all and be-all. He was the boy I was going to love FOREVER! Everything I did and in all the decisions my little mind made, I had to consider him. If he was attending Saturday classes, then I too was attending Saturday classes. If he had his socks pulled all the way up all day, then that's what we were all doing. 
There was a day we were to be allocated seats according to the first letter of your Last name. Since Tumz was a T, and I was an A-something, I obviously had to add a letter to my name that would bring me closer to T. Naturally. So I became Na-something instead. It didn't get me a seat right on his desk but it brought me close enough. 

It got to a point where I carried a boy's bag. It was a brand whose name I cannot remember but the design was more of male than female; pshhh, as if that would stop me! When the beginning of the term came and we were doing shopping for school materials, I did everything I could, and I mean everything, until my mum had to get me that bag. Poor lady, if it was these days, she probably would have questioned my sexuality. 
Getting the same bag did not go unnoticed. My girlfriends questioned me shamelessly and endlessly as to why I chose that particular bag. Some went as far as to ask if it was because of Tumz, but I denied it with everything in me. I went on to add that I couldn’t possibly be interested in Tumz as we were even cousins!(Thank God our parents had once had a brief conversation one day as we went home so no one could be sure we weren’t cousins after all).

I did everything to make Tumz notice me but the nicer I was, the more cruel he became. My turning point was one day when a popular dance group called "Obsessions" came to perform. In those days, they went around schools performing at a tiny fee (The group has since re-branded, split-up, re-united and split up again). Being who I am, I was not about to be the only one that missed out. They came in the afternoon right after lunch and since we had a free period, it was the perfect arrangement. Plus of course the fact that Tumz was going to be there too; I pictured us dancing together to a slow song the Obsessions would be miming, gazing deeply into each other’s eyes and promising to be together till death. So after about an hour of being squeezed to near-suffocation in that over-crowded main hall packed to capacity with sweaty children pushing back and forth, an hour where I was not able to even see Tumz, I decided I had had enough. I went back to class, disappointed, exhausted and filthy.

For some reason, the teacher that had given us the free period decided to pass by just as I sat at my desk. On noticing the almost empty class, he asked where everyone was. The nine or ten of us that were in class answered that everyone was in the main hall watching the Obsessions. Off went the teacher, fuming from both ears, mumbling something about how we were candidates who had no time for such play and should have known better. 
To cut the long story short, all P7 pupils were called out of the main hall and each one told to line up outside their class and be ready to receive their due punishment. Guess who was at the front of the line -Tumz. 

I had always liked the location of my seat in class because I could see outside directly. It always helped if you could see the teacher coming from a distance. That day however made me regret the name change that put me in that seat. As Tumz stood at the front of the line awaiting his strokes of the cane, staring directly at me, I looked on with a poker face as he made a gesture to let me know that he was going to tell (the gesture involved touching your middle finger to your thumb and moving your hand up and down as you made scary facial expressions at the person you meant to tell on). Surely Tumz was not going to tell that I had been part of the show-watchers. It wasn't my fault I somehow luckily managed to get back to class in the nick of time. After all the love I had shown him, he wouldn’t!!

Tumz did tell on me and I did get a whooping along with the rest of the 'party-animals' and that my friends, was the day I experienced my first heart-break. As I quietly rubbed my butt and cried with my head on my elbow facing down on the desk, I cried not only because of the pain of my poor behind on fire, but also because of the pain of  cold betrayal. 
I did not stop liking Tumz that day, but all the gestures stopped. I suffered silently with my feelings and focused on just making it out of Primary School. Tumz held a special place in my heart till the last day of class and in my heart, I SWORE I would love him forever no matter what…
I forgot all about him in less than three months when I joined secondary school and found bigger fish to fry...

I have since been down that heart-break road more times than I would have preferred, but I can assure you that I now laugh at those days. Laugh Out Loud actually. And yes, there's a moral to this story; at the time that something painful happens, it feels like the world is going to end. I know as you grow older, your problems become more serious than a primary school crush and it feels like you will never recover and nothing will ever be the same again. Nothing will ever be the same, that's true; it will be better! It will be so much better that like me, you will be telling that super painful experience as a joke. You will wonder why you were so worked up about it and you will just shrug and move on.

THE END.

Monday, 17 October 2016

The introvert this side of eternity



If you’ve watched the new Disney Pixar movie “Inside Out” you might understand a little how people turn out to be the way they are. We all have voices in our heads trying to point us in a particular direction. It’s not always as straightforward as the angel on your right shoulder and the imp on the left. Sometimes you’re a boiling pot of different flavours, each trying to make their scent known.

In the movie, you have different voices – Joy, Anger, Sadness, Disgust, and Fear. Joy attempts to be the leader of the voices, always trying to let you focus on the “yellow-er” side of things. All memories should be yellow, sunlight. Anger is the non-thinker, provocation gets immediate reaction. Sadness is how you’d picture an introvert; quiet, low, thinking about why things are how they are. Disgust reacts when she doesn’t like something, fear is always apprehensive.

It’s not easy being an introvert. It feels like Sadness is the one in the driving seat and your memories are blue. You think about everything. Your most important question in life is not what, where, when, who or how, it’s why. When you consider the other questions, eventually you also get into the whys.
Life seems easier for the extrovert. The extrovert draws and demands from without, yet the introvert draws and demands from within. There must be meaning to things.

Living on the side of eternity that I am – this issue would seem to have been solved. However, it’s not as easy as that.
Crossing into eternity means entering a door. It means using a narrow path of which it was said
“This new way of life is so narrow that we cannot take ourselves into it, we have to leave ourselves behind” – T. Austin Sparks
It requires a certain amount of coming to an end of yourself.
"For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it; but whoever loses his life for My sake will find it.” Matthew 16:25

Cue Michael Jackson’s “Man in the mirror”. So many times, we think it’s a matter of learning people skills, becoming cocky and funny, enduring a little discomfort so you can become better. We think it’s changing our tone and things like that.
There’s a scene in Inside Out, where Riley is going through a lot and is on the brink of “losing it” when her mom comes to talk to her and thanks her for being patient. Her mood changes immediately.
The impact of love on everyone is so grand.  And love is not work.

Gal 5:22  But the fruit of the Spirit is: love, joy, peace, long-suffering, kindness, goodness, faith, meekness, self-control; against such things there is no law.
In a way I feel like that scripture has the colon in the wrong place, but that’s me – love is like a container of every bit of the life eternal – when you think of it, and compare that scripture with 1 Cor 13 you might agree
1 Cor 13 4-7 Love is patient and kind; love is not jealous or boastful; 5 it is not arrogant or rude. Love does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; 6 it does not rejoice at wrong, but rejoices in the right. 7 Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.
Love is the man that must live, I am the man that must die. I, the 100 percent introvert who sees things as blue. It’s a crucifixion that happened that I must reckon lest I live Inside Out as if it were a true reflection of this life eternal.

Gal 2:20 I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I that live, but Christ living in me: and that life which I now live in the flesh I live in faith, the faith which is in the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself up for me.

The writer of this article, Joel Benjamin Ntwatwa is a blogger. He loves literature, African literature, and is reading more of it lately even participating in the Africa Reading Challenge. He has experience in Social Media, Content Management, and graphics ….He writes about his experience with see(k)ing God, creative fictional prose and poetry,  and on numerous topical issues at nevender.com

Letter from a (then) new friend...

Dear Kullein,
When I was growing up, despite my quiet nature, I liked to listen and I still do. I am not big on preparing sermons or lectures that are instructional. Most of my conversation comes from listening, understanding and giving appropriate feedback. What I am saying is I enjoy conversation.
I am the kind of guy who will stay awake fighting sleep waiting for a text. I sometimes think if one could stay alive on anything other than food, for me it would be deep personal conversation.
I thought about what to write for your blog. Should I write about ten steps to enjoying your twenties? I’m reminded of that Switchfoot song that goes something like
“We were just kids
Just limited, misfit, itinerant
Outcasts singing bout the dissonance
We were just kids, wide-open
Like a child, eyes-open,
Like a child, unbroken
by the wheels gone by you’re in the sunrise of your years”
Something that reminds you to celebrate your sunrise years.
However, I want to know about you first. I want to hear your story. I want to know more about the Riri turned Hannah Montana; the writer and doctor in the same breath, maybe about the red roses on your whatsapp pic.
I am no good at being a teacher when I am not a friend.
What’s the meaning behind your name Kullein? Does it mean cool wine? Where did your love for hats come from? Outside countries or Jane Eyre?
Now I am not trying to extract information for blackmail, I do not have the weight for espionage. I am simply a lil ol guy getting to know a new friend.
I am not much for crowds of friends, I agree with a certain riddler, Edward Nygma who says
“The less you have, the more they’re worth…”

So, to friendship because friends are the family we choose. Whether a lot or few, old or new, friends are the ink that keeps our hearts from being blue.

The writer of this article, Joel Benjamin Ntwatwa is a blogger. He loves literature, African literature, and is reading more of it lately even participating in the Africa Reading Challenge. He has experience in Social Media, Content Management, and graphics ….He writes about his experience with see(k)ing God, creative fictional prose and poetry,  and on numerous topical issues at nevender.com

Tuesday, 20 September 2016

Five things you need to know about the National ECD Policy

On Thursday September 15 2016 at Imperial Royale Hotel, Uganda launched its first-ever National Policy and Action plan on Early Childhood Development. The policy is expected to contribute to social, economic and human development, increase of workforce productivity, and poverty reduction.


The NIECD Policy of Uganda has three major objectives;

      -To harmonize existing ECD policy related goals, objectives, strategies and initiatives within and across all sectors.

     -To set, improve and align standards for ensuring access to well- coordinated, quality, equitable and inclusive ECD services within and across sectors.
          -To build and strengthen capacity of systems and structures to deliver integrated quality and inclusive ECD programs.



 It will also ensure integrated services for children from conception to eight years of age in the form of health, nutrition, education, protection, and parenting support services; representing one of Uganda’s most cost-effective ways to achieve more sustainable socio-economic growth in the future. Here are five things you need to know about the policy.

1. It’s all about the children
Early childhood is a special and crucial period during which the brain develops fastest, is most malleable, highly impressionable and most amenable to change. Science indicates that if children are not given timely and adequate opportunities for good nutrition and adequate stimulation, they lose opportunities for good physical and intellectual growth that cannot be made up for at later stages. Yes, it’s highly probable that the implementation of this policy will lead to a general increase in productivity and help us achieve some of our Sustainable Development Goals as a country, but the bottom line is giving children the best start in life.



2. Parents have the primary mandate
What parents do to care for children during the early years has the lifelong impact on children’s development. They need to be supported to effectively provide care through supportive structures and systems, and an enabling environment. The policy has the family and community strengthening as a core program area and prioritizes engaging parents and families in their children’s development and promotion of ownership programs. Family is the first line of response in ECD service delivery.


3. Other caretakers are involved
The Policy also targets other caregivers of these children. These include those who provide care for children in the absence of the parents, such as grandparents, other relatives and care providers in children’s homes. Families, parents and caregivers have the primary mandate for the care and upbringing of young children.

4. The main policy  areas
These include Early Childhood Care and Education, Food Security and Nutrition, Child Protection, Primary Health Care, Sanitation and Environment, Family strengthening and support, Communication, Advocacy and Resource mobilization



5. Each of us has a role to play
It does not matter where you fall; whether you’re into politics or a public servant, whether you’re a soldier, engineer, surveyor, architect or IT specialist. If you’re part of the Media or Local Governments, Civil Society Organizations or a Religious/cultural/community Leader;
If you work in the Private Sector or with NGOs/foreign mission; whether you’re a parent, relative, sibling, or a fellow child, each and every one of us has a role to play in making our communities and Uganda more child-friendly.


The full policy PDF can be accessed here- http://www.unicef.org/uganda/resources_18682.htm



Saturday, 17 September 2016

The best start in life

This is one of my favorite pictures from when I was a baby. It's my elder sister and I posing for a picture that was to be sent to my father in Denmark.

I don’t remember much from the time that I was a child. I do however remember feeling safe. Some memories stand out for me however from the early years of my life. On the weekends when my dad was around, my mum and dad would buy either goat’s meat or cornflakes, I do not know why it was one of the two foods but it was always one of the two. They would set up an eating place, one bowl or dish, and place it on a table in the corridor of our small house. My siblings and I would sit around this table together and eat the cornflakes/goat’s meat till the bowl was empty. My mum and dad would stand at the end of the corridor, holding each other and watching us eat together. I can’t remember the exact expressions on their faces but I would like to think that it was something like; ‘Yup, we created that’.

Another memory that stands out for me is one time when my dad came to school in Primary School. I think he was there to see our teachers. Since he was usually travelling, and not really around, this wasn’t something that happened often. I remember it was lunch time and we were outside playing and I managed to see him just as he was getting to the gate. I remember asking him to play with me, for just a few minutes. After a bit of hesitation, he agreed. We played ‘A ring of roses’ right there, in that crowded school yard. A man and his daughter. Best three minutes of my child hood.

It might not seem like it, especially in our African culture, but children do remember a good bit from their childhood. Some experiences stay with them their whole lives and even go on to influence the decisions they make and ultimately shape the person they become. Yes, we do want our children to be successful in school. We want them to be healthy and clean. But is that all we want our children to be? Is that what we are giving them in those very important first years?

You want your child to know he/she is loved. You want them to know they are accepted and they are valued. You want them to be well rounded individuals, with character and values and empathy. You want them to be happy. You want to give them that extra oomph that not only tugs at the brain but at the heart as well.

  I’m not a mother yet, but I am someone’s child. I know for sure that some of those early experiences contributed to who I am today.


Let’s give our children the best start in life.

Monday, 5 September 2016

Could it be...you?



Everyone has struggles. We all go through periods that are particularly trying to us. After a certain age, or at a certain point in life, you realize that these trials are part of life. You realize that they will always come and pass so you brace yourself and pray to come out on top. For some of us, you even develop a coping mechanism that will help you through it; mine is usually time-off/away because then I get a different perspective which always helps me to adjust.  

So what happens when a time comes and your mechanism does not work? And it does come sooner or later. What do you do?

Do you just throw in the towel and let yourself sink into a pity party of massive proportions? Do you throw yourself headfirst into the situation and try to fix it whatever way you know how? Do you run to your friends/family/loved ones and ask them to help you solve the problem? Do you throw money at it? Drink/party the problem away maybe?  Do you pray and fast for days; throw in some overnight prayers as a bonus? (Christians, I see you…) I’m not saying there’s anything wrong with trying any of the above; to each his own, but what happens when you try all these but they still don’t work?

Have you ever thought that maybe the problem might be you?

Yes, I said it! I believe that it all starts from the inside. Who you are, your character affects the way your life turns out to a very large extent. You can always tell when something is different on the inside though you’ll find most of us would rather live in denial all our lives than admit that maybe, something just ain’t right. Sometimes something as small as reading two extra pages of that book or getting to work ten minutes earlier than usual or even just smiling four times a day instead of the regular two is all it takes. 

So how do you know it’s you? You don’t have to look far to know something’s going on with you. There are so many ways to know if you’re in turmoil inside; the first and easiest one being the words you say. From the fullness of the heart, the mouth speaks. Also, if you find yourself being ruder than usual, more abusive, spewing filth basically, then there might be something you need to address.  If you find yourself more agitated, easily irritated, faster to bite off someone’s head than usual, then two things are happening. 

1)   The situation has finally gotten to you; this is probably because it’s taking longer than you thought it would and also your usual Three-step-solve-it-all-in-two-days-plan is not cutting it.
2) You need a new strategy; usually this works best if YOU adjust.  ‘Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.' Not my words...

It sucks I know. No one likes to think they are the problem; we all want to believe we are perfect. We are doing the right thing. It’s this and that that needs to change; It's so and so with the problem. Maybe it does need to change and maybe so and so does have a problem, but while you wait for it them change, do a little changing yourself. To make a slight alteration to the famous Michael Jackson lyrics; If you want to make your world a better place, stand with the man in the mirror. Take a look at yourself and make that change.


Tuesday, 26 July 2016

World without color

I’m looking for you in every face I see
Looking for the familiarity that used to be
Empty parking lots, bare wrists
What’s a picture without color; what’s me without you?
I’m running to you but you’re already leaving
I’m running faster, running to catch up with you
Running past wondering stares and pointing fingers
Running to stop you from taking another step, the next step…and the next
Running to make you see that we are all it takes
We are all it will take.
Wait for me.
Take my hand.
 Look me in the eye.
Believe me.
Believe me, I beg you…
You smell of home
Carry it with you as you go, leaving me exposed, un-sheltered, cold.
I can’t run anymore; I’m panting and sweaty
I can’t let you leave but I can’t run anymore
Why won’t you stop walking? Why won’t you look back when I call your name?
Tell me you see it too; how great we will be. How unstoppable we are together.
We will conquer the world, swallow them whole. We will make history.
We were born to be legends, can’t you see?
Don’t take that next step, don’t cross over.
If you go, you leave shadows. You leave a world with no depth, and no color.

If you must go, take my heart with you.

Tuesday, 5 July 2016

Part of something bigger.



I am a person who likes order. I have nothing whatsoever against systems; except for those that I feel do not work for me.
For people like me, deciding whether or not to join a system is usually a very big task. Take for instance joining my current place of employment. I needed to be sure; not that the place was suited for me, but that I was suited for the place. I did not want to be the employee who after one year or so, both you and the employer are wondering what on earth they were thinking. Naturally, I want to make things I come into contact with better. I also did not want to be a disappointment /embarrassment to all those that had pushed the process of getting that particular job along. I wanted to be sure, at least to a certain degree, that come what may, even after time had passed, I would still wake up daily and give 100%. I did not want to fail. So I weighed my options carefully, realistically and rationally and after what I feel was a thorough brain-storm session, it was decided that yes indeed, this employment would be advantageous to all those involved.

There has never been a moment in my life when I have regretted that decision. However, there have been several moments where I have forgotten what drove me to it in the first place. From a young age, it was always clear that I was following a different path in life. For some reason what I wanted was in direct and complete contrast to what everyone around me wanted. I questioned the way of things and I tried to map out my own path ‘too early in life’. I cannot tell you how many times I heard the phrase ‘That is not how things are done’ over the years. Don’t get me wrong, I was absolutely organized, obsessive about it even, just not organized about the things I was supposed to be organized about; just imagine preparing a very exquisite fish dish to perfection only to be told it was supposed to be beef. If you’re a young girl growing up in Africa, you can imagine the chaos that breaks out whenever you stray from the path, especially if it is a path that everyone else has walked with reasonable ease. 

Needless to say, it became a recipe for endless internal turmoil; trying to choose between doing what was expected of me and following my gut. I started to wonder if there indeed was something the matter with me. I started to mould myself after those I thought were doing it right. I tried to walk the way they walked and talk the way they talk and be the way they were. We all know how that story ends; major major blow out.

It wasn’t until later in life that I realized that there were other people who thought the way I thought; yes they lived a bit of a distance from where I stayed but hey, I wasn’t crazy, or at least I wasn’t the only crazy one. It wasn’t until later in life that I realized that it’s OK to find another way out of the a thousand to kill a rat. I realized that in some places, this was something to be celebrated, it was all a matter of perspective. I also learnt that there is always a place of compromise; a system that could be designed to satisfactorily fit both extremes. It wasn’t until later in life that I realized what exactly it was that drove me to these unconventional ways.

It wasn’t because I didn’t know how to follow the already set procedures. It also wasn’t because I did not think the systems in place would not work. The reason was I wanted something…richer. Something with more. I wanted something that required my full dedication, something that would utilize the raging passion I had. I was curious about life. The more I knew, the more I wanted to know. I wanted something that would acknowledge my growth as an individual, something that would tickle my imagination; challenge me to think harder. I wanted to see the bigger picture, to be a part of something bigger. Something more lasting...


Over the years, I have learnt to harness this energy and turn it into being productive in whatever I am working on at that moment. Sometimes it works; it makes me spring out of bed in the morning and puts a bounce in my step and a twinkle in my eyes throughout the day. On those days, when passion is high and morale is at its best, I could probably sell water to an islander. But I’ve come to realize that there will be other days; those other days when you can’t bring yourself to remember why you started doing what you are doing in the first place. It’s on those days that I have to remember that in spite of everything, I still want to be part of that something bigger; something more meaningful and richer. It’s on those days that I need to remember that I, and only I, can decide whether I get to do that and how I live a life that will get me to that point.

Monday, 2 May 2016

Letters to Stella

Day one

Dear Stella,
I am falling into what seems like a bottomless pit. Its pitch black so I can’t see much around me but there is a damp smell and the sound of air rushing fast past me. I struggled at first, frantically moving my hands trying to reach for anything I can grasp, but nothing. After a while, when I realized I was still falling anyway, I let my hands hung limp by my side and decided to see how it goes. I loved you Stella, more than I let show probably. I saw the doubt that flickered across your face sometimes when we were together, a shadow that only lasted a second but I saw it. How could I have shown you what you meant to me without looking weak? Yes, I loved you desperately, it scared me sometimes. I am still falling and it’s getting warmer. I think the pit is narrowing because my fingers are grazing what feels like protruding plant roots. It’s getting more humid too so maybe I am close to the bottom. I didn’t fight the fall Stella; you would have been disappointed. It’s been one long fall after you left after all… what difference would this one make?

Day Seventeen

Dear Stella,
I haven’t moved in a while. It’s not because I can’t. I just don’t want to. Time stands still at the bottom of this dark pit. I lie in a foetal position on the cold mossy ground and let the ants and whatever other creatures the dark hides crawl over me. I hear my muscles scream out, beg for movement, any movement. If you thought the fall was the terrible part of this, then you have no idea. Someone once said that the good thing about hitting rock bottom is you can not fall any further. I am lost Stella inside and out. I patiently await death.

Day Twenty one

Dear Stella,
I remember your smile. I remember how you liked to dance. I remember your eyes. I remember how freely you trusted me. I remember how intensely you loved. I remember how you lay your head on my chest ever so gently while we sipped on your favorite wine and just lay in bed. I remember your dreams for our future. What else could I have done to show you how deeply you had been etched into my heart? We would never have lasted, you were meant for much greater things. I saw it in your drive; so young yet so passionate. You would have blamed me. You would eventually come to resent me for stealing your youth. You never saw the laughter in their eyes, or heard the sneers behind my back when we walked by hand in hand. You were so caught up in your bliss. Your hope and optimism cut right through my chest.  I know it was the coward’s way out, but I did the only thing I could. I hope you will one day come to understand it.



Day Thirty Four

Dear Stella,
Someone has accidentally let the light in and for the first time I can actually see where I am. It’s a well, a deep one no doubt, with all sorts of crawling plants and algae growing up the walls. At first I thought it was just another of my visions, but when I slowly stretched my hand in front of me, I could see the dried blood around my broken fingernails, evidence from the first days I scratched around trying to feel something; to feel anything other than the grayness you left in me when you took all the color and light out of my life. What did I think would happen? That you would sit around and wait for me? That somehow you would be the one to find the solution I was not able to? That you would continue to try and talk some sense into me? I see that a small shrub has grown around my temporary bed. My hands can not support me even as I try to sit up. Oh Stella, I hurt myself more than I hurt you, you can believe that. I broke your heart but I killed mine; drained the life out of it and buried it where no one will ever be able to dig it out. I will it to stay dead ever day.
When I wake up Stella, I will find you. I have decided that I will live after all. I will live and find you and earn your forgiveness.


Tuesday, 15 March 2016

Ms Potato; Mr.Cheese

                                                                              




With all the eateries springing up everywhere in Kampala these days, it has become a bit difficult to look forward to going to a new restaurant or food. If you are a restaurant trotter like myself, always looking out for something new and unique, looking for cuisines that will leave you palate refreshed, you might encounter a bit of frustration. I have now learned to look at going to a new restaurant like I would meeting someone for the first time. Each dish has a personality and just like people, some are agreeable while others are not so much. These are some of the food personalities I have encountered so far;

-The old faithful

 Much as I really despise the use of this word, I feel it accurately defines some of this food. You know that dish you have that feels like home; it’s adequately delicious, it’s familiar and it’s safe. You’ve had this meal many times before and while it’s not super exciting, it still gets the job done.

-The feisty b***h

Think un-tamable; you have had this dish before. In fact, you have had it so many times, you should be able to recognize it with your eyes closed by now. However, for some reason, your being will not let you get used to it. It makes your eyes tear, gives you a stomach upset, leaves you bloated and there is a hangover thrown in sometimes just for the sake of it. Only thing is; it’s so DELICIOUS!




-The one night stand

You’ve had it on your to-eat list for a while, say because it was recommended by a friend. The praises ring high for this one and when you finally have it placed before you by a smiling waiter, you can’t wait to dig in; and guess what, it’s actually great. There’s just something about it though that really isn’t for you. Yes you had a good time but you know deep down, you won’t be trying it again.




-The BFF


Need I say more about this type of food…? It’s delicious. It’s fun. Not too pricy and not too fancy and yet posh enough for you to have with a romantic date, work colleague or your mother. It’s your go-to dish; first one that pops up into your mind when you go to eat out and the one you look out for on every menu. Only problem is; it’s fattening.




Photo cred (2 and 3); Zahra Abdul