Legend

So I got me a phoneskin for the last man standing: A brave, generous and humorous soul, with a genuine smile. That’s what it reminds me of each day.

Although my mum doesn’t like to see it – cause she’s still grieving – everyone else thinks it’s pretty cool.

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Nifties makes this kind of cool. Check them out sometime.

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Doing 26

A lot changes in one year – and 26 has been such a year for me. Am looking back. . .

Photo credit | Vnutz

Photo credit | Vnutz

. . . as I sink both feet into 27.

The lows

Life is fleeting

The in-betweens

  • I fall in and out of love; not necessarily in that order  . .

The highs

  • A photo of me is presented as a gift from one global company to another, the motions I go through are indescribable.

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  • Seeing my mum in a graduation gown and tassel, hits me she’s been doing school for 7 years  – and that I’ve watched her study most nights into early mornings almost all through, even though she didn’t have to. There is not a more studious, more disciplined student I have seen. Challenges me. .
  • Man enough –am glad I get to do this one. It teaches me the ways of godly men.

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  • Starting the 100 Day Challenge with friends – It kicks off like a joke really, but unforgettable connections are born between strangers, and it inspires those who dare to be great. It also affirms that it’s possible to have a goal and stay true to it, right till the end.

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The future
God has been gracious to me. At 27, am looking to assist creatives kick out depression and be more loyal to their trades; am keener on encouraging the heart broken, as God leads me – it’s part of the reason am here.

Lessons for men

What must have gone through her mind the moment she heard about her husband’s demise was: ‘Oh my, I was just kidding. . .”

Because the two often held mock debates teasing each other about who would go first, before laughing it off. Now that my grandpa lost this duel, he owes her one when they meet again.

His life was full of color, and after living it boldly for 100 years, he leaves some few valuable lessons for men today:

Lessons – A man:

1. Is opinionated – before he gave up drinking, stories are told about how he threw rounds to younger men he found drinking in the pub. He’d later visit their homes in the evening and beat them up. Hehe. He believed that young men should not do alcohol.

2. Believes in a cause – his MAU MAU exploits read like a blockbuster, and because of them he got the nickname: Ndege (airplane) because he was swift. .

3. Is skilled at something – Although he was a heavy drinker in his mid years, he’d pick his tools of trade a few weeks before schools reopened, and by the d-day, all his 17 children had school fees to last them a term. He too would have something to warm his coffers till the next term. Yes, he was good at what he did.
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4. Doesn’t stop dreaming – [from an excerpt of a post I wrote 3 years ago . .]

With the advent of mobile phones in Kenya (1999/2000), he promised to own one despite his age. And a few years later he did. Well, that’s probably not a big deal, you’d think. But at 97, this man knows no rest. He supervises his shops, takes coffee to the factory, catches his usual banter. His eyes, they glint with hope. That dreams unfulfilled are still within reach.”

[He got into real estate at about 95]

5. Is a patriot – it’s the reason he wanted a gun in May this year, because any attack on Kenya should irk every one of us enough, to do something.
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As I hesitatingly accept that it is a generational transition – That with this hero’s loss, 10 days before Mashujaa (Heroes) Day, a new niece has been born to me; he has left big shoes: someday I hope my baby niece can at least write half as much about me as am writing about my grandpa today.

Sleep well | Welcome to the world toto.

C’est la vie.

A man and his hair

Rules get broken.

I prefer to be far-removed from my story. Telling it from the sidelines instead, as if am not really there.

But life is no straight line, and this one motions me to stay here and tell it.

About two years ago, I was at a casual event, busy pointing my camera here, there; when someone used it to take a photo of me, and as I sat back to view them all, one caught my eye. The one with a guy dressed exactly like me, with a face like mine, only his hairline thinning on the sides to form a V on his scalp – some slight furrows positioned on either side as if to protect it.

Like in a trance, I remember staring at the photo for a while, then mumbling something to myself: I had just recognized the face. It was mine. And as I squinted to look at it some more, I realized I didn’t know what to feel.

When did I lose a fraction of my hair? Life had been happening behind my back. Life always is.

And I constantly wonder if an elderly couple sees it coming when their last day of making love pulls a sinker on them; or how it is for a man who wakes up one day and realizes he can never walk again. Is it better when life ambushes, or is it more comforting when it comes stealthily?

So there I was – one day looking down on men with bald heads, thinking they had a deficiency in something, the next day literally looking up, keenly staring at their heads on the streets wondering exactly how my receding hair would end up; just thinning on the scalp or like a donut?

I didn’t care for the answer because my esteem plummeted for quite a while; yes my hair had betrayed me, and my way of dealing with it, was to shave extremely close to my scalp. Hell, here, not even my friend Maich with all that hair could help.

But then there’s genetics and that stuff. My grandpa and a few uncles are ‘bald eagles,’ using scales on this article – balding gracefully, some have a V, others – perfect hairlines. But it doesn’t bother me much now, how my cookie crumbles.

Life is happening. We are aging. Everyday.

Last Man Standing

How does it feel to roll the carpets of a generation, and watch another slowly unroll? At 100, my grandfather looks set to go another hundred.

With a hunched frame now, slower and more calculated steps, he gallantly marches on – his memory intact, mind alert and eyesight sharp. Sometimes I wonder if am taking as much good care of myself.

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So at 100, I ask him how his body feels. “Calm, like a Sunday afternoon,” he says – not in the exact words, of course.

Shipped to the front lines of the Second World War by the British, and back to become a toughened Mau Mau war veteran, his life has been nothing short of adventurous. Today he wants a gun, and only 4 days to sort the recent wave of terrorism in Kenya. “I may be an invalid, but I will bring it to an end,” he says, amidst our laughter. Amidst his soft, quiet anger. How can a few cruel minds kill and maim Kenyans like that?

A patriot.

A wise man, and . . .
A wise man won’t give advice unless you seek it
So upon prodding, I ask:

“What’s the most important thing in life?”
“No one can know what that is.”
“How can I maintain robust relationships?”
“Be a good man. But that goodness can only come from God, because in life there are people who can tell you things that make you angry.”
“And money, how important is money…”
“When you have too much of it, it depraves you, it makes you a vile man. When you have too little of it, again you become a vile man.”

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With the Missus

He’s not religious, but his reflections beam from the Good Book.

It’s a wonder when you live so long, and life doesn’t unseat your peace. When you can still appreciate little things each day, like he does, I’d say you are living a good life.

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This post was written on May 12th, 2014.

Sadly he passed away on Oct 10th, 2014 after a stroke.  The night before he passed on, I wrote this post Motions discouraged by what the stroke had done to him. Only I didn’t know that it was just a few hours, before he passes on.