A few things about me

Archive for the ‘Politics/Development’ Category

Powerful Women

I finally finished reading February’s edition of “Vogue” the one with Mrs Obama on the cover.. The feature articles included Mrs Malinda Gates (wife of Bill Gates) Queen Rania of Jordan, Carla Bruni first lady of France and Stephnie Meyer (author of Twilight series novels that have taken the publishing industry by storm)

I was impressed, inspired and spured on to continue being the best woman I can be. Mrs Gates story was very interesting. The article mainly featured her work with her foundation and what they aim to do. The same with Queen Rania’s article. Over and above that, what moved me was thier dedication to thier families and how well they have maintained thier bodies. With regards to how they dress Mrs Obama stands out best because her fashion is so accessible to the rest of the world. She manages to look elegant, beautiful, feminine and poised in clothes from the high street as well as designer stuff. And she is not afraid to repeat clothes. She is an everyday woman. She gives me hope that if I just get “serious” about my dressing, I could also look fly and I do not need a president, millionaire or king as a husband. I believe that this is why Mrs O’s opinion polls in the US are in the 70s while her hubby’s are in the 60s. Way to go Mrs O.

Reading about these women and their work got me to thinking “eh Mrembo here you are admiring women so far out of your reach.. what about women you know”. That thought led me to my mother. Yes I consider her a powerful brilliant woman. My mother’s career is in developmental work and she rocks in that area. More importantly she really enjoys what she does. She will sometimes call me after the end of a project and I can hear excitement in her voice  as she talks about pulling off the project. It was from her that I first heard the term “grass root”. I was about 13 years old. She once told me “I really enjoy what I do.. the only part I don’t like is writing up the report.. lakini I am also very good at that”. Inspite of many challenges she has not opted out of her career because “she was born to do this” as she said to me.

Anyway so I was thinking about the way she has impacted her home village with her efforts that have had nothing to do with her work. In her own way she has managed to bring “maendelo” to her village area. My mother does not have a lot of money to her name but she does what she can to ensure that things happen in her home area. As a community we are a very small group.. many times forgotten by government but through small endeavors by those who can things are getting done one step at a time. And in that way my mother joins the ranks of Queen Rania and Malinda Gates.

She makes me proud…my mother. When she was here last summer we really talked and I got to really know her and know how things went down with my dad. The challenges she faced. The decisions she made that have impacted mine and my sisters life forever. Like the decision to send us to very good private schools on her small government salary. I said to her “but I thought daddy used to pay the fees” she said “in the begining no.. he was not for it and wanted me to send you to xyz… nikakata… I wanted you girls in abc and decided to pay for it. That I did by taking coperative loans etc… and eventually your father agreed to pay the fees”.

Details of things I did not understand or know about her all came to light last summer and I stand in awe of the woman that my mother is. On the whole mum is a calm, quiet, chubby, intelligent, funny, sensitive woman. She is also a very strong woman. It is from her that I have learnt that if you are not happy in a marriage you walk away. She is the one who walked.. not willing to put up with stuff. She walked at a time when everyone around her was telling her to “vumilia” (hang on). I have always been of the opinion that it is ok to break a marriage when deal breakers are broken. I also know that it is not easy to be a single  mum. I must also say that though she was a single mum.. my dad finally stepped up and in terms of school fees and “child support” he did provide consistently so unlike other women, my mum always knew there was school fees and child support coming in from my dad regularly.

It is because of my mother that my sister and I have travelled the world and East Africa.  I love her, I consider her a powerful woman.

This is my appreiciation of my mother. Not thorough but a small reflection of how I feel about my mother. Don’t get me wrong, she is no angel. Sometimes she frustrates me to no end.. but she’s my mother.. she is allowed anything.

Mini crash!

Did I tell you all that Danish is trying to kick my ass and I am like No No No.. No.. No..!

Me; the TV addict cannot even tell you what is currently on TV. The only thing I know is that House is on on Thursday nights at 9.00pm. Bas! The rest of the time.. Danish Danish Danish

My brain is crying out for a mini break. Can’t be bothered to pick up my books and catch up on verbs, tenses and conjugation.

Umm……. M of Thinkers Room has an interesting post about Obama. I was going to leave a response that differed to his opinion then I hit a road block. As I begun to respond, I realised how asinine (always wanted to use that word)  my response was.  Mpaka I felt foolish! So I shyly deleted the response and left his “digz”.

Thing is in my head I know what I want to say and it sounds intelligent, when I start writing it down it just falls apart. I agree that people should not vote for Obama solely cause he is black… but at the same time for the sake of history and the unprecedentedness of it all.. .. we(I mean they) should vote for him. Surely surely that should be good enough reason to put the man in the white house ama?? My argument is “for the sake of history, lets vote for Obama” That’s how I am looking at it. The terrible thing is that I cannot even tell you what he stands for. Yeah I know he stands for change and off-shore drilling, High taxes for the rich.. or was it less.  I am so pathetic like that. Yet Imagine I have an opinion on the Obama -McCain saga. (McCain is too old and he was mean to his first wife. Ok so he was POW for 5 years.. but he is old).. surely surely Mrembo!!!

Let me hush up now.

I have learnt afew things from watching all those videos on TED.com.

1- I am not as intelligent as I think I am. (those were some very intelligent Africans speaking and speaking facts.. not just mambo mambo but serious facts and figures. Like did you know not a single African country as been able to meet exportation quotas (for whatever they were supposed to export). Did you know that out of 53 nations in Africa only 6 (as at 2007 -TED conference) have civil wars.

2- I need to start paying more attention to detail and that starts here, like editing before I publish, I mean the number of spelling mistakes and grammatic errors is appalling. ( I am sure this sentence alone is resplendent with them) Another word I have been wanting to use and I it is used correctly in this sentence given its meaning ama?

3 – I should continue to stay away from dicussing any political matters because I know nothing about them. A lot of what I think I know is usually skewed and then I react from an emotional place vis-a-vis a rational place. However I would make a fantastic political strategist.

4- There is something hot about that Massai MP. (sorry I could not resist! I need to be more serious.. but there was something there!)

I need to go to bed now.. this post reflects the silliness that I am feeling.

Goodnite y’all and nope I have not edited because it’s late, I am tired, I still need to brush my teeth, pack my school bag and get into bed. But I have read it through 2 times.


This has totally awakened me from the deep apathy that had found a resting place in me. I will still stay away from politics(too hot to handle! interestingly I come from a political family, really, both on dad’s side and mum’s side!) but not from the other stuff. The part about “one individual carrying others behind them” has resonated so loudly with me.

Well done to Ms. Okolloh

(and there I was, at the time TED thing was going on.. saying, and I admit with shame; (what the heck talk talk talk.. and nothing ever changes! little did I know)

Added 1st September 2008

I have been stuck at TED.com watching the videos on Africa. It’s worth a watch.