Eating with the sinners & bedding Presidents

Why did Jesus eat with the sinners? I guess it is the same reason I hang out with those that no one ever pays attention to unless if they need their money or services. I find them good company and they have extra Extra(Emphasis on that) ordinary stories. These are the kinda of women who will tell you stories of their numerous encounters with police and immigration officers and in the end, they were released. The fear of being in confined places has long gone out of the window. They have taken their business to the international level. They no longer trade in local currency. That was when they were still naive and were not able to understand their market value.

I might sound like I uphold their trade in high esteem, which I do. I applaud these women because they are abiding citizens of the society, taxpayers and bring in foreign exchange. Isn’t that what the government is looking for? Nationals who contribute to the economy and sustain households. I admire their resilience when it comes to the challenges they face. I say go, girls because they have managed to empower themselves through their activities. Many scorn them for obvious reasons but who has given them the audience to know who they are and their great secrets? Stones are being thrown like the rest of us do not sin in the light. They hold secrets of world leaders. If you are in bed with national leaders, you become a national treasure. You understand national security or how to get through the back doors. By the way, how does one get into the president’s bed? I need to research and write that book before someone else steals my idea. I would love that as my next title.

I have listened to stories of being smuggled into hard to penetrate countries using private planes, construction cars, containers, going below and above wire meshes. A movie scene would be magnificent. I am already on the storyboard; No suitcase, no passport, just the clothes on her body moving like a snake across border lines while watching out for the border police.

How about a story of their time in jail? Waiting, imagining the hours left to go to court or when will they see their families again. I wonder about their scarred bodies if they die out in the desert or killed at border points, where do their bodies end up? Most of them have no identification and only wait to make a name for themselves in whatever country they land in.

They don’t carry the horror stories in their eyes. Their past is in their heart that is why it is tightly shut. Keys thrown away. They have perfected the art of secrecy, posture, marketing, serenity when it is required and have an honorary degree in public relations. I am always blown away by people who can do things I can never do or try. They live by a code that allows them to manipulate and penetrate all regions. I never get in trouble for hanging out with them because it is once in a while. I use that time to ask all the questions…yeah all the questions that other people would love to ask. It is a service that I have taken on to ensure that those nosy individuals in society understand how, why, where, when and what the trade is. It is the oldest trade in the world, the rest of the information keeps my mind wondering if the mentioned friends understand how rare they are.

Whenever I chance upon ‘my friends’, I let someone in my family know what I am doing. Most times they don’t care. They just send a text, Be careful yet I want to tell them the juicy bits before my memory chooses to destroy some of that data.

These are the masters of all trades because they deal with different men from all walks of life. I had the pleasure of attending women studies sessions at the university, which opened up my eyes and heart to aspects of the female world. Our lecturer asked a question one time, a question that helped me to be more curious and observant.

Where do you think all the men go when their women deny them sex.”

Our answer was; “Other women in society.”

BE specific,” she said. “Which Women? The sex workers, the transgenders and other minorities.”

Some communities have acknowledged and embraced this for what it is while others push the most amazing stories of these women under the society’s rugs. But you can not hide something that is already breathing and surviving in the broad-day light.

They have been used as spies, contractors, mercenaries and part of tourist attractions. They have survived pimps, cracks, beasts and evil beings. The only thing left for them is; to survive, develop and keep all the secrets of their past intact. If I am privy to some information, I might as well enjoy it.

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What people mean when they say you have changed?

You have heard it too? Same here. I have probably heard this statement countless of times from friends and family. It’s okay if it is coming from the people in the community who have seen you grow taller, plump or wiser. Awkward if it’s from the people close to you. The hardest part of this changing is how to react to it.

If I don’t feel the change in my physique or witness the changes. All this time, I thought I had reached a point where my body was not betraying me anymore. It was safe to say that everything was where it was supposed to stop and not succumb to gravitation forces. There is no such thing has rude, poor or polite response, Give them your best;

  • ‘Really??’ (While turning around and blushing off)
  • ‘Seriously….I don’t feel different.’
  • Smiling politely because this is the easiest way ever invented by God or someone out there to get out of trouble or scrutiny.

What we always forget is that it is very difficult to brush off that remark. You look in the mirror for any visible signs of maturity or ask your peers whether you have changed. But that is always the wrong category to ask such…Birds of the same feather, flock together. They can never say you have gained weight because chances are, your weight and size is the same as all the people in your circle. I sat down and decided to come up with the appropriate response to my people.

Family
Family comes first. That is why you need to be a little nicer to them when the only thing on their lips is; ‘You have grown up.’  This is done in the way that they turn you around, touch your hair and actually make you catwalk in the little space they have left for you in their embrace. It’s part of the family routine. It is all love and necessary attention. It is expected. If you don’t get that question at all, your family members are scared of the consequences of the words ‘you have changed.’ They are scared that you are already at the edge and will just flip. Perfect response; Smile and wave it off. In this scenario, I am imagining the penguins of Madagascar saying, ‘Just smile and wave boys, Smile and wave.

From friends

Slap them really hard. Why are they asking for the change yet they have been there with you during the transition. Real friends do not notice you have changed unless if the wave has hit your connection. The question comes from frenemies. Ask them instead what is it about them that made you change? Is it the fact that you are not their my pet anymore?
Maybe your relationship worked better when you were still making them the centre of your being.

Others

Its none of their business. Let them conform to the new YOU.

Sad Eyes

Whenever I meet people I look into their eyes to see what story is held within. Some have these puppy eyes that are also synonymous with sponge Bob when he is asking for something. Those eyes that request you to give the whole world to one person. I love those eyes especially when they sparkle and give you hope. They bring the sun and rainbow over the entire world.

Then there those other eyes. I recognize them because I have seen them in my older pictures. By the time I took these images I didn’t know I was miserable. Those eyes so pronounced that you could not the huge misery in them. My question at this moment is always; How did I miss that? Because the camera could tell it like it is.

Next question: Why didn’t the people close to me tell me about this?

So I become conscious about these eyes but the more you avoid something, the more likely it will become part of you. Remember; What you think about the most is what you attract in your life. Oh, How misery loves company. I could see those eyes in the people around me and in me. I could not get rid of them. Every picture told of my inner turmoil. But I felt fine, Healthy wise I was well hoping to live a long and fruitful life making memories every single day. But that was not enough for the images I took. I smiled, fake smiled; you know what they say, fake it until you make it. I was going to fake smile until the happiness found its way to the outside.

Solution:

I did what I love. My list always had yoga, trying new food, going new places, meeting new people especially ordinary people because they are fun and extraordinary. They have Superman powers to do what you cannot do. They teach you to smile through the pain. Their smiles are genuine. They don’t need to fake a smile. If they don’t want to smile for you, they will ask why they need to should smile. If they smile, it’s because they want too and love it.

Solution for All:

It’s not enough to give your smile to someone who doesn’t have one. They will drain it if you don’t show them the source of the smiles and happiness. It’s like giving someone fish every single moment and you don’t show them how to fish. Let’s go back to the basics. Don’t make them your dependents for happiness, let them reach the source so they can bring you some love and happiness especially in those moments when your smile bank is empty.

Don’t forget to smile, it makes the world better. It heals it’s scars and kisses it better.

 

 

When Kids are so Mean

10 year-old: ‘Is this laptop yours?’

Me: ‘Of Course.’

10 year-old: ‘I am surprised’

Me: “Hmmm. Why?’

The 10 year-old smiles and I can see his lips burning up with the reply. Then he states; ‘The first time I saw you, you looked poor. I was very sure You could not afford anything more less a laptop.’

I smile and I don’t even look at this child anymore. I continue to type away on my laptop and ignore this child. I can never blame a child for their innocence or ignorance. Forget about Kids say the darndest things, this is a child being blunt or mean. Sometimes children are just being kids but the words that come out of their mouth…improbable. Their utterances are most times guiltless and intentional or not, they hurt deeply.

He stops looking at the laptop and holds the phones on my table. I have this phone that has become part and parcel of my being. If you see it anywhere, just know I am around. The screen is broken, the yellow cover has seen better days but it still holds my memories and it has been to 3 continents. That gets it into the monumental hall of my country. The 10 year-old is more curious about the 5 year-old yellow monumental phone. He turns it around looks it a little bit more. A few minutes before, his parent had just asked me to use it because his phone was having issues. He had watched as this magnificent electronic equipment had helped his father make important calls that ensured they got the mobile money that could be turned into fuel for the family vehicle.

10 year-old: ‘I am going to get an iPhone. Not these cheap phones that you have here.’

Me: ‘How sure are you that your Papa is going to get you that phone? You should deserve these things you request for.’

At this point, I feel sorry for him. I have never received any phone from my parents. I got my first phone when I received my first salary. Of course I am lying. I got my Ericson from a boy who liked me. He expected me to pick up his calls every time he called which was impossible. So I gave it back and I kept my sim card. That is a story for another day. Back to 10 year-old; I should have told him how I earned my first phone. That’s another lesson for him too.

He continued: ‘I am going to go to Dubai.’

Me: ‘Is you dad taking you?’

Boy: ‘My uncle is a pilot in Abu Dhabi. He will take me to Dubai.’

In reply, I decided to speak his language. I opened my folders on the phone, I started to show him my memories of Dubai and Abu Dhabi because as a traveller you need to show and not tell people you want to see the world. You go to these locations and take lots of pictures using your phone or anybody who is with you. The point is get there, have proof of the traveling.

‘Show off (as he covers his face)… show off. You want me to be jealous of you,’ he yelled.

Me: ‘You can never be jealous of an adult because we can afford to travel and attain certain things in life. If you are jealous, it is wasted.’

He does not give up that easily and a few minutes later; ‘You need to pay me for wasting my time. I have been here for a while and you have not helped me with my homework.’

Me:’ I think you should pay me first because I have just taught you your first life lessons.’

Him: ‘Whaattt?’

Me: ‘I have just given you one of the most important life lesson. People will always waste your time. Remember to be stingy with your time from now on and use it wisely.’

I saw that he didn’t get it because he continued with his ‘pay me, pay me’ song. It was irritating in a way and I ended by on a video call with one of my friends. I told her what was happening and she jokingly asked;

‘Why are you fighting with the boy?’

That is when I realized that as an adult, I should not be involved in an altercation with any young person. You never win such wars. Be an adult and sort this behavior before it ruins someone else’s day. This boy had pushed me into a corner where it meant that whatever angle I used, I was going to lose because who starts an exchange with a 10-year old. And it seems he was not done with me as yet. He strongly said; ‘Next time I come here, I don’t want to see you.’

Was I being bullied by a boy and I had willingly allowed myself to be dragged in an emotionally draining exchange? I decided he will not have the last word. Looking into his eyes, I said; ‘Look for me in 10 years, I want to see how life is treating you Mister.’

Because he didn’t understand what I meant, he gave me this puzzled look and covered his face with a black book. I concluded that he had a conscious. Otherwise, he would have gone on with homework without a care of what he had said. I pressed on; ‘I am going to tell your Papa about this.’

Him: ‘You should forget about that. Don’t tell him. Jesus forgave, you should also.’

Did I forget and forgive him? Of course I forgive him and I did him a favor. I told his Papa that he should try to talk to his son to learn the meaning of good verbal  communication and avoid rude remarks. His father asked what I meant.

Me: ‘You should ask your son. Let him tell you his version of the exchange.’

Father: ‘I am going to ask him on the way home.’

As he drove off, I had a feeling he was not going to speak to his son about this. He only said that so that he does not look like a bad parent. I wondered if any parent who came to me and told me my son was misbehaving, would I want to speak to him about it? Or would I choose to ‘love’ my child and protect him from all those who think he is not an angel? How does a parent handle information about their child’s behavior when it comes from other people? Does it mean, you don’t know your child or that you are bad parent? God open our eyes to see who our children are really, especially around strangers. That they might be humble and play fair with all people regardless of their age, race and disabilities. We are one after all.

Don’t let people that don’t matter too much, matter too much.-Wes Moore

 

 

 

 

People Who have Known Pain

I am talking about the individuals who have been to hell and back. Those who understand that after the rain, the sun will always come up. When the hailstones stop raining down on the plants, some will remain to carry on the legacy. 

They understand that after the fall, you have only one option: to raise your self from the floor and make the world a better place. Those are my heroes.

Then there is another category. I will not waste my word count on those who have known pain and choose to take revenge or inflict more pain on others. They would rather see others suffer and be humiliated. They enjoy the abuse and screams that come with the hailstones. Who told you that you have to transfer your heartache and pain to others? We will not entertain excuses of ‘I have suffered and been in the darkest corner.’ If you have been there, why do you choose to drag others there? No wonder, hurt people hurt. They don’t know any better or pretend to ignore all the red lights that come with the territory.

Solution

Someone should inject them with a shot of love. If it cannot be injected let someone create love cocktails that hit the stomach, brain, and heart at the same time so people can change. I wonder why love shots are not available at the hospital. When you feel unloved, the doctor should prescribe something. 

Back to my heroes, thank you for kissing and making it better despite what you have been through. It’s your story of overcoming the challenges that inspire not only me but the millions.  You will not get a standing ovation for your actions or an award for making it better but your contribution changes the cycle of life. You will not receive the credit in this lifetime because they don’t understand how you are still here. They ask; How does a person like that still wake up in the morning and smile despite the challenges they have had? But we know, you borrow from the well of inner strength to energizes your breath. It’s because of your unwavering faith and patience that others choose to believe. It’s due to that fact that now you understand the language of the universe.

What does not kill you makes you stronger indeed. We are glad you are not many so we can appreciate and celebrate your contribution. You smile deeper because you understand that if someone had smiled at you at that hour, you would have been healed. You are unforgettable because you help so many on the road and never ask for anything back. Some are not aware you are real. Others would not exist without you. A mother would be homeless. A child would not have something to eat. The government would not know right from wrong. They still don’t know but we need a rude awakening once in a while.

You reject the evils in society. You don’t turn away when someone needs help especially when you are tired. I see how you work hard with less pay. But even from those peanuts, you give a percentage those society has forgotten and neglected. History will not forget you. Your name may not appear in the books of history but you will remain in their hearts. Don’t worry if they forget how you helped them. This is your contribution to society. You will always know and remember how they felt when you were there in time.

How Often Do We Get to choose Friends?

1998

That is the year I realized my kinda of company didn’t relate at all. I never found it odd or surprising because I liked all of my friends because of their weirdness. Normal is overrated and I do deal well with pretentious beings. It’s like I had a friend for anything. I would keep one for escape routes, another for being funny, I remember one who was 5 years older than me(am sure she was only 2 years older but my mom said 5) she knew all the DJs at night clubs and was a great dancer. I liked their stories especially since they potrayed a real picture of the world where I was forbid from going. None of them liked the other. If I was with this friend, it meant I could not be in the company of the other. I preferred it that way because I still don’t know who chose the other. While on the topic of friendship, I still think all sides choose the other. It is the unspoken rule, other wise it collapses.

2016

I celebrated an addition to my years and my friends turned up. There was no interaction between any of them. Nothing like one wanting to save the mobile number of another so they can link up later with out me. When it came for time to leave, I had to say farewell to each one individually at different intervals. They avoided the group goodbyes. My mom wondered why they were not chatting. I don’t even remember if I made introductions because as host I had to allocate them enough time with me. The question my mom forgot to ask is why all these years I choose friends who can’t stay in the same room together. If I was not the common factor, would these people ever know the other? Does it happen to other people too? What does that say about me? I still take full participation in acquisition of my friends but I choose weirdos, happy-go people, misfits, the no-ones, hilarious, I hate the-world types, wonder women, the suicide squads, the would be president, egoistic, bitches, broken, what am saying is I don’t discriminate when it comes to friendship. My choice is already made for me by my heart and soul. The brain only comes in at a later stage to be caution.

That Article I almost didn’t Publish

Me: We should get better at saying hello.

Sister: Hello

Me: Hello

Sister: Basically the communication has broken down. I don’t know if we can even relate anymore.

Words hurt and this is how it went down. I think this is our good bye. This is the moment I realized that the sisterhood had been shattered. Fancy ways of making the break up seem easy but yet the words we can not even relate seem huge. They hang around and you do not know what to do with them. We can not relate. That big elephant in the room being dropped in a form of a chat. What follows we can not relate? My friend Twinnie will probably say thank you and it would be the most hilarious thing I have heard in years. How about I respond with ‘And you are telling me now? How does one continue with such a conversation?

Coincidence or not, I had been watching the scene of Arya and her sister Lady Stark in the series Game of Thrones. Though Arya was back at Winterfell, you could see that their separation over the years had not made their relationship better. The absence from each other had created this void that could not be filled however much they tried. I started to remember their lines;

Lady Sansa: “You are angry. Sometimes anger makes people do stupid things.”

Arya: “Sometimes fear makes them do unfortunate things. I will go with anger….”

Again the next scene, we see Lady Sansa, as she prefers to be called going through Arya’s room. The tension in the room is real.

Arya: “See we both wanted different things while we were growing up. You wanted to be a queen. I wanted to be a knight going to battles.”

Another coincidence, I watched the TED talk about ‘The magic of not giving a F’. While she found the magic of giving F***(Time, energy and money) to things she cares about, she didn’t look happy throughout the talk. So If you let go of all the things that are weighing you down, shouldn’t you be more cheerful. Perhaps it’s her nature that she cannot seem cheerful. Or did the years of giving her F to ungrateful people wear her out? (Forgive my analysis because I always look for answers to everything even after the observations)

Which brings me back to my response to my sister. I hope it is as short as I wish it to be.

Me: “I promise to be real while jotting down this. It is sad that after growing up, we have taken different paths. Despite repeated choices, I always take the path that makes me happy even with all its difficulties. Sometimes am lucky enough not to choose my next role in life because the heart decides it for me and you like logic. I have made mistakes and I have ensured you were part of it by being my confidant. You lent me your ears and always had something to say about my inhibitions. I have learned to laugh and love my mistakes. It’s the things that I have not been able to do that keep me awake. I wish I taken part in this or that. I wish someone had not talked me into out of this.

I missed those activities which I left because other people didn’t feel were okay for me. They made me feel that If I participated in that, I would never be associated with me. I have always known I will never fit in with everybody. I have achieved a lot by overcoming my weaknesses and troubles. That is how I have learned who I am. Your notion ‘I should do better’ was good but some people grow well with a pitch of different cultures, beliefs, and environment. Maybe that gave you an impression that I had learned from other cultures is who I have become. I have allowed myself to fall in love, be loved and even hurt. Many times I have lived at the edge because that is life. It’s always beautiful at the tip of the mountain. I know you can never live at the edge where you are likely to somersault, swim with the actual sharks or go down the water raft. I can not conform to your values or your psycho-analysis of how my life should be. My adventurous and some times impulsive traits get the better of me. I need to make sure when I am old, the stories will be great to tell.

I keep imagining myself on road trips this time with my partner still looking at the world. That is not how you envision my life. That is why you have given up on me. I have failed to conform. Whatever your reality about me, I will choose happiness at every corner not misery from other people. I don’t know what became of you but I hope you find what makes you happy. I have taken countless advice from you for a great part of my life and used it. Some of it back fired because that was not me. It was not tailored to suit my nature or ambitions. The last time I saw you, you were not with me. You were distant perhaps thinking about your work or something else. I kept talking to you as usual but something was off. You told me you had a feeling that you will not see me for a long time which I believed because I wanted to be anywhere except my country.

But as far as I know, Arya and Sansa relationship will never be amended. They are different people. They have always been and so it shall be. So here is; I will see you later at my wedding, a relative’s burial or when we accidentally meet on the street. I hope it will not be in a place where we will be stuck for several minutes. Promise not to make it awkward because other people will not understand. I don’t know whether the little or nothing relationship will make it past those stares and questioning eyes but as I said; “Let’s perfect saying the word Hello. Because that is all we have until a tragedy hit. Those have a way of bringing people together. We had time to boost our emotional attachment to each other but shit happens. Hello has never hurt any body’s ego. The next hello will be 2018 or 2020.”