Traditions worth upholding.

I consider myself a morden woman. A total 21st century woman with morden Ideals like equality and feminism. But I think some traditions are there to build us as a people and should definitely be up held.
I recently attended a dowry ceremony. My friend is getting married and as is tradition, the grooms family have to pay dowry. This is a tradition that is often misused. I say this because, the purpose of a dowry ceremony is 1. For both families to get to know each other. 2. To appreciate the girls family. Now some people, malicious people, try to use this as a money making opportunity. They keep asking for more and more money from the boy and his family which is not right.
I loved my friends dowry ceremony because of the respect both families had for each other. Nobody wanted to exploit or humiliate the other. It was a smooth sailing, stress free and happy occasion.

Traditionally after dowry had been paid. The girl’s family has to visit the boy’s home to see where their daughter’s new home will be. I loved this ceremony. It was the first of its kind I have ever attended so I don’t know if they are all like that, anyway, I loved that all people present were in full support of the couple to wed.

The girl was taken aside and given advice by married women. Women who have been married for two years to those who have been married for over thirty years all had invaluable advice to give the bride to be, which, I found to be amazing! Usually women shear horror stories and not success stories but all women present had only words of encouragement for the bride to be. The wisdom that was being passed on to this young bride to be was amazing and some would apply to all relationships. Platonic and romantic alike.
I think if I knew some of this information before, maybe I would still be in a relationship right now but it is what it is. 

I didn’t know that I would take way as much a I did from this occasion. In fact I didn’t think I would take away anything at all. It even made me get excited for my own such function. That said I am n no hurry to get married.

The groom to be was also spoken to by the married men and given advice and encouragement. He was told how he should treat his wife in their new home. I think if all young people who want to get married would go through such ceremonies and had as much support as this couple has, we would have a considerably lower divorce rate. It was a beautiful ceremony.
This is definitely a tradition worth up holding even in centuries to come by all modern women.


Soul searching

I have always been the type of person who gives 100% in all my relationship. I’m there 100% for my friends, people I’m in romantic relationships with and my family. When I care about people I’m very protective of them. I would go to the moon for the people I love.

I’m a very passionate person. I can passionately love and the line between love and hate is very thin. I can turn from passionately loving to passionately hatting in 2.5 seconds. I’m loyal to a fault too. These are my strengths and at the same time my weaknesses. I hold every one to the standards I hold myself. The thing about that is not everyone will live up to my standards or love me and be loyal to me as I am to them. This is a painful reality because I put out a lot for the people I love. I go above and beyond for the people I love and I expect the same from them. It hurts when people don’t see how far you are willing to go for them or how much you have already done for them. It hurts when you always compromise for people and they don’t appreciate it……the problem with love is, it just can’t be turned off. It can become hate or resentment or some other emotion but it just can’t be turned off. If you truly loved someone, and the relationship didn’t work out, you learn to live with that. That’s what getting over someone means. You still love them but at the same time you realise that you didn’t work. That person will always have a special place in your heart. Accepting that makes us stronger, makes us better people.
Its not easy to get over someone you love. Its like trying to kick an addiction. So every day is a struggle. You see things that remind you of that person or of things you did together, it makes everythings that much harder. Its becomes easier to live with as time goes by. The hurt you felt too will become easier to live with. Just be careful not to fall back in to old habits. Its not healthy.  It’s very tempting and exciting but not healthy.
Soul searching….still in progress.

Africa: Through African eyes

A lot has been written about this beautiful continent. Surprisingly a lot of the writers are not African. I am a little disturbed by the stereo types tied to Africa and I hope to break some of those stereo types by the end if this post.

I am Kenyan. I have been fortunate enough to visit three other African countries. 1. South Africa which, as its name implies, is at the southern end of the continent. 2. Uganda, which is right next to my mother country in the eastern part of the continent. And 3rd is Ghana in the west of Africa. So I feel I have a good sense of what is true about Africa. Although one might argue that Africa has 53 countries in it, how does 4 countries give me an accurate picture. Well, the truth is I don’t have an accurate picture but I can tell you for sure it’s not what’s being portrayed to the rest of the world either.

I live in Nairobi which is Kenya’s capital city. We have the central business district which is full of skyscrapers. This may come as a shock to many who have never visited Africa. We don’t have animals running around, I don’t live in a village with mud houses and thached roofs. Almost nobody does anymore. You will only find mud houses in very rural areas. Most of Africa is more developed than what is portrayed.

I have never suffered from malaria or typhoid. I have lived in Africa my whole life and never once have I suffered from either of these diseases. So Africa is not full of malaria and typhoid. I’m not saying that these awful diseases don’t exist, they do and they do affect a lot of people in Africa but that’s not all that happens in Africa. The picture that’s portrayed when ill informed non Africans are talking about Africa is: a malnourished child with dirty ill fitting clothes and flies all over his mouth. That is the scene in refugee camps or in war torn countries. Which is not a regular scenario. Have any country go through war then take pictures during and after the war then tell me if it will be any different from these photos used to showcase Africa. Africa is beautiful. Africa is love. Africa is way more than what is being portrayed of her. I understand these photos are sometimes used to bring awareness to issue that Africa is facing but let them be used for just that.
Another thing that bugs me is when my country is being talked about its usually just a savana landscape with lions and Massai people jumping yet that is not all that Kenya has to offer. We have the only city in the world that is a business hub and has a national park in its back yard. So if one is going to take photos of Nairobi cover all aspects of Nairobi. Speaking of animals, in the other african countries I visited, non have animals roaming about either. They very good infrastructure too. Africa is not just mud houses, dusty roads and poverty! We have world class hospitals, universities, roads and social amenities.
Africa is diversity. We have over one thousand ethnic groups on our continent. That means we are rich in culture. We also have the largest mineral deposit in the world, ranging from oil to gold to diamonds to titanium to even simple every day used minerals like salt. People pity Africa and think Africa is a place that just needs aid all the time. But the truth is Africa is a sleeping giant and the ‘developed’ nations are scared that we will wake up. The reality of Africa waking up is not too far into the future, in fact she has already started to wake up. With the example of countries like Botswana and Rwanda who have one the fastest growing economics in the world, It is only a matter of time. Africa is a contender. A potential super power. So report accurately and get your cameras ready to report Africa’s coming of age story
because it will be spectacular!