Of Coffee, Condolences and Hugs

If you were having coffee with me we would be having a cuppa ginger and honey tea, I am trying to soothe away a cold and bring some warmth into my life, after several days of a funeral wake and the burial of a dearly departed uncle.

lemon tea

“Nematambudziko” that is the Shona translation for my condolonces; the standard response is “Akaoonekwa”  which literally translates to they we were witnessed. To be honest I have never really understood what it all means and when someone says that, I try to look appropriately grief-stricken enough as I mumble a response back and wriggle myself out of hugs and evading invasive personal questions, we grieve in our own ways and life, well it goes on………

If you were having coffee with me, I would ask you that unless someone where bereaved is there a standard length of time that is acceptable for a hug? Some people hug you like they are channeling their inner kidnapper holding you down so that you can never ever leave ………forever….

If you were having coffee with me, I would ask you if you remember the Colcom pie I menationed in my last Coffee Chat  well guess what the company released its first official statement on their product:

Pork Payi?

“In August 2015 Colcom commissioned a new, largely automated plant to replace its previous aged and inefficient plant to increase production capacity required to meet the increase in demand….. While it was anticipated that the new plant would be able to produce similar pies, in practice this was found not to be the case.”

“Whilst maintaining the original Colcom pie has been the objective since the commissioning of the new pie plant…….”
“And we have committed significant resources to achieve this result including seeking the assistance of international technical experts, it has until now not been possible to replicate all aspects of that product.

Three years since they commissioned a new plant production has trebled while the quality has gone done, I guess its a matter of quantity over quality and watching the zeros in the bank add up………

If you were having coffee with me, I would tell you the election madness is here, I just got an sms from an aspiring candidate which not only asks me to vote for them but addresses me by name as a fellow comrade and I am busy trying to wrap around how they got my name and number and if someone somewhere is violating some privacy codes of conduct or did I agree to this in those terms and conditions I never got round to actually reading

Have an awesome week ahead

~B

PS so by some fortuitous turn of events I got me some four free movie passes and now I am struggling with wether I should

A) take four friends to see one movie

B) take one friend to see two movies

C) take two different friends to two different movie each

D) go watch four movies all by myself

Decisions decisions what would would you do?

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Of The Art Of Conversation 3,2,1 – Quote Me!

I was nominated by The Britchy One who blogs at Bitchin In The Kitchen for this quotes challenge. The topic for this particular challenge is The Art Of Conversation, for me conversation is a subtle art, since I have more conversations in my head and on paper than out loud and I appreciate having conversations with people who get it.

conversations

Rules: 3.2.1 Quote Me!

• Thank the Selector

• Post 2 quotes for the dedicated Topic of the Day.

• Select 3 bloggers to take part in ‘3.2.1 Quote Me!’

Note: Although this is the topic for today there is no specific deadline to it, meaning you can answer as and when.

Today’s Topic: The Art of Conversation.

alice-with-queen-of-hearts

Alice laughed “There’s no use trying,” she said; “one can’t believe impossible things.”
“I daresay you haven’t had much practice,” said the Queen. “When I was younger, I always did it for half an hour a day. Why, sometimes I’ve believed as many as six impossible things before breakfast.”
Alice in Wonderland.

v is for vendetta

Evey: Are you like a crazy person?

V: I am quite sure they will say so. But to whom may I ask am I speaking?

Evey: I’m Evey.

V: Evey? E-V – of course you are.

Evey: What do you mean by that?

V: It means I, like God, do not play with dice and don’t believe in coincidence. Are you hurt?

-From the movie V is for Vendetta

 

My nominations:

Mable of Mable’s Rants

Dante of My Dialectics

Claudine 

 

 

Of Love In The Time Of Chocolate Cake

Guest Post

Love in the time of chocolate

Chocolate Cake

The rich chocolatey smell of the cake overwhelms my nostrils, coating the fine hairs with thoughts of warm crushed cocoa beans. I savour the heft of the slice in my hand, marvelling at the glossy, delicate swirls of chocolate butter cream. My mouth is heavy with saliva. I close my eyes and lean in for that first eager bite.
A bright shaft of light pierces my eyelids and a voice drills into my head: vasikana havasweri vakarara. Confused I open my eyes. Where is my cake? Where is the chocolatey goodness that was meant to transport me to confectionery seventh heaven? As my mother continues to bustle around the room, the clouds lift. It was all a dream. A beautiful tantalising dream cruelly snatched away by another person’s intervention. I was too young at the time to know that it would be a recurring theme, though sadly too often it was my dreams being snatched away in real life, with no warm bed to snuggle back into.
As a black girl growing up in Harare, I learnt early on that I did not have the luxury of sleeping in during the school holidays. By 6am my mother would have woken me up to get about my industrious day. Because my training to be the perfect wife could not be left to chance and circumstance and sleeping in after 6am.

Zimbabwean society places a very high value on a woman being married. As a young girl, your waking moments are devoted to furthering the cause of your future marriage. A family does not just raise a daughter, their combined efforts are preparing a wife. A woman who will not only be an excellent cook and homekeeper, but one whose focus is on keeping her husband happy. And if she can issue forth from her loins strong strapping sons to carry on his family life, she has fulfilled her God-given purpose. She has earned her title of A Real Woman. But A Real Woman training takes time and sacrifice. When you are younger, the unfairness of watching your brothers play outside, with their ball made from the brightly-coloured sacks the potatoes you spent hours peeling came in, becomes something of a permanent friend. You don’t yet possess the sophisticated lexis to describe the unfairness, but you feel it deeply. You feel it when you are the one to pluck that live chicken. Smell it when you need to clean and squeeze out its intestines. Bleed it as you cut deftly through the bones to make sure there is enough chicken to go around at dinner time, in the hope that no unexpected visitors drop by as dinner is to be served. Season that tomato and onion chicken stew with a large dollop of unfairness and as you suckle the marrow of those bones and lick the juices dripping down your arms, unfairness cuts off your contented burps because the mountain of dishes still awaits you. To be a good young black girl is to know service and unfairness intimately.

  • Zimbabwean society raises us to be perfect wives for imperfect men

A girl born into a relatively traditional Zimbabwean family is a potential return on investment in the bride price that can be charged for her. For those lucky enough to be blessed with natural good looks and child-bearing hips, their value increases exponentially. As early as when you are a chubby-cheeked toddler, aunts are already exclaiming what a pretty wife you will make one day. Before you even have full command of your own bowels, plans are already underfoot to offload you for a few beasts and healthy wad of cash. Because your beauty is not your own, your beauty belongs to the family to financially maximise on, at hopefully not too distant a point in the future.

So now it’s 6.01am. You have lifted your head off the pillow. And you groan inwardly at the thought of pillows because today is a laundry day and all the sheets need to be washed. Six pairs of sheets and pillowcases that need to be washed by hand, hung out to dry, ironed and then beds remade. All before 3pm because the evening meal needs to be prepared and ready by 6pm. You don’t want to miss the start of wrestling on tv by not getting your timings right. You trudge to the bathroom and complete a cursory ablution. You will bath once the laundry’s done and the house swept and floors polished and breakfast and lunch dishes put away and the meat simmering on the stove. 12 years old and you already have the house running like clockwork.

As you proceed to scrub the kitchen floor on hands and knees, your older brother trudges in from outside, trailing muddy footprints to the fridge. Sadly, you don’t yet know any expletives to tell him what a fucking cunt he is for dirtying your floor. But the anger is real and hot and burns in your throat. For all he knows about clean floors, there is a Floor Elf that whizzes in every afternoon and abracadabraes all the dirt away. You don’t hate your brother exactly, but you swallow the unfairness each time he walks into the house dragging in smells of sunshine and rolling around in the grass and the happy dampness of hosing each other down in water fights.

You go back to clean up his muddy footprints and look on the floor with a kind of grim satisfaction. You are confident you have done enough to ensure not being made to re-do it as your mother’s opprobrium rains down on you, warning you that uchatinyadzisa wadzoswa. What could be more humiliating than your future husband returning you to your family because you could not scrub a floor properly. How would you ever live down the shame of being a slatternly wife who could not maintain hearth and home? There wouldn’t be enough earth to swallow you whole!

To be an average Zimbabwean woman is to know the fear of never getting married. To be one of those women looked down upon with a certain degree of contempt and pity, with a side of What If She Steals Our Men fear for good measure. So you learn early on to comport yourself in a manner that makes people remark kuti mwana ane tsika iyeye. You sit with your legs tightly closed, and in lax moments where your legs betray you and fall open, one eagle eyed glare from your mother is enough to jam your legs back together, straining your muscles in abject fear of dropping your guard again.

Requests to bring more tea for the guests are a blessing in disguise as you can discreetly wipe away the sweat that has been pouring down your legs in superglued legs exertion. You are young, but the need to be nice in company has been drilled into you. Cautions of not running around like a wild animal chasing each other in your head. The burn marks from the carpet as you greeted each adult on your knees still stinging slightly. You answer questions politely, just enough information so they don’t think you are a bit slow, but not so much that they leave thinking that chimwana chiye chinoganhira. You serve guests with scalding cups of tea and chocolate cake, harnessing both your culinary skills and generosity. You clear cups and saucers quickly and quietly, making sure not to disrupt the adults. You know what it is to be a good girl. How then can you fail to be a good wife?

Through all this, the mud-trailing brother has come in and said a perfunctory hello and gone back to his outdoor games. You are told later on that boys don’t mature as quickly as girls do. You believe it because Mud Trailer can barely wash the skidmarks out of his own underwear, or make himself a decent toasted sandwich. Don’t even think about getting him to get that neat crease in his white long-sleeved school shirt. Somewhere else in Zimbabwe, your co-labourer is perfecting her skills so she can do all those things for him. She knows as well as you do, that a man doesn’t need to be able to not burn a hole in his shirt every time he picks up an iron. All these lessons in cooking and cleaning you have been learning have been for his benefit and for that of his family. Without a husband to validate those skills, really what is the point of having darkened your knees on so many floors and strained your neck hanging up those thick wet winter blankets?

CHOCOLATE CAKE

Ingredients

2/3 cup margarine

2 eggs

1 T vanilla

4 T cocoa

2 ½ cups sifted flour

1 ½ cups sugar

1 ¼ t soda

½ t salt

1 ¾ cup ice water

Method

  1. Cream butter, sugar, eggs and vanilla till fluffy for about 5 minutes (electric beater or by hand).
  2. Blend in chocolate (sifted if lumpy).
  3. Sift flour with soda and salt and add to creamed mixture alternately with iced water..
  4. Bake in a round tin in a moderately hot oven until done (approximately 30 mins)

 

Guest Post by Eleanor Madziva

Bio

Eleanor is an itinerant Zimbabwean with a passion for picking lint out of her navel, while trying to find the best ways of not turning into a charred mess in the desert heat. Less a writer, more a person who writes.

Eleanor Madziva

Twitter @Madziva_Eleanor

Of How To build A Business That Lasts: Vision, Mission & Objectives

More than 60% of all business ideas never live long enough to materialise and of those that do more than 80% do not outlast a single year. This is not to say the ideas are bad, well in some instances they are actually worse than bed, but some really good ideas just seem not to work out as they are intended. The current economic vision shift in most countries and in some instances the lack of economic vision, has led to the growth of the entrepreneurship sector.

Zimbabwe is no exception, one cannot surely ascertain the reason behind the sprouting of the informal sector in the form of small start-up, some allege that it’s an economic vision shifts whilst some suggest that its poor governance.

One thing we can all agree on is there is a steady increase in entrepreneurship, sadly most of these start-ups never get to experience the world outside the owner’s briefcase and if they do well they varnish from the face of the earth in less than a year. One then wonders, what could be the reason behind such massive failures, what can be done to increase chances of survival and who is ultimately responsible for business survival.

In my experience I have noticed that there are so many causes of these massive failures, however the most common one and yet rarely mentioned is the lack of vision by the owners of the idea/start-up or the company. Most start-ups do not have a vision, they just operate without determining where they are going, what is to be achieved or what they exist for. There is a common adage which says, it doesn’t matter which way you go if you have no vision because eventually you have no desired destination and it also happens that failure is the most common destination. If you put your business on autopilot and leave it to curve its own course well do not be surprised when you see it landing on the death zone aka business closure.

In my opinion every business, no-matter how small, needs a business strategy also known as strategic management. For improved chances of survival, one has to know which decisions to make, how to make decisions, have guidelines that dictates how everyone in that organisation ought to behave.

All businesses face money problems, reputation problems and yes intense competition, however, have you ever asked yourself how others survive. Some businesses are born from backgrounds of no finance at all, face unimaginable competition and yet have no good reputation to their name.

Despite all that, they standout and outshine or at least secure their future in the measure of the acquired advantage. But which advantage is this, how do they realise this advantage and how do they choose the route to take. I hear most freelancers in the web development circles crying foul about others charging as low as $50 per site. But with a well thought-out business plan with the elements of a strategy one can choose between low cost business strategy and differentiation strategy.

Knowing how you tend to position your business and how to eventually do it are two different things and they require a lot of commitment to master and ensure that the path you choose will ensure that you achieve that. This is a long road and it requires consistency and determination which starts with the following.

A business strategy is used to make sure that each and every decision made by any member of the start-up has value towards survival and growth of the business if every member of the start-up know what is to be achieved by the company then their decisions will be more inclined towards the interest of the organisation.

Unfortunately this is not the case in most start-ups, they leave the doors to their organisation unlocked and unattended and always act surprised when failure opens their doors and assert its dominance.

Lucky you dear reader, in this article I’m going to walk you through some of the things you need to make sure that exist in your company if you dream of having a company to run a year from now.

The first thing you need is a vision

Vision
Great writers such as Andree De Waal and Grant clearly stated that every excellent performing company has a vision. This is the reason why on almost every company’s website they put their vision. It is the ultimate destination that the organisation would want to achieve in a given time period. Without a vision written down, it doesn’t matter which decision you make because ultimately you have no target, which basically means you have no measure to judge your decisions or your employee’s decisions against. Everything you do in such a case will be right and unfortunately it will also be wrong. Take it from this perspective, how are you going to see if you are moving in the right direction if you do not set the direction you want to go. It is like a plane taking off an airport but has no intended destination, eventually it’s going to crash or disappear from the radar, whichever happens first.
After establishing a vision, then you need to take the next step.

Mission
A mission, just like the word suggest, is what you as an organisation intend to do. If you do not know what your company wants to do them it is going to fail because failure might as well be on its to do list. You can only determine your market size after determining the kind of problem you are fixing by what you exist to provide. Some companies take their mission to be..the best provider of office furniture in the country for SMEs. This forces a business to have focus and know how to best achieve their mission. There is a lot that can be said about the mission, however, in this 1st article I’m going to stick on the basics but I will definitely make effort to produce more detailed content that can help you and your business take the world head on.

Strategic Objectives
This is the next step, it joins the mission and the company strategy, objectives by their very nature are targets that each and every organisation, and individual, no matter how small should have. They help when trying to break the mission of the organisation down into manageable units. Unfortunately we often rush into starting all these business because the idea is so fascinating but never take time to set targets for progress sake. The most common outcome of such an approach is heartbreak and burnout. The idea behind the notion of objectives is to have portions of the mission focused on different sections of the organisation. Some objectives are financial, they solely focus on the financial affairs of the start-up and their contribution towards the mission of the start-up. As you might have correctly guessed, other objectives will be productive related, customer relations focused and so forth. The idea is to make sure that all corners that have an effect on the performance of the start-up are covered. If this is done professionally and well your company’s chances of survival will be improved drastically. The sooner we master these fundamental principles the better least our ideas become history and nightmares that haunts us day and night.

The issue of planning strategically the future of an entity is of great importance, it is surely a cure needed by most start-ups that we have today if the entertain hope of having a meaningful future. Depending on the reception of the first article I will make a more detailed article looking at the issue of managing start-up strategically and ensuring survival of start-ups.

Until next time happy money farming!!

Guest Post written by Douglas Mwanza.

Douglas Mwanza

A business consultant specialising in the areas of strategy formulation and implementation.
Phone: +263 779 947 976
Email: douglasmwanza7@gmail.com
LinkedIn: Douglas mwanza7
Facebook: Douglas Dee Mwanza
Instagram: douglas_mwanza7

Of Sworn To The Depths Of Inyangani

Sworn to the depths of Inyangani

Sworn into the depth of inyangani

is a short novel, a collabowriters project by four authors Lindiwe Dhlakama, Takatso Sibanda, Rejoice Moyo and Banabas Karuma. .

The collabowriters project is a creatively innovative project which brings together different writers who are you doing today then challenged to create a work of fiction one chapter at a time.

Writer A does first chapter, Writer B reads the
first chapter and composes chapter 2, Writer C reads A and B and
builds Chapter 3 and so on……..

Sworn to the depths of inyangani Published in 2018 by Multimedia Box, Zimbabwe and made possible by support from various partners including British Council, Zimbabwe German Society

Sworn to the depths of the Inyangani is an African Fantasy work of fiction based on the myths and folklore of the Inyanga Mountains.

The Inyanga Mountains found on the Eastern part of the country have long since had an air of mystery which this story explores in this YA Fantasy where a young lad Elisha struggles to find balance between his Catholic religion and the mysterious world of the old ways, tradition and the secrets his parents have kept from him, secrets that now haunt his dreams because the past always catches up……

Sworn to the depths of the Inyangani, takes you to the depths of the Inyangani with its sacred healing pools and mermaids who spirit away people, never to be seen again and sometimes a chosen few come back, with healing abilities and a supernatural understanding of the world around, and where a past wrong if not corrected might have fatal consequences….. .

I love this book and read it at a time I have been thinking of how we are losing certain legends and lores from our culture, the unwritten myths that the modern world has no place for, maybe they are only that, legends; maybe they are a more but we shouldn’t let them fade into no more than barely remembered curiosities.

I never did try to figure which author wrote which part but in some chapters the were rather jarring differences in the story telling and some continuity issues where a chapter would begin on a different track leaving empty gaps in an otherwise captivating plot. Well I guess considering it was the work of four different people, it’s not unexpected that sometimes the difference would show.

It’s a short story which I wish could have been a bit longer to do justice to some aspects and flesh out some one dimensional characters that felt a bit rushed.

Still I loved the concept and I am tempted to start a collaborative blog post project… who is up for challenge?

~B

Of House of Stone Book Review

House of Stone

House of stone

House of Stone is a book by Novuyo Tshuma first published 2018 in Great Britain by Atlantic Books.

House Of Stone might be a work of fiction but it’s premise is based on real events from the history of Zimbabwe; the struggle for independence and the mostly untold, unwritten, unspoken and barely confessed about Gukurahundi Massacre……

The main character Zamani, is a young man, an orphan with a desperate need for a family of his own, a father and mother to call him son, and to chronicle the history of his surrogate parents in an attempt to recreate himself with a new past.

As he finds out the past from his surrogate family you get a glimpse of what might have been experienced during the Zimbabwean struggle for independence, the falling out of comrades in arms in the post independence era which led to the Gukurahundi massacre and the infamous farm invasions that dispossessed settler farmers………….

This is the first book I have read which touches on the Gukurahundi killings which were a near genocide decimation of the Ndebele people. For the longest time this dark period of our history has been buried and never outright referred to as if by some collective amnesia it would be like it never happened and even now 35 years later it’s still a triggering topic. When you reading this book you will be able to relate to why the people who experienced these atrocities never got closure nor outright talk about it………

Novuyo manges to capture the essence of the past without turning the book into a dark and heavy read with the story unfolding from Zamani’s perspective as it his related to him and of course you are on a dizzy ride trying to figure Zamani out, since the rest of the characters are spelt out for you but Zamani, Zamani, Zamani, what can I say read the book……

~B

Of Coffee, Pies and Bombs

Coffee, Pork Pies and Bombs

If you were having coffee with me, I’d say allow me to treat you to what used to be the darling of pies, The Colcom Pork Pie.

Tea colcom pie

You can have a cup of herbal lemon tea, while the pie warms up in the microwave. Can you smell that? I hope you aren’t a vegetarian or don’t eat pork for some reason, if so then graciously accept my apologies and you can have toast instead

french toast

Imagine after all that anticipation, you open the package and are greeted with a crumbling pastry product a pale shadow of its former glory with a meat center that’s now barely existent, that makes you wonder what the quality department takes its consumers for, seriously.

Pork Payi?

No wonder people have taken to calling it Pork Payi? Meaning where is the Pork.

#ThisPie

If you were having coffee with me I’d tell you that my vote just might be for sale to the person who can guarantee an economy in which a company can afford to put proper meat filling in its pastries to make a pastry pie I can still afford to buy……

According to a poll conducted by the Orange Door Research via an sms-based survey sent to 1200 people:
48% of all respondents said the economic situation was the most critical issue facing the country,
23% said free & fair elections
17% Corruption, & 12% improving basic services

According to Zimstats 98% of youth are employed in the informal sector. So our graduates have a 2% chance of getting a formal job…..

If you were having coffee with me I’d tell you that our elections are 35 days away and it looks like candidates are pulling out all the stops

From a Minister officially opening a bin;

Minister opens bin

well to be fair he was opening a new sports center nearby but I guess the commissioning fever got to his head, we’ll try not to even think about why the bin already has trash inside……. but the internet go crazy checkout the #chinamasachallenge

And then on to something a little more sobering the bomb attack on the president as he was leaving a rally in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe now that one has me in shock, I never thought we would stoop to senseless violence, I thought we had our problems but at least we never lost our heads and went the route of trying to bomb the President. Fortunately he survived the blast and the were no fatalities although almost 40 people were treated for various injuries.

Various conspiracy theories are flying around from the one about the bomb being a stage managed incident to get sympathy vote and as an excuse to increase military clamp down and then there’s the one about it being a falling out between the president and the army, or that the former president might have had something do with it and a whole lot of other theories ranging from absurd to down right alarming.

There was also a bombing attempt on the Ethiopia’s Prime Minister at rally in the capital leaving scores injured and several critical and a single casualty…..

Violence usually begets violence and here’s to praying that this isn’t the start of a journey down a dark bloody path.

Have an awesome week Stay Classy!

~B

 

 

 

 

Of The Hairdresser Of Harare Review

 

The hairdresser of Harare by Tendai Huchu

hair dresser of harare Tendai Huchu

The hairdresser of Harare is a story about. .. ..well a hairdresser in a hair salon in Harare, Zimbabwe; but not only that, it is also a story that navigates the socio-economic and political dynamics of Zimbabwe set in the hyper-inflatory era of 2008.

It’s strange reading this book 10 years later from when it’s set and seeing how things have changed and yet stayed the same.

The Hairdresser of Harare is peppered with colourful characters whom you experience from the perspective of the main character Vimbai who reigns like a queen in MaKhumalo’s Hair Salon, until a position for a new hair dresser opens up and Dumi enters the picture then everything gets tangled up into an unlikely love story……..

I loved how the book captures the duplicitous nature of society having one set of standards other people expected to live up to and another for yourself, mixed together with the judgement, through whose glasses we peer at the world…….

Chapters in the book end with a predictive statement which is a highlight of what comes next, at first I found it interesting but after a couple of chapters; it stops being cute as it felt at times like a spoiler; the way it forced me to start anticipating the story, aspects of it wound up disappointing compared to how I imagined would unfold, and how it took away the element of surprise as you already have been primed to see it coming and you justing wait for the other shoe to drop……

The book is easy to read although it has a few colloquial phrases and slang words in the Shona language which are relatable to Zimbabweans but jarring for non-Shona readers and without a glossary at the end, well you simply have to figure out from the context of the italicized words that this is probably a greeting or better yet make friends with someone who speaks the language……. I can be your friend 😂 😉

~B

Of A Letter To Africa

Dear Africa

There’s defiance and determination in your depth.

They came, they saw and they conquered. They plundered, as they they convinced themselves they were bringing light to your dark shores.

mad scramble for Africa

They convinced you to believe your darkness was ugly and that your past was shameful and they would teach you real salvation, civilization and sophistication because the things worth striving for could only be found beyond over the seas.

AFRICA

They took bits of your soul, your blood and bones and created a restlessness in you. How can you be anything but restless when the bones of your ancestors lay displayed in museums in foreign lands, when descendants of your blood struggle to relate with you?

How can you prosper when you were taught that the spirits of your ancestors are demons and communing with them is to practice heathen ways and to invite evil into your life? Commune instead only with the Holy Ghost and the One True God

cavorting with evil

How can you advance when they saw all the magic and beauty in your ancestry and called it witchcraft? Parts of it could have been malevolent but it all got heaped up together with the benevolent and cast away like a nightmare bedtime story..

See how they broke you, they taught you how to read but only after they rewrote themselves into your history and all you know about your past is how they wrote it juxtapositioned with how your own tried to rewrite it back and the truth, well, the truth, lies lost somewhere in-between because no one owns the truth.

See how they made you shun the melanin in your skin, the kinks in your hair and how you bleach it out and straighten it out as you weave for yourself a whole new identity.

How comfortable are you in your skin when everyday a struggle to battle the uncertainities that were bred into you when they told you the colour of all things evil is dark and light is all things good.

There’s darkness in your past, a past that fills you with rage and shame, but it’s OK because if it did not it would mean you don’t remember where you came from. The past doesn’t have to define you but that doesn’t mean you should pretend it never happened or it did not change you

You have changed ……

Like a child learning to walk, your footprints are all over the place; neither neat nor straight as you struggle to find your roots and your place in the world.

footprints

They broke you but the cracks are healing, filled with something different, something stronger…….. Divergence

Africa remade

 

You are no longer whom you were nor whom they tried to turn you into, you are different. Find peace with the new you and your divergent flavours, from the dark roasted caramel to the milk rich vanilla and everything beneath all the layers that make you up……

diversity

You were unmade and now you are remade, embrace all your Divergence.

Africa Dawn

 

You have a story to tell, don’t let anyone tell it for you but most of all, don’t let anyone else tell you how to tell it, find your voice…….

All my love
My Africa, My Words

~B

Of Letting it GROW: hair

Hello……

A few questions I get asked fairly regularly include how long I have been keeping my hair, why I have dread locks and if I have any hair care tips for someone wishing to grow theirs too and who my hairstylist is?
Well today you are in luck……

The last time I tried to measure my hair length was a couple of days ago……..

20180412_131651.jpg

I don’t quite remember the length I got from the tape measure, mostly because, well, one was pretending to measure the length, one mustn’t measure their precise hair length one must stay humble…… Just let it grow, let it grow!!!!! 

let it go

Generally it’s somewhere close to Mid Back length MBL or something like that:

mid back length locks

How long have I been keeping my hair?
•hmmm I have been keeping it since the last time I got my hair cut, and to be honest I don’t remember when And I can’t recall what my scalp looks like.

hair (2)
Why do I have dreadlocks?
• correction, first of all they are not dreadlocks as such, what I have going on is called two strand twists…. because well twisted into two strands.

two strand twist dreadlocks twist

• I used to have such a big Afro hair, I loved that huge Afro and I  wore it like that cause I could comb it out. That is, until the breakage during combing started really getting to me, this hair was never designed to be tamed by a comb and that’s why people get regular hair cuts or use hair relaxers and straighteners but I figured it would be crying shame to just cut it off and thus I started to keep it twisted……..

two strand twist

How to get length?

That’s easy don’t cut your hair!!!!!!

That’s the easy part not cutting your hair and then it gets complicated because it takes no small amount of commitment, especially in the beginning, the awkward phase is real when you have the short wriggly larva hair going on…

until one day boom the butterfly emerges

Two strand twist dreadlockss

The number of people you have to defend your hair from, The System; Lecturers, Dean of Students, Vice Chancellor, Employers, Potential In-law’s, Church Folk (because apparently the devil resides in long hair), random strangers, friends and family……….

I have a friend who cut his hair for a job interview and still didn’t get the job….

The closest I got to a hair cut was when a relation literally dragged me to a hair salon and offered, a then obscene amount of money; to the barber to cut my hair and the barber was like “NO, it would be bad Karma.” I have never been more thankful for karma than that day….  .

There’s always that relative whose first words are “I see you haven’t cut your hair……” like you an unrepentant criminal…

You will have to cultivate a streak of stubbornness and yep I am a keeper

Still I love my hair

dreadlocks in the sundreadlocksa crown of hair

If you really like it put a ring on it 😂

dreadlocks in a suit

Who does my hair?
I have this pillow, you go to sleep and when you wake up;  you wake up like this….

I woke up like this with my locks

You can’t keep two strand twists without learning how to self twist your hair….

And sometimes hair strands will break off, it happens;

hair breakage
•like when a baby grips your hair as if all of existence depends on it *snap*
•Your hair gets caught on a Velcro strap *snap*
•Your hair gets caught on zipper as you pull off your jersey. *snap*

don’t panic, grab a needle and thread and just sew it back on, nobody will ever know……….

~B