On Writing


We are back. After a long time of wandering and searching and not finding exactly what we were looking for, we are back.

Well, we found out a few new things, but that is a story for another day.

When I stopped writing, about two years ago, it felt like nothing. It felt justifiable, almost. I had tried, and for some reason, there was a great sense of a lack of direction. I was taking a break. I took it. It was a whooping two years.

Unawares to me, life was about to throw me a another spanner. A thorough and life-changing process of self-awareness. We’re not yet there, but we have come so far. The process was much more rigorous and draining than it sounds. It took me to the depths of the underbelly and back up. I lost friends, I made friends, I realized I had way more “friends” from my past years than I acknowledged, I tried my hand at a new job, moved to the city, met new people (work-related), had soul-changing conversations. I learnt that I do not know how to cook well and that it is an essential service that I do…gasp for air. Should I Continue?

I realized I am drawn to different people, all in strange, different ways. But that there’s a a lot more I’ll have to learn about the longer-haul type of love, yeah that one.

I travelled to some new places in the country. I reveled in the beauty!

I especially have fond memories of Meru, it was beautiful, of driving through Kericho. Muhoroni was glaringly dry and the sun, unforgiving. Acacia, Kisumu- heavenly. The interior space, a work of human art.

I came back to Nairobi. I got lost in the haze. I got submerged a couple of times, some worse than others. I survived a year, without ever once writing a word down to the public, as it were. I jotted my thoughts down though, a lot. And by a lot I mean, I have an array of notebooks lying in my bedroom. I hunt and gather for notebooks for pleasure, and for survival. You can, and are allowed to call me a notebook scavenger.

In many ways, I knew not what to write about, or how to do it.

But finally THE WHY caught up with me, and we are here, writing.

Really, the why is nothing profound, except that just like a runner cannot really say why they run, except that they do, except that they are drawn to it in such a way that their lungs breathe different when the souls of their feet hit the surface…tap, tap, tap, we are here…

We are back,

like a moth drawn to the light,

like a lover to their oppressor.

Perhaps, this time, a little kinder on ourselves, a little less serious on the consequences of our perceived shortfalls and mishaps.

This time we are taking a somewhat pragmatic, or shall we call practical approach (sounds very mature and detached, doesn’t it? )—building a craft. There’s nothing about working with wood to make, say, a beautiful Ankara frame, that is so emotional. Of course there’s an emotional aspect in any creative endeavor. You give a part of your soul and yourself away.

But then again… for the work to really get done, for the table, chair or beautiful Ankara frame to leave the carpenter’s hand, there has to be a level of professionalism in the working,  and detachment in letting go.

Wish me luck.

**crosses fingers, takes a deep breath