Going by the number of emails I got following my article last week, it seems that I am not the only one who has been pining for the Kenya we knew before divisive politics took over and planted hate and intolerance amongst us.
I must have sounded so sad and defeated, that one reader wrote with what she was sure was a solution to the disillusionment I was feeling – what I needed to lift my battered spirit, she told me, was join a knitting and crocheting club. Knitting, she told me, was therapeutic. “Take it from me, I’m talking from experience,” she assured me, though she didn’t tell me what horrid experience drove her to buy some wool and knitting needles.
But she did tell me that she knew of one such club if I was interested. It was on a Monday morning, and I must say that this email tickled me so much, I burst out laughing, my first laugh of the day which felt good, almost therapeutic.
Coincidentally, the previous week while waiting for my turn in hospital where I had gone for a checkup, I spotted a young woman knitting – she could not have been more than 23, going by her youthful face and even more youthful manner of dressing. She wore distressed jeans, which are in vogue at the moment, I think, and a cropped top that revealed her belly button. On her ears were large silver hops and over her ears were red and white earphones. Trendy young woman knitting. Certainly not a common sight in Nairobi.
She was laboriously knitting a dark grey something, and from her painfully slow process, I deduced she was a beginner. A determined beginner.
I could not help being amazed at her resilience, because I am sure I would drop dead from boredom if I were ever, for a reason I can’t imagine, forced to learn how to knit, I mean, I was even unable to complete the pyjamas I was tasked to stitch for my Class Eight home science project, which robbed me of precious marks.
You can therefore understand why I was tickled funny by that email – I was pretty certain that taking up knitting would only pile onto the despondence I was already feeling. For the life of me, I just couldn’t imagine knitting relaxing me, taking the tension away, but I could imagine getting a stiff back, neck and fingers, thanks to all the hunching and sitting in one position. I, of course, didn’t tell her this; lest I sounded ungrateful, rather, I told her that I might just pop in one day if time allowed.
Thinking about it later however, I thought to myself that it wouldn’t hurt to try, especially because I am often accused of not being adventurous and willing to try out new experiences by those who know me. I started by searching, on know-it-all Google, “knitting groups in Kenya” just to be certain that my grandmother’s decades-old craft still lives on in 2017. Surprise, surprise, it does!
I am yet to motivate myself to go out and buy some wool and knitting needles though. Once I do, I will definitely let you know how it goes. Speaking of therapy, what’s your poison when you are feeling low, discouraged and uninspired? I am desperately looking for a mood-lifter that isn’t knitting.
[email protected]; Twitter: @cnjerius. The writer is the editor, MyNetwork, in the Daily Nation
I feel the same too on sorry state of our situation. I am exhausted of the never-ending politicking. The worst is when ordinary folks start insulting and fighting each other to defend their political factions. I am so tired that I no longer read or watch news related to politics. What hurts me most is when we are told to pray. I am a Christian and prayers are good but they are not enough. We need actions.
This election thing is just too monotonous and boring. It has disrupted almost everything. I miss “normal TV programmes, normal prices for ordinary commodities.” Tribalism is so high to the extent that on Saturday, a neighbour got a good house to rent and the first question was guess what…“wewe ni wa kabila gani?” she had to lie but for how long will she live a lie. As for me and my heart, I will love different tribes and cultures because I learn new things from them.
It is indeed a very frustrating time in Kenya especially those who operate in urban set ups. People are expected to go to work yet there is no security. Men and women are expected to feed their families yet there are no enough supplies in the urban markets. My advise to people is that don’t get frustrated by what you cannot change. Politics and its resultant disorder and even violence is such a constant in Kenya. We have really cried but no one cares to come and change us or feed us.
I feel your frustration and you are not alone. Sadly we have allowed politics and politicians to run affairs of our country in a dangerous direction. Individually I think we should reflect and examine our talk and action for a better tomorrow.
Businesses have been closed, one can’t take a walk outside without fear of what will happen next.I am also tired. I had to send my wife and son upcountry because of insecurity. Lets stop this, Kenya will always remain.
You sound depressed. These are the feelings that I have also been going through. You have voiced the opinions of many Kenyans who just want life to get back to normal.
To change our outer circumstances, we must change our inner first. We manifest our thoughts. Politicians will not change our lives. There’s no better news than the fact that we have within ourselves the power to determine our circumstances.