The Uuuhs and Aaarghs of my life

Posts tagged ‘Food’

A little = A lot

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To share is to love

This week, I was blessed to enjoy an evening walk in the company of three boys who live in the street.
How did this happen?

Well, I had been carrying two apples in my bag so that if I met someone who was hungry, I would have something to give.

So as I walked along Ngong Road this evening, staring at the caterpillar of cars due to crazy traffic, I spotted an unusual heap of garbage bags under a tree. As I walked closer, I spotted a young boy, Dan*, with a bottle of “glue” in his mouth.
I approached him to say hello.

Surprised, Dan sat up straight and said hello with a smile on his face. As I spoke with him, his friend Jim* joined our chat as I handed Dan an apple. I made him promise that they would share the fruit. I did the same for two other boys who joined us later on.

As I said goodbye to the boys, I heard the voice of a little one Steve* saying, “Sister, something small to eat please…” I had no food with me and felt bad that I didn’t have something to give. The sincere look on his face made my heart melt. Steve’s older friends, JB* and Mike* were also standing at a distance. They respected my silence and slowly retreated.

This is when I called Steve and his two friends for a walk to the market nearby. As we walked, I asked them if they thought that the street was the end of them. With confidence, they said, “NO!” I was super glad to see the hopeful smiles that follow.

Thank God I had some money in my pocket, enough to buy 6 bananas for the boys to eat. As I made the payment, Steve approached me with the bunch of bananas in his hands. He looked at me with his big glassy eyes, raised the banana bunch and said, “Thank you!”

That moment, my friends, was a moment I will live to remember.

Do you have some food, juice or water in your home that you could share with someone who is hungry?

I encourage you to use the little you have to spare in your home to share a little bit of sunshine with someone else who desperately needs it.

Loving is sharing!

Learning to Wait

I had been wondering why my loquat tree hasn’t yet bloomed with tasty fruit like the other trees I saw on Monday as I walked home.

This was yet another revelation of human impatience that is often triggered by comparison.
But then I remembered that the other loquat trees had a mix of ripe fruit, raw fruit and others still in the process if blooming flowers.

Such is the case with my journey of life. It can’t always be harvest time 24/7.

There are some areas in my life where I am experiencing harvest season, some areas where I am experiencing a season of loss, some areas where I am experiencing a season of planting and yet some areas where I am experiencing the most difficult season of waiting.

Just like my loquat tree, I am experiencing a mix of seasons that don’t look appetizing from the outside. But with time and patience, the mixed seasons will expose that there had always been something great at work.

If you thought that God doesn’t reveal Himself to us through nature, think again. I learned about Him this week through observing my loquat tree.

I hope this tale encourages you to be patient regardless of the mess your life might look like at the moment.

God is at work in your life despite the mix of seasons. Just trust Him and He will not let you down.

Why compare your purpose with others’ lives? We are all uniquely destined in the eyes of God. Each tree has its unique moment within a season.

Today, I saw some flowers bloom on my loquat tree. Looks like it’s moment has come.

Love and Sunshine,
Ayuma.

New Menu at Nairobi Java House!

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A new menu is out with exciting new things!

1. The Chili Con Carne: Spicy bean with minced beef stew with cheese, tomato and onion. Price: Ksh. 400
*It is also served with chips as the Chili Con Carne and Cheese Chips for Ksh. 420.
*Moreover, it also features on the burger section as the Chili Cheese Burger (Chili Con Carne and Cheese) for Ksh. 800

2. Salads
*Spicy Vegetable and Halloumi salad for Ksh. 560
*Oriental Chicken salad for Ksh. 580

3. Sandwiches
* Classic: Avocado, cheese and tomato salad for Ksh. 400 where avocado slices now replace the guacamole
* Signature: Grilled steak and cheese with pickled onion for Ksh. 660

4. Chicken wings served with chips and a side of salsa
* 5pieces for Ksh. 450
* 10pieces for Ksh. 850

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5. Desserts
* NEW JAVA ICECREAM: Java now makes their own gourmet all-natural ice cream
* Coffee cake for Ksh. 180

6. Lemonade
*NEW Strawberry lemonade for Ksh. 190 (small) and Ksh. 260 (large)

7. Sides
*Steamed vegetables

These and other new elements on the new Nairobi Java House menu.

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PS: You might notice that some things have also been removed from the menu such as the Apple Cinnamon cake.

Also, the prices are a bit higher than those on the previous menu. But hey, when it comes to good quality food… It is worth it!

‘Beautiful People’ ~ A new category on Diary of Ayuma

Today, I finally met an amazing pineapple vendor in Nairobi. His name is Jimmy. I had always spotted him and his wheelbarrow of sweet pineapples at a spot along a regular route I use on my way to work.

I rushed in the scorching sun just to purchase one of Jimmy’s mouth-watering pineapple slices. But I did not find him at his usual spot. When I asked the other vendors selling boiled maize and peanuts at the spot, they said that he usually leaves at 2pm.

Luckily, the vendors directed me to the Green Belt Movement headquarters which was established by Kenya’s late Nobel Laureate Prof. Wangari Mathaai who fought to protect the environment.

Jimmy’s pineapple slices are quite popular with the staff members at Green Belt but they did not chomp down all of the fruity slices. Phew!

I asked him how much one slice costs and he told me that a slice costs Ksh.20 which is about USD $0.23. He sold one to me but I had to have more. And so I told him to prepare a full pineapple for me and he told me that a full pineapple costs Ksh. 160 which is about USD $2.

Watching him peel the pineapple so carefully with different techniques, knives and in a sanitary environment displayed just how much Jimmy loved his job. He peeled the pineapple as if he were creating a piece of art… as a creative, I would boldly say that he was.

Jimmy wrapped the pineapple in a clear bag that made my mouth water even more. To protect others from some fruity temptation, he hid it in a black paper bag for me to carry home. I was so happy and I gladly paid him without bargaining which is a typical Nairobian behavior.

Later that afternoon, I spotted Jimmy with his wheelbarrow of pineapples at a parking lot of a popular church. He had pushed the wheelbarrow for quite a long distance from where I had left him. Somehow, I was filled with such pride to have met someone so driven, talented and strangely passionate about pineapples like Jimmy.

There are so many more amazing people out there just like Jimmy who never get the mention in the news, on the radio or in the many memes people share on social media. But these great people do exist. And it is such an honour for me to introduce these beautiful people doing great things everyday.

So if you are ever in the city of Nairobi in Kenya at a place called Adams Arcade, please give Jimmy a call through +254728040439 for a tropical splash of sweet pineapple for your enjoyment.

Great personalities like Jimmy are the inspiration behind my new blog category entitled ‘Beautiful People’.
Lookout for my first post as I reintroduce myself to you with the new format for all posts under the new category. Enjoy!

With Love,
Ayuma.

REAL BROTHERHOOD, BEYOND RUGBY

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During my freshman year at Daystar University, I thought that it was one big community of people whose friendships lasted only as long as your quest for a degree. But my thoughts slowly changed once I met Tim*, a fourth year student who was an active member of the university’s rugby team.

I had always feared him since his team members were so huge, loud, and all over the place. He was the last person I expected to befriend as a freshman. One day, I asked Tim why he and his team mates eat too much; their plates were always full, at times, too full. The answer he gave me was not what I had expected.

Tim told me that his rugby team mates are like his family and they all go through so much. Since the Post-Election Violence (PEV) in 2007 to 2008 there were some student’s whose lives totally flipped over. There were students living in school and no one really knew. Some went without food and could not even afford a basic meal; this included some of his comrades. This is why some filled their plates with excess food so that they could share it all.

This, to me, was a selfless act of courage. Tim and his friends chose to share in the embarrassment of looking gluttonous to protect and help feed their team members.

From that day, Tim continued being like the village idiot to other students who knew not his intentions. To me, he remains my hero. I still remember to stuff my bag with snacks every now and then so that when I walk in the streets of Nairobi and meet with a hungry person, I reach into my bag and offer them my little gift of food.

I cannot save the world, but I sure can leave a mark in someone’s life even if it’s with the blessed taste of food. With what you’ve got, please reach out and be a blessing to someone.

Love and Sunshine,
Ayuma.

Silly is Legal – A Happy Dance by Ayuma Michelle

I believe in the beauty of simplicity, the colour of life, the romance that comes with every breath of fresh air. There is beauty! So much beauty around us, just waiting to explode into our sight, in our minds and in our lives. And what better means to paint this beauty than with words?

Storymoja Hay Festival Banner

Recently I wondered how ignorant I had been to the serenade of life’s silent simplicities around me. I had long forgotten the things that used to make me laugh out loud silly like a child to a point of tummy ache.
But is this what we ultimately call being grown-up? Hushing the child in us and handing over the baton to the seriousness of life? Tucking away the colours and adorning ourselves with the neutrals of grey? Literally setting aside only two or perhaps three days of the week to focus on “fun” instead of naturally letting fun run throughout our days? Well, despite the modern complexities we often find ourselves tangled into; let us forget not the simple things, just an inch away, to make you smile.

Here’s an interesting trip I recently took to my kitchen for breakfast. I captured some of the silly monologues I often host in my mind where imagination is the rule of the game. I hope you manage to steal a chuckle or two from this piece:

Breakfast Call

A beautiful song calls me from sleep at first light,
A chill oozes though my grumpy bedroom wall to pinch my cheek,
Into my bed, I slothfully sink like a strawberry into a pool of honey… Just for a few sweet seconds,
Then I hear it again!
The clash of crystal-like elements, breaking and crashing into beautiful symphony,
The chorale of bubble pops, jelly plops, juicy splash, crispy crackles,
All leading me into a sailing fling like a weightless feather.
Step by step,
I tip and toe,
To clink and the clank,
Of the chant.
And there they are… All lined up to serve me with their deliciousness.
“Pick me! Choose me!”
Charming me with their hotchpotch of tangs,
My knees grow weak, slowly giving-in to crippling cavity.
To my rescue, beckons Monsieur de l’eau, “C’est moi Cherie! C’est moi!”
And so I reach out first for his crystal arm and entertain Champagne’s sober cousin.
Suddenly, all in the land of Jikoni exclaim, “Relief! She is well fed.”
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Did You Know?
The Storymoja Hay Festival is at bay and I for one look forward to joining various discussions to help me grow as a writer and a creative being. Workshops for writers, talks on writing, focus on identity, the environment and culture, all under this year’s theme “Imagine the World” [Waza Dunia]. Be sure to diarise 19th – 22nd September 2013 and be there with me. For now, please join the ongoing discussions on Facebook and Twitter!

Yours Truly,
Ayuma.

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