Lovestruck: Notes from Kigali

KIG_8993Photos: Kevin Mutonga.

I’m writing this from Kigali, Rwanda. I’m actually kind of cheating, so we’ll call this is a teaser post for a more photo-filled post in a few days, but I just couldn’t hold it in. You see, in a couple of days I’ve been forced to reconsider a grossly mistaken belief I’d previously held, which was that Nairobi was the best city in Africa. Nairobi, I’m deeply deeply sorry– it appears that my city loyalty was fickle and fleeting, despite everything you have given me all these twenty something years.Continue Reading

Shrinking Spaces

 I spent Christmas with extended family at my Cucu’s (grandmother’s) in the Aberdares. It was over really far too soon, but while it lasted we ate a lot of chapatis and meat, took family pictures using a selfie stick, and walked off all the chapatis and meat from lunch. Many of my cousins are really young, and it often feels like history is on repeat; when my sisters and I were young children we would visit our grandparents every December, and spend days on days running about in the endless fields of green, yelling across the hills– “Hello!”– and waiting to receive an echo of our message in return– “Hello-o-o-o”.Continue Reading

A Girl Walks into a Bookstore…

BookstopHeader Photos by Kevin Tosh.

Did you hear the one about the girl who asked to take pictures in a bookstore for her blog? The bookstore’s owner’s face turned pale in shock, then red in anger. He dragged her by the sleeve of her jacket, shouting: “This is a bookstore! How dare you?” And from that day onward, whenever The Girl tried to enter a bookstore it suddenly would be no longer open for business. Because don’t you know? Bookstore owners share information amongst themselves along the bookstore grapevine. And The Girl forever regretted her actions and spent the rest of her life wandering sadly in the streets of the city and peering wistfully through windows at volumes and volumes that she could only desire from the outside looking in. The End. 

Luckily, my story has a happier ending. Continue Reading

So Long, Goodbye.

PicturePhotography by Kevin Tosh.

“I think you travel to search and you come back home to find yourself there.
– Chimamanda Adichie. 

Maybe it’s because I’ve never used a train in Kenya. Maybe because most Kenyans my age that I know (which is, admittedly, a very small subsection of Kenya) have never or rarely used a train. Maybe it’s because it conjures memories of Harry Potter and Platform 3 and 1/4.

Continue Reading