Just hello

It has been raining well into two months now. Heavy rain really, and very cold, windy nights while i seem to recall a meteorological report predicting them to last into early may. There is a good side to all that water though as evinced by the abudant, cheap fresh produce. Fresh beens, french beans, aubergines and everything else not predictably for export. There will be a bountious harvest this season and a likely surge in the numbers of newborn human babies and  other species as well.

Kampala is lately crawling with visitors from everywhere. When i recognize Americans among our visitors, i often get an irresistible urge to holla out or run and catch up with them or if we are passing each other, to grab a shoulder and spin them around and then ask whether they are from the East Coast(Washington DC, Maryland anyone). I want to break out into an accent. I want so badly to ask about the new-look DC that was only beginning to be rebuilt shortly before i left in 2011.  About Mass Av, or North Capital, the Waterfront. What is the new and exciting trend in the district. How about Adams Morgan? Or Downtown Silver Springs. Please let on. There was so much free literature and a library i loved to visit and sit in, on Saturdays, when i could find time. Ohh….such a long time ago it was.

See, the world is a great place to be if you know how to find things. I haven’t seen my elder sister since mid-november 2012. It’s coming up to six years now. But she is well in the U.S as she should be, working and doing things that advance her cause. I miss her. There is a lot going on in many places. There is a sort of elegant waltz in the far east, another of the tiresome, endless round of diplomatic back-and-forths in the Arab world urging restraint on all sides and doing everything to end the wars out there. There is great deception taking place behind sturdy doors. Do you know a thing i dont? Would you pass me some gossip if you could?

i am spending a lot of time listening to the good ol’ music i once heard when i was younger and spent so many joules running somewhere to find things. I like being and feeling this way that i know am. It gives me a lot of freedom knowing the truth and being certain of some things. That’s power and being the man i am, i frequently exercise it gently, a little sweetly sometimes, and with kids especially, cautiously. i do not plan to hurt them or teach them anything wrong. The world is a hard place, built for guys who survive only through being able to outlive bad situations. I need to see an epic 2018 movie. Any suggeswtions for me?

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Soliloquy in Thought No. 1

the writer is immortal,the writer is king

The Guise Side of the Story

A word of empassioned influence, the crowd in the palm of the hand, of the speaker and his confidence, a great more great with falling sand.

A lesson amongst the madness, the co tent vast and growing, of better lives and greater minds, a time of knowledge flowing.

A discussion with the people, the matter to be addressed, of changing what one knows, a life that has been blessed.

A challenge to authority, the power undermined, of information scrutinised, a difficult endeavour.

A mention in praise of effort, the journey nears an end, of undetermined learnings, a process ought to mend.

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what’s in a word?

Saying sorry to a person you feel you may have annoyed or actually intentionally annoyed frees you from carrying the burden of guilt around with you. It  clears the way for making up or “patching things up” as they say. Why would anyone think it is belittling to eat humble pie? It is, to say the least, rather quite  unconscionable  for a right-thinking person to hold the view that making an apology is reversing oneself in any way. You apologize because you have acknowledged wrong-doing. No one is going to reach out to strike you. It is a noble gesture and one which shows a sort of sophisticated morality. It is the gentle thing to do.

I am preparing my bits now. I will then keep reviewing my statement of apology. I need to use a sensitive approach as i go about it. Just saying sorry? Oh come off it! Genuinely and without a dab of pride signifying  some high-minded notion of intellectual supremacy. We get so caught up with the socially-observed “effects” of such gestures. When you genuinely apologize for a slight, slander, malicious utterances etc, you get it out of your conscience and breath easy afterwards. It should also remove feelings of rancor on the part of the aggrieved party and help you live long. We all deserve to be unconditionally happy(even us adults).

Are you with me?  Pick the correct time. If the fall-out was really bad, get some advice first, from a trusted confidant. Choose your words carefully. If you must, involve a third party. Should it happen that the other person refuses to take your apology, for lack of grace or such, you the apologist needs to take it in stride and back off gently with plans to try again later (perhaps at a better time). They’ll eventually give in if your  efforts are sincere enough and whether you are doing it for the sake of peace.

We all err, believe that. Sometimes intentionally, sometimes because we are, er…only human. Guilt is a burden. Believe that also.

stay blessed

A converging of paths

Happy new year and good riddance 2017. You were bad, monotonous and so drawn out and extended it is hard to fathom how you packed in all you did. i am the kind who likes order. I do not like upheaval. I prefer not to be upstaged when i am running my show. When i look back at my accomplishments of 2017, when i start to feel a soaring pride in them, i want to let out an extended, made-for-the-natives loud scream of self-congratulation.  But equally, during the review of a year bygone, when i come across a pattern that might prove an instance of discontinuity, i get annoyed and cannot help feeling betrayed by someone or something, seen or unseen, a conspiracy of forces that caused the crease in a year  or  it seems everything conspired in 2017 to rob me of so much……joy, ambition,   and more than i cannot list here that i had tenaciously held onto. The love of human beings is very fickle to say the least, or, “as inconsistent as the moon”

The year in review took a meandering route, took too long to end and  left me  the sharp memory of a  bristly experience i  had on my blog here . . nothing life-changing only that it left me  feeling technically limited.   i felt inadequate and dangling on a string (reminds me of an adorable picture of a kitten dangling by a string with the caption below, “faith isn’t faith until it’s the last thing you are holding onto”.) very unnerving but…”tough times don’t last.”. I managed to fix it yesterday.

 

Today i have a spot of good news for you. i found my old friends again. We had been out of touch for a while, quite long to be truthful. I suppose none of us was purposely trying to keep away from the others it’s just we were, quite separately too engrossed in our own lives. We grew up. We went away from home. We came back. We met new people in the process. We developed and worked new connections. The thread of friendship we had meticulously weaved was left to run while “life went on”. Time waits for nothing.

You see, we were last together, as friends in 2000 when the world was still young and in the days i talk of, quite also apparently relatively carefree and “thriving” so to speak. Fast-forward to the present, we have grown into fully-packaged, separately-bottled, distinguished adults complete with our personal foibles. Sometimes when some of us meet, there are the little awkward adjustments we make and on the part of some, at unguarded moments during conversation, accusations resembling those similar to charges of infidelity may escape one’s conscience. One might call that a Freudian slip. Of people making themselves  incommunicado and not “keeping the faith”. Of growing apart. It is a problem of perception or how one sees the world. It may be about a friend who may have forgotten to keep a promise here, or elsewhere, or plain not kept in touch. Failure in certain critical steps. I am awake now.  Thank god i have learnt to let go and to forgive myself the past. Before i leave,

“….to our dearly departed comrade and singularly creative spirit, dizz, a stellar representative of the African Legends crew, the void you left will forever remain empty but you live on in our hearts and memories. Thank you for sharing your life with us as an individual and visual expressionist, we shall miss you dearly….”

Rest In Peace Dennis Oscar Ggaliwango Mubuke”

2017 is gone, bye bye, i have learned to accept some losses as inevitable consequences of this thing called life. I am beginning to rediscover the simple pleasures. like being who you truly want to be by being around people who matter to you. Mostly. see you,

Gotta go

The Largest Private Home in America

Visible History Photoblog

Our next stop on the trip – Biltmore Estate – the largest private home in America.

Unlike the other members of the Vanderbilt family who built summer homes in the Northeast, George Vanderbuilt chose Asheville in western North Carolina in the Blue Ridge mountains. Built between 1889-1895, it is a 250 room French Renaissance chateau.

Biltmore-1

Biltmore-2 The original model for the estate

Biltmore-3 The rooftop view

Biltmore2-2 The front entrance showcasing the elaborate spiral staircase

Biltmore2-4 The interior view of the spiral staircase, with the chandelier that runs the height of the stairs

Biltmore2-1 Edith Vanderbilt

Edith Vanderbilt
Although the home looks like it is stone, it is a limestone facade built over a structure made of brick and steel I-beams. This, along with brick fire doors, made the building very fire proof. This construction was one of the reasons it was used to store pictures from the National Gallery during World War II. This…

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Flower of Life, Mexico City

thank you for writing with such exquisite detail. i had a delicious experience reading your post. keep it up.

Bespoke Traveler

Spirits of ancestral Mesoamerica hover beyond my periphery. Wandering through the Anthropology Museum in Mexico City, I can hear their prayers aspirating among the sacred icons. This is no customary aspic collection of austere antiquity. The exhibits pulse with seismic energy. Xochipilli, patron of art and love in all its sensual facets — his head tilted up, his seated body alert — summons the ghosts of dreamers. An Olmec head, with a frown and piercing gaze, conjures the anima of its slumbering despot. Chacmool, reclining in submission, proffers himself as portal between me and valorous eagle warriors. Even the floor-to-ceiling windows, the marble parquets, the geometric latticework evoke pre-hispanic allusions. Nothing is basic within this complex. Statues, amulets, materials, balusters, and the patio are symbols of a timeless philosophy. 

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The coolness syndrome

The charming enduring material girl-net image:

It is Saturday morning 11:10am GMT and here i am injecting a toxic dose of pessimism and gleefully infecting the lot of you with my personal packaged brand of pure distilled cynicism. It is cool to vent a little what with all the rampant misbehavior going on, but “only as long as it lasts”. It is not cool to add to the fury anymore than it is to patiently let a friend drink ’til they soil their clothing. It is so uncool an experience watching boorish politicians trying to take cover after the shit hits the fan. Running off with our money. Taking off in some cozy little jet with someone’s wife or mistress, the jet in this case fully loaded with all the fun stuff, y’know the bottle of vintage champagne “liberated” from beneath some dirt off the coast of Normandy, for instance or the very best chocolate stashed in some fancy closet on that snug all-leather and very sedate looking at the airstrip(don’t we all know how to live, folks!!!)

Quietly living off the planet at a whale’s pace then coming home to moralize about the virtues of thrifty behavior in these hard times and our need to be conserving. “it was exactly what i needed…”, they’ll mouth off to a reporter eager for a story they can stretch out for subsequent columns. Thank you to Wikileaks and the rest of the bust-your-balls hard-nosed vigilantes, i have acquired a taste for virulent truth-sayers’ heresies. I devour with a gargantuan appetite. I have so much fire to trade, get at me. You steal from us and catch yourselves blabbing, at unguarded moments when the sun is high and the fumes have evaporated from your heads.  I just think you should learn to eat your cake in private while staying cool under a good tree.

How about this recommendation here “…an exclusive collection of memoirs of an ancient thinker that is good to be read at sunset while the little jet ploughs through puffy clouds, now  it’s occupants’ moods heady expectantly awaiting the twilight, to gaze at the stars while glasses clicked and someone grunted self-satisfactorily. Ah….the bliss and longing for some full-bodied hedonism!!! Lighting a Cuban cigar, while the lightning outside cracked and the plane tossed a little. A chuckle and a raised eyebrow. Back to the books: feet free of all encumbrance including sandals or socks. Bare-chested in a light burgundy bathrobe and green-and-blue-stripe boxer shorts, legs stretched across a cleverly custom-made table, (only for me), calmly thinking of the world and the folks on the ground. Waiting on a chicken dinner which will be a surprise since i gave the hostess the liberty to do it the way she would like me to enjoy it. Money is a means to certain ends.Throwing away our cares, casting our burdens according to “the believers” as though it takes a specialized skill to believe. Hurling a rock into the pond and watching the ripples. That was a long time ago. It was during the golden age of music, it will never age or go away, the beat of the eighties and true musical stardom. It was during the days of Madame Ciccone and she was queen of the “into the groove” movement. It was so cool to be alive. I pray we stay.
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I will close the door and draw the curtains. i will contrive to be alone, to have room for my thoughts. There will be no sleep. No rest for the weary, no rest for the wicked. every rose has it’s thorn. it’s true.  “…………Oh wail infidel, or have yea no anthem?”. There is something strange about folks clamoring for more fun time, more leisure when they is so much work awaiting, fixing the system. Where’s the defiance, the cultural nonchalance, the indifference and not giving a care about the rest of them and how they live, the things they do or what they believe? By being we and what it ought to be. How about a riot, er, brothersss ? It bothers me a great deal when i remember there is so much more to life, so much to do in each new day, sooo much to live for, to wonder at!. Where did the simplicity of life flee to or where is it hiding. Maybe there is a devil, some devil lurking somewhere witnessing the passion of men’s children, now happy, now tumultously engaged in endless personal conflicts, duelling for the spoils, unperturbed in their single-minded resolve to kill each other. They used to say “put each other to death”.

Yes i use the word put the way they  wrote English in the olden days. I sound whimsical but small things get me through.  They’d say an executioner put a man to death on the orders of the king, penalty for stealing a poor old widows winter’s supply of corn for example. To make an example of what to do with incorrigible criminals. Afterword, the king, retired to his chambers and refreshed and feeling himself restored and once again composed for the agitated mob below his balcony, would emerge now charismatic and address the people gathered, pause to whisper with an advisor and then declare  his kingly intention to honor his subjects with a feast two fortnights into the future. I strongly suspect such kings to have been doing this as a way to assuage themselves of any particular guilt in having been so rush, so instantaneous in displaying their wrath however kingly it might seem to be in the eyes of common folk. But that is something kings are known to do; it is an imperial gesture after all and loans the king public acclaim and gives them time to make themselves  over. Cool stuff from the cobwebby archives.
We continue to plunge headstrong into a future hurtling towards us at great speed. Ever increasingly dizzying speed, we continue to lose the moment, so caught up are we in this spell-binding tale of the present distractions on offer. Everyone i meet is busy, they are unwilling to give the littlest(if there is such a word)of their time it is a worrying trend. Let us band together and pray the love affair ends soon. So long, comrade.