My mother, the herbalist.

Remember my post on taking stock last week? When I said I was smelling herbs? ( ) Well, it is getting pretty serious around here. My mum has brought home the big guns.

 I have been sick for a while now and my medication is not working. She just got frustrated one morning and I heard her on the phone.

“Her meds aren’t working. I think you’ll have to come in and check it yourself.”

(Person on the other side.)

“Yeah, kuja you see her, hizi dawa za wazungu pia huwa useless sometimes. I think ni vuindi.

(Person on the other side.)

She nods vigorously and hangs up.

“Who was that kwani?” I asked.

“I called my friend Harbert to come check you out. He’s an herbal doctor.” My mum is a big believer of natural remedies provided directly by Mother Nature.

So Harbert came home on Monday and checked me out. 

They discuss the diagnosis in luhya, which is pretty rude if you ask me because they think I don’t understand luhya. I’m the bloody patient so the least Harbert could do is address me personally. As you can tell, I was a little pissed. I’ll translate it.

“What do you think? Is it  vuindi ?”

“No. But I’ve seen this before. It’s not serious. Itaisha tu once you get her the herbs.”

My mum sighs with relief, not because the good doctor has said my case is treatable but because he said it is not vuindi.

Okay. Vuindi is this luhya thing, like a sort of witchcraft. Someone looks at you and “throws you sickness” to translate it directly. These things are real you guys, haha. Suddenly you can’t eat because your throat hurts or you start limping or something funny just happens to you. This is why I don’t like going upcountry sometimes. But there’s herbs to prevent this.

Anyway, my mum is told which herbs to get for me. She returns in the evening with so many plants, she looks like she uprooted an entire bush. There are little berries, purple roots, I swear there is one that looks like weeds we learnt about in Class Four Science. She tells me to wash them and pound them in a mortar.

“And then what?”

“You are to drink it and apply it around your neck twice a day.”

“Ha! I’m not drinking this stuff. These berries could be poisonous. What’s this purple stuff ata?” I say with a ddisgusted face.

“Nothing here is poisonous. My grandmother used to use these. You will drink it upende usipende. I didn’t look like a crazy lady picking plants by the roadside for you to refuse to drink this.”

So now I’m drinking this dark green concoction I thought I would have to drink with a bucket nearby in case I vomit but it’s surprisingly not bitter. It’s not kali at all. It’s just….unusual.

When I apply it on my neck, especially at night, I end up smelling like backed potatoes. I’m dreaming of potatoes too a lot lately. Could it be the herbs’ side effects? Ha, just kidding! It was only once😂
Ps: Mother’s day is this Sunday by the way. May 14th♥


Conversations with my alter ego.

What you’re about to read is sort of an interview. A dialogue. A conversation between my alter ego(Queer) and I(Tess). It is just a page from my weird imagination in an attempt to know what happiness really is. If you get confused, don’t worry, it happens to many people when they try to decipher a way through the maze in my head☺
T: What is happiness to you?

Q: Happiness? 

Um, wearing a clean bra☺

Being gifted happy socks on any occasion, blisssss.

Eating ugali and omena and it’s not even my birthday, wtf ily!

T: Let’s be realistic here for a moment.

Q: And what’s nonrealistic about hygiene and multicolored socks and favorite meals? They seem pretty real to me.

T: Okay then. What “psychological” things make you happy?

Q: What’s with the air quotes? Well, not constantly over thinking about stuff would make me happy.

T: So you’re saying you are an over thinker?

Q: No. You’re the over thinker. I like to sit in the background, pour myself a glass of sangria and watch the proceedings. You can be quite a skeptic sometimes.

T: Back to the happiness bit. What makes you happy that isn’t vanity?

Q: Well when you put it that way…hmm.

I would say the little things in life really. A great panorama, moments I’m alone with my thoughts and we’re not over thinking, deep conversations with people ow, like that guy you like, what’s his name?

T: We can’t say that here!

Q: Oh shit! My apologies. But why not Tess? A blog’s purpose is self expression, isn’t it?

T: It is but that’s not why we’re here. And nobody cares about stuff like that Queer. You were saying?

Q: Ah yes. Being somewhere with my people, kicking it, listening to some great music, discussing our big dreams and sharing plans for megalomania. That makes me happy. 

Living in the moment, you know? Cuddling. Taking long reflective walks. When I write something awesome, that feeling is everything Tess.

T: Who are “your people”?

Q: Again with the air quotes…Weirdos like me are my people.

Also “non-weirdos” who get me. That’s how to properly use air quotes BTW.

T: What about family?

Q: What about them?

T: How do you relate happiness with family?

Q: If my mum is happy, I’m happy. If my family is happy, then I’m happy.

T: So what is happiness to you?

Q: Um, happiness is not one thing Tess. I can’t put one thing in a box and label it happiness. That’s just sad. Happiness is many different things which can only be put in a large space where it is free to burst out into different colors, bounce off walls, hang from the light bulb, play with the light switch, bang the doors, break some windows, draw on the white walls with crayons, rearrange the furniture, sing out loud, cry like a baby, stare in awe, wave frantically out the window at passers-by, do some cartwheels, run around in circles and sit down peacefully. That’s just it. It’s many things,some of which we have never heard of in our entire lives. Happiness to me is many things. You get?

T: Um.Wow. If I didn’t know better, I would say you just described a crazy person in an asylum. 

Q: I’m glad you know better Tess. So what about you? What is happiness to you?

T: Whatever makes you happy makes me happy. We are the same person after all ,aren’t we?

Q: I like it when we’re on the same page☺

(Q-Queer. T-Tess.) Why I have an alter ego is a story for another day. What is happiness to you though? Let me know in the comments.

Nice weekend peeps✌