The Magic Number

   112    
431

In December I woke up in a very charming, American style country home nestled in a spice farm called Uhoreru Farm in Loldaiga, Nanyuki and got onto a mountain bike. I cycled for 12 kms in the punishing heat, up and down hills and sisal fences and down rocky paths, until finally I stopped at a gate where my friend stood waving, a long jagged scar running down her hand. She had gotten that scar when she fell in a bathroom in India, where she had undergone surgery to strengthen her vaginal walls. [Colporrhaphy]

Beatrice. 

Smart. Irreverent. Wild, free, funny, untethered. 

I had been promising to go see her wooden cottage since she last attended my writing class in 2019. She had moved to Nanyuki and built a cabin facing Mt Kenya. She had two identical red Land Rover Discoveries in her compound and an athletic-looking Ridgeback of sorts, a guard dog, that kept a close eye on visitors. She home-schooled her two daughters who were away visiting relatives. We sat in her wide open kitchen made from wood and stone and drank iced orange water and then went upstairs to see if we could see her. [Her being Mount Kenya]. She lived like a white person; frugally, intentionally, wildly. The wooden floors creaked under our weight in some parts, the high wooden ceilings loomed over us. There were maasai shukas and pallets turned into seats. Outside,  she had planted trees and kept planting more even when some hung their heads in the heat. She spoke to the seedlings because she believes plants can hear us, that they have emotions.  An introvert, she was happy living offgrid, building cottages in her massive farm. She had retired some years ago, on her 40th, to live the life she chose. I admired her farm life but I also wondered if it got lonely because it was so quiet, it was loud. “Don’t you miss people? The sound of a car honking? Someone coughing?” 

She wasn’t that animal who drew energy from people. This was her sanctuary; the silent mountain, the swaying of trees and her brown-eyed dogs. Oh she had many dogs. She had -locked away – a gang of German Shepherds the size of Volkswagen Beetles. I couldn’t see them but I could definitely hear them breathe. They breathed like hippos. She talked to her dogs. She told them, “this is who we are, we are part of nature, we are unbowed and we eat meat.” She planned to sell some land and take her girls on a cruise around the world. 

She took me on a tour to see the cottages she was building, all facing Mt Kenya. Money was tight and construction had stalled. She was hopeful but also a bit worried. We hugged goodbye next to one of her red beauties. I nodded at her Ridgeback and he nodded back like a thug. 

Last week we were chatting on Whatsapp. She was low and defeated. She used words like ‘failure’ which is unlike her. She said she would be in Nairobi the following day. That she was moving back. So I went to see her at Kerarapon, Karen when she arrived. One of her daughters had come down with a black, sinister-looking cat. [OK, all cats are sinister, they are always planning a mutiny] We sat under a tree with strange fruit [remember that classic by Nina Simone?] She started talking and talking and I was laughing or widening my eyes until I said, wait, and I put on my voice recorder and we talked for hours until my battery got to 2% and I needed to preserve it so that I could order brown chapos from 3-Dee restaurant on my way home because they have mastered the art of chapatis. 

The only reason I’m retelling her story is because her story is like an onion and now it’s taken a twist, which might be a big deal because her life story has always had twists. However, this particular twist has come at a crucial time when she’s turning 50 at the end of this year. So it comes with great reflections and inflections and it fascinated me: how one person can have a million transformations in one lifetime. 

Here is the story of a woman who goes through walls and attempts to walk on water. 

***

So, I’m in Perth Australia doing my doctorate. I’m young, smart and broke. My best friend Regina Mwangi just died from Lupus. We were the only two black people, two African girls holding it together in white Perth, doing this pata potea thing, and now she was gone and I was alone. Her dad, retired, had only one request, that she doesn’t die the same day her mom died. Regina died the same day her mom died. It was a real tragedy, if there ever was one. Just terrible. Anyway, her dad shows up and of course he is broke because the old man is retired and also paying school fees for Regina’s younger sister who had flown in from Malaysia to take care of her sister while she was dying in hospital. So now we have the body to fly back home for burial and her sister’s ticket to pay. And there is no money. Oh, did I mention we are in Perth, Australia? It’s faaar. 

Her dad reaches an agonizing decision no parent should ever reach and he tells me, “Beatrice, I have to leave her here.” Her is Regina, my best friend, now just a body. There is no money to fly her body back home. It’s heartbreaking to even imagine this man leaving his daughter’s body buried in Australia because he is broke. 

It must have been the following day, I’m washing my hands in the bathroom when my phone rings. I don’t know the number. A man says, “Hi, my name is Stephen Kuria, I hear one of us is dead and we can’t take the body home?” This man I don’t know is talking about ‘us’ and ‘we’ and it’s a relief. I say, Uhm, yeah, who are you again? “I’m Stephen Kuria, I’m Kenyan too.” He then instructs me to arrange for a room in University and set a date for a small harambee. “I will bring Kenyans.” He said. I thought, bring Kenyans from where?  Anyway, I arrange and secure a room in the uni and get many plastic baskets, you know the ones for trash? Yeah, for cash collection. 

The next day, or maybe it was two days after that call, it’s raining slightly outside and I’m in university, standing outside a church with Regina’s dad and we are talking and this dark blue Range Rover comes from the rain, it’s a massive thing, this Rangie and it’s coming from the rain, like something off a movie. It’s evening and it’s about to get dark and this massive car stops right next to us. 

Two men come out of the Range Rover, Indian men. Father and son. The older man with the boyish hair says, “are you Beatrice?” I say yeah. He says his name -Sigh and he says he heard about Regina and that we are unable to send the body back home. He’s wearing black and standing with his hands hanging loose by his side like someone accustomed to solving problems. He asks Regina’s dad how much we need. He turns to his son who fetches a cheque book, writes something on it and hands a leaf to him which he signs and hands to Regina’s dad. I’m like, whaat? Who is this man? He then tells Regina’s dad, “you are still unsettled, is there any other bill bothering you?” He says his daughter is also here and needs a ticket to go back home. How much is a ticket back home, the Indian man asks. Again his son writes the figure on the cheque which he signs and hands to Regina’s dad. Any other bill you need settled, he asks and Regina’s dad, who is now very emotional, I mean very emotional begs him, he says ‘no no no, you have done enough, I can’t take another penny from you. Please, no.’ It’s still drizzling. They get back into their Range Rover and drive back into the rain that they came from. I never saw that man again in my life, Biko. I later learnt that he was a major publisher in Kenya. 

Still in disbelief, I call Stephen Kuria and tell him, some Indian guy has footed all the bills and so we won’t be needing the harambee. He says, no, a funeral always needs the extra money. We will do the harambee. On the D-day, this Stephen guy comes with a handful of Kenyans and we fill that room and people donate, Biko. All the baskets were full. All. And I had many baskets. The university was so shocked at the overwhelming support they matched every dollar raised. The funeral home also waived their cost. All things are just happening fast, this great wave of generosity. 

The only reason I’m telling this story for Regina is because it changed the course of my life because during the funeral procession I found myself walking behind the coffin with this Kuria guy and we got talking. He asked me how uni was and I told him it was tough being a foreign student and he said, you don’t have a job? I said I didn’t. He said, ‘sawa call me next week’. 

Sawa, call me next week’. Those five words changed my life. 

Because that’s how I landed work as an intern at Barrick Gold Corporation, the world’s largest mining company at that time. Stephen Kuria hooked me up. I worked so hard, Biko. I worked like I was employed. Three months later I was called into an office and this lady said, we would like to offer you a job. I said, a job? She said yeah. She said they wanted me to fill the position of an Oracle Specialist. I actually laughed. I said, er, this is nice but there is one problem. I said, I think you have the wrong person because I’m just an intern and there is also a small issue that I don’t know what Oracle is and I certainly am not an Oracle Specialist. The lady laughed and said, don’t you worry, we will teach you, we have seen how hard you work and so you will learn. Biko, suddenly I was earning thousands of dollars a year! Me, Beatrice! [Claps her hand] This is, what, almost twenty years ago?

I got into that job and worked my hide off and not long after that I was given a new role. My business card read Beatrice Imathiu. HR Systems and Projects Lead, Barrick Gold Corporation. Suddenly I was flying business class all over the world to do training. I was being picked by stretch limos outside my door because that’s what Emirates does; they pick you in their limo. I was not doing well, Biko, I was doing insanely well.

There was only one problem. OK, two problems. One was I didn’t have a man to speak of. Two, I had endometriosis. I didn’t have time. I was 32 years old and I wanted babies. So I went into a shiny white hospital and did a laparoscopy to check if I had time to get babies and this doctor with a wide chin told me I had to do surgery. So on 6th June 2006, yah I know 666, I went into surgery and the doctor with the wide chin said I was okay, but ‘you need to have a baby soon, you have no time.’

My only prospect was this Tanzanian guy, a scientist, who was blowing hot and cold. I needed to have his babies. But at the same time I was asking myself some important questions about life, key which were; why the hell do people work after 40? I mean what is that thing that they are chasing? I was 32 and earning well, kwani how much more money would I need to make between 32 and 40 never to continue working after 40? Which brings me to a story about my father because the decisions I made after were informed by how my dad lived. 

My dad grew up dirt poor in the villages of Meru. They were so poor the poor people in the village used to mock their family. To put himself through school, my dad worked in a golf club collecting golf balls for white colonialists. When he got a letter from Makerere offering a full scholarship he didn’t have money for the fare from Meru to Kampala so he did what my dad would do; he started walking towards Makerere and he walked and walked and by the time he got to Limuru he couldn’t go any further, the journey had killed his spirit and body. He was hungry and tired so he got a job at the storeroom in a post office and worked very hard for twenty years until he was the GM of the post office. But then he got involved in multi party politics and Moi said, ‘ala? siasa mbaya maisha mbaya’ and had him fired. He got into real estate and started buying and selling and building and he accumulated wealth so he sent us to good schools abroad. He was an old school dad; I will pay your fees, the rest ji sort. [That’s why I was broke in Australia doing my doctorate] He was big on education but he was always working, he was hardly ever there. I understood his work ethic, this need to make more and more money; he was running away from poverty and when he died I thought, what’s the point of wealth? How much can you make before you say, OK, this is enough let me enjoy it? Our lives just can’t be about work!

So I opened my Excel sheet and did my math. I calculated how much I needed to have in wealth before retiring at 40 because I didn’t want to work after 40. I wanted to spend half of my life rewarding myself by doing things that didn’t involve making money. I wanted to experience life, not live it. These are things my dad didn’t do. He just worked and worked and worked and made more and more money and then he died and left his money. 

I wanted to raise my children and enjoy a peaceful life doing things I enjoyed without running after money or taking another flight or working late. From my calculation, I needed to make at least 600k a month every month until I clocked 40, then I’d walk away from the race and settle in my cottage in Nanyuki where I’d live a quiet life. I would give my children a great education using the money which I would lock in assets, mostly land. I wanted a different education for them. I had been in four universities in four continents and I didn’t remember shit I was taught.  So, I drew plan A, plan B and plan C. My contingency plan had two contingency plans. I had this excel sheet opened on my laptop and I would end up tracking my progress obsessively over the years. I also always had a resignation letter written but not signed in my bottom drawer to remind me that I had a deadline. 

But first I needed to have children. 

I was sure that there were no high-paying jobs that would be more important than being a mother. I knew I would regret it if I didn’t have babies, no matter how successful I would become in life. 

I spoke to the hot-and-cold scientist and made a solid plan. I shared with him my ovulation calendar. The following month I was called to the head office in Toronto, and offered my dream job which I turned down because the role was in Toronto which would have complicated my baby-making plans. Two months later, in winter, I resigned from my job and I planned to go back home and make these babies. He had my ovulation calendar, he would take time off and fly into Nairobi and we would make babies. It was very military-like, this planning. Meanwhile my company says, no we are not accepting your resignation, you go to Africa and come back but we are holding this door open for you. My doctorate supervisor thought I was mad but I was adamant, I was not risking not having children for a job and a doctorate. 

I put my things in a shipping container and flew home. A few days later he says he changed his mind. He isn’t coming to Nairobi, literally and figuratively. Oh my God, I was crushed! Completely damaged. I mean, my stuff had not even arrived from Australia.  I wept like I have never wept before. Then I slipped into depression. Everything froze; time, my brain. I had no doctorate, no job and no prospect of babies. I had money for a year because I knew in that year I’d fall pregnant and finish my doctorate. Now I had nothing. Feeling like my whole world had shattered around me, I  moved back to my mother’s house in Lavington. We lived right next to Saitoti  but living with my mother wasn’t easy at all. We have a very complicated relationship. She wasn’t very nice to me. I was depressed and down. I became so broke our gardener would lend me money to buy food. Meanwhile I was applying for jobs, looking for big jobs in Newsweek. I’d walk to the cheapest cyber and back. My mother eventually kicked me out of her house because she said, you just can’t sit there eating nice food. 

I moved to Ngando, I had nothing. I slept on the floor. I used shukas as curtains. The scientist sent me two months’ rent, maybe out of guilt. I couldn’t afford to go to town if I didn’t have assurance of fare back. This is me, who was flying business class, upper business class, and being picked by stretch limousines by Emirates, the year before. And I had a job waiting in Australia, if I wanted it and I had an expatriates permit. But I was under such depression, I couldn’t. Because if I went back I was sure I was not going to have babies. I couldn’t finish my doctorate either. My hands felt like they had rocks on top of them. I couldn’t type. I was in my bibliography stage, Biko. I was finishing my doctorate. It was so good I had won two scholarships. Australian government scholarship, post grad scholarship, they were paying for my flights, I had stopped paying fees. And I had won another scholarship to Notre Dame in the US. That’s how good my doctorate was. And I couldn’t finish it. I couldn’t finish it. I felt like such a failure. Like oh my God. The year before I was in Toronto, working for one of the world’s largest Companies, being offered global jobs, and now I lived in Ngando on the floor. I used to buy avocados and half a loaf of bread from a kiosk. I’d cross a sewer to get to the kiosk and then wait until like 6 o’clock to find someone else to buy a loaf of bread with so that I could take half. 

Then I got a lead to an interview and I was invited to do aptitude tests and when I went I found 40 people. Jesus, forty people! I was like aargh fuck it. This was a waste of my borrowed  transport to come for this Westgate thing…40 people! And it was so complicated. I did the test, sijui this circle, that circle, and I went home. I had a transistor radio that I listened to in my verandah where my view was a heap of stinky rubbish this high but I had gotten used to the stench. You can get used to anything. 

Anyway, I would listen to this show by a Nigerian pastor on Hope FM. The music was like rhumba and it was on fire and I was like this is Christian music? Really? I loved it. It was upbeat. She was called Dr. Esther Obasi-ike and she had a heavy Nigerian accent and this one time she announced that there would be a bus taking people to her church for free. She got me at ‘for free’ because I couldn’t afford 40 bob fares. So I went to her church, for the women’s service. I remember the date; 7th July, 2007. I will never forget. We have the meeting, and she talks about how her church started from reed grass. How they used to sweep the floor, it was soil, then they put grass around to mark the church. And she told the people, that when it’s time to build the church, it’s you people from here, who are going to build it. At that moment I experienced a physical thing, a force because before she finished that statement I leapt in the air with my hands and grabbed it like it was a bird. When church was done, I just knew it. I knew my life would change one day soon. But my God, Pastor Esther prayed for me like her life depended on it.

Remember that interview test I went for with 40 people? They called, they said they wanted to see me. It’s BAT and they are at Business Park. I have no fare, I don’t have clothes worth talking about, I smell of the rubbish outside my balcony. I don’t live too far. I live in Ngando. I show up at the reception and the receptionist looks at me – I must have been looking hungry – and asks, do you want tea? I’m starving, Biko, of course I want tea. I want food. I want a whole cow. I will eat the hooves and tail. She sees me eying the slice of bread on her desk, so she asked if I wanted some bread? I said yeah. She served me bread with jam and tea. Oh, I was so grateful to her. Her name was Jacky Chepkonga. I will never forget her. 

BAT’s reception was so posh. Outside the big ceiling to floor windows, you saw horses galloping around. The greenery. I was like oh my God what am I doing here? The interviewer was late. He comes, and he’s trying to apologize, and I’m so grateful he was late because I got some bread and cocoa. I’m like no problem. And we enter a room. He interviews me. His name’s Abrie, HR Director. He asks me things that I don’t know. The job is what? Reward Specialist. What is that? But I was an Oracle specialist which I didn’t know what the hell it meant, so I could deal.  He asked questions and I didn’t know the answers but I just gave him answers and I think they were God’s answers because I know not what a Reward Specialist is? He promises to train me to become a Reward Specialist. [18 months later he would nominate me to take up his role] He stands up and says, I would like you to meet someone, so we go to the next office to meet someone. We chat a bit, talk about Australia and when I’m leaving I shake his hand. I believe in touch and spoken word. I told him, I can’t wait to start working with you and they both looked at each other and laughed because I had not even been offered this job. But I knew it was mine. The power of touch and spoken word. I had aced it, I told my pal when I left the building. Little did I know I would end up going for seven more interviews at BAT before they called after I had gone for other interviews and had sold all my Mumias sugar shares and was now flat broke. [Looks up, tearing]. Yeah, I get the job. I get the job, Biko. They give me an offer and it’s good money but because I am who I am, I have the audacity to ask for more. I tell the guy that I have a magic number in my head and he’s almost there. Make my magic number, I tell him. He asks, am I too far? I say, you are not too far. So he hits my magic number. He hits it by 10,000 more. I signed the contract.

This is 2007, I’m working for BAT. I put my back into it.  I worked like I was my boss’s boss. Oh my God I worked. Now I have the energy to try and pick up my PhD. Then my Australian citizenship comes through, permanent residency. So all these things that had frozen started to open up. Remember I have my eight year plan which is now, five or so years. I’m using a matatu because I borrowed money to start this job. I went downtown to buy suits only to get to the office and find out that folks dressed down. I said, I will still wear my suits. I’d break them. 

I would ask for lifts after work and some people, I remember who but I won’t say the name, would look at me, they would be so inconvenienced that what type of manager is this we have hired who’s borrowing lifts like the receptionist. I would send Jackie to ask the manager for a lift for me, especially when it rains. But the disdain with which they looked at me, I swore never to ask again. I said but why? Ata kama ni BMW, excuse me, I’ve flown upper business class, one step from first class, all over the world. Na wewe unaniringia na BMW 320i? What happens to people when you make small money? What happens to people, Biko? But I was really hurt. I really felt kwani I have fallen that low? But I didn’t even feel it because I was so grateful for where I was. I bought my furniture by the roadside. I remember my seats, I still have them. I didn’t move from Ngando immediately, because I’m heading for somewhere at 40. 

Check this out. I got a promotion before being confirmed and my salary went up significantly. I got a bonus even though I hadn’t been there long and they prorated it. I would go to the ATM and just stand there staring at my balance. I wanted to print it and laminate it. I started buying land. Every shilling I had, I would find out the maximum loan amount I can have on this money, and I would buy plots. Remember I don’t have the time to develop it, I was accruing land, buying, buying, buying. I would develop them later if need be. For now I was just locking them in assets. But I’m also aware of my age and my deadline and it’s looming over me. I’m frantically gathering assets and I’m tracking my numbers on an excel sheet at the bottom of my laptop at work. 

Remember the baby project. Oh I never forget it. I think about it daily, it makes me anxious. I need to have a baby before it’s too late. But there is no man. No one hits on me. I don’t know if it’s my job but men don’t approach me. Okay, there is the fact that I’m working many hours, I mean many hours and so there is no time to meet anyone. And I’m constantly in and out of the country, carrying boarding passes and dragging suitcases in and out of my house. I’m almost 36 years old now. Time is running out so I go to see Dr. Noreh, Landmark Plaza because I read an article about in vitro fertilization. I tell him that doctors in Australia told me I have little time left but I can’t meet anybody to get pregnant with so you need to fertilize me. He says, look first I think you are still young, I have seen women in their mid forties get pregnant here but listen, I’m going to be out of the country for a few months, take this time to think about it because this is a different journey full of blind spots, when I get back and you still want to go down this route, we shall do it. 

I say sawa and I go home and make a decision; I’m going to pray this shit out. But first I buy a baby’s dress and a wedding dress and I hang them in my closet and I tell God, “there, I have done the ordinary, now you do the extraordinary.” Then I go to Nigeria to pray. I go to church to the main headquarters in Nigeria. You know me, I don’t do things in small measure or half measure. This church is massive; Redeemed Christian Church of God in Ibadan, Oyo State. In fact CNN wrote about that service, we were about 8 million people physically present in church. The church was 4 kilometers long and 4 kilometers wide. The inside of the church was insane’ pews and lights and big screen TVs. It took me 45 minutes to walk from one end to the other end. Kenyans are treated like royalty there. They love Kenyans. Kenyans and South Africans. There was a hospital and banks and institutions in the church grounds.  

I prayed for a week. And one day, at the shops, I held a little beautiful baby that this lady was holding. And the baby held me and wrapped herself around my belly like this….it felt like an octopus. And I just felt it, that my daughter was coming. I felt it by the way that baby wrapped herself around me. I dug into my pocket and took out all my money. I had dollars, I didn’t even count, I just took out everything and squeezed them in her hand and told her mother to hold on, and I gave her, and she told me her  name, the baby, was called Gift. I went to look for my friend who had had nine miscarriages from IVF, nine babies died in her, and she’d also come to church to pray. And I told her about Gift and that I had vision and I was going to get a baby. My baby is coming, it’s a daughter, it’s a girl, I’m going to have a baby, it’s going to be a girl. She looked at me like, what? 

I came back home. 

I remember one time my father was building these flats. And everybody, my siblings and their children were labeled on doors. Each of them had a flat. But the last one, was written HC. That was my flat, it didn’t have my name. I asked him what’s that? He said, husband or child. whichever came first because Beatrice didn’t have a husband or a child. I told him no, it’s not one or the other, I can have both. Why can’t I have both? 

That December after Nigeria I met somebody but it didn’t work out. False alarm. Then I flew to Cape Town for a meeting but missed my flight and I got so angry because I never miss planes. I think people who miss planes are so frivolous and careless or take things for granted. And I chastise myself so badly. When I arrive, I tell my friend how horrible everything has been. I’m not meeting anybody etcetera. I tell her we need to take me out. We dress up and wear our heels. She suggests that we pass by a food outlet, have a bite then hit the club. When we arrive at this eatery there’s a man standing at the entrance, a big man, like a bouncer. And he’s folded his arms like this, and he looks like those tough men in security. He’s GORGEOUS. I remember smiling like a teenager and being flustered; Oh my God, Oh My God, I didn’t even know how to say hello to him. He was a beautiful man; very tall and very strong, a mandingo. 

He extends his hand and it’s a huge hand and I’m like oh God, so I have to shake his big hand. I have been avoiding looking up at him lest he sees how giddy he had made me but with his hand extended in a handshake I have to look up. I look up and he’s smiling at me and I’m bashful…absolutely bashful. I place my hand in his and my hands  are suddenly tiny, like a bird’s foot. Anyway, he turns out to be our waiter. The whole night he knelt before us and smiled at us and served us and I was like, Oh my God, is this it? Is this the man God has sent to give me babies? This man with big hands and a big smile, this man on his knees….

***

We are 5,500 words in already and this story is already quite long and she hasn’t gotten her man yet. My fingers hurt from typing so we will drop anchor here. Part 2 is next week. 

Oh, and Happy Women’s Day tomorrow. 

As usual, you know the drill. Three weeks to the creative writing masterclass. Register HERE

 

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112 Comments
  1. Ugghhh, I was so engrossed…next week is so far away, but i see myself in this woman, i can’t wait for the next part.

    9
  2. Southern trees bear strange fruits
    Blood on the leaves and blood at the root
    Black bodies swinging in the southern breeze
    Strange fruit hanging from the poplar trees
    Because a black man was lynched yesterday in Jonesboro

    I made up the last line.

    Waiting for part II

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  3. I’ll be sleeping here waiting for Tuesday lol.
    https://prodigitaladdress.blogspot.com/2023/01/the-holy-studio.html

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  4. It is weird how life has to make us yearn for something or make everything feel incomplete because of one or two things. haha. For Beatrice, a husband and a baby. For me, a good job…and it goes on and on…

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    1. hahahahaa…. inakaa Biko na Beatrice walikuwa juu ya jaba aki….

      Btw… thinking of it. He should tell us what they were drinking wakiambiana hii story.

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  5. You see that thing where you’re about to sneeze? And you have your mouth half open and a very awkward facial expression? And you’re hands are frantically trying to reach for the handkerchief in your purse/ pocket? And miraculously, it reaches your nose THEN the sneeze disappears??? That’s exactly what you’ve done to us Chocolate Man.

    Can’t wait for part two

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  6. This story is so intriguing, I had to go to Biko’s instagram to a post he did on Beatrice in 2019 just to see whether I could get ahead of this story!!

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  7. Surely Biko…next week? Must we wait for a whole week? I was so emotionally engrossed in this story!!!

  8. seriously…seriously…I’m.here getting giddy with her and we have to wait a whole week..
    After travelling from nanyuki to Australia to ngandu to downtown to BAT to smiling and having cocoa we have to wait a week yawa…

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  9. Me, I will comment after reading part two. for now, Wacha nipumue, this was rollercoaster. Yaani!

  10. Beatrice, in french they say, mbegu ndiimanagwo…

    Am sure there are linguists around the corner with a ready translation.

  11. I want to cry The suspense.Its a wonderful story.Ill wait for next week….. should be this week.cecilia

  12. Not cool Biko, you should have just finished the story even if it was 10,000 words, now you’ve left us hanging.

  13. There is a bit of exaggeration that makes this story seem stretched. Either Biko is embellishing the tale, or the lady is exaggerating facts. Nairobi Business Park doesn’t have ceiling to floor windows; sometimes you can see the horses at the barns in Ngong Race Course, but you have to really be standing at specific windows to see them. The barns area is also not green, it’s the worst section of Race Course. Alafu 8 million people in a church in Nigeria. Come on!!

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    1. Someone once said never let the facts get in the way of a great tale. Of course we know the church really didn’t have 8 million folks (nor was it 4 kms long). In literature, we call it hyperbole, lol. Anyway, another mad Amerucan woman 🙂

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      1. Thank you for your feedback.
        CNN covered that particular service – Dec 2019.
        The Church as since grown from the 4kms.

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      2. Hi,
        I’m Nigerian and I attend the church. It’s well over 4km now and over 8 million too. No exaggeration :).
        You can simply google it :).

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    2. Someone has said it! I also found it unrealistic that a total stranger would figure out where you are at a certain time and give you lots of money.

    3. Biko, I also see Part 3 to fill wide gaps I’ve seen in this tale. Where did $70,000 dollars disappear to and over what period of time did that kind of cash disappear. Number 2, did the ship with the returnee’s goods arrive? and couldn’t she sell those things at a car boot to feed herself? Number 3, she mentions siblings…kwani she also didn’t have a good relationship with them hence moving to Ngando? and what about the rental income from apartment HC. And she mentions many universities? kwani she didn’t have friends from all those alumni considering what she did for the Kenyan in Aussie? just thinking aloud

      2
  14. Life is very interesting. At the peak of her career, all she wants is a husband and a baby. And here I am pregnant and a man by my side and all I want and pray for is a job.

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  15. I wanted to print & laminate my bank statement. Ipo siku.I had the same feeling, after taking my first flight. I still have it in my drawer.
    I am glad you didn’t finish the story. I prefer sipping good coffee without hurrying .I re-read this twice to feel everything

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  16. Wallahi Biko you are evil hahahahaha. I was so engrossed. You must be rubbing your hands and laughing sinisterly. Wacha tungoje next week basis *sighs*

  17. I live for stories like these clearly God works in marvellous ways. Her faith is the kind that can move mountains and I just love her determination. Can’t wait for part 2, Tuesday you better get here quick do you hear me?

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  18. ……..But first I buy a baby’s dress and a wedding dress and I hang them in my closet and I tell God, “there, I have done the ordinary, now you do the extraordinary.” Then I go to Nigeria to pray. I go to church to the main headquarters in Nigeria. You know me, I don’t do things in small measure or half measure…..

    ……..important note..go the whole length…no small measures…..Looking forward to part 2 and follow-up parts…

    I am blessed to have Jacky Chepkonga in my network too! Quite an amazing lady!

    Happy International Women’s Day to all ladies in this network and beyond! May we continue celebrating equity.

    1
  19. Had to back and google ‘fell in a bathroom in india bikozulu’ to read the previous story.

    https://bikozulu.co.ke/2022/02/22/why-get-out-of-bed/

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  20. Biko!!!

    Today was captivating! The minute i saw Nanyuki…it could only be Beatrice. She should write a novel!

    She doesn’t know it, but her India hotel experience taught me a few lessons which i engraved mentally.

    My dad used to tell us that the things of this world are just but vanity and are to be experienced to create memories with God at the centre of it all. She has done what we called LIFE! She has LIVED! and is still LIVING!!!

    About the mandingo………i see a beautiful story here….

    Biko, Tuesday is too far!!! How about you put your fingers in ice and heal them faster to help you write to us on Thursday??? Surprise us please?????

    Cheers!

    3
  21. my take so far…

    Kumbe its not that hard to get a job at a multinational without relevant experience,. .interesting….

    i await part 2 with baited breath

  22. I got lost on the part where she got back home with enough money to feed her child and herself but she couldn’t even feed herself.

    1
  23. Aiii Biko, is this a true life story ama its among the many make up story i have read… coz aje sasa, it sounds like a fairly tale story…it can make a really good movie . Aiii God may the grace she carry rub on me now.. especially the Job opportunity

    1
  24. They say life is more spiritual than physical, at this rate I’ll probably die before I fully comprehend exactly what life is.Nice read can’t wait for part 2,

  25. Great story can’t wait for part 2

    Biko the story start well, but halfway through when she came back to Kenya to have a baby that’s when the story begins to have loopholes. Tried to ignore the holes so that I can enjoy the story, but the holes are too much. It makes you ask many questions of when where and how did such an event occur. They don’t add up. Additionally, you didn’t provide timelines.

    Anyway, we wait for Tuesday

  26. Great story can’t wait for part 2

    Biko the story start well, but halfway through when she came back to Kenya to have a baby that’s when the story begins to have loopholes. Tried to ignore the holes so that I can enjoy the story, but the holes are too much. It makes you ask many questions of when where and how did such an event occur. They don’t add up. Additionally, you didn’t provide timelines.

    Anyway, we wait for Tuesday

  27. oh gosh! I love this. so real. women can talk . I can relate with the tz scientist . a lady of the same age begged me to give her a kid I durked the last minute though guilty but, nop you can’t just go around planting seeds especially moving seeds which will meet you one day with a booklet of questions and no sorry can lift the guilt of how the generations from that seed will get by.
    this is perfect hopefully it ends up being a book. I’ll read it every second to the last page .

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  28. Some of your characters look sureal Biko and I often wonder whether they are real or imagined. Kama huyu wa leo. Sometimes they speak to me and I want to be like them..like that part about retiring at 40 to a cabin home in Nanyuki..that is my dream too only that for me I would want to retire at 50 and move to a farm house and grow organic foods and write memoirs.. beautifully written!

  29. This is a missed jackpot. I was relatively younger than her at BAT, and Jackie was surely a beautiful, kind, welcoming and hospitable receptionist. Beatrice(and another lady by the name Susan, worked in marketing… a very beautiful lady from eastern province ); they looked way beyond many men in BAT. Their English accent was intimidating. Had i known how eager she was to get in to a serious relationship, probably we would be enjoying life together on the those Cottages in Nanyuki. Beatrice all the best and am following the 2nd part of this story. Jackie left and is working………………………….i know where.

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  30. Wow! The planning, the spreadsheets, sounds so very me! Albeit definitely. Not for kids because I don’t want any, but to travel the world. And hopefully meet someone that loves cuddles.

  31. I’m Nigerian and attend Redeem Christian Church of God so this story resonates deeply with me. I’m soo happy for how your life turned out. The huge part faith/God played in your story.
    Sending all my love and also praying my way through this journey of life <3.

  32. Wow! Love it. Can’t wait to read part 2. I see myself i. The lady that writes her goals and a timeline for them.