Hold it! Did I just say that? First of all, can I get a little space to rant. I loved math in high school. In fact, I was one of those girls people came to and ask “Verah can you show me how I can get an A in math too?” I loved it because the simplicity: there is a formulae, apply it on the question, calculate, get an answer. However, I hated it when math was applied in real life like in business where we would be talking “liquidity” and some other jaw-breaking business terms. Then I loved the civics part of History and Government – you know the law making process, those Latin words like Jus sangurus and all that shit that made me look like some Athenian philosophical goddess. I wanted to be a lawyer those days in my teens.
But I hated the history part of History and Government. A question reads “account for the downfall of Lobengula.20marks”. Then I was like, wasn’t he Zimbabwean? How is that going to help me as a Kenyan? The potbellied man, resisted colonialism, white man did not like it, white man beat him. Simple. Then there was that fellow from TZ, Kinjekitile Ngwale?.. damn didn’t they have names that take a ceremony to pronounce? Hallo everybody gather around, we are about to term the name of that resistor from TZ… Ki-Nje-kitile.
But you know, you need the complexity of history and the simplicity of math. The Kenyan budget has been read and I need the math (which I am good at, smiles) but I need to remember previous history(which I loathe, frown) about this annual exercise to put everything in perspective. My mentor Catherine Gicheru has already sent me five angles from where I need to analyse that document. Before I loose you, let me tell you how that brings me to why I love them older. Fashion. Music. Friends. I am wondering whether I should add men to this list because I saw a 43 year old with the attitude of my 13 year old nephew. Of course, this love for old stuff comes with a healthy dose of what is current.
I cannot begin to tell you about the men and women, some who are twice my age who have held my hand through emotionally draining moments and taught me how to rise over them like a champ. My friend Zipporah Musau tells me “You must learn to rise over petty issues when you are angry, Verah”.
So whenever I wear the retro fashion- the 1950 pumps, the 1960 shift dress, the 80s pleated skirt- I feel like I am wearing this wisdom. Let me not even get started on the shoes.
My friend, ex run way model Damaris Muga, knows how to buy these shoes for me. When you have time, check out her blog here. Journalists who are perpetually in the field like me cannot have smooth skin, so do not criticise the leg above loool.
So do not fear old. Embrace it.
PHOTOS/ Sandra Ruong’o
WARDROBE: Verah Okeyo designs