They are four. My three brothers Chris, Francis, Casper and our uncle Solomon(mama). So why I’m I thinking about them this week? It could be I need to purge and get out my feelings so I can move on as my self help thoughts tell me. And anyway, I need room for new thoughts. For the longest time my relationship with the opposite sex has been influenced by how I felt towards my biological father. Between age 12 and 18 my main goal in life was to find out who he was. I did, at 19. Met him at 22, and at 25, I decided having a father was not really my kind of thing. So I packed, and headed home, to tell my people that they were the greatest. I didn’t, I’m still learning how to make confessions.
I regretted the time lost in that selfish pursuit. Our rojak family set up of uncles, cousins, grandparents, aunts, mothers, friends, sympathizers and mafans was just fine.
These four are my heroes. My uncle held my hand and walked me to my first day of school. He gave me his handkerchief. I did the math recently and found out he was just a teenager himself when he suddenly had to play father to his sister’s kid. We became buddies.
I admire him for maintaining a peaceful home for all of us. He deserves a kingly hat for his sense of justice. His head is full of white hair now, he still works like a horse but it is always refreshing to sit around the fire and listen to his stories that make us laugh and choke on our food. I owe him for not letting me drop out of high school in my forth year.
During my high school years, Casper my younger brother stayed up with me when my head was going off like fireworks, when I realised my days at home were counted. I’d soon be packed off to the city. As we were growing up,I felt bad when he had to get up in the morning to help with milking despite his morning allergies. I hated it for not having a place to welcome him when he was interning after college. Despite all that, I and everyone in the extended family knows they can always count on Casper. If it is within his reach, he will get it done, even delivering a computer in the middle of the night. I could never make him cross no matter how hard I tried, and I did try. You need to be really mean to make Casper mad.
Then Francis grew up and came to visit me in my log cabin and brought a big bag of food with him. He asked no questions, just came to visit. He was in high school. Later, he sold a young bull and sent me some money- and I cried like the fool I am, wondering why it took me so long to know I had a family that cared.
Francis is humble, he acts like he knows nothing but he has all the copies. He has always been able to gather a crowd. He would gather the neighbour’s children and bring out every single edible thing out. He still has a gang following him wherever he goes. When our neighbor,(http://gathoniciss.blogspot.co.ke/2011/03/animal-tolerance.html) died recently, he broke the news in such a mature manner I added another feather to his hat. He also acts as the link to everyone; if you need to know what someone in the family is up to, just ask him.
Chris was born a few years after I left home. But his thinking ability fascinates me. Everyone says he reasons like a middle aged man. He has already established himself as our age mate. He is in cram school but whenever he gets access to a phone he will call me. He looks for me. He is a hero for being able to maintain peace between his mother and grandmother, something I always look on with amazement.
I’ve been thinking about these four men, their love and their good example, thanking my creator for putting my life under their watch. He was right all along.
There are others, like Mama Mdogo(lesser uncle)Kamande who ensured I had lunch everyday and taught me how to make decorative stitches when he learnt how to do it in home science class, it was the coolest thing. And many older brothers not related by blood but whom I’ve come to love very much for setting a good example on how to be kind,, mild, wise and to worship God with all seriousness.
Mama and Francis