Monday, June 2, 2008

bee stung lips, pole sana and bono..



oh woe is me. i so badly wanted to write last night but TANESCO (tanzania electricity supply company) let me down some what (and unsurprisingly)... so ended up huddled around three candles and three kids whilst 6 million mosquitoes huddled around us and drank merrily away. i read the mojo by torch light and then called it a day.


thanks to everyone who is reading my site and leaving comments. i can't express my gratitude enough. i am addicted to what you all have to say. i LOVE getting comments. and thereby discovering new sites.

ok so the week-end. well. clearly i safely managed to avoid any head collector (or boob collector for that matter). it really is a hideous and horrific affair. and terrifying. all the warusha (a tribe residing on the western slopes of mt meru) women i saw on saturday and sunday moved in large groups to go and collect firewood; they seemed heavily armed with pangas too. i don't think it's safe for them to be alone. and if they were perchance after the head hunters themselves, then headhunters beware. these ladies meant business.

the kids and i collected m who lives in the valley below me. (m of silver party and sexy dressing fame) she is carless and needed a lift up the mountain for the night. the drive to her place is so beautiful. she lives on the edge of a flower farm which is in full bloom. a riot of colour. from my hill it looks like a van gogh painting. ( i finally saw real van gogh's in amsterdam about three years ago - the last time i was off the continent - before that it had been ten years -and to my amusement i discovered that this information provided much shock and surprise in london...so i ended up saying it on purpose...) - from home i see giant squarey patches of colour lying carelessly amongst the green patchwork of mealie fields. like a blanket.
life has been rather challenging for m lately so she decided to go for a run. nothing like a run to keep the thoughts in ones head clean and humble. i arrived a little after this hearty event and there she stood with a top lip bigger than mick's (as in jagger) or carley's (as in simon), clutching a bandana full of ice against her mouth. it looked worse than a botched botox lip. much worse.

how it happened: she was running along, lost in the moment, lost in the colour of the flowers and the blue of the african winter sky, feeling cradled by a kind, safe and responsive universe, when out of no-where a wayward bee crashed into her lip and stung her. nothing quite like a reality call. why now? why me? why?
we piled into the car - everyone and The Lips. the kids were silenced by them and deadly polite. off we bounced down the hideously bumpy road until we came upon a tractor and some tanzanian villagers calmly ploughing up the road. we stopped to ask them if they were fixing the road (in my shamefully poor swahili). oh yes. indeed they were. and if we liked we could contribute. on seeing darling lippy M, they smiled widly and greeted her with great affection and recognition and asked how she was. she mumbled from behind her icy bandana still fixed to her face, "pole (pronounced: polai and everyone says this about twenty times in one sentance and after you have been here 8 years then you too will start saying it twenty times in every sentance - english or swahili. it means sorry or excuse me as in pardon me and it has the wonderful effect of making others feel thought of and cared about acknowledged and respected. I LOVE pole.), " Pole. i have been stung by bees in the flowers..." and they replied " oh POLE SANA (means very much) mama,. POLE POLE but now you look very beautiful. very beautiful!"

it really was enormous!!! the lip! (and lopsided). as we walked into n's house on the mountain she said, "oh hello mrs wildenstein." by this time the cheek was like a balloon too, drinking hot tea was challenging (and dribbly) and certainly laughing was no laughing matter. m was worried about her lips cracking.

stings and things always go away. even heartbreak, eventually.
darling m is still wondering about the karmic significance of her bee encounter but has managed the day with overdoses of The Cow Bell Skit.

apparently bono and david beckham are in town. how can i get bono to come to my little gigs on tuesday and thursday and david to come and play footie with my kids?? anyone know them? send bono an sms please. blue heron tuesday from 6:30 to 8:30. and again on thursday. which reminds me i need to get my act together for this gig. oh dear oh dear. bloody terrifying and why do i always leave things to the last awful minute?
it's true. i am waiting to be discovered. people always laugh when i say this. i tell you. i am! (a bit like at my old job when i was sulking from lack of recognition and salary increases and threatened to leave. my boss said," well. what is it you want? tell us and we can make a plan." i gazed steadily into his eyes and said " well. I want more money and more power." and he started laughing. so i left.)

when i was jogging this morning (yes 5 kms..MEGA brownie points) i was visualizing bono sitting over a cold beer at the blue heron, exhausted from his day of saving africa from malaria and suddenly up on the verandah he sees but more HEARS this INCREDIBLE musician, playing original songs and music. and he comes up and says " won't you be my back up singer?...do you know the band U2? oh we would love to BUY all rights to your songs. and BLAH BLAH BLAH!" and overnight i become a helicopter owner.


apparently bono, at a concert not too long ago, stood on stage very slowly clapping his hands and said " for every clap of my hand, someone is dying in africa." someone in the crowd shouted back " for godsakes stop clapping then!"

so everybody please visualize bono sitting at the blue heron tommorrow between 6 and 8 our time. and best i get my A into Gear and get a set or two together....ooooergh... whilst humming " and i still haven't found, what i'm looking for..."


Kitchen Board: Monday Evening: 2 June 2008:


Contributors: Janelle and Veronica

Comments: well. am not going to be able to complete shopping tommorrow for various reasons.

1. traffic. because there are many famous people in arusha for the sullivan summit (like 3000 more people - could this be possible??) the roads are jammed.

2. lack of cash.

3. i have a million things going on tommorrow. meeting gani the seamstress at 10:30 (urgently trying to get house into shape before older sister from singapore arrives. we have not seen each other in eight years, purely because of geographical distance and financial..so you can imagine i am DEAD excited about it all...suddenly everything around me looks so shabby...ripped cushions, kids footmarks on the walls, grubby couches oh the list is endless - oh ovens which have "things" growing in them..), shopping, have to get sound gear to blue heron for gig tommorrow evening. 12:30 gabby's poetry reading at her little school in the fever trees, back home to collect boys from school then back into town for gig with all children in tow because husband still on safari.


thank god we have tanesco tonight! YAY. toodely pip then! off to design set for tommorrows silly little gig...where i shall be scared. XX








5 comments:

Dumdad said...

Good luck with the gig. I'll tell Bono to look out for you. His mobile number is 06 25 ... damn, pole, pole, I must dash, someone at the door.

Miranda said...

What does Bono like? Maybe we can leave a trail of them from the summit to the Blue Heron. Like breadcrumbs

or sunglasses

Janelle said...

yes quite! lets. sunglasses. and POLE SANA to you, monsieur! a bientot. x janelle

http://reluctantmemsahib.wordpress.com said...

i need to see bono too. i wrote him a letter. he didn't bother to reply. i had some useful suggestions for making poverty history. if you get his number, please pass it on.

and good luck. wish i was going to be there to enjoy x

Janelle said...

thanks anthea! yes wish you were here too...to swell the crowds!! to make um, 7. xxx