Sunday, 9 July 2017

23. Discipline and Self Control

You will fall, how do you get up? Self discipline and especially the ability to control your emotions will give you more mileage than you can imagine. Al is the master of self control. Me, I wear my emotions on my sleeve, a rookie at my best. I know you are surprised. My greatest loses and mistakes happened when I lost control. I am learning to keep myself together. It is not always easy especially when I am surprised but I am better every day at this. No one practises for surprises, but it is not about how you fall but how you get up ...

Elan and Al’s close friends and family are gathered at their home. The garden looks beautiful and everyone is drawn to it, they are talking outside and a few are walking around the garden amongst the well manicured hedges. The gateman, Saeed, is looking outside the gate impatiently. He eventually gives a signal and they scurry inside. Moments later, the reason for the flurry, Al’s car, is driven into the compound. The housekeeper Njeri, cook Mustafa and Saeed all come to the car to welcome their madam. In the car is Al, Elan, Nurse Kate and the babies.

As soon as it stops, Saeed hurries to get the bags. Elan, so glad to be home, can hardly wait for her husband to open the door. Her staff seem to have equally missed her, despite their formal greetings, as required in their training from Al's mother, their big grins show they are likely to have hugged and joked around if Al was not there. 

Saeed, ‘Welcome home Ma’

Njeri, ‘Karibu Madam’ 

Mustafa, ‘Welcome Ma’

Elan, ‘Thanks Saeed, hi Njeri. Mustafa how are you?! I am famished hope you have my Kenya-Naija Combo ready. I told Al to remind you!’ 

‘Yes Ma, chapati and ogbono soup is ready’ Never having gotten used to Nigerian ‘eba' in place of East African Ugali or Chapati, Elan had different East/West African combos that were served at her house. Al had learned to appreciate the signature of his Pan-African home.

Elan, ‘Great! Thanks can’t wait!’

They laugh and get into the house. Njeri and Nurse Kate carry the babies while the gentlemen; Mustafa and Saeed carry the bags in via a side entrance. Al has his wife’s arm and they walk behind the ladies. Elan’s eyes are on the babies and as they go in she gives instruction for Njeri to show the nurse the nursery and her room.

Elan, ‘Njeri, mwonyeshe chumba cha watoto na chumba chake. Na kitu chochote atakacho hita-


Elan is surprised at seeing everyone, ‘Oooh! darling!’ She hugs her husband gratefully. She turns to say hi to everyone and then the four ladies step in front. She is obviously glad to see her three sisters. 

Elan, ‘Penrice!- Jenny!- Tekla!- M---’

She faints. There’s a flurry as Al carries her to her bedroom.

Al, ‘Call Nurse, CALL NURSE!’


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