Tag Archives: Roxanne

Jambo! … Greetings!

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 Jambo!’ greeted Wambui, our lovely friend from the beautiful land of Kenya. (Jambo means ‘Greetings’ in Swahili).

Wambui recently returned from East Africa. We had missed her greatly for she was an integral part of our group. She’d add fun and liveliness to our discussions and debates; excitement and hilarity to our various outings.

True, life was certainly more interesting and enjoyable when she was around.

We now sat with her, happy to be in her presence; embracing her vivacious spirit and taking in her love, warmth and charm. Whenever she spoke, her exquisitely beaded braids bounced upon her head, and the artistic brass/copper African bangles merrily jangled about on her delightfully tanned arms.

Wambui was a dynamic personality, exuding integrity, dignity and self-respect. Having travelled half the world, she was an encyclopaedia of views, news and information. And we loved her so!

‘Ooh, I do love this kiondo, darling!’ exclaimed Mildred, with a sparkle in her eyes, as she held up the pretty sisal-woven basket. With shades of pretty pinks and perfect purples, it sported a silver lion-shaped clasp and had light brown leather shoulder straps.

Wambui’s traditional Kenyan gifts of beaded mats, carved wooden figurines and the ever-popular African masks proved a tremendous hit. How we cherished them! Indeed, we accepted them heartily, but protested—albeit, a wee bit mildly—that she had done far too much! Giggle.

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Mr Mildred RIP

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‘What’s wrong with her?’ Roxanne asks, as we ring the door bell. We are stood outside Mildred’s house.

That morning she had called up to ask us over. ‘And bring Weedy with you,’ she tells me, referring (rather rudely) to Roxanne, a mutual (skinny) friend, who is known to relish her waistline and salads (and in that order, if you please).

Personally, I’d say she’s undernourished, but then that’s the double choco-caramel in me talking.

I answer her with a quick ‘Don’t know.’ This time, I knock sharply on the door.

We hear footsteps. Clickety-click, clickety-click. Yes, that’s her.

The door opens. Mildred stands there. Her eyes are red and puffy. I can sense Weedy…oops, sorry, Roxanne, take a step back, in alarm, fearing the worst.

Despite her keep-fit keenness, she’s still a diehard pessimist. The red alert feelers warn her—conjunctivitis! However, forever the optimist, I step forward.

Old Red Eyes suddenly begins to snivel, and out comes her lace, embroidered handkerchief. She dabs at the tears and hiccups a sob.

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Eat your grass, weeds and all…

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‘You know, that’s not good for you,’ I hear as I bite into the chocolate crème éclair…mmm, heaven!

I simply ignore the (ominous?) words, and carry on. Relishing each second spent on my luscious crème pastry, I pick at the crumbs left on the plate like a hungry bird zealously pecking till the last grain. Then, I turn to look at my friend.

Dressed in candy pink garbs, Roxanne matches the pink roses decorated on the small round table in the quaint coffee shop. An expression of incredulity is visible on her pretty face.

With eyebrows raised, mouth agape, she stares at me, and once again, exclaims, ‘God! Do you know how many calories you’ve just gulped down?’

‘Firstly,’ I begin, easing back into the cushioned wooden chair, ‘I hate to disappoint you, Roxanne, but I’m not God. And secondly, it is very rare that I indulge myself in such sweet luxuries.’ True.

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