Taking Stock 004

“Let’s talk about the tough lessons Riri learnt in 2017.”

This is a continuation of my new series. I am accounting on some of the things that happen in my life in 2017

  1. No friendship, no matter how solid, can survive bad debts.  My goodness, now when I call my friends that took Shoes from VaaKenya on debt, they don’t pick.  I just want to say hello sometimes, and yes I still want my money, but I honestly thought our friendship was more solid than that.  Thanks for the lessons BTW. I learnt that I should never sell on debt amongst friends. Also, it taught me that I need better friends. And the better friends did pay up, thanks for keeping us(Vaakenya) In business.  You my heroes, and the economy of Kenya is proud of you, when you buy Kenya, you build Kenya. Like our slogan in VaaKenya says, “When we grow together, we succeed together. “
  2.  That sometimes you win, sometimes you don’t but most importantly, keep walking or doing it anyway. It doesn’t get easier but you get to grow as a being either way things go.
  3.  That love doesn’t have to be work. It should flow. If you have to convince them to stay, they are not worth it.  And some people are not supposed to stay. That some relationships are meant to be butterfly interludes, to prepare you for the real thing. When the real thing comes along, there will be no mind games because you two will be busy trying to get to know each other then want to build together while getting to know each other at a deeper level. There will be fights, of course, the difference between the real thing and a butterfly interlude is that fights make you grow not break you. 
  4.  That some people are like Mombasa, visiting is fun but no one wants to live there. I need lots of down time after hanging out with some people and others is just comfortable
  5. Patience in life, love and business. Most part of adulting revolves around being patient. You have no idea how many times in a day I close my eyes praying for patience. Apparently it’s frown about in polite society to use curse words and you can’t just throw stones to things that annoy you.
  6. That the saying ‘The darkness hour of the night is the hour before dawn’ totally applies. The universe has a weird sense of humor. Every time I thought things can’t get worse than they already had, they did, and I kept the faith and somehow things worked out in the end. The hardest part was keeping hope alive through every storm. Perseverance does pay.
  7. If you stand up for what you want and believe in people are going to impose what they stand up for and you will be lost in the end.  Don’t be afraid to do what you think is your thing.  Do you, the world will adjust.

Another from Riri the Miss. 

Until next time friends. 


Taking Stock 003

Stop saying that you poor, you just broke, there is a difference. “


I stopped trying to prove that I am not broke because let’s face it, this chick is broke, take it or leave it. I don’t even think it’s something to be ashamed of, like J. Cole once said, “love yours. ” I was shocked the other day when some tweeps were talking about being broke and all. After a long thread of the reality of their financial state, one of them admitted that they can only talk about such deep things on twitter. Well, it’s true, twitter is for savages or so I gathered. That it’s not things they tell their friends., laud! We can’t be friends if we don’t speak real. I was like, WTF! We are in the twenty first century, being broke should be trendy, to start with. Not trendy like we made mental illness trendy, we went more than a little over board with that, just trendy enough to make us not ashamed for not being rich. Love yours, always. I want to start a community of people who own whatever stage they are in while they keep working towards where they want to be. Instead of swapping flashy ten seconds photos we tell each other what was really going on in our life at that particular moment. Like, “you see how good my hair is there? I had just scored my first big time client and my boss gave me bonus so I decided to spend it all bla bla bla…. ” You feel me?

As long as you working towards improving your bank account and life in general, there is nothing to be ashamed of when you a masterpiece in progress . You don’t have to go deep into debt just so you can go out with friends to places where you know deep down is damaging your finances. You don’t have to pretend you can afford 3$ worth of coffee just to hangout with someone you used to know from I don’t know which lifetime. You don’t have to pretend that you living some sort of life for instagram likes or anything. Own where you are right now. It’s your journey, that is your story. “fake it till you make it” whoever said that I am sure they didn’t mean literally.

Don’t get me wrong, I ain’t saying that just because you broke that you don’t deserve “the good life”. No, I am just saying, don’t go an extra mile to prove you ain’t broke when you supper broke. You deserve to treat yourself to all the good things your life has to offer, if they are expensive, you can start saving. Which reminds me, I haven’t gotten around to getting myself that bottle of wine yet, all in good time Riri. I should start saving for it, probably tomorrow or the day after. Just not today.

You see, after graduating, we all get a chance to approach life differently. I can only speak for us who choose self employment. According to my mum, it will be roughly around 5 years for a business that started from scratch to go steady. In plain words, she was just telling me that it will be a long while before I afford that bottle of wine I have been dreaming of. Dammit! I have friends and clients who went into gainful employment and to be honest with you, they are the ones who are winning. They have more spare change to spoil than anyone I know. I call them my rich friends. Every time I am telling my partner stories about them. ……..I am like, “you remember Brenda the rich one? She just gave us an order for black and white polka dot shoe and clutch. ” Well, it’s true they ain’t broke they are rich. Then there is the group that be jobless, don’t stop looking if gainful employment is what you really want, no situation is permanent.

It’s just a matter of owning where you are, embrace it. Appreciate it. Live it. Keep working towards improving it.

Fruitful week ahead my beloveds.

Until next time friends!

Riri from # VaaKenya

Taking Stock 002

Let’s talk about books”

I have been reading a lot in 2017. I vowed to increase my knowledge beginning of the year, at least I was able to keep that resolution all year long.That means it’s worth looking into that part of my life in my series of accounting for my 2017. So, I went into books with an open mind and I got lucky. I discovered a few interesting reads. Read from genres I didn’t think people wrote books about. I won’t go into details for each and every book or anything as interesting, but I will try to brush through and give as many details as possible. You might wonder how some over worked and under paid chick like Riri  would get time to read? Wonder no more, the secret lies in my phone, the gods of e-books did that and Nairobi unending traffic jam majorly contributed to the success of upholding my reading resolution. So, I get stuck in traffic more than once a day, I decided to turn it into reading time instead of getting mad over situations I have no control over. It’s a.life back and it totally works. Also, some Sundays(when I have time) I walk into city parks(Uhuru Park and Aboretum) has been my sanctuary to enjoy a book and nature, I hate working on Sundays,so when I get a chance I bury my nose in a book. I am a morning person, before when I had too much time and little to do I used to blog in the wee hours, in 2017 I have been using those few hours to read instead. Well, that explains why I haven’t been blogging as much-needed. You can’t be everything,sigh! I digress. And I refuse to be a 24 hours on call time of woman. There is only so much you can do within 24 hours you know. Sigh!Again.

Okay. Fine. Let’s talk about books.

  1. My first exciting discovery of 2017 in the genre department was Queer  Romance. The entire over the rainbow spectrum. I should have found these books earlier but apparently everything happens in due time. I have dwelled a lot on the violet part of the spectrum, the beauty of how women love women blew my mind in more ways than one though I have taken some time to read at least one book on the entire rainbow spectrum. I should give you a list,right? I really should. Okay, here is a Deal, I will compile the list and post it as a sequel or something or a mini post something something.
  2. The other exciting genre discovery was Urban Fiction. I was introduced to this particular genre by a friend and my first book was a series. I swear I am a sucker for books that give me a chance to hangout for a while with my newfound friends(characters). The initiation books were from none other than Simon R Greene series- Nightside and The Drood Family. Hanging out with John Taylor(from The Nightside) and Eddie Drood( from The Drood Family)respectively was awesome. I still think Eddie was and is better than Taylor but what do I know? My significant other is head over heels for Taylor and so is my best friend. Betrayers! Them both! Though to be fair my best friend read (The Nightside) only. 
  3. I read from a genre I never thought I could; self help books or self improvement or whatever you want to call them. That was challenging and a little hard, though, I soldiered on. I read “The power Of persuasion” , “money lab”, How To Be Happy(that one had so.much bullshit it’s a miracle I finished it), “How To make Friends and Influence People” and “Every day is a Friday” which at first was tough but I picked some worthwhile lessons. It did give me perspective. I don’t even remember the authors, I will have to Google them. I read enough to last me a lifetime, never again, I ain’t touching that genre again.
  4. I discovered more than a few books on mental illness. I was lucky to get to read books from bipolar disorders to multi personality disorders to depression. I was impressed by the number of books on mental illness, we are seriously making progress on the subject. The books that left impression on me were all the three books by Jenny Lawson the bloggess: “Furiously Happy, Let’s Pretend this Never Happened and You are Here”. Also Mary Higgins Clarke “all around town boys and girls” was a good read.
  5. Contemporary romance kept me sane on the days things got a little tough. I love me a weird romance story with a happy ending when I want to escape reality. 
  6. The Bible, of course I read the bible. Of all the books I have read, The Bible is among the few books that left a lot of room for thinking. As a literature reference book, on it’s own, it’s genius. As a religious read? What do I know, a lot of controversy sprout day in day out. 
  7. It’s not a good year without reading Robert Green books so as a sign of a good year I re-read the art of seduction. Well, it was because I needed to seduce someone whom I had a huge crush on, of course “the art of seduction” did not save me. I was forced to improvise along the way but it felt safe having the awesome tips of seduction somewhere in the periphery of my subconscious ready to be implemented if need arise. Tiara good thing I kinda won them or the other way. I am not sure who is the catch here. At the end of the day, love wins. At least for me it won,anyway.

Basically, that was the highlight of my 2017 in the book department. I use FbReader as my reader and I get most of my books for free from www.ebookbike.com 

Process Of Getting Free Ebooks

  1. Download FbReader from play store(Android users)
  2. Visit www.ebookbike.com and search for whatever you looking for. You can use authors name or book titles.
  3. Start reading

P.S. happy reading from Riri. Just remember to donate to your favourite authors while at it.  LITTLE SOMETHING FOR THE FREE BOOKS.

Taking Stock 001

Spoiler alert : I will be doing something like ten pieces on how 2017 has been. I want to slot them before we go full blown Christmas spirit.

Honestly, I don’t know what to write so I will just ramble until somewhere along the way I start making sense. Right this minute I have some flu, fever and I want this feeling to go away. I don’t like it here. Also, I am super broke and my house rent is due today. I have been thinking of ways to raise this rent and nothing is coming to mind. Business is slow, in case you didn’t know, I am unemployed, started my own business a few months ago, so basically, I am just hanging in there. One thing I learnt the hard way about business is that, Sometimes you make money, sometimes you don’t and most of the time you hope you will make money. It’s weird. I think I finally understood why business persons are always broke. Next year, I will do entrepreneurial posts, probably. I ain’t making any promises.

2017 has been good to me, despite the harsh lessons and challenges here and there, it’s been awesome. I would like to whine and complain, but that will not do 2017 justice. I am tempted to say, it’s been a blessing, double triple blessing for me.

I haven’t been blogging as much, I know, but I think its because I have had such a good year I had nothing to write. Writing for me has always been a way to vent, to bleed my pain through ink, to survive. I had a lot to cry about and I had more to laugh about, I am not saying my pain wasn’t worth writing about, but it was like in every storm there was so much laughter in the thunder.

I didn’t know how toxic my relationship with dearest daddy was until I actually left home. We were just bad for each other. I didn’t know how toxic some friendships were until I grew a pair of scissors and cut the cord. I didn’t know how much unnecessary baggage I have been carrying all these years until I decided to burn some bridges and walk away from some people and things . I have spent most part of 2017 cleaning house and to be honest, it’s hard at first but the freedom thereafter is definitely worth it. It’s hard to admit to yourself that you don’t need some things, things and people you have been holding so dear. It’s hard to start working on yourself, weeding out the unnecessary so you could bloom. It’s a hard start to go on a journey of finding yourself especially, when you didn’t even realize you were lost. It’s tough but necessary. If it was easy, everyone would be doing it.

I am still cleaning house, working on it, fine tuning some parts, just cleaned others and still thinking about cleaning the rest, one step at a time, there is no need to rush, it’s like learning to fly when you have been walking all your life.

I have been depressed every year of my life, usually in November or there so about but in 2017 I have had a few moods swing here and there but nothing serious. My definition of depressed in this article has been used to mean sad with tendencies of laziness and lack of appetite accompanied with lack of sleep. I don’t think that is the classical definition of depression, though. It’s been a good year. I need to stop saying that over and over again.

The lessons, the opportunities, the freedom and the inbetweens throughout the year has made me grow as a person. I went from “it’s impossible, I can’t do it myself “ to “I am possible, I can fucking do it “. I just feel like all the choices have made might not have been the best but they are the very best for me. A year older and loving it.

In Getting Married and Having Kids

My friends and strangers online around my age are getting married or engaged or having babies and am here wondering if it’s okay that I don’t want those things, not just yet. My newsfeed is full of engagement parties photos, baby showers and wedding gowns photos from different people. People posting photos of their little perfect families or their cute babies or gross family day out because it’s gross to have a family day out with a little baby since the whole time you will be trying to keep them alive instead of having a good time. Some of you are posting pics in the gym working that baby bum off,apparently, it’s a thing. But what do I know?

It’s a good thing, you guys are moving on, making your lives and all. I am honestly happy for you. Growing up, marriage and engagements and babies and the in betweens is something I have always know is a thing for adults and at almost 23 I don’t feel so adultie. I feel like I have a long way to go to be a proper adult. There is a lot of things I need to do and starting a family ain’t on my top 100 list, conventional marriage is not even on the list.

I am trying to successfully run my shoe company(Like our page on facebook VaaKenya) that needs A LOT OF WORK. If you into unique, customized shoes and that kind of thing then VaaKenya is your shoe company of choice. I also have to do some unpaid internship I have been postponing, maybe I should suck it up and go for it, get my license and be done with it.

Then there is the most important thing of staying alive and reminding myself to incorporate vegetables and other proteins in my diet because having bread/chapati and tea for dinner everyday doesn’t count as real food and that throwing in mutura in my meager meal of black tea and bread DOES NOT count as a balanced diet, though it does make me sleep better knowing that yesterday I ate meat (read mutura). I also need a trip across Africa I have been planning to do if and when Evey gets back in the country if she doesn’t I will figure something out.

I mean, there is so much to do. Well, there is much that needs my attention, and all I want to do is sleep. I don’t think I am an adult, adultie enough to start a family. I am barely taking care of myself, I don’t think it’s wise to include some innocent persons in the picture….don’t you think?

Seduce MeĀ 

Seduce me. 

I don’t mind the cliche romance we see on TV, my god, am a sucker for slow walks under the moon and chasing setting sunsets. The reason they are cliches is coz they work!  

I am sucker when it comes to silly games by the beach and getting high by the beach, scratch that last part, I like getting high anywhere.

I am a sucker for efforts! 

A well planned dinner, breakfast in bed, unexpected kisses….. 

That kind of thing.  
But when I say seduce me this is what I have in mind. I am a hopeless romantic, of course. 
Kiss me like you mean it. 
Hug me like you want to 
Look at me like am the only girl in the world, like I put stars in the sky and the moon is my best friend. 
Darling, I am not a hard girl to please. 
Text me random smart shit to make my day, shit like why you think the sun goes to sleep so that the moon can unleash her brightness or what you think vegan zombies eat or what you think of event horizon and space theory…. I promise I won’t indulge you but that will fucking make my day  
Talk dirty to me, try seducing me with science, use physics, the appalling theories,a seductive language forged from physics will definitely get you into my pants, I know I won’t  understand half the things you be saying but I will be so impressed you wouldn’t have to try. 
Undress me with your beautiful mind and baby, I am sold. 
Seduce me.

On Clients and In Betweens Of Being Your Own BossĀ 

So, the journey of being your own boss comes with challenges, who would have thought? I am still new in the game,still learning the ropes of the business.I am in the shoe industry, just in case you didn’t know. Ankara and custom made shoes to be precise.
I heard somewhere that the principles of business is the same everywhere and all you have to do is figure them out, apply them and thereafter, everything else works with the same principle. Well, where I come from we believe in the power of books or is it information? So, before I started my business, I read books from several fields, books written by economist, psychologist, marketers and heavens knows what other related fields. I thought those books will on the least, help me with basic principles of the business and all. Imagine my surprise when it hit me that I had to learn everything from FUCKING scratch. So far so good, still learning, still trying. Haven’t put a bullet through my brains yet, you know. Progress.
Today am in the mood of talking about customers or clients. If you are a start up, the worst clients are your friends or so I found out. I should have known from the start, or I should have taken the advice from that book I don’t remember that somehow stated that friends will be your first clients,and they will grandly ruin you. I mean,some of my friends have been awesome and paid up and all. Most of them did let me down. Some paying half the money,others none and some placing orders and then somehow changing their mind. I mean,what the fuck, why give specifics of a shoe then somehow change your mind? You do realize, it will take a century to have another you with such a poor taste in shoe,right? The reason we custom make shoes is so that we include our clients in the process of creation. I have over fifteen pairs of shoes lying somewhere in my house that I have no fucking idea what to do with them. I can’t even wear them, maybe I will go to shagz(my village) and I might get lucky to find a few feets willing to wear them, donate them for Christmas or something.
They say the client is always right. I know. Some clients I found online bought our products and gave us both positive and constructive critics that I did appreciate. Perfection is our aim and with such criticism we will definitely achieve perfection. If a client doesn’t like a product, that is totally alright. I don’t see how clients are right when they give you specifics of what they want then fail to pick up their goddamn orders.
Then the ones who outright refuse to pay. That was a mistake on my side. I am learning. Soon, I will get better at the game, like everyone else. Apparently, no one escapes bad debts, it’s part of the game.
On the days I feel like giving up, someone restores my faith in humanity in one way or another.
Until next time friends. I will keep updating you on my journey of being my own boss. Tough, I know. We carry on.