Alice Mangat

Born and Raised in the Mau Mau Uprising Era

Here is a taster of what you will find in my latest book. Enjoy

Chapter 1

It was a warm Tuesday evening in the hilly countryside of Rũngǐri. The red-soiled ground was giving its smile to a very windy brown August weather. The clouds moved here and there as if to surround the sun just about to arrest it in the evening hours.  I was sitting outside in front of our hut when my mother came from her shamba carrying a bunch of firewood, tied up with a rope on her back.  On top of the firewood, was a kǐondo full of sweet potatoes.  This was usually all that my mother ever seemed to bring home from the shamba.

Fed up of Eating those Damn Boiled Potatoes

In my opinion and belief, this should have come to an end, because I was fed up of eating those damn boiled sweet potatoes three times a day: for breakfast, lunch and supper.  All I thought was that she did not want to cook other things. I did not want to understand the words she used often in Kikuyu “Nΐ kwang’aragumwanawakwa!”(It is hunger period my child).  I did not dare complain anymore because every time I complained, my mother would break into tears repeating those same words.

Sighing heavily from the weight of the heavy load of firewood and a kiondo (African basket) on top she was carrying, she put down the kǐondo first, then let the bunch of firewood fall from her back with a thud. Looking in my direction, she saw me sitting near the door of our hut, digging a hole on the ground with a piece of stick.

“What are you doing there alone Cikŭ?”  She asked me in a very tired voice.

“Why aren’t you playing with the other children?”  I kept on digging avoiding looking at her and did not give her an answer.

Being Consoled by Mama

“Have you swallowed your tongue or have you become deaf?”  As if waiting for such words to be said, I suddenly started crying endlessly.  My mother comes quickly and lifted me up from where I was sitting.

“What is wrong with you my little girl? Did anybody beat you while I was away?” She asked worriedly.  Lovingly, she wiped my eyes and removed the long black hair from my face and tied them behind with the long-plaited ones hanging on my back. She always loved to comb my hair and tie it all at the back they looked neat until she came back in the evening and find them flying all over my face.  Looking at her rather questioningly, I said promptly.

You can get a copy of this book on Amazon.

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