Tag - post a day

The Abandoned ship at Bamburi Beach

There is a small abandoned ship on the shores of Jomo Kenyatta beach that has attracted many photographers due its rusty old look. The ship has been at the beach for almost two years. Rumour has it that it was bought by a Tanzanian guy but he is out of the country, in the meantime it is being fixed until he returns.

When walk on the public beach at Bamburi, you will find it there with onlookers trying to find out why the ship has anchored there.


Jina Langu ni Mauko Maunde

mauko 1

Your Name and what you do?

Mauko Maunde. I’m a lot of things rolled into one. Blogger, Web developer, Poet, Band manager and a trainee civil engineer.

What’s the one thing that amazes you?

Beauty in its rawest, most innocent form. It is all around us, in the sights and people around us. That, and the capacity for humanity in people. Despite all that happens, those people that remain “good” and restore your faith in humanity never cease to amaze me.

Tell us about Artists in Mombasa, do you think they are doing enough to be recognized?

I don’t think so. Wanataka kuchezea nyumbani hapa. Most do not want to get out of their comfort zones. They are going the tried and tested way forgetting that this line of work requires one to think beyond the gamut and try out new things. Go out there into the unknown, so to speak.

You manage different artist, what is the one challenge you face the most?

Getting them gigs to perform, then getting them paid after an event. On top of that is finding producers they can work well with, but these are apparently “normal” challenges.

Tell us about Sanaa Salon?

Sanaa Salon was borne of the need for a platform for artistes and writers to showcase thier various creative endeavours and create a large community where networks can be created and as result utilised to grow both individuals and the arts industry as a whole. It is a showcase of creative works and opinions from various stakeholders, but primarily young artistes.

Our publishing and marketing division, at www.books.sanaasalon.com also seeks to offer convenient and affordable publishing for budding writers who would otherwise not afford the exhorbitant costs associated with mainstream publishers. We do this by creating ebooks in various formats and distributing the same across markets.

Blogging has not been received well in Mombasa, compared to Nairobi. Do you think this will change?

Yes. I think the tide is changing, albeit too slowly, but we are headed there. I have seen a number of blogs come up in the recent past. Pretty decent ones I must add. Coupled with the establishment of the Coast BAKE chapter, the future looks good.

What is required, I think, is an awareness by Coastal young people of the immense opportunities blogging offers, both in terms of self-development and expansion of thought spaces; not to mention the obvious financial gains that can be achieved from a well- written blog.

How do you manage time to run your blog efficiently?

I realised the best way to handle it is to ask for help. I know, most people wouldn’t want to cede control of their blogs to others, but it’s the only way to maintain an active blog with a wide variety of perspectives.

Since one of my blogs is for events, I thought it would be easier and more convenient to crowdsource its content, so I only have to edit the submitted posts.

How do you want to improve yourself in the next year?

Ah, we are making new year resolutions now, are we? Well, for one I’d like to see better performance from by blogs and other projects; perhaps even take them up as a full-time gig. I want to invest more in growing the literary space in Mombasa because I realised that makes me happy, and I’m content when I’m happy.

Can you name some of your favourite bloggers and explain why they are your favourites?

Well, you for one. I love your photos. They represent a perspective of Mombasa only those of us who live here see, a beautiful face they don’t show much elsewhere. Keep up the good work. There is Jackson Biko too, I want to conceive and nurture words in the way he does so when I let them out into the world they can hold their own, blow minds and change lives. For the better. Ah, Jacque Ndinda. I love her. Her writing I mean.

Parting shot

A while back, someone mentioned off-handedly that Mombasa was backward, and the residents too daft for their own good. I could have argued otherwise then, in their  defence, but I did not. I’m glad I can do that now

The Beauty of Heena

Every Eid and during weddings women in Mombasa adorn their hands with floral henna patterns, some with the black dye and others natural henna.

In Mombasa, there are henna artist who do the henna designs around town but the most common place is called Bin Sidiq center on Bawazir Lane. There are few salons located inside the shopping arcade that primarily do henna art. In addition, you can find a few on Facebook where you can see samples of their work before you visit them and book online.

 

The designs depend on status, for little girls normally a small simple design pattern suffices. For a single girl, the art goes just up to the wrist of the hand whereas for married women it is not restricted.

It is believed that a woman must always adorn her hands with henna to look beautiful for her husband so that whenever she is with him, he sees the beautiful and colourful artwork.

The price starts at 300 kshs for a smaller design i.e to the wrist and the higher the design on the hand it goes the higher the price.  Bridal designs are different from the other designs because it is the bride’s first night with her husband she has to look extra beautiful.

Different cultures have specific designs; you can Indian design Mehndi or United Arab Emirates Khaleeji style, also Sudanese black dye style.

The process includes mixing the henna powder with water, and the designer puts the wet henna in a cone which is used to draw with. Once the henna is applied on your skin, you wait for about forty five minutes to one hour for it to dry.After that, you just peel off the dried henna and normally you are advised not to touch water for 6-8 hours so the henna can darken preferably overnight. These days henna is mixed with a thinner which speeds up the process of drying.

The Craft Market at City Mall

Every Wednesday and Thursday, City Mall Nyali dedicates part of the parking lot for the craft market which promotes local curio businesses. The market was first introduced two years ago by craft producers and was registered as Craft Market.

On display at the craft market are various items such as hanging ornaments, kitchen wares, bedding, clothing, sandals and wearable accessories. The price ranges cost as low as kshs 100 to over kshs 5000, depending on your purchase.

Most vendors also design the accessories, adding a twist to make their pieces different and unique.

Each accessory produced represents some of the craftsman’s personality, making the items exquisite in every aspect.

Looking for quality and locally made crafts? The craft market makes it easier for you to be trendy on a low budget. The items sold there are diverse in colour, texture, design and material to cater for all ages and genders. There is something for everyone.

The organization is open to curio/crafts sellers and supports all kinds of groups. Youth and women groups who would like to join to promote their work are welcome.

So next time you are at City-Mall on a Wednesday or Thursday stop by between 8am and 8pm for the beautiful souvenirs.

Below are pictures from The craft Market at City-Mall.

Jumba la Mtwana

The full name Jumba la Mtwana means in Swahili “the large house of the slave”. Within this area four mosques, a tomb and four houses have survived in recognizable condition. These houses include the House of the Cylinder, The House of the Kitchen, The House of the Many Pools, which had three phases, and the Great Mosque. The inhabitants of this town were mainly Muslims as evidence by a number of ruined mosques.

There are no written historical records of the town but ceramic evidence showed that the town had been built in the fourteenth century but abandoned early in the fifteenth century. The dating is based on the presence of a few shreds of early blue and white porcelain with lung-chuan celadon, and the absence of any later Chinese wares.

It is most likely the site’s strategic position was selected because of the presence of fresh water, exposure to the North East and South East breezes which would keep the people cool and its safe location from external attacks by sea since it had no harbor, thus larger vessels had to anchor along way offshore, or move probably in Mtwapa creek. One can only therefore guess reasons for its eventual desertion, namely trade interruption, hostile invasion or a failure in water supply. Though there is need to pursue further research on this.
Clearance and excavation of the ruins were first carried out in 1972 by James Kirkman with a view of dating the buildings, its period of occupation and consolidating buildings which were in danger of collapse. Ten years later in 1982, Jumba la Mtwana was gazetted as a National Monument. Thus Jumba is legally protected under Antiquities and Monuments Act Chapter 215 of the Laws of Kenya.

Excerpt from National Museums of Kenya

Mombasa Instameet #wwim12_Mombasa

Every few months Instagram hosts a worldwide instaMeet, basically photo enthusiasts coming together to take photos and videos and upload on instagram.

A definition as per their blog “An InstaMeet is a group of Instagrammers meeting up to take photos and videos together. That’s it! An InstaMeet can happen anywhere and be any size. They’re a great opportunity to share tips and tricks with other community members in your area, and an excuse to get out and explore someplace new!”

A group of people or an individual can plan and organize an instaMeet in their city and invite others via Instagram.

In the beginning of October 2015, Instagram called out for worldwide InstaMeet number 12. The theme was #WWIM12 is to share #todayimet portraits of the people you meet at the InstaMeet.

For Mombasa we held the Instameet at Mombasa Butterfly House, located next to Fort Jesus. The Mombasa Butterfly House has on display butterflies that have been purchased from community groups living adjacent to key coastal forests, including the Arabuko-Sokoke Forest.

About 20 people attended the event, we enjoyed getting know one another and capture the different species of butterflies that inhibits the gardens. We were given a tour of the garden, and a few facts on Butterflies and the House itself.

Below are scene captured from the InstaMeet


 

 

Nguuni Nature Sanctuary

Nguuni Nature sanctuary is located 4km from Lafarge Bamburi Cement on the Nguu Tatu Hills; the amazing sanctuary is the home to many species. Including Giraffes, elands, oryx, waterbucks, ostriches and many species of birds have made Nguuni their home. Large Doum Palm crowned by Leopard Orchids are scattered in the grassland.

Nguuni offers a beautiful location to view the sunset, also caters to weddings, camps and barbecue sundowners. At sunset Giraffes make their way to the picnic area for feeding. You can experience feeding the giraffes without gates or barriers, an exquisite experience only at Nguuni.

I had the privilege of visiting Nguuni during a sunset and the experience was magical and enchanting, I had the experience to feed the giraffes who made their way to the picnic area, as the sunset the giraffes made their way back to the grassland. The backdrop of the landscape and giraffes walking away was very beautiful and delightful.

Below are photos from the trip.


Duka La Abdalla Leso

Located in the heart of Biashara Street, Duka ya Abdallah under the Kaderdina Hajee Essak Ltd have been around since the forties of the nineteenth century. Mali ya Abdalla Leso has become a household name in Mombasa and other parts of the world.

The leso is a rectangular piece of material made of pure cotton. It measures approximately 150 x 110 cm, and is wide enough to cover a person from the neck to knees or from breast to toe. All lesos have fairly broad borders (pindo) all around and are printed in bold designs and bright colours. Lesos are bought in pairs – a pair is known as a gora – and are most attractive and useful as a pair. A gora of lesos is joined along the width of the fabric when bought. The buyer then cuts along the width and hems each of the two pieces of lesos to prevent fraying of the sides of the fabric. The leso is also known as the Khanga – the names are interchangeable. – Duka Ya Abdalla

The saying is the crucial part of the leso, it sends a message, and it tells a story to others. Others are made for gifts to newlyweds, to new parents and etc. Once you step into the shop you look for two things in the leso- the saying and colour patterns of the leso. Choosing a name depends on the occasion of the purchase of the leso. If it is for a newlywed, one with beautiful colours and congratulatory words will be ideal.   A tradition that used to be common in Mombasa is when neighbors quarrel they just argue through sayings of the leso, one will wear a Leso with a saying that indicates hate to the other. Duka Ya Abdalla gets the sayings from anyone who gives them suggestion, they accept from the general public.

So if you are in Mombasa, take a walk to Biashara street to Duka ya Abdalla shop and peruse through the different patterns and colours of the lesos showcased.

In the meantime here are some samples from my visit to Duka ya Abdalla shop.