Tuesday, 17 July 2007

I Reminisce

(Guitar is strummed)…It’s been a hard day’s work and I’ve been working like a dog….... (The Beatles 60s hit). For those ‘young’ enough then, you can remember some animated feature that used to be shown on Kenya’s national TV channel KBC around 1987. This programme used to come on Saturday afternoons, and thanks to my parents weaning us on some 50s, 60s, and 70s and to some small bit 80s music, I was a sucker for the whole ‘toon.
It used to evoke even crazy memories cos some KPLC black-out had cost us our modest Sanyo Black and White TV which had served us diligently for 8 years. Thus my siblings and I had to find some accommodating neighbour for such moments much to the chagrin of our larger-than life Mum. I can vividly remember that it was around that time too that we used to find ourselves go for Saturday catechism classes at some nearby Catholic Church (I can recite some memorable lines). Thus after these monotonous classes (do kids still do such things nowadays?), the afternoons were to die for. First came the lunch which would be taken with one eye on the clock as we’d not want to miss The Beatles Animated feature.
After this consensus would be sought on the neighbour to ‘raid’ with an impromptu visit, of course that was after running cat and mouse games with our parents as we try to loose them off. With the location decided, I usually found myself being at the front since somehow almost every neighbour at our place used to have girl or boy my age. So I was sort of the link and would come up with some excuse like, ‘can I see George? I seem to have forgotten my text-book in GHC and I thought I could borrow his copy?’
As the parents try trace ‘George’, my ‘accomplices’ would quickly squeeze behind me and make themselves comfortable on the sofas as we wait for the text-book.
Once ‘George’ is traced somehow he also fell into the mix and suggested that we take some tea to which my ‘accomplices’ would gleefully welcome.
Well again due to the same fault of KPLC due to power surges(would they care compensating us for ‘lost view-time’…?)we missed the 1987 All-Africa Games. Unfortunately our little gigs had been figured out and my Mum was more hawk-eyed than ever. A promise *by my Dad to visit the venues was quickly forgotten as he left town for some company training out of town. *{To compensate this, I was promised a visit to Kasarani when the Africa Cup of Nations was to come to Kenya in 1996 but our Federation and Government then made sure that it remained a pipe dream !}
I can remember the dread of the cheers as my neighbours watched the Kenya vs. Malawi and Kenya vs. Cameroon games which went down as some of the greatest moments in Kenya’s sporting history. My only solace was the old box of a radio possessed by my old man where we listened to one Salim Manga, Tido Mhando, as they wowed us with action at the Nyayo National Stadium.
Who can forget the dash by one Chidi Imoh in the 100m as he ran a wind-assisted 9.90 secs ? Remember Innocent Egbunike’s scorching of the 4x400m as came from a distant 2nd to anchor and win the race over Kenya’s David Kitur? Or Kenya’s Hit Squad taking the City Hall by storm winning 8 out of a possible 12 medals in boxing? City Park coming alive with Peter Akatsa’s led Kenya’s men hockey team taking the gold? I can dredge up these on and on.
I had copies of the Weekly Review for the month of August 1987 as I kept reviewing the performance of our brothers and sisters in the Games. That was my only memory thanks again to my compatriots in the KPLC.

No comments: