For those you who normally buy the Saturday Nation(you are many, as I came to discover), there was a full page article in the magazine with an interview about me as well as info that my book was to be launched that same day at the Silverbird Westgate.
My apologies if you did not receive an invitation, I was working with a figure of 70 guests as the space given by Silverbird could not take more.
The event did have a slow start courtesy of providers showing up late. I think I lost my nerve more than once. I hate incompetence. Why would we agree that you are doing the setup at a certain time because the launch is from 2.30 then you show up at 2.30pm. I was furious.
Hitches started from 12pm. I was at the venue at 11.30am. The Power setup guys came and just sat as if waiting for their cables to find their way to a socket!. The decor guy showed up with the tables at 2.15pm and kept lying that he is at the corner whenever he was called 1hr earlier. By the time he was setting up the tables, some guests had already started streaming in. The last straw was the trussing which the guys kept fumbling to put dressing on and setup for the launch. I had to walk away to cool off.
Despite the hitches, we did start the program albeit 1hr late though the guests were patient(there was alot to see at the store)
Our MC for the day Anto who I like calling Anto Neosoul coz of how I came to know him some years back at Kwani open mic, was the earliest and was aptly prepared for the occasion. He started us off with a an intro of Aziza an upcoming AfroSoul male quartet. The event was actually more of a poetry open mic one as there were more performances than speeches. His singing which has a rich blend of tenor left everyone in awe wondering why he did not win that MNET competition. (Anto is known more for his acting in a Siri as well as in the AIDS documentary Sugar)
Mstari Wa Nne was in the house and their poetry was amazing as ever. Other writers also published by Nsemia, Moraa Gitaa (Author of A Crucible for Silver & Furnace for Gold), Chris Okemwa (Author of the Gong) and Matundura were also present with Moraa reading an excerpt from her book and Chris performing a poem on love. Ngwatilo did her legendary ‘Lessons from home‘ which most of us prefer calling ‘Goat Meat’.
I did not realize how excited and proud my family was for me until that day. They came in huge numbers and shared in the joy of launching the book.
My publisher, Dr. Matunda who flew all the way from Canada just for the occasion made sure that everything was taken care of staying around till after 7pm to ensure that nothing went a mis.Now, that is dedication.
Somehow, it seems like the menu for the event was very well thought out. Everyone was amazed at the quantity and quality of the delicacies that were served, my colleagues are still telling me about it now. I was too nervous, excited and at some point apprehensive to enjoy anything.
Many thanks to those who came. I hope you will get yourself a copy of the book. Enjoy some of the moments captured. Official photos with the Video coming soon