Friday, 4 July 2008

Now for the website

We opened on Wednesday, the cyber café, that is.

Now DABIVAM Technologies has a website. - not fabulous, but it is a start. We needed something on the web just to give ourselves a presence.

So we are on the way!

Wednesday, 2 July 2008

Today IS the day - Official!

The cyber café is open!! Vincent, the manager has contacted me from the café, where he is supervising two clients - not bad for the first hours of the first day.

Once word gets about that we are open, we are hoping that things will really take off.

Tuesday, 1 July 2008

Happy Birthday to ...

So our esteemed Prime Minister, Gordon Brown MP has completed a year in office as leader of [Great?] Britain.

In the last year he has aged about 10 years, but he insists that his way is the best way (Hmm ... didn't Robert Mugabe say something similar not so long ago?)

We in GB are lurching from one crisis to another, lost sensitive data on CDs, laptops, in briefcases ... the great and good who fund the Labour Party are pulling back ... abolition of the 10p income tax belt - there is another revolt looming over this one ... fuel prices soaring (GB - that's a world problem, not mine!, despite the fact that we are the most heavily taxed country in the world when it comes to petrol and diesel) ... inflation is climbing above the Government's own targets ... house prices are falling ... mortgages are almost impossible to get ... it goes on ... and on ...

Local and by-elections have been a disaster for the Labour Party as well. But Gordon is insisting that he is running the country, not a popularity contest.

He could have fooled me on the former and he wouldn't have a snowball's chance in Hell on the latter!

Yesterday WAS the Day - or not!

OK, so I was wrong. Yesterday was not the grand opening of our new Internet café in the bottom left-hand corner of Kenya.

It should have been, but apparently, Internet connection was not available yesterday - not just for us, but for a large swathe of Kenya!

I got a text from Vincent last night explaining all this, and also to tell me that we now have all the necessary equipment, printer, scanner, fax machine, etc.

So ... Today's the day ... or not.

Inside Mugabe's World

I have just read excerpts of an interview with President Robert Mugabe, by Heidi Holland, which took place last December.

When the Ms Holland suggested that his policies had caused the economy to collapse, he sat up straight, his eyes flashing.

"Our economy is a hundred times better, than the average African economy. Outside South Africa, what country is [as good as] Zimbabwe? ... What is lacking now are goods on the shelves - that is all."

On his reasoning behind the land invasions, he said: "We had hoped that the British would take notice of it and that they would say: 'Let's meet and discuss this'"

It became clear that Mr Mugabe has arranged himself in a bubble of denial to avoid facing what he has done in Zimbabwe.

What a sad old man he must be ... a despotic, sad old man.

Excerpt from "A glimpse inside Mugabe's world" by South African writer Heidi Holland.


On another tack, I see that Kenyan PM Raila Odinga is urging the African Union to suspend Zimbabwe's Robert Mugabe until he allows free and fair elections.

As to the other members:

South Africa's Thabo Mbeki is the key mediator. He has not criticised Robert Mugabe, despite pressure from the ruling ANC.

Zambian President Levy Mwanawasa has taken the toughest line. He's called Zimbabwe a "regional embarrassment". But he has just been rushed to hospital in Egypt.

Angola's President Jose Eduardo dos Santos is one of Robert Mugabe's closest allies. He has urged Mr Mugabe to end the violence.

Botswana has summoned a Zimbabwean envoy to complain about the violence. It has supported Zimbabwe's opposition.

Namibia is an ally of Robert Mugabe. It wants to re-distribute white-owned farms to black villagers. It has not criticised the violence.

Mozambique has hosted some white farmers forced out of Zimbabwe when their land was seized. It is seen as sympathetic to the opposition.

Tanzania's ruling party has a history of backing Robert Mugabe's Zanu-PF party. Its foreign minister has condemned the violence.

DR Congo's President Joseph Kabila is an ally of Robert Mugabe who sent troops to help his father, Laurent Kabila, fight rebels.

Malawi is seen as neutral. But 3m people from Malawi are in Zimbabwe and many were badly hit by the farm invasions.

As for the EU, Italy has recalled its envoy to Zimbabwe, and called for other members to do likewise.

And the British? Oh, I expect we are making a nice cup of tea to calm the situation.

Monday, 30 June 2008

Today IS the Day - probably

I received a phone call at 8.30am this morning from Kisii. It was my friend, Vincent. I haven't heard from him for a few days as he has been busy getting the Internet café ready and trying to get electricity, phone lines, Intnernet connections ... er ... connected.

He phoned just to say that in principle, all is now ready and he is hoping to open the doors today.

Here's hoping!

Sunday, 29 June 2008

Winter has arrived in Nairobi

A friend and colleague who lives and works in Nairobi emailed me to say that he was in his office and feeling the cold, as winter had arrived.

On questioning him, he told me that the outside temperature had crept up to 19°C at 10.30am. That's 8.30 here and our outside temperature, was at 6°C, but forecast to rise to a glorious 16°C in the afternoon.

He concluded that he preferred winter in Nairobi to Summer in GB! So do I.

Time for a change and mental ramblings

It is summer (in the Northern hemisphere at least) and I felt it was time for a change. Nothing devastating, just a minor change to format and colour. The previous template was dark and serious. I don't feel dark and serious at the moment, just a bit frivolous.


In the UK, I drive a multi-purpose vehicle with 7 passenger seats. I have this urge to paint a broken yellow stripe around its waist and MATATU across the front - perhaps route 19C (my route from office to home when I am in Nairobi).

[Yes, I know this is a Nairobi~Kisii shuttle, not a matatu - but it has the yellow stripe!]

Can't do that. I want to sell my ol' bus, and turning it into a matatu would not be conducive, unless a local Kenyan wanted to buy it. It is too old to take to Kenya, although it would be put to good use at the ophanage.


There was a South African choir in our town yesterday. They sounded very similar to the Ladysmith Black Mambazo Choir and were very entertaining.

But the most entertaining for me was a little girl, braided and beaded, wearing what looked like a kanga, moving to the music. I had forgotten just how easily black kids pick up rhythm.


That little girl reminded me of a winter a few years ago. I was in town when it started to snow. A few feet in front of me, there were two little black girls with thick quilted jackets and wooly bonnets. As the snow fell, they both stopped and looked up. Their wide-eyed amazement was fascinating. As the snowflakes settled on their upturned faces, they looked shocked, then they both burst into giggles - as only little girls can.

I just had to speak to their mother. These girls had just arrived from Uganda for the Christmas holiday, staying with friends in the area. And, naturally, they had never seen snow before. I wish I had had my camera with me.