This is the tennis court next to Mbale golf course. Standing here reminded me of my tennis playing days in the late 90’s. My brother and I practiced all day with borrowed rackets and tennis balls till we became fairly good at it. One day, a local recruiter approached us and asked us to join his team which used to train at the Jinja tennis court, the only tennis court I had ever seen. We got excited about it and always pointed it out to our friends whenever we had the chance. Unfortunately, we didn’t enjoy our shine for long. We found out a few weeks after we received the exciting news that we, the entire family, had to move out of the area because Dad had been transferred to the capital city, Kampala. Met the sport years later when I joined secondary school.
One of the reasons I enjoyed playing tennis is because it’s one of those sports that don’t require body contact for the competition to take place.
This was one of those rare moments where you take a picture at just the right time. One of those moments that you can only capture in a very small window of a few seconds, after that, they are gone. This was shot in Mbale during a family event. An Uncle and his wife , just behind him, had just stepped onto the event premises and little missy suddenly broke into a dance frenzy, a sign of ushering them in I guess, as a song played on the sound system in the background.
We are all different regardless of what characteristics some of us might share in common. We like different food, we dress differently, we drink different beers and whiskeys. We squeeze toothpaste tubes differently and all these different things we do, big or small, are a reflection of our point of view, our take on things; our perspective.
I started a jogging routine last year after the long walks alone stopped cutting it for me. It came to a point where I would walk for three hours and feel nothing. So, one day I stepped out of the house for a long walk and mid way through the walk I stopped for a minute and started jogging. Just like that. My body demanded it, I wanted to burn some serious calories which had stacked up for a while. That’s how the routine started. I jogged every day for about a month and just like that it became a thing I do even when I don’t want to sometimes.
One of the first things you notice when you start jogging is that people jog or work out for different reasons and each of those people has a pace; a speed at which they jog. Some are slow and some are fast. Some work out for longer periods than others and each one has a routine of drills they do, those who have routines anyway. It gets demoralising on the first few days when you meet the first pacers who are killing it with their routines and you can’t even finish a 5 minute trot.
It gets sad quickly but then if you think about it, you will realise that these are people you have no idea about. You don’t know their names and neither do you know for how long they have been working out for. Start slow and find your pace, in a few weeks you will be surprised of how much distance you will cover before breaking a sweat.
I wrote this during what I called the ‘30 days of raw free verse writing’. The plan was to write 300 words off the top of my head each day with minimal editing. The plan failed. I only wrote for 15 days and on day 16 my head was blank. There was nothing for me to write about, nothing I was comfortable with anyway. But something came out of it and next time I am hopeful that there will be enough content for 30 days or more.
“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sailaway from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.” ~ Mark Twain