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Walking the Tortoise Way


I have just returned to the office from having lunch together with a colleague. And boy oh boy, she kept complaining about how slow my pace is. To be very honest, my pace is slower than slow. It is comparable to that of a lame tortoise. Thing is, I suspect my baby is already head down, and the pressure that baby gives my lower abdomen is just amazing. When walking, my lower pelvic region feels so HEAVY I always feel like the baby is gonna fall out anytime. However fast I try to walk I simply cannot push my feet fast enough.

I have since taken to calling my colleague ‘Raila’, and myself Kibaki. Now, Raila is our Prime Minister, while Kibaki is our president. I am comparable to Kibaki, whose pace is similarly comparable to a tortoise’s. Might be his age or his ill-health but whatever it is, he walks extremely SLOWLY.

On the other hand, Raila is this energetic fellow, active and always on the move, an avid soccer fan and generally a good sportsman. Courtesy of various state functions where both Prime Minister and President have to attend together, they are often stuck with each other and have to walk side by side. And that’s where the comedy lies. Poor Raila has no option but to walk the tortoise way. You can actually see the frustration written all over his face as he struggles to do so.

Kibaki actually walks with a slight kind of limp on one of his feet, and I don’t know whether it’s only me, but I’ve noticed Raila also walking like him of late whenever they are together. Raila too drags his feet from side to side, almost like a limp – just like the president. I think a slow walk is contagious, because just like Raila, my workmate has also recently adopted my tortoise pace. Infact, I shift heavily from foot to foot, and I have noticed she has begun doing the same as well. Problem is she doesn’t even realize this, it is only until we run out of conversation that she notices the tortoise pace.

What I know is that if you can’t beat them, just join them. I’m sure she enjoys the slow walk, especially in this sweltering March midday sun. Me, I am only more than happy to provide her with the company for the brisk lunchtime walk.



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Maryanne W. Waweru is a Kenyan mum raising her two sons in Nairobi. A journalist, Maryanne is passionate about telling stories and hopes that through her writing, her readers learn something new, feel encouraged, inspired, and appreciative of what they have in their lives. Maryanne's writing focuses on motherhood, women and lifestyle. "Telling stories is the only thing I know how to do," she says.


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