TRIP TO TANZANIA: Fractions of Family Affairs

be selective with whom you share your soul to.

In 2016 I spent my Christmas in the motherland Tanzania and met the new year under the same sky. I exchanged winter for summer and confronted 2017 sat beside those closest to me… those closest to the roots of my family tree.


The early mornings were a struggle, both a blessing and a curse. We experienced a full day but bared witness to it through the lenses of sleep deprivation.  



img_2690In the distance of the mountains, past the sounds of chirping birds, moving leaves and a running river, singing is heard. The faint sound of community and unity travels through the hills and small mountains of Moshi.

I found connection in natural land that the city of London could not offer me, somehow I felt so compelled to the smells and the sounds that London’s city lights could not compare and a knowing sadness easily came to me.

Something about witnessing a town sheltered from the rain and blessed by the sun, unlike those around it seems almost holy.  

A blessing. Although I understand that this is the London-raised girl in me speaking against the dull skies of my city and not the native Tanzanian unwelcoming to the dry winds. 


Her hands shook with weakness, but her face displaced a long history of strength and bravery. It is rare to find many these days who openly wear love and an honest vulnerability, but along her laugh lines both qualities sat perfectly as a pair. Visiting a great auntie of ours triggered a change within me. In front of me sat 90 years of experience that my 19 years could not match, nor relate to but admire in a way one could only admire an elder – awe. 

fullsizerender-1History holds the ties of our family, wirings and knots which link us to one another and through this we understand life, experience that we must witness through a pair of eyes that are not our own.  

I consistently




with words that are spoken from sophisticated tongues, tongues which rest heavy with the weight of life’s lessons.         

I learnt of kindness and I was met with a gaze that shared the same familiar longing for family that I did. 





Today we planted trees along the hidden bushes of Moshi in order to leave behind a legacy and to restore the land. It can be said that we blessed each plant with the power of community, family and pure happiness. The laughter and chaos moving away from our family and toward the trees so that they may be filled with richness. *Walking, or shall I say sliding down the hills, I had realised that my footwear was not the best. 

The chaos of the situation, the thin planning and the spontaneity was enough to convince me to find my own roots amongst the trees of Moshi, it was enough to create a want and a hidden need within myself to place my own feet firmly in the ground and refuse to leave. I longed to remain and never return to London.



We sat in a circle, as family affairs with Christ and religion were laid out upon the table. It was confession out of love… confession in the purest form. Words spoken and tears let out, I felt moved by the devotion in the room. I felt I wanted to be more, do more, be better and do better. An uncle of mine spoke to me shortly afterward and left me with the reminder that most families do not often unite without reason, but ours comes together not out of obligation but a want… and a need. 

We forget sometimes, the unfamiliar familiar intimacy that arrives with the presence of distant family and the shift that occurs within us, as if something of a longing has been fulfilled. Years without visitation and yet it is until we’re all sat amongst one another that gratitude sits deep within me and a longing that I had not known until that very present moment is fulfilled.


“It can be said that we blessed each plant with the power of community, family and pure happiness…”


Journal Entry: What They Forget to Tell You About Growing Up

'and here you are living, despite it all' - Rupi Kaur

I’m at an age where the whole world expects you to know where you stand and what you’re doing. We’re all so convinced that at this point in time we’re supposed to be able to envision our futures – we’re supposed to know what every single move we’ve made, up until this point is leading up to, as if we’re all pre-programmed to be something, someone… anyone.

Except you can’t just be ’anyone’. You’re supposed be someone – we’re supposed to be the generation that makes a difference, that changes things, that turns on the light switch and suddenly in a God-like form we’ll scream ‘let there be light’ at the top of our lungs whilst moving our fingertips along to the sound of corporate greed.

I mean, we’re literally conditioned to believe that we were placed on this planet to specialise in one area of reality, and somehow, just somehow somewhere along the way we’ll make the world a better place, but I mean… how? How do we do that? We were never given blueprints or a 60 day plan. 

I think when the older generation discuss the younger generation in a negative light they forget who created us, they forget what we were raised on – it’s not merely “bad blood”, it’s their blood. Maybe we are the selfish youth, with God-like complexes knee deep in pharmaceuticals and glued to technology. But, really, who’s fault is that? This generation was ‘created’, we didn’t just ‘appear’, creating this generation was a process that didn’t happen overnight. So, dear older generation, in order to criticise our generation you must be willing to take responsibility for sitting back and allowing us to happen.

DSCF0831xxBut here we are, alive and ready to roar, frightened but fearless – Generation Z. We are a generation of frightened, frightened children learning how to go from “I want to grow up to be…” to “what on earth am I doing?!” and hopefully to “this is my next step”.

I think it’s important to realise that it is okay, to not be at ‘this is my next step’ just yet. Life does not have a time limit, it happens and all there is to do is go with the flow, move along when the tide draws you in, follow the flow of traffic and never, ever, let on that you are somewhat scared and terribly confused but just keep going, keep moving, and never look back.

I think the most important thing to remember is that life does not stop for anybody and so if you feel stuck – move… push forward and don’t look back.  Keep moving, push until you get there, remain frightened.

This is your superpower.  You are your own hero.

A ship at harbour is safe, but that’s not what ships are for.’ – William G.T. Shedd.