In July, 2008, I, Princess Rachella, Intrepid African American Girl International Journalism Consultant, pulled up stakes once again and headed to Nairobi, Kenya. Through my various adventures, I've concluded that if I get any MORE explosively fabulous in these prequel years to "THE BIG 5-0," I will have to register myself with the Pentagon as a thermonuclear incendiary device.
Friday, May 28, 2010
Thursday, May 27, 2010
I knew the name Nas because I'd read a few stories about his nas-ty divorce from singer Kelis, she of "Milkshake" fame. And of course, who doesn't know the name Marley? So when Phil told me to check out their new release "Distant Relatives," I figured it was a good bet. He took about 3 minutes to download it onto a flash drive for me, and then I took about 3 days to figure out how to download it into my iTunes library.
And then I took about 3 WEEKS to finally listen to it, just yesterday. And lemme tell you, it completely blew my mind! To try and boil it down, "Distant Relatives" is a neo-soulful, hip-hoppy collection of brilliantly written and arranged tunes that celebrate the triumphs and struggles of the sons and daughters of Africa and the diaspora. In simpler language, that Nas-Marley joynt is off the chain!
I'm considering it the soundtrack for my life over here, as a distant relative on temporary tour. I'm African, but not really. I'm American, but undeniably of African descent. My home is 8,000 miles away, but everybody here keeps wondering why I don't just stay. I'm of the same color, but not of the same mind. And yet the moments when I've felt most alive, and been most accepted over here, have been on the dance floor. It's like, when Kenyans see me dancing, they get it.
And it's just like this picture up top. You might look at it and see the beads and the spears and the cow's horn and think, "alien and strange." But look again, more closely this time.
This ain't nothin' but a Soul Train Line, y'all. If you don't know, you betta ASK somebody.
Wednesday, May 26, 2010
But there was one piece of adornment I couldn't have begged, borrowed or paid every shilling in my wallet for. It was this Obama belt buckle, worn proudly and prominently by one of the young men, and it almost made me a bit misty-eyed. Just think, these young men reveling in an African forest have a closer link to President Barack Obama than I do.
Now, when it comes to fashion, this is what I call class, not trash.
You know, the more I look at him, he's actually kinda cute!! Maybe the next time an African warrior prince checks me out, I won't worry so much about dying a bloody death and I'll listen to what he's actually trying to communicate to me.
Tuesday, May 25, 2010
Monday, May 24, 2010
Sunday, May 23, 2010
After a harrowing 5 hour drive over a non-existent road into the Magadi forest, I half crawled out of the Land Cruiser and headed to an open clearing, where this was scene was unfolding.