0500 hrs on Thursday 17th April, as I did my routine morning run, this day along the river Avon in Bristol. I ran past a glass wall and had a glimpse of myself. And it caught me by surprise how so much had changed yet inside I still felt like the little boy I was 2 decades ago.
How did that nobody, that little boy with so little to smile about leap from the humility of barefoot, mud wadding upbringings in Nyando to this well manicured Bristol waterway? How did these two worlds, extreme apart so suddenly seem so linked up and synchronised like I have lived Bristol all my life? I ran past people; black, white – yankee, oriental, Zulu, European and it seemed so normal, like they couldn’t notice the humility in my being. How did I get here?
I still don’t have the answers: But I think the hope and inspiration of two forthright hardworking P1 teachers that showed me a book, taught me how to read and showed me what an open mind and a vastness of opportunity reading books can open me up to has something to do with it.
I still don’t have the answers: But I know for a fact that, books have changed my life. With each passing day, I learn something new; I encounter something fresh. I challenge myself to learn the things my upbringing did not privilege me with through what people have written. Whether its cuisine, art, landscapes, history, language, quantum physics, politics, poetry, culture etc. I just read.
Grab a book today, read something, learn something new, change something in yourself, in your neighbourhood – community – country, inspire change in the world in your own little way. It will make a difference.Give me a book;
I will give them to children;
We will turn them into world-class citizens!