My Whit’s End Book Club–Out of Africa–Wanyangerri

“For he could to-day tell me, with much assertiveness, and spitting out the words through a tube in his mouth, that he had been killed the day before, and was going to be killed again in a few days’ time.”  –regarding his stay in the hospital.

“The Natives, if they are not paralyzed and benumbed by their terror of the unknown, growl and grumble much in hospital, and invent schemes for getting away.  Death is one of these; they do not fear it.”

“With the Somalis you can make or destroy your prestige within an hour.”–true of Facebook also.

p. 131:  habituee de la maison –French.   habitue = a resident or frequent visitor.  de la maison = of the house.

p. 131:  Athi plains – a painting from Stephen Gjertson Galleries

p. 131:  blue mountain of Donyo Sabouk and the long Mua Hills –  

p. 134:  Nubian in the band of the King’s African Rifles – from Wikipedia.  The King’s African Rifles (KAR) was a multi-battalion British colonial regiment raised from the various British possessions in East Africa from 1902 until independence in the 1960s. It performed both military and internal security functions within the East African colonies as well as external service as recorded below. Rank and file were Africans called askaris, while most officers were seconded from British Army regiments. When raised there were some Sudanese officers in the Uganda raised battalions and towards the end of British colonial rule African officers were commissioned in the various battalions.

p. 135:  Governor, Sir Edward Northey – from Wikipedia.  Major-General Sir Edward Northey, GCMG, CB (May 1868 – December, 1953) was a senior British Army officer of the First World War who commanded a brigade on the Western Front until wounded in 1915. Returning to service in 1916, Northey took command of a colonial force in Nyasaland in the East African Campaign, later becoming Governor of Kenya. He later served as a general of Territorial forces and retired in 1926.

p. 137:  programme – British spelling of the word program.

p. 139:  gambols – to leap about playfully; frolic

p. 141:  immanent – NOT imminent = about to happen or happening at any moment.  NOT eminent = high in rank or repute; prominent, but immanent [pronounced just like imminent] means indwelling; inherent; naturally part of something.

p. 142: rapaciousness – aggressively greedy or grasping

p. 144:  impression of a mental troglodyte – a caveman; a prehistoric cave dweller; a hermit.  Think GEICO commercial.

p. 144:  Uraka and Laskaro –  This question is answered here.  It is copyrighted, so I can’t just post the answer.

p. 145:  the flowering of the pilgrim’s staff – from knightsoftheholygrail.orgIt was upon holy ground, at the foot of  Glastonbury Tor (the legendary Isle of Avalon) that Joseph thrust his pilgrim’s  staff into the ground, where it immediately took root and budded.  This became  the famous Glastonbury Thorn, flowering every year at Christmas in honor of  Christ’s birth, until it was cut down and burnt by a Puritan fanatic in the  seventeenth century.  Even today, succeeded by a slip of the original stock, the  Thorn miraculously continues to flower at Christmas, while native thorns flower  only in May.

At this site, you can view Karen Blixen’s house.

The chapter ends.  “I must call in fresh forces, or the farm will run into a bad dream, a nightmare.  I know what I will do.  I will send for Kinanjui.”  So next chapter, we will get to meet “A Kikuyu Chief” called Kinanjui.

See you there,


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