Rufo Roba, Kenya

You never know what nature is until you start appreciating it for what it is. For the first 24.5 years of my life, nature meant so little to me. I would walk for five kilometers away from my village to look for women who would sell us firewood and charcoal (in Milima Tatu village, somewhere in Northern Kenya) in bulk considering the amount of people in our house to be fed. I would be so angry if they didn’t have them! The rains were the worst part of my life because it meant the women couldn’t have dry trees to cut down!

The last 1.5 years of my life was a flashpoint, thanks to my change of work; I moved from the city to a town up country. Working with a conservation organization, I can’t help but be ashamed of growing up encouraging degradation of our environment. It breaks my heart now having traveled through that same village and barely seeing a tree. The vast wilderness that was now reduced to an empty dusty village, with no shade to shield you from the scorching sun of the north.

Nature has a whole different meaning in my life now; it is serenity. Peace. Calm. Freshness. A life surrounded by life itself: trees of all kinds. Animals. A self-perpetuating cycle of life. The birds of the air and their chirpings that makes life beautiful.

Nature is abundantly rich and rewarding; from the oxygen, we depend on to the soil we toil to feed the world. It is a mutualistic relationship, I take care of it and it takes care of me!

Nature is my sole role to take care of everything and everyone around me; it’s only natural!


2 Comments Add yours

  1. Soulful Whisperer says:

    Ms. Roba. Articulate and Compelling.

  2. Antony Wandera says:

    Nice piece, its a shame with what is happening with degradation of our ecosystems – courtesy of fuel wood and charcoal.. the elite in peri-urban areas are fueling this degradation further and faster than they realize of know. I think its high time the government needs to come out strongly and burn the use of charcoal, its sell and its distribution. Good people of Kenya, Just know for every bag of charcoal you buy you would have killed an average of two to three trees in the dryland. You are killing your self and your future and the lives of generations to come. Remember Laureate Prize winner Prof. Wangari Mathai once said..”If you don’t take care of nature, Nature wont take care of you.. Mother Nature can be very unforgiving! Dear Kenyans, my appeal to you this year 2018, please dig a hole, plant a tree and take care of if until it survives. Its for your future and that of the many generations to come. This goes out to everyone, especially in the dry lands (arid areas) of Kenya.Tree planting is not for only those in the highlands and the catchment areas! My word!

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