Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Image matters...

Well, it seems I've been working here for a bit long. Have started noticing quite a number of staffing changes, people quiting, being fired, or being hired... and I thought this place was cozy! I'd read earlier on corporate culture, and apparently the need to understand a company's 'politics' is crucial in how your existence will be. See an interesting article here. But so far I'm easy, the current dept I'm in doesn't have any hands on work I can do, so I get to surf most of the time other than peruse some of their process documents and ask a couple of questions here and there.

Church has been focussing on arts this month and hosted a jazz fest last sato and a fashion show sunday night. More like revolutionary rather than controversial, but hey, God is the master artist ama? Speaking on the same, the ekklesia is doing well, 3 new persons attended. One was a british lady, who apparently recognized me, ati we sat next to each other in some service months ago. It was one of those, greet your neighbour pr exercises, and shock on me coz I remember her, she was quite enthusiastic about the whole thing! Guess it's a lesson that you don't show attitude to those guys you come across, it's a small world apparently...

Had a date yesterday evening. A pal was celebrating her birthday, (more like going thro the motions) and was bila anyone to take her out. So I pull the superhero thing, call her at 6 in the evening, get her to beg for it, then hook up in town at 8 for a polite coffee date. Was quite nice actually, though had to open up a lot which isn't my style. Might hit 3 other dates by Sunday, one of which is a wedding that I've invited no.1 contender as my bride, sorry I mean escort! But my sis, who is one of the brides maids together with my niece who's a flower girl, wants me to be her driver for the day, and that would coz some logistical issues.

Financially, sold 2 thirds of my HFCK shares at 41.75/- earning a cool 56% capital gain in 3 months. I've invested in Mumias, hoping that the wave of good success goes on. The price dropped when the govt announced that they will release more shares, but signs are the the company is set for good times ahead. Other prospects for me include Standard Newspapers and Unga Group in the short term. All of a sudden, mob people are on my case regarding investment advice. I give hints only as far as what established investors say plus information gathered from blogs (see links on the left), but in the end, everyone makes their own decision and bears the cost! Penny for your thoughts about the money rat race: "Like a rat in a maze, the path before me lies. And the pattern never alters, until the rat dies."

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

After leave, reality

I've resumed work today following the four day leave. It was worth it all the way, and wouldn't mind going again (forever, if they maintain the salary + benefits). I still have 29 more days left for leave which have to be taken by end of March. Day 1 of leave, decided to set up a date with the small sis of the no 1 contender chic. We'd only been vibing on fone, so we go to meet, took her out for lunch then took a mat to her digs (where I'd never been) just to surprise the older sis. That was too cool!!! Then took my best friend out for lunch last friday, we got to vibe which was long overdue (work hinders someone from such things). Background is that I taught him everything I knew on hooking up chics in our late teens, and now he's a pro. Apparently, he's got so many chics on his back, loaded ones, international ones, super spiritual ones etc. Yaani, I'm jealous. But fact is he's open to all while I invest in a firewall to keep them far. I love my space, yet they still keep on coming... Did I mention ex chic version 2.0 sent me a mail today detailing the key points to identifying the right marriage partner? Go figure!!!!

Financially, though I'm kinda broke, good news is that HFCK broke the 40 bob mark yesterday and is going higher, so my capital gain is over 50%. My colleague at work, who stood by me when they fell to 19, is insisting I sell, but I 'm struggling with greed. I want to wait till it levels out but have already made the killing I wanted. Scangroup was oversubscribed 5 times. Since I bought 2k shares for a pal of my sis in SA, I'm waiting for the allocation results to act accordingly. Too bad they aren't my own!! As for East African Cables, they are too much to bear, closing at 581. I noted them last year but was not in a position to trade, with the share split coming, might go for it.

Apparently the Kenyan Blogging Community has taken me to heart a bit, I got a few comments plus a mention in another guy's blog. Aint that cool or what? Must keep tabs on pple and establish good contacts.

Came back to work today, only to find that the team building had been postponed to next month. I was so psyched but well have to bear. I reported to the Risk Management division, will be there for a month. It's quite chilled out as compared to Finance. On that note, I missed out on presenting my report, since it was late in the day. As a result, I got a suicide presentation for the other Friday, was dressed in jeans and a summer t-shirt. Add to that, the harshest managers were in attendance. I got more damage than Hezbollah fighters in Lebanon under Israeli fire. Yaani, pure disaster! I'm sure that's my worst presentation result ever. Wondering how the results will be...
The bosses come back this week after heading to recruit guys for this program in US & UK. Apparently one of the successful applicants tracked me down on graduates.com. He's just texted me, called, and we've just been chatting on yahoo messenger. I figure the guy is a genius to have surfed the net looking for info on the program. (Or I'm genius to have updated my profile on graduates.com, second hit already!). I've given him 411 on the program and he looks set to join. Interesting enough, another applicant I assisted during the process made it all the way. How I met him, we were in the same campus, but his girlfriend's dad and my mom are cousins. That link is crazy but apparently if you follow your roots, i.e. attend funerals & weddings and network like it's a business function, you could strike gold! I'm sure both will pay off in the long run...

The ekklesia kicked off and is getting on well, though I got an offer from a rival one that is composed of younger pple and has one of a former high school (sister school) chic who had a crush on me (she's the one inviting). The american couple who host make nice chocolate chip cookies, and I unashamedly carry a bunch of them home with me. Bila pice. Interesting spiritual lesson learnt in the past week. Life is like a piece of glass. The more silver you have, the more you see yourself only (mirror). Wealth is good, but I'm a steward (everything belongs to God), and should use it to benefit others (who I see through the glass) not myself (mirror).

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Community awareness

I recently joined the Kenyan community of bloggers. This has opened my eyes to other bloggers and it's an interesting bunch of people. You get to see that people are so different yet are brought together by strange things in life. Will I plug in and be part of the crew, which is a tight knit community that loves drinks and hang out? Time will tell.
We got our payslips which came together with results from our annual appraisal. Since this was my first time, I didn't put too much maana into the whole thing, as in appraisal reminds me of assessment in campus (i don't like rules). The process is usually a self appraisal, then discuss it with your boss, who gives his views and you ammend according to how you agree. Apparently, I self appraised myself lower than my colleagues, and guess what, I got the lowest pay rise in the gang, and now I'm the least paid in our crew. That isn't amusing at all!!!! I'm kicking myself inside while putting a brave face outside, coz hey after tax, the jamaas I joined with only earn a couple of reds higher than me every month. But still it hurts (how could you be so stupid?).
On a better note, last week, the Finance Division celebrated the monthly birthdays, and one of my colleagues had slipped my name in. It was nice seeing it imprinted on a humongous chocolate cake, and have guys singing 'Happy Birthday colleagues'. That was fun. Then, I got selected to go for the next team building exercise for technical division which will be at Simba Lodge, Lake Naivasha in 2 weeks time. Considering the fun I had last time, I'm definately looking forward to this one. As for work, we are currently working on our individual projects to finish the Finance Division rotation, whose presentations will be tomorrow afternoon. Our boss is out of the country but apparently the chief finance officer will be in attendance, so I look forward to making a good impression. Then my first experience of leave, next Monday to Friday, 5 days of chilling out.
Spiritual, finally got hooked up to an ekklesia. Which actually stands for a small fellowship or home group organized by the church I attend (though the internet has different outlook, see here and here). We had a meeting to plan who would lead the group plus hosting. All the people in attendance (5) had their own cars, save for me. And since the host lives far from digs, I'll be hitching a ride throughout back home, which isn't jazzing at first but what to do. Our first meeting in the host's place will be this Thursday, which I hope will be the start of another opportunity to grow and mature in the Christian faith.

Financially, I'd invested 10k in a wheat project some months back, and when I met my pal who was running the thing, she told me that the stuff had just been harvested, bumper harvest, so I should set up a meeting. I can't wait, hoping that the returns are substantial. HFCK stock is stable at 30 bob and I'm resisting attempts to cash in on a 15% capital gain. I couldn't invest in Scangroup coz of some family issues. Oh the joys of being a grown up! My mom finally got in touch, thank God. She toured all over South Sudan, sold most of the stuff they'd carried, but she says business is too much stress so she's gonna look for employment which is easier. She's back in Kenya, but will only stay a bit. I get to redo her CV and hope for the best.
Social is quiet but alive. I'm resisting attempts to go all out (no hands policy - refer to picture), but I keep straying kidogo. Recently pecked another pal of mine goodnight, she did the same next time, and now I'm worried that I may have opened a Pandora's box. I wanna stay single and enjoy maisha much to the chagrin of the prospectives. And since I'm extremely broke this month (family issues), I want to keep a low profile. Though I met someone during a prayer meeting, then we bumped into each other in town (between that period I'd shaved all my hair and beards), but she still recognized me and intro'd me to her pal. That is something I hope has a happy ending... I'm actually chatting with my ex from 1st year of campus, she's now doing corporate law at Citibank. Life is interesting, 2 months ago, I turned down the chance to work there. I had been contacted by the dean of students at campus, but since I have a 4 year bond at my current place of work, turned it down. Would be crazy if that had checked in...
Oh yes, and the chic from states who said we hook up, STOOD ME UP! Yaani, sad. Ati she'd forgotten about it and was going ocha, then flying back the same night. Of all the luck!!!!