Tuesday, 6 November 2012

Aerial Pictures of Thika Town...Have a look

Below is a nice shot of Clairbourn Towers and the building housing Safaricom Customer Care and Faulu Bank..Kwame Nkurumah Street along which the buildings are built happens to be the busiest street in thika
Far away you can see Mt Kilimabogo..The newest building in Thika that supposedly will house Nakummat Thika is on the far distance, followed by Leens supermarket and the Posta Building with the long mast
 These are just some of the few buildings which i feel should either be replaced or refurbished.
The incomplete building houses Kassmatt supermarket. The next building is the 5 Floored Twin Oak Plaza that houses Gathimaini Pharmacy
 The Thika skyline..I repeat it..the old buildings in Thika need to be dealt with..Mr Mayor....
 Far away, thats Ngoingwa...Is that Tuskys near the horizon
 A near shot of Thika Arcade, the first building in Thika to have a lift..nearly 15 years ago
 Thats where I was making the shots from...sniper style...The Alisa Plaza

The dancing version of Alisa Plaza...it houses among others Jodan College of Technology, Multichoice, Na Health Spa...make a visit
Pictures talk very loud...just listen.

Friday, 2 November 2012

Thanks - The report card: Thika Live,six months after..

Today marks six months since the idea of the thika live blog was started..Seems like yesterday that I toyed with the idea of starting a small platform where I would write about the nice things that happen in my home town. From the early days in Biafra Estate, Thika has really changed and still remains the same on some fronts. Like this cool place at Blue Post Hotel
There are differences here and there like we used to run to the stadium to watch KTM (Kenya Textile Mills) which was then the local team playing in the central nationwide league, nowadays we have Thika United at position six in the national premier league. Section 9 used to be the posh estate, nowadays we have gated communities coming up in Thika like Bahati Ridge along the Thika Gatanga Road
Thika tanning used to be the only air pollutant, nowadays we have Bidco which positively employs more than 500 locals. I can go on and on but the fact remains, Thika is a nice place.

Over the last six months we have showcased just a fraction of what Thika has to offer with the economic rise being the most visible part. We have had discussions on the local economy ranging from the supermarkets, clubs, hospitals, hotels and colleges. We have had one on ones with Thika most popular and loved hand artist BujuSanii, an interview with Thika top hypheman MC Vizzy. Dj Chacha, Denno the artist and MKU Student President Martin Martinae have also graced our wall. Thika Live has also had the privilege of covering different economic and social events including the successful Thika Homes Expo sponsored by real estate firm GreenBuck consult, the PCEA mass for the Tanzania accident victims, the road safety initiative by the Thika Red cross and numerous events in Thika colleges. We have also showcased different businesses by young entrepreneurs and attended different government functions.

To our readers and followers we feel that its important we give you a performance report to emphasize that the blog is dedicated to showcasing Thika to the entire world in ways that have never been seen before. That has been successful with thika live enjoying  more than 18,000 views in the six months. Quarter of these views originate from the Diaspora with more views from USA and UK alone. Its great to note that we had a diaspora following who call appreciating our content since it reminds them of their childhoods in Thika. Thanks for the likes on Facebook, those who follow us via twitter and the lovers of our art on pinterest.
Blogging is nice idea which you should try out. Either entertainment blogs, informative, business or just personal.  Blogs are a great way of expressing your idea and creating a platform where you can share your ideas with the online audience. Its free and very flexible to start one..If you want to create a brand, start with a blog.

In the coming days thika live will have great posts which you should check out. You all wonder where Christina Gardens opposite Thika Municipal Council derived its name from?..well that post is on the way. For any assistance or communication, you are always welcome in our offices at Clairbourn Plaza Thika, 2rd floor
For now lets part with a great quote from Henry Thoreau..
As a single footstep will not make a path on the earth, so a single thought will not make a pathway in the mind. To make a deep physical path, we walk again and again. To make a deep mental path, we must think over and over the kind of thoughts we wish to dominate our lives.

Thursday, 25 October 2012

Dreadlocks: The latest trend in Town

Its official,dreadlocks are here to stay this time. Surprisingly the culture of dreadlocks has of late been adopted aggressively in major urban towns in Kenya.
In Thika to be specific, salons are mushrooming in major buildings offering dreadlocks treatment(for lack of a better word). Thika has Kings of dreadlocks who major with locking of dreads(mmhh). Victory Plaza has more than three salons offering these services which means that Thika has a nice market as far as this new style is concerned. Coincidentally many of these salons have other branches around town. Victory Plaza has Davies Salon and Jawknee Dreadlocks with many other mushrooming around town.
All these salons are experts by all standards and are the main trail blazers in the Town. Matter of fact, out of five dreadlocked heads you spot in Thika, 4 are courtesy of these salons. This brings me to the part where am supposed to examine the revolution of dreadlocks up to their current place in the contemporary fashion .
Research reveals that dreadlocks could after all trace their roots to Africa and to be specific Kenya and Tanzania..WHHATT//..Many of us may tend to think that dreadlocks originated from Jamaica or Ethiopia but Rastafarians just started having them from the 1950s. However they had been donned by the Ashanti, Red Indians, Ancient Egyptians and pre-Columbian Aztecs.
All these groups started having dreadlocks centuries after the Maasai of Kenya who have had them since their existence. Matter of fact to the Maasai, dreadlocks are a way of life. They are smeared with red ochre and its a great sight when you meet these tall brave Morans with red heads. Before being adopted into the modern fashion, dreadlocks have maintained a spiritual meaning and the best example would the Rastafarians.
For Jamaicans, the Columbian Aztecs, the Baye Falle Muslims, the Hindu Sheiva followers dreadlocks are associated with religion.
So when did dreadlocks hit the mainstream?? The last 5 years has seen a surge in the number of dreadlock wearers. Long are the days when a deadlocked guy would attract puzzled looks and grins in offices and streets. Nowadays they have been embraced by all age groups

Personally I find dreadlocks captivating especially the long ones donned by ladies..However I dislike the unclean dangling and unkempt locks. Which brings the question, whats the secret to those black, dyed, clean locks that keep everyone gazing down the streets?. I thinks its time we invited an expert to shed more light..keep it here as one of these fine days Thika Live will get an audience with one.
Dreads,nutty,locks..whatever you call them are here to stay. The stigma that has lived with dreadlocked people since they are not considered formal is rapidly whizzing away. Long gone are the days when dreadlocks were the preserve of the civil society, radical groups and societal rebels. Nowadays, you might visit a bank and get served by a dreadlocked teller. Imagine your Sunday sermon being delivered by a dreadlocked reverend?
pictures courtesy of Google

Friday, 19 October 2012

Ladies Only: Manuz Boutique Thika..the one stop shop for your favourite merchandise

Fashion is about good energy. It's about feelings. That's what I have to give the people, good energy and good feelings..
Adriana Lima
Those are the words of the acclaimed Brazilian model Adriana Lima who is ranked at number 5 among the top 20 richest models. To be ranked at any position by Forbes is no joke.
Today we will have a look at ladies fashion. This journey takes us to the door step of a Thika entrepreneur I have known for close to a decade. Talking to him gives me an insight on the journey he has taken to his current place as a one stop shop for all ladies wear. Well he is commonly known as Manu or Emmanuel Kibe. Manu deals with all round fashion for ladies ranging from stylish bags, tops, dresses, coats, heels, sandals,stilettos,  boots and the list is endless.
When talking of clothing and fashion its much more better to have a look at some of his merchandise. I will exactly do that and you can have a peek.

The fashion industry is very dynamic which requires a lot of information on the latest trends in the market. 
This is quite true especially in major urban areas. Manu has been in the ladies fashion business for the last five years and this exposure and experience is key in his stocking. 

Coincidentally he has to restock his shop nearly weekly due to the fast movement of his stock. To become a household name in Thika and to enjoy a fast flowing and loyal clientele is no easy feat and this reflects the popularity of Manu merchandise 
Thika Town is emerging as a new semi economy with the different sectors blooming to the ceiling. This has attracted a new wave of a working population which is fashion conscious. Manu satisfies this need and a visit to his shop will me bear witness. Manu personally serves his expansive clientele with a warm personal touch. Manu is a pioneer in Thika owing to his time in the fashion and clothing market in Thika. For convenience on the part of the customers Manu shop is centrally located in Thika Town along the ever busy Nkrumah  street.  
To sample and acquire these great outfits visit Manuz Boutique. The shop is situated in the MGT Building below Thornton's Pub opposite just a few steps from the Thika, Safaricom Customer Care shop. Enough said, the stocks are full and moving and its time all ladies grabbed  these and more outfits.

Wednesday, 10 October 2012

Entertainment Klubs in Thika: Porkiez,Image,Brown Bottle, Zinc,Leos..just to list a few

A month ago I was talking to a friend who happens to be a klub owner in Westlands about the challenges of the industry and the latest trends in Kenya. Five minutes into the conversation the subject of Thika Town had cropped up. As the conversation proceeded  we had talked about the emergence of Thika as the new business frontier in Kenya. Entertainment is a vital part of every economy. Surprisingly my friend knew all the entertainment spots in Thika. A random check around Thika during the day gives the impression that Thika is quite an silent and sleeping giant.

All these suddenly change at 6.30 pm. You will see groups of people heading to joints for coffee and light beer. Some would expect this to end at 9.00pm but my friend you are in for a big shock. That's when the beehive of activities begins. From any area around Town you will be treated to reverberating music coming from different corners which were rather quite during the day. The Tuskys Chania area that is rather peaceful during the day suddenly changes with dozens of Toyota cars competing for parking space. Friends welcome to Thika Nightlife.

Different clubs of repute exists with variations in terms of clientele. Frankly speaking the competition is high to extents that different clubs have different events daily with the main aim being to consolidate their fan base.
Klub Porkiez which is one the pioneers of this entertainment craze leads the way with a massive crowd and following as evident in its Facebook page that has more than 13,000 members. Matter of fact the Porkiez following in Thika can translate into a movement as seen in its last Friday's Porkiez Divas competition
The urban following in Porkiez has been cultivated over the years and the club remains the top dog to beat in terms of klub entertainment in the Kiambu County.

Although Zinc has a following especially among college students in Thika, it has relatively gone silent over the past few months. When it stepped into the domain it caused shrivels in Thika but it is yet to replicate its initial form. Coincidentally the pub remains full during the weekends. The story is the same with Thorntons which has remained a household name for the last five years with its own crowd that still frequent there even with new klubs emerging . Klub Leos located near Cascades hotel is one place that is always full from monday to sunday.

Its strategic location near the busiest town in Thika does it more good than harm in terms of attracting revellers.

Although college students and the urban population in the 18-26 age bracket remain the majority party goers in Thika, there exist an adult population mainly made of the working class. This age spreads to the 50s who to be sincere, are quite active at night. This clientele is the majority customer base for the Brown Bottle, Cocobase and Everton clubs along the Thika Garissa Highway. Brown Bottle opposite the National Bank and few blocks from the Tuskys Chania is the most popular of the three and is a darling to the working and mature class that is less concerned with the modern day hyphe. Last time I was there they had a great service and  music flow, though am also quite laid back.

The entertainment industry in Thika has however being transformed with the entry of Klub Image Thika. Well, honestly this is the big deal for the last 2 months after its official launch and only time can tell if it can maintain the attraction. Although many of the Klubs are situated in rented premises with one or two floors, Klub Image is out of this world. When i first visited the place I couldn't help but marvel at the three floors of entertained tailor made for different clients but all in the same premises.
They have a VIP lounge, a dining area, a discotheque and DJ mixes spread out in floors. Its romoured the posh Klub and Mathai supermarket are owned by the same person. If architectural design, class, space and appeal are to be considered then Klub Image is the leader in Thika. However design and class just attracts but to transform that into popularity and sales is what entertainment is all about. Well only time will tell.
There are exists other nice joints but to be frank the one highlighted above are the main leaders. If you would hope to meet with your 50 to 60 year old drunkard uncle then there the adult joints for the 50 to 70s. Rwambogo, Fulilia, Sky Motel, Brilliant and Sunset Bar are well tucked in Thika Town serving the senior citizens.

That is our entertainment industry which is just an image of the economic growth in Thika. Realistically, entertainment  is slowly becoming a crucial part of the economy in Thika.

Wednesday, 3 October 2012

World class tatoos from Bujusanii: You don't get such stuff anywhere else.


There you got it..More works from Bujusanii, the pioneer tattoo artist in Thika. For more of these visit us at Njoka & Njoka Building (Thika Chemist) opposite Family Bank.
We specialize in small scale to large scale,grey scale to colour.
Lets just end the day with an inspirational quotes on hand art from Keith Haring.
My contribution to the world is my ability to draw. I will draw as much as I can for as many people as I can for as long as I can. Drawing is still basically the same as it has been since prehistoric times. It brings together man and the world. It lives through magic.

The case of G-iinue Youth Enterprise Sacco

Shared from giinueyouthenterprisesacco.blogspot.com

Introducing you to G-IINUE Youth Enterprise Sacco.

A simple group was constructed decades ago by simple farmers in a certain place called Kangema in Muranga. At that time, there were no liberalized financial institutions and the few that existed were found in major towns. It happened that after every harvest time, farmers would get paid handsomely by the local tea and coffee factories. Woe unto them, the only bank they were would keep their money was kilometers away. Its told that many of them "stored" their hard earned currencies in their houses.

In every case of scarcity, there is a tendency of entrepreneurs rising and this is what happened in Kangema. A group of farmers came together to form a Group where members would open accounts and deposit their money and the Group would later deposit the collection in the nearest bank in Muranga Town. Years later the group decided to give loans to their members which they would invest into their farms through farm inputs like seeds and fertilizers among other agricultural inputs. Of course they would pay back at a certain interest which would be ploughed back to the group. With years the group registered as a Society in Muranga. It then expanded to nearby Towns with the recognizable name of Muigananie meaning one that makes all equal. In 1984 it was called Equity Building Society and with time transformed itself into a Micro finance.
Thats what Muiganania literary did through loans to farmers to boost their Agricultural production which is the backbone of Central province. This it did though cheap loans with less or no restrictions in terms of collateral. Whereas many commercial Banks were turning farmers down when it came to loans, Equity was taking them under its wing with cheap repayable loan, friendly service and personnel support. Within years the Sacco had to grow, and this it did with a bang that caused shivers to the existing banks. Equity Bank came into being and with it came a realization of many peoples economic dreams that can take years to narrate.

Today, we have the Equity Bank Group the most popular and recognizable Bank in Kenya. Matter of fact Equity Bank trophy cabinet is full of awards won over the year, both in the domestic and international banking sectors. In terms of customer base, Equity Bank leads the team with more than 50% n banking Kenyans having accounts with the bank. I can say with accuracy that every town in Kenya can boost of an Equity Bank Branch. To consolidate its hold in the Kenyan banking sector, Equity Bank has initiated the Equity Agents program. Most of the Banks that existed when Equity was starting as a small Sacco are in turn adopting products that have already been tested by Equity.. Equity is simply a trailblazer in Kenya. This name shows how dreams, collective sharing ,saving and entrepreneurship can translate dreams into financial success.

The journey that Equity took to become the giant it is today is not an every day event. This is a journey taken by risk takers who believe in empowerment and coming together. That story is being replicated in Nairobi and Thika and will form the backbone of what you will periodically read here. This is a journey of Youth empowerment through efforts undertaken by young people who believe that their fate lies squarely on their able hands. People who believe in consolidating their potential through a Sacco that will provide products to push them to the next step in the ladder of financial independence. Thats what I will be sharing with you day after day, the good work of G-iinue Youth Enterprise Sacco.
images coutsey of Google