14 Days Till Christmas!

It’s an hour before the clock strikes midnight when the sudden sound of loud knocking came from the front door.

Who would pay us a visit in this ungodly hour?

Mother opens the front door to a shivering Mrs. Juanita, our lovely neighbor, who now looks pale and gripped with fear, almost as if she had seen a ghost.

“Mrs. Juanita, is everything alright?”  Mother cautiously asks our tiny, frail neighbor who appeared visibly trembling in cold sweat.

Our neighbor rubbed her trembling hands to keep warm from the sudden chilly breeze that brushed past her tiny frame.  “I was – I was,” she gulped nervously.  “I was in the kitchen closing up,” she paused to take a deep breath, “and I stepped out for a second in the backyard and I saw – this – this – this man – peering into my kitchen.”

Mother attempts to downplay her tone of questioning and remain calm so as to not appear alarmed although she could have sworn her heart did a mini back flip.

“I know for sure that it was not one of your well-behaved children but I thought – I would just let you know, if you knew who that man was”, Mrs. Juanita paused to take in a deep breath, “especially since he was climbing on your tree – y’know, from your compound.”

A sudden expression of deep concern flashed through Mother’s eyes as she thanked our neighbor and reassured her that she will notify the police immediately and pass on the message to our other neighbors.

As Mother sent a slightly more calm Mrs. Juanita back to her home, the family decides to pitch in with the other neighbors to figure out what exactly has been going on around our neighborhood backyards.  Apparently two recent robberies have occurred and it appears that our wooden picket fence has a hole the size that could fit a grown man to have an easy access into our neighbor’s home – the one that got robbed a few months ago.

Prayer, time, the police and most likely with the assistance of the neighborhood watch, we would be able to zero in on our prime suspect.

The Christmas holidays is a lot of fun especially when its summer and you’re tempted to hang out with the family and friends all day at the beach.  But it would be a much safer option to considerably keep in mind the safety and protection of the family valuables and property.  Lock it up properly and notify neighbors you trust, family members even the police that you will be away from home for a longer period of time like a family vacation.

Stay safe this Christmas holiday!

Peace and love,

~Marama Vaka Buiniga~


15 Days Till Christmas!

The subtle whizzing of the air-con in the background performed a marvelous job cooling the dry and hot spell that summer unapologetically offered today. Beneath the velvety darkness that silently blankets the nation, society at large remains transfixed on the live-streaming memorial where world leaders, international dignitaries, family, friends and the beloved people of South Africa celebrate, honor and pay tribute to the legacy of the late Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela (July 18, 1918 – December 5, 2013) live at the FNB stadium of Johannesburg, South Africa.

Of the wealth of information available at our mere fingertips thanks to Twitter mostly, concerning Madiba who lived his life as a lawyer, activist, prisoner, South Africa’s first black president and the passionate struggle and legacy he dearly held for his people, he essentially taught me that whatever thing that is deemed impossible to achieve, can only be a success if I am ready to compromise and struggle for the fruition of my personal goals, dreams and ambitions into polishing myself into the best version I can possibly be.

The quote that struck me at my core as I sit here watching President Zuma deliver his public address live-streaming from the memorial is taken from President Obama’s transcript:

“And when the night grows dark, when injustice weighs heavy on our hearts, or our best laid plans seem beyond our reach – think of Madiba, and the words that brought him comfort within the four walls of a cell:

It matters not how strait the gate,

How charged with punishments the scroll,

I am the master of my fate:

I am the captain of my soul.”

Peace and love.

~Marama Vaka Buiniga~


Christmas may mean so many things to so many people. A friend once shared that there are only two special days in her life: her birthday and Christmas – most likely because those are the two days in her life where she is guaranteed to be lavished with gifts, hugs and unashamedly smacked with kisses. 

A few others anticipate Christmas because it is the only holiday throughout the year that promises the presence of extended families from afar and boasts the abundance of food, flashes of sparkling green and ruby red lights and colorful decorations emanating the spirit of joy and celebration across the vast rooftops of suburbia, in every shopping mall, local council, city, you name it.  The atmosphere and energy of the entire town are transformed into this season of joy and giving.

With less than twenty days to hustle and bustle in anticipation for Christmas day, it would be nice to put forward a list of 16 hopes that I’d like to pray for in preparation for Christmas.

Prayerful hope for day 16:

As I go about clearing my room of all the things that I’ve hoarded over the months like recyclable jars to accommodate my mascara and makeup brushes, clothes that don’t fit in the bleak hope that I would one day fit into it, old Womans Day magazines, damaged sandals amongst other things, I am also cleaning my mind from time-wasting wishful thinking and negative thoughts and countering this with positive thinking.  Less of, darn, I won’t be able to fit into this beautiful summer dress to town! More of, “Fortunately, I have the power bestowed upon me to actually do something about my current situation, which will inevitably pass.”  Less of, yuck, weeds!  What an ugly backyard!  More of, “I need to schedule a day this week to mow the lawn”.  ACTION – Aren’t we thankful enough to God for instilling within each individual such a power of good in intense proportions?  There is a solution to every ‘situation’ (and if you’ve run out of ideas, you could always exploit the option of finding your answers in google).

You may dismiss words as mere puff but therein lies power.  What you say to yourself – regardless of whether you believe it or not – is very powerful because your subconscious is always aware of your surroundings. So once you realize that your own words has power, use it for your own good.  Start within.  Say good things about yourself, because, you are a good person. Then go ahead and clear out the mess!

As I join the rest of the world in preparation for Christmas in clearing out items I’ve hoarded in my room, may this encourage me to clean out negativity beginning within, and trust that God will take care of the things in my life that I do not have the power to change.  Essentially, to activate the ‘let go and let God’ mentality.

Peace and love,

Marama Vaka Buiniga.