Last week, Njaanuary sent me two messages, just a reminder that it exists. One, cooking gas went kaput, without warning as it always does- two gas cylinders all with 0 gas at night with minced meat on the plates. Then we woke up to no electricity – the units were also gone. You know how fast Kenya Power sends the power token when you pay with M-Pesa, so there was just no use purchasing the units at that time of the morning. And it was too early to get gas.
That’s when you start wondering if the Bad Beast of Revelation put the 666 mark on people’s hands and forehead overnight and that’s why you have money but you can’t buy the stuff you need.
Anyway, I was there looking and feeling like a caged rabbit. I was hungry and couldn’t make breakfast. And when I smelt my underarms, there was no way I was going to work without taking a shower. Made me wish this was Plot 10, I would have just gone to shower at the neighbour’s. This time I had to take it cold.
And taking a cold shower is a science.
I had been reading a lot of those productivity articles and they all agree on one thing: to have a great day you have to take cold showers. I had chochad myself several times that I would try it but every time, that switch cried for a flick. Today, however, Njaanuary was in control.
1, get set…
When you do a cold shower, you shower in phases. You can’t just walk into a cold shower, you will die of shock!
First, you fungulia just a few drops and feel the water with your palm.You let a few drops hit your feet and Tue rest of the arm first. That way, your body conditions for the giant task ahead. And that’s the first benefit of taking a cold shower in the morning. It instills the discipline of planning early. Test whatever you want to do before diving deep into the deep end. Before you get the girl, you have to see if your toothy smile will be returned first. Okay, bad example.
Apply soap up your arms to your underarms and rinse with water, hot directly, but using your palms. The underarms are one of the most sensitive parts and if you can vumilia those, you will get it. Also, in case you lose faith before going into the cold shower, you will not be smelling. Why do makwapa smell, btw?
If you get your underarms wet and survive, you can now go to your head and face. Use your palm to get water there and then apply soap or shampoo or whatever tickles your fancy. You notice until now you haven’t gotten under the shower, you have been using your hands. With the head soaped, your brain registers that you have to bathe… or you will he leaving with a white head. So, fungulia a little more water (kidogo tu) and get the head only. This is where the nitaingiza kichwa tu proverb applies…oh, I’m digressing. Rinse off your head and face pole pole.
Time to get into the cold shower…
By now, some drops of water may have dropped to your stomach, and the center of cold- your back. You are slowly acclimatizing. The chest or legs can stand some cold, so, apply soap there. And rinse it off like the ninja you now are… stand with your tumbo mbele matako nyuma like a policeman on parade. If you have a huge tummy that will help. Just don’t let the water run down your spine, or crotch, yet!
Okay, now you can. Turn the water on to the maximum you can. Take a few steps back, a few long breaths… and take a step of faith, get under that shower! You will be shocked, first, when the trickle gets to your back…but ninjas don’t back off a mission. Once you are in there is no going out… it’s okay to scream, but don’t get out, or press the switch!
Focus… you can’t sing in a cold shower
See, when you get into a cold shower, every nerve in your body appreciates the water. You feel the water in your marrow, in the center of your teeth, in your medulla of Lang’ata. It gives you focus, brings you to the here and now like Yoga…when you take a cold shower, you don’t sing in the shower, you don’t think useless thoughts, like why Prados have their name in ugly graffiti on the side, or why your grandfather caught land in Meru and not in Nairobi. You don’t imagine yourself as President or Christiano Ronaldo in a cold shower…
When you are in a cold shower, the only thing you think about is the water. You get a chance to listen to your body, you synchronize your heart, body, and soul. And nothing feels as better as those three working together. It’s like Ohuru, Odinga, and Munya working cohesively in one government.
You will be alert all day, my friend! Taking a cold shower in the morning, and feeling cold water pour down over your body seems more horrifying than soothing. However, the deep breathing in response to our body’s shock helps us keep warm, as it increases our overall oxygen intake. Thus, our heart rate will also increase, releasing a rush of blood through our entire body. This gives us a natural dose of energy for the day.
You will be beautiful, too. A doctor told me hot water dries out your skin, while cold water tightens your cuticles and pores, preventing them from getting clogged. If you’d like to reduce the appearance of acne, cold showers could do the job. When you meet me in the streets glowing, don’t start guessing where I spent the night.