Thursday, July 25, 2019

Rest in Peace, Maureen, darling sister

We are joined with everyone in celebrating the memories of two sisters growing up in  2nd Avenue, Parklands, Nairobi.


I write the following with a broken and heavy heart.
The tears are non stop as I remember all those early memories.

The pain of losing Maureen is so great. Caring friends, and relatives from around the globe  have called, sent emails and cards.  These offer solace for a broken and grieving heart.  Maureen was a larger than life figure in our lives.

Sisters, sisters

There were never such devoted sisters
When a certain gentleman arrived from Rome
She wore the dress and I stayed home.
A song my mother taught us to sing and perform.

We became known as the Moniz sisters:  You know Pam and Maureen Moniz from Parklands!

Dad was very strict about makeup and nail polish, whilst still at school.  Maureen, however, would manage to over-look this strict rule. Although we dressed alike until we left school, growing up our interests, our friends, our hobbies and our working lives took different paths.

I let her drive dad’s car one time after church service.  As we got to the gate she forgot to straighten the wheel of the car and we swerved into the bushes.  I quickly got out, jumped into the driver’s seat, reversed and managed to get the car home safely, with just a few twigs stuck in the front bumper.  Dad never came to hear about this incident

Both Maureen and I went to dress-making classes with Mrs Fernandes in 2nd Avenue Parklands.  Our first project was making a pair of rompers.  She always said the rompers would come in handy in the future.  Marriage was certainly not on our minds at this stage.  We were more interested in making layers of starched petticoats, the fashion of the 1950s.

I believe Maureen was one of the first trained hairdressers in Nairobi.  All our girlfriends, Cicely, Suzanne, Girlie, Claire would come on a Saturday afternoon to have their hair done.  We would discuss where we were going out that night and with which boy.  It was hard convincing our parents that the boys were also good family friends.

Many happy times were spent at the Goan Gymkhana in Nairobi.  We loved dancing and it was a job trying to keep up with booking the boys for dances!  Our family and friends,  picnics to City Park, the Arboretum on New Year’s Day after the all-n ight party at the Gym..  Our parents cooked food and took in large tiffins called ick micks.  Clarice organized the games and the boys had to dress in fancy dress.

Soon our lives were to take different paths.  I left home to study and later teach away from Nairobi. Maureen left to find her fortune in UK where she met Eugene and later married.

Maureen always supported me in my fundraising ventures.  She mobilized all her friends in Canada to contribute to a school in Kitui and to the aged home in Aldona.  And if she couldn't, she would know someone who could.

Maureen darling sister, you will be sadly missed … especially all those emails always informing us of various events and giving us first-hand information of deaths, births and marriages and much more.

Our times spent in 2nd Avenue Parklands were special and I shall always cherish those happy memories. 

Rest in Peace now, darling sister.

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