The Man, The Legend, The Pozza!
In my short life, I have met men, great ones at that, I have met legends, but I count myself lucky to have met the man we called Guka Funky aka Pozza.
It is a chilly, drizzling Saturday morning at Nairobi’s Impala club, first day of the 2017 Floodies. The ground is wet and muddy. It is one of those mornings that make you think twice about getting off your bed.
As I tip toe through the mud, making my way behind the empty stands, I look up, ‘Aaah unafanya nini hapa saahii?’ I ask a fresh looking Pozza, ‘Ni nini wewe unashtuka haha, nasaidia Eric na bar..’ He answers amid laughs, ‘Inakaa unateseka.’ He adds, we laugh, throw a few jabs of banter then head out to our respective stations.
That was Pozza, going out of his way to get up, make his way here to help out in a task that had almost nothing to do with him. Selfless is an understatement.
The very next weekend at the same venue, as the semi finals played out, we developed technical hitches with the sound system which meant that I could steal a few moments to maybe grab a drink and chat around with friends. There was only one place I could get this.
I headed straight for the ‘sponsor’s corner,’ where Pozza, in typical fashion, had the guys around him in stitches from his stories, or storoz as he fondly referred to them, which always seemed to start with, ‘You guy there is a another storo…’
We traded banter in our typical fashion, vile ali mentor arrest, alicheza na Web Ellis..before I knew I was carried away and forgot about my job. I rushed back to the center table a few minutes later, promising to get back to him after the games.
To his word, we met up, gobbled down a couple of Shawarmas, as we caught up on life. ‘Ehe, so how is jobo and the mamaa?’ He asked. As we went on, I shared a couple of ideas that I had around rugby, and he was off like a rocket. He went on about how we could actualize the ideas, we agreed to meet on the Wednesday to draw up proposals. It was the last time I saw him.
George Gachui had a great brain on him, about everything events, PR and general life. He was not only a great friend, he was a father, to me and a lucky group of friends who you know as the Tummy Boyz. Pozza was and will always remain Tummy Boy 001.
He always knew what each of us was up to, always ready to give a wise word, a hand of help where required, even when you never asked. It is only after his passing that it hit us, we were not the only ones. There were DJs, his mates, friends of friends, the high and mighty, half of Kenya Harlequins and indeed Kenya rugby, people he had never met before, he was a dad to them all.
When I moved ‘diggoz’ (houses in Pozza slang), he was among my first visitors, he always bugged me..’Weeh tebu we go you show me your diggoz..’ I tried putting him off, ‘Weh mzee hiyo hao haina sofa, utakuja ukae chini ushindwe kuamka..’ His reply was always, ‘Aii sofas for what si you have a kitanda, kwanza us guys in our day we just moved with a ka mattress.’
I eventually gave up one evening after a Kenya Simbas game, we sneaked out of Quins bar with Curtis Lilako, to my diggoz, had a quick drink and were back. In what remains one of my fondest memories of the guy.
Pozza was a man with a heart far bigger than his diminutive size, it was how he took up all this and more, with that constant smile, that infectious laugh and a bubbly character that was beyond impressive. This was a super hero.
He was a great supporter of the Hecklers Podcast he never shied away from sitting down and recording with us. On his last episode, I remember right before the Christie sevens, it was on a rainy Tuesday evening he sat through 2 hours of traffic to join myself and Marto, listen in here.
I once quipped that, Every once in a while, you come across a man way cooler than his age, meet one George Gachui aka Pozza. He was not only cool for his age, he was too cool for age. He was the epitome of cool.
He was the life of the Tummy Boyz, he was that guy who never hesitated to forward jokes and storoz from 19 before then. He had such typical jokes that whenever one of us tried sharing similar jokes, they would be met with a ‘Ey Pozza rudishia nanii simu yake bana..’ Most importantly, he kept a group of hot headed young men in check.
I could go on and on about Guka funky, I have barely scratched the surface, but I will stop here before the proverbial onions start getting sliced.
I never saw the man play competitively (few did, na if you are one of them, weh ni mzee hehe), but if his life after rugby is anything to go by, he was one hell of a great and dedicated player.
We have lost a great man, a one man support system, a dad, a mentor, an all round fun guy and as Joeli put it, Heaven RFC needed a captain and they just got the best there ever was.
Rest well Guka funky, rest well, najua huko juu isaa mad Parlaa for drinks of five filla ..hiyo proposal tuta andikia huko mbele.