Chris Nsubuga has been one of my closest friends for 23 years. We met while we were both students at Kings College Budo. We bonded over our love for music and he is one of the people that was most instrumental in my decision to move from being a nominal Christian to becoming a committed Christian.
But more than our shared faith or our shared love for music, the one thing that I enjoy the most Chris is his open and analytical mind. He has the ability to take the numerous experiences of our human condition and synthesize them in a way that makes sense. In our relationship, I am the one who wildly swings from one emotion to another and from one theory to another. I am the flaming liberal pushing political and social boundaries trying to shock him out of his good-boy natural tendencies. He is the one who takes it all in stride, rides the emotions with me, while at the same time keeping an even keel and an eye out for what is really important
Don’t get me wrong. He cuts loose like the best of us, but he never stops analyzing things and he has a memory for detail like very few people that I know.
But above all, we are friends because we do not have to act with each other. I can be exactly who I am with him – warts and all – and I suspect that he feels the same way about me.
One of the best things I did with Chris was introduce him to my family. My mom, dad, sisters and brother took him in like he was one of us. It helped that he was over at our home a lot.
He also shared his family with me and his mom and brother just smothered me with love. In fact we hung out so much that people started asking me whether his big brother, Ronnie, was my blood brother.
As you can imagine, having been friends for so long, there is no end to the stories that I could tell you of the adventures that we went on. And because of this strong and long-lasting connection I have with him, I feel that what I share with him is much more than friendship. It is even more than GOOD friendship. It is brotherhood.
Chris recently became an author, which I think is so cool! He has just finished a book called “The Gold In Fathering” and he was kind enough to send me an advance copy.
I. LOVED. IT. !!!!!
He weaves together all these incredible stories from his formative years, his young adult years and his time as a father of his two kids – Lemuel and Sinza. And in the pages of the book you can see his mischief, his passion, his emotion, and his analytical mind all rolled up in one.
A highlight for me in this book was reading about his interactions with our family. I particularly enjoyed reading about the respect and love he has for my father, who is like a surrogate dad to him. It filled me with such pride to know that God used my friendship with him to bring into his life my dad and I am so glad that I got to share my father with my dear friend.
But the thing that I love the most about this book is the delicate balance between honesty AND the honour in every chapter. I knew about Chris’ troubled relationship with his own father and did not know whether he would gloss over it or speak candidly about it. Chris is somehow able to separate the good from the bad and while he speaks candidly about his complicated relationship with his own dad, you never get the sense that he is using this book to disrespect him. Far from it!
If I were asked to write an excerpt for this book, this is what I would say:
The prototype for fathering on the African continent generally looks like the character Okonkwo in the acclaimed Chinua Achebe book, “Things fall apart”. Angry, aloof, detached, disinterested, volatile. This is not the case for every african man, but it certainly describes the relationship that most Africans have with their fathers. It is against this backdrop that “The Gold In Fathering” book by Chris Nsubuga Mugga is written and in it he makes a compelling case for a different model of fathering that is based in the best examples of men that have fathered him over the years. This book is refreshing, candid, analytical and yet somehow manages to be a page turner. I would recommend it to any man that wants a better fathering prototype. I thoroughly enjoyed it and WILL be a better father for having read it!
– Paulo Mugarura