I wanted to call this post my other village but a friend sadly reminded me of how much people fear and hate, actually dread the word village. All these are pictures I took while there.
I went to the NIRA offices to get an ID but they told me to return on Thursday. So I took the time to visit the village with my cousin sister, Response. And yes, her name is indeed Response.
I hadn’t gone there in years, most of the buildings that were actually there yrs ago have been removed and in their place, new houses are being built, I think no one lives in my grandpa’s compound anymore. I got to take a look at my grandpa’s grave, he lived in 1941 – 2011. I remember the day of his burial because I had to come from school, I was in primary five and probably just 10 or 9 yrs old then, my siblings actually don’t remember that much about my grandpa but I remember the mangoes he used to get for us. I also found out he wasn’t exactly called Valentine, the name was made more villagish , Mweru Valantino.
Today I also discovered he had Four wives and alot of land. My grandma, okay let’s say my Father’s mom was his first wife. I know this is Africa and our normal definition of four wives is a nice compound with four wives who all respond to you. But though my grandma wasn’t divorced, I don’t even know if they were wedded in Church, all I know is she didn’t stay with him until the day he died, leaving is actually a common trait, though legal action wasn’t taken,they live apart , she left and lived elsewhere on her own. That compound with four wives working together or haunting each other never ever happened.
Having four wives and around seventeen kids means a very huge family, and it’s no wonder I have never even heard of some of my real close family members. And it also explains the constant fear of being poisoned, bewitched or murdered among family members when I was a little girl. I mean with step mothers, alot could happen, practically even as children, you never really get access to your father at all. But I don’t know much about all that.
I confirmed from my grandma that my dad and my Uncle Anthony are twin brothers though they don’t look alike. And that my Uncle Matthias is actually not my dad’s brother but Cousin brother. And obviously I took alot of photos.
On my way back home I visited a local library for the first time, I visited my grandma for the first time this holiday. And we talked about her friend who has just died recently, Veria , I looked at old photos and discovered besides being teachers, those two ladies also acted in dramas and plays alot. Mrs Veria was a constant church goer, the Roman Catholic church, she was one of the pioneers of the women’s guild in my village, she was my childhood friend Joy’s grandma and my young brother’s nursery teacher. We went to her place to get mangoes and play on the instruments there alot of times. But I had taken like seven yrs without visiting her and now she’s gone. I discovered my cousin brother Simon got 20 aggregates in P.7, for a boy in the village, that’s good , hope he joins high school soon. My grandma also told me that Mrs. Veria was a very lonely old lady and none of us actually took time to visit her, and that she never left her house except when going to Church, and that a snake had once bitten her and she was so afraid of so much, she said we ought to visit old people more often, they too get lonely. Also I found out why everyone kept saying my grandma is sick, she told me she was diagnosed with Pressure in 2009 and has been on medication since .
I promised my grandma that we would go back on Sunday to clean her glass windows. Hopefully my siblings will join in. I also took milk at her place and a soda and chapatti in the village, so I think it was quite an adventurous day.