Friday, July 18, 2008

There's something about Mitumba

Ah, the day that was had! Hung out with kindred spirit and soul sister J and her kids yesterday. What fun man. To share my life with such fabulous, genuine, know-what-you-mean-no-need-to-explain friends is a gift I do not take for granted.

Well if you read J’s blog this is going to be much the same as hers (except ahem, hers is better written – So maybe I should just save myself (and you) the trouble and cast you in J’s direction. Naaaaa. Coz that’s lazy.

So I entered their House On Da Hill in the morning and into the middle of a mutiny. J says, in previous blog:

i have confiscated the play station. yes. i have. and have concocted up projects for the 11 yr old Boy), the 9 yr old (boy) and the 5 yr old (girl) for their long summer holidays: i have decided to wholeheartedly Raise My Children, for once. (snigger snigger, i hear you, lets see how long THIS one lasts...)

So today’s project: Drawing on the Right Hand Side of the Brain. Cool, fab book. I did it at their age and HATED the first day. As did they.... Really funny to see their reactions and remember that mine was exactly the same. “I can’t do it. It’s HARD. I’ll look like a pig. I’m useless at drawing I CAN’T DO IT” Pencils thrown on ground, feet stamping.

J trying really hard to be ra ra and this is fun, come on, stop whining, it’s FUN. It’s GOOD, you’ll see. No-one believing her. Then finally tears turn to sniffles turn to tentative smiles turn to “Lets do more, this is FUN. Ah, what, the lesson is over? Just one more?”

Then off to Mitumba. Ah, mitumba, she sets my heart unraveling. In a good way. Oh yes, in a good way. In Zambia she was called Salaula (pronounced sal-a-oo-la) and I the Salaula Queen. Those heaps and rows and folded piles of second hand clothes. Pile after pile after row after row. The hidden gems, the hilarious pantaloons, the dodgy underwear, the funky trendy tops, the ball gowns, the nylon 1970’s jumpsuits, the shoes – takkies to silver beaded sandals – the toys, the tiny CUTE kiddies clothes, the bedding, the jeans, the buried Versace. The gorgeous, the weird, the downright bizarre. You get the picture, no? So off we trooped. Got shoes and funky Hawaii shirts for the kids. A fab double duvet. Much bargaining. I used to be crap at bargaining but am getting pretty good at it here. I have a good teacher. J – so indignant at the RIDICULOUS mzungu prices. “WHAT? 60 DOLLARS for that crappy pair of sandals? I think NOT” The lady has a point. It then gets brought down to $15. Worth a try I guess! And that’s still a good price so everyone leaves happy. Geez. Bargaining, it seems is the done thing here. In Zambia, not used to it.

The afternoon session of “wholeheartedly raising my children” was band practice. Kids (ranging from 5 – 9) on an assortment of instruments – from guitars to violins to egg. I the official photographer. J the mother/conductor/songwriter. Ah, they sounded good, I tell you. Ha! The Ngorobob Hill Blues Band will conquer.

And I snapped the gorgeous glowing sunflowers near the airport on the way back before the sun went home and they nodded off to sleep.

Look at the camera, don't be shy.


Janelle said...

ah WONDERFUL WONDERFUL stuff and not because its about me and the kids...but because you got it exactly right..and LOVE the pics of the Ngorobob Grassroots Blues Band...brillian. THANKS MO for all those kind words.. love you. xx bisous xx j

Bush Mummy said...

Miranda, have just discovered you and Janelle and you both make me want to hop on a plane and come and stay forever. Shepherds Bush is not nearly as glamorous..

Will be back

Bush Mummy x

Dumdad said...

You manage to do all that and BLOG too?! Impressed.

ciara said...

came by way of janelle's...fabulous blog. i think you write pretty well, too :) and your photos? fantastic! i love the ones w your mom.

tam said...

you are that sunflower

Miranda said...

J - THANKS. (yeah, whatever.) ha

Bush Mummy - thanks for the visit! Love your blog. I'm afraid Shephers Bush is MUCH more glamorous than Arusha!!

Dumdad - I KNOW. Don't know how I do it! Hope it lasts...

Ciara - THANK you and welcome! Look forward to checking out yours, so to speak!

Tam -xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx