Malawi, What a wonder! This country has it all… animals, food - incredible food, scenery, and the friendliest people you could ever hope to meet… more of that in the next blog.
We converged in our numbers upon Lilongwe, in Malawi, arriving by bus, by plane, by SUV. On that first day there was loud conversation and much merriment as we begun with one thread of conversation quickly jumping to the next while trying to catch up with lives that had been going on for the last twelve months. You see, despite having access to WhatsApp, Skype, email, Facebook messenger, we discovered that there are some conversations that were just impossible to be had until we were face to face with each other, fingers cradling a cup of tea, or a glass of wine.
When aGogo (grandma) Enelesi arrived two days after everyone else, there was a definite shift in the energy levels. For starters, this nonagenarian arrived with song on her lips and dance on her hips. She shows no sign of slowing down. She was born on 16 November in 1927 – of course this date is made up. The year is definite, but because public written records across Africa regarding Africans have not been well documented, the year of birth is often correct, but the date and month are a bit of guess work.
aGogo, in her life gave birth to eight children. Of these, only two are alive. There has been a lot of tragedy in the family, but she is filled with joy and speaks about how EVERYDAY is a gift that should not be taken for granted. For aGogo personally, what keeps her going is her love for God, and her love for her family. On the day of her birthday celebrations she was able to spend time with her 2 remaining children, 10 grandchildren, 15 great grandchildren, and 3 great, great grandchildren. You could NOT dim the twinkle in her eyes, or wipe the smile off her face that whole afternoon. And she sung! At 90 years old, when she sings, her voice is still strong and sure! For aGogo, we ate, we drank, we danced, we laughed, we made memories and reminded this woman how vital her life is, and how she is the glue that binds her family, and brings family and friends together. It was beautiful!
In Africa, and in the Far East, there is a special place of importance, a place of honour that the aged in society occupy. An invisible throne if you will. It was such a privilege to experience this celebration of an incredible life being lived. We are able to drink from her fountain of wisdom, to listen as she passes on her morsels of a life lived with a myriad of experiences. This past holiday, I hope you took time to celebrate with family, with friends, with your tribe. I hope you made memories, and I hope you spared a thought for those who were lonely during the holidays.
What memories do you have of your grandmother? I called both my own grandmothers Bibi. What do you call your grandmother? Please share!
As you go forth into 2018, remember to live your life to the fullest.
Founder and Owner