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Tell The Nations (4)

Tell The Nations 4: My autobiography I worked on for over 15 years, came off the press last July. Here, I write of my background and my world view.

Tell The Nations

Tell The Nations (4)

Sakila savannah was a peculiar place, in terms of nature. Everything grew wildly. There was no need of planting beautiful, green plants, or growing flowers. We only waited until after the heavy rainy season, then we could glance to green colour wild plants, and various colours of beautiful flowers.
Dangerous bees and colourful butterflies scattered all over the flowers. The rainy season also produced the lake, which lasted temporarily. During the dry season, the entire savannah was dry and dusty.
The temporal lake, which rested at the centre of savannah, was the centre of attention. We boys practiced swimming, and both; people and the cattle drank from the same water. People had to battle against frogs while fetching the water.
Above all, the lake covered partially by masasanja swamps, was the home of flamingo and various birds.

* * *
Here is where birds sang from twilight, all day long. Here is where frogs screamed from sunset, all night. And snakes sneaked, from bush, day and night.

* * *
To the northwest, stood Sakila Hill and behind it one could view the peak of, mount Meru from the distance. To the north rested the dark, dangerous forest, where time after time, the elephant caravans walked in and out: From Arusha National Parks.
The zigzag valley marked the end of savannah, from the south, southeast and southwest.

* * *
Leaving one another was not the easy task, since savannah was like our home away from home. As kids, we performed a special game as the way of saying…”Bye-bye.” We scarcely wanted to depart from each other. Nonetheless, we had no way out. Since we were to leave one another while bringing cattle home; we played (ukova) game.
Ukova, was a typical and tantalizing story. It was the endless evening game.
Initially, one boy would touch the other boy and yell “Ukova.” He had to run, but the other boy had to chase him until he touched him and claim “Ukova.” Then the first boy should chase the other boy until he reached him and touch him and shout “Ukova.” Then the first boy had to extend the game, by repeating the same.
We were to be helped by our family counterparts. The one that thought could run than him. Secret behind the scene is that your group shouldn’t be the last one to be touched. That would be like going home with debt.
The winning family group is the one that, after one of them touch the one from the other family group, he and the rest of his group, could be able to run fast and reach their home compound, before the other group touched one of them. Then the other group would be going to sleep with (ukova).
The game was the sweetest one of herding the cattle. Nevertheless, most of the times, adults were to intervene and shout, to stop us from shouting “Ukova…!”
To be Continued


Cover photo of Tell The Nations by Nixon Issangya