Yohane Mbeeya Moono
Life is a journey whose is destination man cannot comprehend. Often times when man delves into finding out what the final destination of human life, the more it brings him to the fact that everything about life is vanity. As such one has to enjoy every moment of their time on the planet before mother earth comes calling.
A period of human life where everything seems that it will always be rosy for man is childhood. Childhood is a period man tends to experience almost everything that comes to mind. Childhood is often fraught with moments where when one looks back, they always say what if I had died, what if I had not lived to see this day.
Childhood was characterised by moments where one returns home late in the afternoon expecting a beating for abrogating the home curfew rules. One was usually expected to be home by 4 PM but one would return hours after that time, looking like one was temporary buried and exhumed upon realising that they are alive. Though dirty looking one would gather the courage to reach home. Upon reaching home, one would get a wet mop and clean oneself and pretend to have taken bath, but parents were so careful to even inspect the ankles and the elbows just the confirm the assertion of bathing. If the mop was not readily available, one would use saliva to clean oneself and quickly apply lotion on the body but the ankles and the elbows were always a let down. When one was forced to take a bath, pretence was applied by making the water to make noise as a sign of bathing. Yet one would just rinse the towel and carefully clean oneself to avoid a second inspection
Sometimes one would return home bruised and battered yet the childhood ego would not permit one to tell their parents the full extent of what transpired. One was never ready to show the injuries that came from the childhood escapades. Those injuries left scars on the legs, the hands and other parts of the body where the injury was. Was it childishness? Or was it naivity? Neither is the truth but that is just the hallmark of growing up. Childhood is never complete with mentioning the escapades of trying to bring some food home.
Activities such bush rat and bird hunting were a norm of how enjoyable childhood was. The thought of the risks involved in the activities never at one crossed the mind.
Making artificial scars popularly known in local language as “ifibala” was another dangerous norm of Childhood that was enjoyable to do. Going with the “icibala” on the road and riding in it without mind that you would be crashed by a car, but just the joy of riding overrode everything. The fear of doing something was usually overrode by the joy accomplishing something good among peers
The activities of Childhood though risk they were, they helped to improve the agility of children, helped to improve the creativity of the children at the time.
The scars become more apparent in adulthood. When one looks at the legs, hands and other parts of the body with the numerous scars, they truly underline the kind of childhood one had.
The scars surely are a hallmark of childhood and memories that are worthy cherishing