The other me

For me, going back home to Uganda is like shading off one version of myself and wearing the other one. When I am home, I cease to become Angela, or a wife for that matter; I am simply a daughter that everyone knows as Najore. (A birth name that I worked so hard to erase only a few years ago, because I never liked its meaning – war!) I drop the English language for karamojong, I drop most outfits, I keep my trainers on at all times, and I stop asking guests if they are staying for lunch or not. See in my home, we always cook extra food in case relations, friends, friends of friends, friends of siblings, or the neighbor’s kids show up, and 90% of the time they do. There is always someone either coming in or going out of home, and it’s great – sometimes.

In my village, visitors don’t announce in advance that they intend to come visit on a certain day, so you operate on a probability schedule. They can show up at any time of day: in the morning while you are still sleeping in, mid-morning, afternoon, or late in the night when you are just about ready to retire to bed; and when he, she or they show up, my culture demands you feed them. It doesn’t matter whether you still have hot coal in your stove or if it went out a couple of hours ago, you will need to make that fire again to heat up any left-overs and serve your guest (s) food. A visitor cannot leave your home without being served either a cup of tea or water to drink, unless a family completely has nothing to offer, but even then, the guilt of sending a guest off without serving them some food is enormous.

From left to right is my sister Jacqueline, my cousin Caroline (Daughter of Chaudry Lokwang who took my dad to school, my family’s very dear friend Monday (Steven), and the other me, Najore.)
Neighbor siblings, Nakiru Angela, her brother Logwe, and Najore.

Published by Msdedeng

Most importantly, I am a daughter, a wife, and a friend. I am also a student who still has lots to learn.

44 thoughts on “The other me

  1. Hi,
    Hope all is well. All ok here 🙏. Thank you for visiting my recent post.
    Just revisiting here and I see I was perhaps identifying more with the similarities of life in Gambia and that of years ago in Ireland.
    I missed the most important part regarding your name. What name do you prefer to be called by?

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Angela, I think that’s always how it is when we return home.
    When my parents were still alive and I visited them, I was always their daughter immediately.
    Even though I had grown up a long time and lived my own life in another city.
    The visits were always full of memories.
    It was always nice to have this loving feeling.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I love this story! I was a guest in Malawi and never wanted to leave because of how I was treated as a guest. I think I have read this post 3 times because it brings back the memories of being a guest:)

    Liked by 2 people

  4. I relate to this. I have different mes everywhere I am!! It’s nice to see put a face to the amazing person I have been talking to.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. I love, love your comment. That’s precisely how I see it and I wanted to extend on that and talk about it, but I was too tired and sleepy last night, so I gave a half-baked post.

    Liked by 1 person

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