Thursday, March 31, 2011

Mother Comforts

Attending our third wake, I saw something so universal to a mother's heart. A small child, not more than 2 years old, in a tattered tank top and undies walks over to a clothesline and begins tugging at a piece of fabric. Once it is down, the child carries it over to mama as if to say, "mama, please carry me, hold me, rock me". Look at another photo on the blog to see how they hold the babes on their backs.

Well, mom was preoccupied with the happenings of the wake, so, the child, instead, reached into moms shirt and pulled out one of her two "pacifiers" and cuddled up. This is so common and casual around here.

Shortly after, I walked over to say hello to the child. Once I picked the child up, though, the child began to cry. I quickly returned the child to mama. White people sometimes frighten the children, but most are quite excited to say hello. I later learned that the mother had said to the child, in Joula, that I would take the child home to my village, causing the child to fright. Basically, mom was giving stranger danger warnings to her young child, not unlike the warnings I give my own children. Still, it's quite interesting to be on the other side of that statement.

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