The Covid 19 vaccine brings back memories of my childhood! Kayendeke Zoey Patricia, also known as "Zoeythestoryteller", tells a true story from her childhood in this episode, triggered by the current promotion of the vaccine Covid19 in Uganda and worldwide.
Kayendeke Zoey Patricia is a Ugandan folklore storyteller known as #Zoeythestoryteller, poet, musician and theater maker for children and adults. Kayendeke Zoey hails from the eastern part of Uganda. She is both a Munyole and a Mugwere. But she is fluent in Lugwere, Lusoga, a little Luganda and French. She loves the microphone and lives by biblical principles. She is a lover of Christ and a lover of people. Over the years she has learned never to condemn a soul, but to pray for them and love them with the eyes of Christ who died for them. Whoever condemns a person commits the same mistake. Don't forget to follow her Facebook page "Zoey -Thestoryteller"and YouTube channel ;"African Zoey"
Zoey has a story to share with the world
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My name is Kayendeke Zoey Patricia.I was born in the city but after some time ,my family moved to my father's village where we lived for a while before relocating again.
Kibuku is a small village in Eastern Uganda , known to be the origin of the wise men .
A region also known for birthing the beautiful sunrise that decorates the sky like an artist's painting on the wall in the living room of a rich man's house.
Everything in Kibuku breathed life. Apart from the beautiful sun rise, mornings were also filled with songs of birds, bleating of goats, moo-ing of cattle as they were being taken for grazing by little boys or men. Mothers wore their babies on the back, carried hoes over their shoulders and left for the garden while some farmers paddled their bicycles to the trading centers to sell off merchandise
In the mornings, you also saw kids of all ages clad in school uniforms of all color; green , purple, pink,blue,white , khaki name it. My school wore blue dresses for girls while the boys wore white shirts and khaki shorts. It was always a joy to go to school. We packed roasted cassava and sweet potatoes, boiled eggs, roasted ground nuts for break time and lunch. What made it more exciting was that we aways went in groups comprised of my young uncles, aunties, cousins and friends . We sang stories on our way to school. We even played and told jokes . As a result most times we were late and received a beating .
At school we were mostlyr taught in our native language . The teacher would enter class with a lugwere greeting " Kwezeyo" to mean how are you ? and we would respond in a chorus "Tuliyo" to mean we are doing ok. Our teachers taught us songs, poems and stories in lugwere . Knowing a few lines of the queen's language set me apart and admirable among my peers.
At school we never wore shoes or sandals and it was a rule since most most of the other children were very poor families. No foot ware meant uniformity .
We paid school fees ranging between 300-1000 Uganda shillings yet still there were defaulters.
I am so much like my mother. May she R.I.P.. I took her size, color, her personality and her wisercking . Though we were in the village, she kept the stndards of an uptown woman . She did her hair, nails,powdered her face, colored her lips, she knew english lyrics of some of the songs that played on my father's small radio. She spoke English with the bazungu at the center and some swahili with the Kenyans at the factory. She was said by the elderly women of the village to have a blessed hand. Her goats birthed in sets of twins , triplets or quadriplets. Her poultry did well too as well as her gardenings.
My mother was the envy of the women in my village.
For my father, he was the man from the city who visited on weekends and brought us gifts. I got to know him more in my adult life and now we have a bond that is unbreakable.
Kibuku village might sound to have been filled with the gloom of poverty but on the contrary we had plenty to eat and drink.
The peace I knew in this village I have never known it anywhere else. I missed it right from the day we moved back to the city.
In Kibuku villages during the evenings after all play and work, the village went to sleep except for the crickets.
But one day , a rumour fell into the ears of the people of my village that birthed fear upon the hearts of mothers, fathers, children and the elderly. It was sung by the women at the well, the men in the trading center , those greeting each other by the roadside , even us the children as we went to school. In fact even the teachers told us in class and on the school compound.
The rumour about the white pajero was equated to the end times. They said the mzungu was coming in the white pajero to inject us to death. That they come collect our stool and urine samples and in the process inject us with a silencer that would kill us. They said the mzungu called it vaccination.
Mothers cried for their children, fathers cried that their sons would die with their name, the elderly cried that they had come to wipe the black race off the face of the earth.
Therefore we were warned against this white pajero car. We were told never to look behind if we saw it.
Because of this fear, doors would close and candles would be blown out before the moon came out. There were no storytelling nights anymore. Even the drunkards who always staggered home noisily in the dead of the night were no more. Every home stead slept early enough. You did not even hear the night crying babies any more or even the crickets.. It was like the village was on its marks awaiting the day of terror.
One day while at school, the white pajero was spotted coming into the school compound. It was like a cattle kraal had been set loose. It was the head teacher who scattered first raising a lot of dust behind him. All you could see was his flying tie. There was no need asking what was next after seeing the headteacher take off. The teachers and the pupils went next. My big brother (R.I.P) found me trying to find my way out of the class room and carried me on his back and then ran off like a cheetah. I was like a baby kangaroo on his back. On our way home, our mother past us flying at a speed of a racing car to school to pick us. Her deflated breasts flying in all directions underneath her gomesi. Her first motherly instinct was to find us amidst the assumed terror that had befallen our beautiful village. My brother 's voice and mine called out to her as we ran back after her. She turned and her face wore some relief when she saw us. She held us on both her sides and ran with us back home.
It was helter skelter in the whole village and then in a moment, the village was empty. Nothing was in sight. Not the goats or the hens or the cows. Upto today I wonder the reaction of the visitors in the white pajero.
It was later known that the visitors in the white pajero were doctors and scientists who were trying to help out on the scourge of cholera that invaded the nation.
And on the next visit, the people of my village allowed to take the tests after the government educating them on the intentions of the visitors . I still laugh when I think about this event. However, I miss the two characters who played in this true story ;my brother and mother.
Every time I hear the stories about the COVID Vaccinations, I remember this day.