8

We did ‘tashe’ during Ramadan too. We sang songs and danced and mocked people. Now I wonder what we did that for. Most time what we got offered was food which we rejected of course. Sometimes we got grains that we gave to Maa after we shared among ourselves.(we usually went with the neighbour’s children, and Maa never even thanked us, for she’d say, “ban aike ku ba.”besides, if we didn’t give her, we would have nothing to do with it.

Once we sang ‘machukule’ at a house and we got chased. How were we to know that they were from Zuru when we said ‘Kan Kare da dadi, can garin mu Zuru?

Daddy waited most times until the last minute to complete our kayan sallah, which was usually the shoes. He left that until a day to sallah. We would have been out of our minds by then. He’d come back in the afternoon or evening and get us all in the car.Bata here we come. Most times I’d pick shoes that did not survive beyond sallah day. They may be high-heeled and difficult for me to walk in, and before evening, they were ruined. Maa  sew so she did the girls’ clothes, the boys’ were taken out. I remember now that Mohammed was always so choosy, the others took whatever there was. Need I say that my Sallah clothes never saw the next Sallah too? Well they never did. Many people won’t believe that Amina and I were always sewn ‘and co’ as mine got old and torn years before hers began to fade. Oh, and the earrings? Hmm. Hardly did the two survive ‘yawon Sallah’. If they ever did, by the nextday they would have been taken off. By me of course. Maa would be lucky if she saw them on her window pane. She’d just pack them and not say anything. I was already a hopeless case when it came to kwalliya.

We did yawon Sallah extensively. We went beyond our very familiar territories of Doka road. I think we went to even to the area called Intermediate.

These were times we looked forward to. We got to keep whatever money we made. We did make some. Maa bought us asussus, Anima and I. We both kept in Daddy ‘s wardrobe. Should I also tell you that I scrapped the opening in mine so much that it didn’t need any rigorous shakes to release my coins? And then when mine would get empty, I’d make Amina make give me some of her money so Maa won’t know that I had spent all of mine. Needless to say that it never covered up, for I’d spend that too. Maa never punished me for that though. It was my money to do with as I pleased. That was about the only time we were allowed to keep monies we got as gifts, otherwise we handed to over.

I think Amina always eventually gave Maa hers. And Maa would use it to buy for her something for just her when mai kaya came around. That would make me ill for some time, but I’d recover, and would promise to give my money from next Sallah too, but never did.

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