The Chronicles V -Cindna

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So began a wonderful experience of Mozambique from an insider’s point of view. I was unusual in the neighborhood, white and a South African. One of the funniest things were my legs. I very seldom wear short pants so while the rest of me is burned brown, my legs remain chalky white. The social structure in Mozambique is very much like a village, even though one is in a huge suburb. Everyone knows everyone else and the place I was staying seemed to be a gathering point for the area. As very few of my neighbors had jobs they hung around all day under the mango trees. Vendors would arrive and sell vegetables and fish, but it was a visit too. Food was cooked in a charcoal Brazier in the yard, I learned that if the Brazier was not lit that meant there was no food in the house. If the family had food the yard soon filled with people, when there was no food the family went to others, these poor people know about generosity and sharing. Anyhow, one very hot day I put on shorts, the owner’s daughter of about seventeen or eighteen was intrigued at the whiteness, lot of jabbering in Portuguese. She, Cindna, came and sat next to me and racked up here skirt, showing a beautiful satiny black leg, the contrast was startling. She shouted to her friends next door and within an hour I had a crowd of young girls all going on about my legs. They really liked the white skin. From then on if the daughter saw me in jeans she let me know with sign language and by pulling faces that she wanted me to put shorts on.

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