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38 YEARS AN EXILE: XXVI

HOME AT LAST! Part 26

 

Schooling in the Diaspora – Kamwala Secondary School

©Simon Chilembo, 2014

©Simon Chilembo, 2014

1975 was the longest year. My first calendar year in Zambia was nine months long, which felt like time barely existed, with no beginning I recalled being part of, no end, and no direction in sight. Time was an idea just there to relate to indifferently.

The three months on the rails and road it took my family and me to get to Zambia from South Africa had bruised my sense of reality, presenting life’s challenges in a totally new way, and intensity. My family relations internal dynamics changed in ways that many mistakes made along the way have never been repairable.

New things learnt we each processed and integrated each in our own individual lives, each in our own unique personal ways. I often like to think that the extremely high senses of individuality and independence my two siblings and I will exhibit in critical choice times and situations, were consolidated during this time … (Continued in the book: “MACHONA AWAKENING – home in grey matter”. Order book on Amazon here). 

Simon Chilembo
Riebeeckstad
Welkom
South Africa
July 23, 2015

38 YEARS AN EXILE: XXIII

HOME AT LAST! Part 23
WALOBA AWARD 2015
Diaspora Friendship, Brotherly Love Celebration

Anele Malumo, WA2015 ©Simon Chilembo, 2015

Anele Malumo, Waloba Award 2015
©Simon Chilembo, 2015

To introduce the recipient of Waloba Award 2015, I take the liberty of reproducing an edited version of my speech to him on his 50th birthday earlier in 2015:

  • You don’t know what it’s like
    To love somebody
    To love a Brother
    The way I love you …
  • Modern, enlightened, liberated men happily declare their love for one another openly even if their love is not of a physically intimate nature. Some call it Bromance. In any case, in South Africa, land of the free, home of the brave, people love who they love, as provided for, and enshrined in the constitution of the land.
  • I’ve heard it said somewhere that if you are not grown up yet by age 50, forget it, you’ll never grow up … (Continued in the book: “MACHONA AWAKENING – home in grey matter”. Order book on Amazon).

Simon Chilembo
Welkom
South Africa
June 26, 2015

38 YEARS AN EXILE: XXII

HOME AT LAST! Part 22 IN PRAISE OF PUSSY – A Song – Diaspora Poetry Inspired by: Åpne din bergsprekk – Det er på tide å ta fitta tilbake/ Open Your Crevice – It’s time to get the pussy back.

The most beautiful thing
I wobble down on my knees for you
To bury my face inside of you
As if to pray
To the highest God
In holy revelation

©Simon Chilembo, 2015

©Simon Chilembo, 2015

In my Son of The Soil Garden of Eden
Dedicated to your splendour
I watched honeybee
Busy inside a rose the other day
Petals in non-modest reddish-pinkish-orangish-yellowish-golden glow
As if source of the sun
Pollen in opulent provide

©Simon Chilembo, 2015

©Simon Chilembo, 2015

I caught the musk of your innermost depths
Went giddy in my head …

… (Continued in the book: MACHONA AWAKENING – home in grey matter”. Order book on Amazon).

Simon Chilembo
Riebeeckstad
Welkom
South Africa
June 17, 2015

38 YEARS AN EXILE: XVI

HOME AT LAST! Part 16

POWER IN THE DIASPORA: KNOW THYSELF

DEDICATION: To my Brothers, global fraternity of wisdom, my Teachers, my Dear Mother, and my children from other fathers all over the world.

Acacia Lisebo Maria Tree

Acacia Lisebo Maria Tree

Trees and flowers planted round Chilembo Heights residence have each a name, and a story to tell. The Acacia Lisebo Maria tree is Dear Mother’s life metaphor. Her deep loyalty and commitment to her friends I have yet to fathom. She loves her enemies. Over time, she ever actively seeks to bring them closer to her, if not under her wings. Ever benevolent to the enemies and their offspring, if and when they die she will contribute to seeing to it that they are buried with dignity and honour. Amazing Grace.

Forced to close a protracted intense, mutually irreconcilable conflict on certain crucial matters of principle, the great royal prince, his highness doctor professor Mdadakumbakumba Kumdada threw in a verbal salvo … (Continued in the book: “MACHONA AWAKENING – home in grey matter”. Order book on Amazon).

Simon Chilembo
Riebeeckstad
Welkom
South Africa
February 27, 2015

38 YEARS AN EXILE: XIII

HOME AT LAST! Part 13
BRAIN DRAIN

By its very nature, life is, and has to be hard. Life is by design brutal and short. The world is an ugly place to be. It is an inherent feature of the world that evil forces will prevail everywhere, relatively more in specific areas of the world than others, in different epochs.

Nelson Mandela, PresidentThe brain is by default and function, the antithesis of all that is abhorrent by way of human behaviour, as well as state of the world and being. The brain will, by inclination, gravitate towards all that is good and beautiful. All things remaining equal, a normally functioning and cultured brain will, as a spontaneous process, seek to create and sustain beauty and well-being against all that is anti-life, all that is anti everything that is beautiful, uplifting, and life supporting. The brain will defy pain and death in pursuit of freedom in the name of beauty and happiness, including the right to enhance the development of these … (Continued in the book: MACHONA AWAKENING – home in grey matter. Order book on Amazon).

 

Simon Chilembo
Riebeeckstad
Welkom
South Africa
December 20, 2014

38 YEARS AN EXILE: X

HOME AT LAST! Part 10
LIFE IN THE DIASPORA – MUCH TO PROVE

Simon Chilembo, President/ CEOOnce you land in exile, even more so if you do eventually get stuck out there, you have everything to prove. You have to. Your life depends on it. Exile confronts you first and foremost as the individual. Troubles in your country of origin will only make sense, or not, on the basis of what story you talk and walk. Consciously chosen or not, it may be your mission to be a Messiah for your people. Prove that you are; their lives depend on you.

Regardless of your real or imagined social status in your homeland, the fact that the latter and yourself can no longer thrive in each other’s presence, and because countries do not move, people do, you hit exile with much of you hanging on the line … (Continued in the book: “MACHONA AWAKENING – home in grey matter”. Order book on Amazon’s CreateSpace here).

 

Simon Chilembo
Riebeeckstad
Welkom
9459
South Africa
November 25, 2014

38 YEARS AN EXILE: IX

HOME AT LAST! Part 9
WALOBA AWARD 2014

E L W Chilembo, S Chilembo

E L W Chilembo, S Chilembo

My father the original exile, Mr Elias Lazarus Waloba Chilembo, would have turned 83 years old on Wednesday, November 19, 2014. When the pangs of British colonialism induced poverty were too much to bear, he, like his own father before, Waloba The First, trekked from our remote village in Eastern Zambia, to South Africa in search of greener pastures. This was soon after the end of World War II, in 1947. Four years later his mother died. He came back home to bury her. As per clan norms among my people, he being the eldest offspring in my grandmother’s house, Pappa should have stayed on to help Waloba The First look after his large, polygamous family. But no, he preferred to go back to exile in South Africa, where he would firmly plant his own roots in the land of diamonds and gold by eventually getting married, and establishing a family … (Continued in the book: “MACHONA AWAKENING – home in grey matter”. Order book on Amazon).

 

Simon Chilembo
Riebeeckstad
Welkom
South Africa
November 20, 2014

38 YEARS AN EXILE: VIII

HOME AT LAST! Part 8
POLITICS OF MURDER: APARTHEID, GANGSTERS, AND DEATH STORY

©Simon Chilembo, 2014

©Simon Chilembo, 2014

Necropower regimes take rule by fear to the goriest level. You are not their friend, threatening their status quo, they catch you, they torture you; information obtained or not, they kill you. On a good day they may kill you first, then ask questions later. If you are their friends, in the inner or the outer circles, same difference, you trust nobody, nobody trusts you. All go with tight golden turtlenecks of death waiting to squeeze, burn, or blow up at the slightest sign of disloyalty. Staying alive is a loyalty reward enjoyed one day at a time. Rock the boat once, and a day can instantaneously be extremely long, the world can all of a sudden seem very, very small, with nowhere to run, nowhere to hide, smell of death real, and omnipresent, like God … (Continued in the book: “MACHONA AWAKENING – home in grey matter”. Order book on Amazon’s CreateSpace here).


Simon Chilembo
Riebeeckstad
Welkom
9459
South Africa
November 03, 2014

SMARTER ZIMBABWEANS, STUPID SOUTH AFRICANS?

IS IT TRUE OR NOT THAT ZIMBABWEANS ARE MORE SMARTER (sic), EDUCATED THAN SOUTH AFRICANS??
Asked somebody on a Facebook group, The SA Political Forum.

©Simon Chilembo, 2014

©Simon Chilembo, 2014

A clumsily formulated, but interesting, question which has provoked extremely intense debate on the forum in recent days. The latter manifesting more the worst than the better of our views of one another in this part of the world: Nationalism, racism, tribalism, bigotry, parochialism, xenophobia, ignorance, primitivity, nauseous arrogance, pettiness, immaturity, insensitivity, paternalism, mental derangement symptoms, lack of imagination, intellectual poverty, academic disorientation, non-culturedness, superstition, spiritual emptiness, insecurity, dumb-headedness, self-destruction tendencies, predator mentality, terribly developed language/ communication skills, cheap rhetoric, thick-headedness, anarchism, mistrust, misinformation, information distortion, history misinterpretation, manipulation, wilful ignorance of facts, e-kassie mentality, ill-defined defiance, profanity, foolish pride, as well as threats; including leadership/ rule by fear.

I do not quite recall how my first year, 1965, at school in Lesotho unfolded. What I do remember well, though, is that it was a hell lot of fun learning how to read and write for the first time. Returning from what I had then understood to have been Christmas holidays, January 1966 I discovered that I had completely new classmates at my school. The others from the previous year were in another class I heard called Padiso/ Sub B. That didn’t bother me much, however; all I wanted to do was to continue learning how to read and write. It was ever such great fun, at the request of the class teacher, to stand in front of the class reading or counting for my new classmates. Nevertheless, I recall that at some point this whole thing began to bore me half way to death; I kept reading and counting the same things all the time. I felt it was time I went to join my old classmates who were now in Padiso/ Sub B. So, I stated my wish to the class teacher. The school principal wouldn’t allow that to happen, I was told. Why??? “Because you are just too intelligent for your age, Simon. Boko ba hao bo tla bola …/ Your brains will rot if you go to higher classes while you are still under age. People who get too much education while young get mad, you see. Don’t worry, you shall go to Padiso/ Sub B when you are 8 years old” the teacher resolutely told me. So, I stayed in Grade 1 for three years, 1965-67, to keep my sanity together. Jeeezuz!

During the years 1967-69, the only meaningful school activity I recall are the almost daily after school fights arranged by older boys and girls. The idea was that boys my age should/ would beat the brains out of me because teachers at the school never stopped talking about how intelligent I was. Sadly for the matchmakers and my opponents, I would win absolutely all my fights. There was no way I was going to allow these dumb heads to kill my brains. I was also a street-smart kid. The thing is, while these age mates of mine were still working round getting the alphabet, and numbers, together, I was already reading to my class teacher and my grandmother some passages from the Lesotho Times newspaper. I am a South African child begotten of a Zambian father. At this formative school of mine in Lesotho, there were many other mixed ethnicity parentage children (representative of the ethnic and racial diversity of the Southern African sub-continent) from relatively more resourceful families in the major South African metropolis, including Lesotho itself.

In 1970, going onto my tenth year of age, I find myself in a South African school classroom for the first time. The academic excellence self-confidence developed in Lesotho got acutely shaken by my failure to understand what the textbook I was given by the new class teacher was about. Reading comprehension, of course. I struggled through the assigned reading passage, and then answered the subsequent 10 questions best I could. I got zero out of ten. The teacher expressing dismay at my explicit lack of knowledge of Afrikaans, I couldn’t reveal that I had actually started schooling in Lesotho, where there was/ is no Afrikaans spoken or taught in schools. By the time of the mid-year exams in June that year, though, I was scoring the highest all-round grades in class. Upon return from winter holidays, my class teacher called me out to where she and other teachers seemed to be discussing something serious together with the school Principal. I was told that all had agreed that I deserved to be promoted to the next class because I was just too intelligent for Grade 3, which I had in fact been forced to repeat in the first place. I declined. Why? I was afraid my brains would rot, and I would thus go mad from too much education while still young. Bummer! I kept scoring the highest grade point averages at school in South Africa till end of 1974.

First quarter of 1975 I am in Lusaka, Zambia. No school that year. Very depressing. I have never felt smaller, and more insignificant. Shattered medical studies dreams. But then again, just under 15 years of age, I discover, and enter into a space called library for the first time in my life: Lusaka City Library, British Council Library, American Library. Book, books, and books everywhere, including my Uncle Oliver’s private library at home, as well as later, the magnificent UNZA library. And there were so many magazines, journals, and other publications of all sorts to read. I became a bookworm that year. A whole new world of thinking and dreaming was opened for me; and thus began my daily English reading and writing journey to this day.

Back to school in 1976. Forced to backtrack again because, my father was told, the then South African Bantu Education Grade 7 academic standards were lower than those of Zambia. But, as soon as I had gotten into the rhythm of things at school, I was topping class grade average points, as usual. I could never understand the Grade 7 failure panic and hysteria characteristic of the time in Zambia. I, of course, passed the final exams with flying colours later in the year. South African born, Zambian dad begotten man-child would show constant, and predictable, academic excellence throughout the entire Secondary/ High School career to university; crushing class- and schoolmates from many other countries/ nations of the world, including Zimbabwe. This, despite the fact that I didn’t know what a science laboratory was until I was 17 years old at secondary school. That Zambian school children had already been exposed to sophisticated scientific education for years had also greatly intimidated me at first. There was at that time an awesome Zambian youth scientific magazine called Orbit. The story would repeat itself in Norway, both academically and professionally in my adult years.

20 years ago, after failing a Drivers’ Licence theory examination in Norwegian language, a blue-eyed Norwegian young man, upon hearing that I had scored almost 100% in the same test, exasperates, “Fffæææn/ Ssshit, I never knew that there were in fact wise negrer in the world!” Another dick head bites the dust.

The moral of this story is that when you are hot, you are hot. Your origin, or Nationality, due to various objective and subjective factors, may have some, but certainly not, decisive bearing.

My initial response to the question on the forum went as follows:
NOT true! The 5 million or so … in SA should tell a lot about Zimbabweans’ smartness, with their country messed up by (one of) the most educated presidents in Africa. We have our Msholozi, we have our legacy of inferior, for Blacks, apartheid Bantu education. But, for one of many examples, and despite acute imperfections here and there, through SASSA, South Africa effectively distributes at least R 10 BILLION in various social grants a month. 

Ultimately, it’s not so much about how smart or educated Nation(-s/ -nals) are, it’s about how they apply these qualities to meet their people’s needs and aspirations as their nations develop and progress among nations of the world.

Simon Chilembo
Riebeeckstad
Welkom
9459
South Africa
Tel.: +27 717 454 115
October 12, 2014

ETNISK NORMANN SUPER STAR

HOW TO BECOME A NORWEGIAN, FOR THOSE WHO WANT TO BE

If Youssou N’Dour plays Ethnic Music, then I am Ethnic Norwegian.

Simon Chilembo, Pres/ CEO, Chilembo EmpireEverybody loves a Super Star. The statement discounts snobs, fundamentalists, the ignorant arrogant, the uncultured, the uneducated, the primitive, the anti-social, the eccentric, the naïve, the narrow minded, the bigoted, the untalented, the gutless, the envious, and the jealous.

This posting is my message to 1st-Xst generation immigrants to Norway struggling with identity, as well as insecure sense of belonging in and to the country. These will be a mix masala mix of people from all countries of the world whose music Westerners refer to as Ethnic Music, collectively called The Third World. They will have skin colour tones divergent from the conventional European one, called White.

These immigrants will have decided to make Norway their new home.  They will have adopted Norwegian citizenship, abiding by the laws of the land, and contributing to the growth and development of the country, each in their own ways in all areas of human endeavour. Singing Ja, Vi Elsker when and where appropriate will have become second nature to these people. Come 17. mai year after year, these people rise and shine in front of the King and the Royal family.

Those immigrants to Norway who are in the country temporarily in any capacity, here for 1- X years, need not bother to read this posting … (Continued in the book: MACHONA BLOGS – As I See It. Order Simon Chilembo books on Amazon)


Simon Chilembo

Welkom
South Africa
September 10, 2014