YALI 2018: Make-ups On My Sleeves, Tears in my Eyes, a New Africa on my Mind
Phones kept levitating into mid air, and for each time, people would bunch up in what ended as dozens of selfies for a memorable day. Women threw themselves into the arms of men, men wrapped their arms around as many shoulders as they could, hugging their last. The sleeves of my shirt had eaten of brown powder from the faces of many women. A glimpse at it was both saddening and hilarious. These are strangers who have now turned family; too attached to let go.
We have had over a 100 lessons on how to bring people together, and not even one lesson on how to go on living without them.
It wasn’t the melancholy of not seeing most of them again but the challenge each of them had thrown me. Smart, passionate trailblazers raising the bar every now and then.
The logic of this program is capitalist, it’s also like a robbery. What you take in one operation is to finance another robbery, and so it gets bigger, and bigger, and bigger. We’re the candles that will be sent out to light more candles and wood. The ripple effect of this gathering will be widespreadly glamourous in the future
Like the rainbow is the pride of heaven, these empowered youngsters will shine and reflect everlasting light on the now catastrophe-ladden land of the black.
“Like the stars we will shine again. We will cry but we’ll smile again. Africa will rise again!”
So the hearbeaking moments of seeing friends depart will not crush us like a drunken stupor. There’s a lot more work ahead. It’s a bunch of tomorows and very few yesterdays.
This fellowship was, for each person a major sprint for life — for our countries, for the world. It is perfect in many ways… like a Cameroonian woman with contours to die for.
For me as an energised beneficiary, all I need is to have the make-ups washed off my shirt and I’m ready to do exploits!
And oh… Mamaaaa we won an awaaaaard!