Zamaleo Memories


You’ve heard of compartmentalizing things, right? And that’s mostly in people who’ve under gone traumatic experiences or have been depressed. But can you lock away and store away extremely good experiences? 

I found that strange when I realised it happened to me. Like since I went through an emotionally numb teenage hood that was locked away in boxes inside my subconscious, I capitalised on the good things happening in my life then. I enjoyed my high school. The activities I took part in and even being there was like my escape goat. I took the maximum happiness I could out of my external surroundings because I wasn’t happy inside. 

So for me to completely lock out something that used to happen yearly in high school caught me by surprise. Like what was so special about it that made me store it away inside of me? It must have meant so much more to the teenage Mercy, that she decided to not disturb its memory by thinking about it frequently but to lock it up like a treasure inside of her. 

Today we were discussing something with my cousins and I thought, that if you live your life each day, fully and led by the Holy spirit, then your future will sort itself out. The topic we were talking about isn’t relevant to this but the above thought applies. Of late I’ve been observing the people we deem successful, people I admire, like Bikozulu and Kevin Hart, not from the common ” steps to success” that books capitalize on, but from the perspective of, ” when they were younger, did they imagine or know they would be there?”

Definitely the answer is no. But from reading Kevin Hart’s book, I realise that the position they find themselves in doesn’t surprise them. Like yes, certainly he didn’t see himself being among the world’s best comedian, but looking at his childhood, he can spot the funny side of him that was always there getting him into trouble or out of trouble. 

And that’s kinda my point, that I may not know what I’ll be doing ten years down the line or who I’ll be, but if I maximise my everyday life and follow my heart every day, it will lead me there. 

So what does this have to do with my hidden memory? I was seated at Courage Stories( formerly known as Stories of Courage), and accepting that in this life, I love stories. I just have to accept that if there was a platform where people shared their stories every weekend, probability is that I would run there for 52 weekends of the year. My love for stories is that intense. 

So it was a good surprise for that memory in high school to unveil itself. Seems Mercy always treasured stories. 

So this group called Zamaleo used to start their yearly show at our high school. They are legends when it comes to story telling. They have all it takes, from involving the audience at the right moment, to creating complete anxiety with their drums when the story demands it, to teaching the audience the song to sing in the middle of the story etc. Like they were so exemplary that the only fault I could find in them is them coming only once in a year. Like every month would have been better. 

But now thinking of it, nothing in high school ever drew me into it like Zamaleo. It had all of me. For those 3 or so hours everything in me channeled itself to listening to those stories. Zamaleo had all right attires for every story they shared, they dressed the part, talked it and sang it. For as long as they were telling the story, you didn’t see them, you saw the characters they were telling you about . They created the world their story was based on, they took all your 5 common senses, especially the eyes and ears and used that to enter into your head and take you to that ” once upon a time” that their story was in. 

Zamaleo took something that I loved so much, created it in the best way possible and presented it so excellently, that after that experience, the only option I had was to lock away that memory. I’m the kind of person who doesn’t repeat things, especially books, but I don’t see myself ever outgrowing stories. 

I have missed the last 3 editions of Too Early for Birds. I don’t know what kind of actors they are, but I’ve read from Owaah’s blog the stories they are acting out. And Owaah has always blown my mind away with the kind of story telling he does to real things that happened in history. But when I’m able to, I’ll attend Too Early For Birds and see if the reviews are for real. 

I don’t remember a lot of things about my childhood. But out of the few things I remember, I can tell you word by word the bed time stories my mother used to tell me. She didn’t read books, just told me stories, some of them were passed on to her from her mum while some she either made up or spiced up real stories. But despite my lost childhood memories, it seems my mind decided to preserve those stories. 

I may not know a lot of things about my destiny, but I know that somehow stories will be part of it. For now I’ll take the story opportunities I can afford to have, like enjoying Biko’s 40 series. And pray my heart leads me to more stories. As I await to be the best grandparent ever. 

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