Saturday, November 05, 2005

Sitting on the Couch

The spotlight is on the lady with the huge turban on her head. My mom explains that is the new African head-dress. The lady in question is the Assistant Minister of Culture or something or rather of the newly formed government of Somalia. I watch with my mom and my cousin as the ministers and officials get on stage one by one to speak their piece. My heart is silently hoping that this is a turn for the future.

"There he is!" exclaims my mom, "There is abti Abdillahi Yussuf." She is proud as she also points herself out to me. She goes on a tangent as she points out each member of the cabinet and their clan affiliations. She was proving to my cousin that there was representation of most clans in the new government. As I sit on the couch I feel proud of the people on stage. A silent prayer goes to them as they set out to correct the many wrongs we as a people/nation have committed unto ourselves. I am not sure where I lie on this spectrum but I know where my mother lies.

I wasn't brought up in Somalia nor were my parents big on giving me the identity of my "bloodline". When I moved to the West I got bombarded with questions of "Who are you?". My reply turned from saying I was a Somali to Sujui to finally saying curtly "I am human." I went through a change and understanding as to how the system works. Somalis were obsessed with clan lines and migrated with this disease to the west. I found that I didn't want any part in it and I used the line human to draw them into an argument. To make them state their case as to why my identity should affect the conversation at hand.

There are some people that are not sure where this new government is heading but I believe a journey begins with a step and this is a huge step in the direction of the future. The one thing, the only ingredient missing is the youth. "Hooyo, you should get the youth involved, have workshops or something."I said with a smile. She looked at me and nodded. For now I will live vicariously through my mom when it comes to Somali politics.

There was a woman whose child had grown and wanted to make a mark in the world. As he bid his mother goodbye she stated "Son, If you go to **insert a far town** or go to the ends of the earth I am still your mother. No matter where we migrated to our Motherland is still Somalia.

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