Juliet Were

 

 

 

 

 

MUKARANGO

Born at night at a community health centre (now a health centre IV). A first bundle of joy to my mum, a young nurse.

Spent most of my earlier years with mum in hospital quarters and my dad visited us occasionally. One of the things I remember to date is the fish that dad would buy each time he visited; deep fried tilapia fish “MUKARANGO”. Although we ate fish which was fresh, dried, or pasted, this particular fish tasted differently and special from what mum often bought. It was a delicacy that I always looked forward to and it was always an exciting moment.

We used to play mum and dad; doctor, nurse and patient; innocently inducting ourselves to sex education and admiring the role models we interacted with on a daily basis. This was our dream land and our playground.

It was exciting being a nurse’s child, the neatness and smartness that came with their uniforms was gratifying. This early experience introduced us to the value of care, love and respect for humanity. I and my siblings learnt the art of nursing from home. We could administer injections and knew all the names of drugs then– “homemade nurses and pharmacists” or “Quack nurses without qualification” in the legal jargon.