Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Surprise Gift

A year ago my dear friend Fatima told me she had a surprise for me...
Soon after that, I was at her house to pick her up for Bible study, and that's when "Britney Spears" (above) walked into the room.

Fatima has two teenage daughters who live in the city of Maputo. They named the cat.

This was the surprise. I thanked Fatima, brought Britney home, and promptly changed her name.   

I called her "Chiguinha" (shee - geenya)

Chiguinha is a Mozambican dish made of a cooked leafy green (like kakana a bitter green leaf), cooked cassava, coconut milk, crushed peanuts, tomatoes, and onions (it's the green item on the right).

Chiguinha the cat seems to be comfortable in any position.

Her name is funny to most Mozambicans and maybe the only way I can compare it to a pet name in the U.S. might be like this:

"An African woman moves onto your block in America.  She partakes in the local foods and culture of your area. One day someone gives her a dog for a pet. The African lady likes the sound of the word lasagna and she also likes the way the dish tastes.  So she names her dog Lasagna."   

Mozambicans may, or may not, think it's strange, but they sure like to laugh when they hear the cat's tasty name.

Here is chiguinha the food (with a side of rabbit leg) lovingly served to me by Mama Ermelinda in Cala, Inhambane.

The surprise gift of Chiguinha :)