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Cutural- Life as an African Parent

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Cutural- Life as an African Parent

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  • November 2010
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Life of an African Parent in Today’s World

I live in the city of Foumban, Cameroon. We are a polygamy family, I am married to four women and I have 30 children. We live in a modest home, which is built from packed earth with a straw roof. My house consists of 10 rooms: 1 for me, 4 for my wife’s and 5 for the children. That makes an average of 6 children per room. I get up at 6am to go is the early light of day. There is life in my village at 5am when we start our Muslim prayers which wakes up the children in the village. 7am I already had gone with 3 of my wife’s to gather wood for our days meals. I farm fish at the beginning the morning I look at my pond and already know the size of my fish. I know how many fry's (frequently Nile tilapia) I need to start with.  With the pond full of water the fry's are release and you feed the pond is fed to keep a good algae bloom.  After an appropriate number of months for the species of fish are being used - maybe six months the pond is drained and everything is harvested and prepared for market, except the number of fry's needed to restock the pond, which are set aside.  The pond is refilled, the fry's that were set aside are released and the cycle is repeated. By 10am take my fish to the market to sell it sells go depending on the merchants needs. As we wait and sell our fish we, head back to the village to prepare a meal. Half of my kids go to school. And my other wife’s already had the house taken care of. For entertainment we hear music and dance or storytelling. We have a traditional dance which is separated from men and women. Participation by one sex all together is forbidden. The dances range from pure entertainment to religious devotion and Music is transmitted orally. By 9pm as pitch black outside I start to think of tomorrow of my greatest fear for my family is the shortage of land for farmers to grow crops I am also worried of dying of AIDS as for me and my family. That is my greatest fear; I hope that...

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