This weekend was quite the party! Since my family is Catholic, Easter is a huge deal. But not just Easter, the party pretty much lasted all of the Easter Weekend! For those of you who don’t know, here’s what I remember from the halls of Holy Name: there’s Holy Thursday, Good Friday, then a random untitled Saturday, then Easter Sunday. Here’s a breakdown of what happened each of those days.
Holy Thursday: I came home from class in the evening and started helping my family break apart and clean up giant tubs of buy (see WOTD #22) that we would be using tomorrow. I kept asking what for. “Ngalla”. Well, cool, what’s ndalla? ” Oh you’ve never had it? You’ll see tomorrow.”
Good Friday: Woke up late because I didn’t have any classes. Walked into the kitchen/porch area of my house to find all the women in my family + some maids gathered together in old clothes making tubs on tubs on tubs of this brown liquidy stuff which, I was informed, was ngalla.
I sat down to eat my usual breakfast and Mère Vitou made Olga get me a coffee-mug full of ngalla to drink.
So here’s what it is: peanuts and buy and lots of sugar and other ingredients I don’t know all mixed together into this milk-like consistency with little chunks of oatmeal-like grains. I liked it a lot, and good thing too because we had about 10 gallons for our house alone. The rest of the ngalla was poured into several small buckets and passed out around the neighborhood to family and friends. I spent a good part of the afternoon delivering ndalla around SICAP Baobab with Mami and Michou. Good Friday marks the end of fasting for Lent, so that’s why my house became an ngalla factory. The evening was a big plate of ceebujën for dinner and visits from some relatives and friends.
Saturday: Laid around the house until 5pm, when we went to Easter Mass since none of us wanted to go at midnight or on Sunday morning. Afterwards I hung out with Zely, Olga’s 2-year-old daughter, and then went over and spent some time at Honorine’s house in the evening.
Easter Sunday: Had a huge lunch with my family, counsins and uncles and friends by the dozens piled into our house.
We danced and talked and watched soccer, and then Esther’s son Apo came and picked me up and we went to another party where I met two Senegalese guys who spoke English. One, Jacques, lives in Massachusetts and the other, Oumar, lives in Italy. We talked and drank and we were supposed to go dancing but I was a zombie and passed out in my bed as soon as I got home.
It was a long, fun weekend with my family. Each night was filled with drinks and great food and good fun. I only wish I knew more wolof!