In the begining when I was asked to go and be part of a hen party,a Zambian one,it was like :"Me ?No,thank you."
But then I though,clearly it is important to my friend Beatrice,so I shall give it a try.So,confinced that it would be nothing major and armed with cinisism I went,and I learn something that I was not expecting.
For Zambian the preparation towards marriage is as important as the deed itself if not more,the women all gather together and perform rituals that go from the cooking,trought out the dancing performed by all the guests(yours included),to the presentation of gifts,to the master of ceremony,did I mention that a "kitchen party "is only for women ?
Well it is only for women because it belongs to them the responsability to pass on the wisdom gathered trought generations preceding the Bride and trought out words of wisdom and passages from the bible,advice is given with words of love,courage and finaly of acceptance.
Acceptance that this is a new begining in her life and some things have to be left behind.
Friends and things she used to do and consider important ,no longer will held priority towards her life.
God and her husband first,family second and then her own children,and finaly work and the surronding world.
See what I mean about the rites of passage where wisdom is concerned only women who have been trought the process of marriage give advice and after performe a ritual dance ?
The name "Kitchen party "comes from the fact that back in Zambia,the most important place in a home is the kitchen and here a women rules the house and ultimely her family,with kinds words she will form or break her marriage and that is also passed on.
Singing its a must.
I was humbled by the love this women show for each other and the effort that went into all the preparation and the customs used,it was beautiful and so right.
The homenage paid to the elderly,to the family of the bride and groom and to all the guests,is so touching.
I learned that it is possible to care and be cared for even when you don`t believe in the act you are celebrating in.
It teached me about the power of love.
Thank you,Beatrice and Hilda.
Good luck on you becoming nuptials,Sandra.