I figured out what today’s post will be about. My childhood superstitions!!! I lived in Zambia for most of my early childhood, 10 years to be exact so these are mostly from there. Recently I was about to about to go under a hanging cable and a thought came to my head, “DON’T DO THAT!! You’ll never grow you’ll if you do!!” I was shocked and amused that I would still have such thoughts at my age. I used to believe this so very vehemently when I was a child (I still am a child but then I was like 8 or younger). The superstition was that if you went under something you stopped growing from then on.

So how do you counter this? I mean you can’t really avoid going underneath things if you actually want to live a normal life, right? Well the trick was to go back under the thing from the direction you exited it from. Ridiculous, right? WRONG!!!! I remember a time in my life I spent keeping track of all the things I went under!! I was always frightened of remaining short while my friends went past me.

If you want a put a curse on yourself or someone else just write your name or the other’s outside and a witch will come do it for you. It was more dangerous though doing your own name. It has to be in a way that can’t be deleted easily. This is one I’m not sure that I’m entirely free of. Let me explain why.

I had a friend, a guy who was a little old than me at the time. He’s name was written in concrete somewhere in our hood (It was a really big gated community) and we all joked about how he’d be cursed. Suddenly (at least to us) he started falling really sick and weakly. His mum fell sick and died. And he moved away from our hood. I never did find out what happened to him, in those day cell phone where the size of bricks and could only be bought by the super-rich. I hope he’s okay though and thing become better for him. Because of him I rarely write my name in public places.

Finally almost every culture has a superstition to do with black cats. I’m not sure why, perhaps because of their colour and the fact that all cats can look at you in a way that makes you feel they’re scrutinizing your soul. Also in our hood they all seemed to appear at night. Anyway we believed that black all black cats where witches that had turned in to animals so that they can curse their victims. Why they needed to cats to do this we never questions just believed. So how exactly do you get cursed?

They have to go in between your legs after which you’d have like a week to leave because all bad luck would fall on you soon. I remember we’d walk around with our legs tightly pressed together when we saw a black cat. You couldn’t hit them or try to chase them away because that would just be tempting fate. I never did see a cat try to dash under someone’s legs but we never gave them a chance!

Well there you have it, 3 superstitions I still have with me, always in the back of my head. Of course most superstitions are hogwash but that never stopped anyone from believing something, did it? What superstitions do you still (or used to) believe in? I’d love to hear about them, e-mail me or comment below. I may make a follow up post of them. By the way have to ever wonder why people say “Bless you” when you sneeze? Well it’s because it was believed sneezes where violent enough to remove your soul from your body and it needed to be blessed back in. Amazing huh? Peace!!!

Written by Sidney Ochieng

Child at heart and mind. Feminist. Story teller. Fledgling data scientist. Your future boss

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *