A Diary Note on Saturday 28th February 2015
Utterly blown away! Not by the wind this time, but by life. Again …
I have just had the most surreal experience – or, rather, yet another surreal experience. Think I dreamt this one. Not sure if this is really me. Is it?
Went to a most beautiful venue, in the Borders countryside, to attend a small charity concert of piano and violin music, to raise funds for dental care in Tanzania. Heard the first few words of the Violinist, and my ears pricked up … he’d grown up in Kenya and Zimbabwe. The music was utterly divine … and interval came too soon.
I met the Violinist – we both hail from stunning parts of Africa – and he asked me where I was born. I said “Durban”. He asked, with a light of memory in his eyes, “What’s that place … it’s south of Durban … it has a wonderful lagoon.” I gawped. I stared. I nearly stopped breathing. It could not have been… I stood there staring at him… He said “Now, what’s its name ..?” I could only stare. I had my hands clapped over my mouth, my eyes wide open, I thought I’d walked into some weird Wonderland. I took my hands away from my mouth. I squeaked “Ifafa?”. His face broke into a grin, he said “IFAFA! Yes, that’s it!”. I nearly passed out. I wanted to cry, laugh, dance – actually, just wanted to weep.
I told him that Ifafa is the place I go to in my mind every time I need to escape … that I had been thinking about it so much, that I often ‘smell’ and ‘feel’ the lagoon, that I miss it all so much, and that no one has ever referred to Ifafa anywhere in my life since I was a young child, except one or a few people whom I am close to and who knew it too.
The story grew more fantastic, and wonderful, but that is the bit that blew me away. I am still wondering if it happened … but it did. How do I know? Because, weirdly, these sorts of things have been happening for much of my life, and they are so precise, so spot on, that there is no way they can be random. God said he would give back more than the locusts took … I can see the promise unfolding.
What a revelation. What a moment. What a beautiful evening.
Ifafa, you are i far far away, but I love you … and one day I shall find a way to return.
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And from my photograph collection, a picture taken on a visit to Devon in 2013, when I was reminded of Ifafa: