Mama wakes us up early because today is the day were moving. Again. I knew it was coming soon because Pop and the tribal leaders had been stirring like always.
Instead of pictures on our walls, there were boxes. Those ugly brown boxes. They meant goodbye. I knew better then to make friends with the local children. My tribal friends have no mind state for true friendship just alliances.
Pop is packing the camels, the horses, and the mules and Mamas quietly making sure he does it right. This move will be a long one, because were going back to our homeland. My younger brother is too young to work so he plays, sometimes under foot. As for me, I’m old enough to gather tent poles, and learning how to secure the loads to the beasts.
“One day my son, you will have to pack your tent for your family.”
Out of my mouth I say, “Yes Sir.”
But inside I said, “You don’t pack up brick and wood.”
My girlfriend was a local. Her floors were made out of harden Earth not canvas. The walls were made out of brick and mortar not canvas. The ceilings were made out of wood called beams not canvas.
The word came down, “We move in one hour!”
The fathers are just milling around about what was and what will be. The mothers are rounding up the babies. The locals are showing us that we always have a home to come back to with them.
Pop puts his hand on my shoulder, “You’re getting to be a big man, you can drive the mule.”
Translation, he wants me to drive the mule and small cart which has the clothes and other knickknacks that we have picked up from our travels.
The first series of horns sounded, the tribal fathers start their final check of their household loads. The water works from the tribal and local mothers started. The second series of horns sounded, the tribe starts to mount our camels, horses, mules, and mule driven carts. The local fathers bid the tribal father Gods speed. The final horn blew, the tribe starts to move. I took a final look at the land we inhabited and it looks like we were never here. But that’s how it always looks.
When I start my family the one thing I will make sure of is that the land will know, I Am Here. Nomad means no land. Its funny all I want is land. A piece of Earth to call my own.