This Monday, I need to tell you about WALKING THE BOWL: A TRUE STORY OF MURDER AND SURVIVAL AMONG THE STREET CHILDREN OF LUSAKA, by Chris Lockhart and Daniel Mulilo Chama.
Lockhart is a white NGO (non-governmental organization) worker, and Chama is an outreach worker who grew up as a “street kid”. Both work with children in Lusaka, Zambia, for whom the terms “at-risk” and “disadvantaged” don’t begin to cover it.
Lusaka was built as a luxury spot, but the luxury sector is only a small part of the city; most of it is a sprawl of dwelling places made out of scrap wood, corrugated metal, cardboard, and rags. At the bottom of the get-by pecking order are the street kids.
Lockhart and Chama had won the children’s trust and had become part of the network when a young boy’s body was found in Chunga Dump, and the police, contrary to their usual attitude toward dead street kids, got involved.
That’s where the story begins. The authors used the incident and its aftermath and outcome to take the reader through a few days of the lives of four main street kids, none of them older than eighteen, whose lives intersect in the case.
The book’s title comes from a story Chama has told all the kids: In short, a woman gives a stranger a bowl of food when he’s famished. She tells him he can repay her by “walking the bowl”, that is, doing a kindness for someone else and asking them to replay him by doing a good deed in turn.
As the book jacket says, “…what emerges is an ultimately hopeful story about human kindness and how one small good deed, passed on to others, can make a difference in the face of seemingly insurmountable odds.”
My nails are sort of a nod to the Spring Equinox:
The dark base is Cascade Polish’s Dance Magic. The light stamping polish is Hit The Bottle’s His Royal Freshness, and the silver stamping polish is Maniology’s So Metal. The moon/stars comes from Maniology’s M071 (Ouija) plate, and the transition stamp comes from Maniology’s M278.
A WRITING PROMPT FROM ME TO YOU: Something dark with a glimmer of light.