GOTCHI AND SATCHI: (part twelve) Days became indistinguishable from one another. Gotchi had no sense of how long it had been since they had left their village. She could hardly remember the day she had begun this journey, when her heart had been filled with eagerness and hope.
The moon lit the night as Gotchi and Binta arrived at the foot of the hill where their village stood. Upon seeing the two women, the villagers yelped with joy and chanted, “Binta and Gotchi are home, Binta and Gotchi are home!” Gotchi’s brothers and sisters ran out of their hut to welcome them. They could not contain their joy, and danced around the two travelers, hugging them over and over.
“What did you bring us, mommy”, asked Bimba, Gotchi’s youngest sister. Tears filled their mother’s eyes, as she clung to her children, almost in disbelief at seeing them again. She had been so strong for Gotchi, but now, she collapsed from fatigue and sadness. She had hoped to return home bearing food and gifts. She had nothing.
Photo: Fulani siblings from the village of Satchi, Niger.