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Granadilla Juice

April 23, 2010 by · 5 comments

By Kristina Petrova


Saturday morning. There’s something that makes me love Saturday mornings and I could never figure out what it was until now. I would like you to start loving Saturday mornings as well. Nothing more. There are no asterisks at the end of the sentence, evilly referencing clauses in a tiny font.

Saturday morning: variation 1

Saturday, I-was-too-young-to-remember-the-year, 7 am.
A villa with a straw roof. Above the bed – the African version of a baldachin – a white mosquito net. I wake up, push the net aside and turn on the radio. My brother sourly mumbles a good morning and proceeds to entangle the net around me. I recognize my mother’s scream, coming from the kitchen. Following the sounds we rush to the living room.


A priceless scene – my mother is making a blunt escape on the couch, across her – a monkey is shamelessly indulging in our barbeque leftovers from the previous night. Saturday morning in Africa.

Saturday morning: Variation 2

Saturday, sometime-in-1994, 9 am.
A house with a pool and a huge yard. The yard, branded with bananas, papaya, guava, mulberries – 100% environmentally friendly. I jump in the pool, swim. Then I start to feel tired, lazy and hungry. Across the yard I knock on the guesthouse door.

Kenedy, the gardener, opens the door. I ask him to pick some mulberries for me. Kenedy climbs up the tree, picks the finest fruit and gives it to me. I have mulberries for breakfast until I get sick, get mulberry stains all over my clothes and hands, but don’t care. Saturday morning in Africa.

Saturday morning: Variation 3

Saturday, 1997, 5.45 am
School camp. Two-storey bungalows, mattresses on the floor. The team that gathers first for breakfast by 6 am wins points and respect. The losers get a good waking up. We listen to a lecture on termites, acacia trees and erosion. We play African hide-and-seek – everyone camouflages themselves with mud, sticks to a hill and just for a second knows what it feels like to be a chameleon. Until you realize that you’ve been abandoned and have to find the way back to the camp on your own.

They’ve left a map and a compass. When we get back we spray each other with a hose pipe to get the mud off. The only thing anyone cares about is whether their team will gather first in time for lunch. Saturday morning in Africa.

Saturday morning: Variation 4

Saturday, the-year-doesn’t-matter, 8 am.
The school field. A field hockey match. Girls in short light blue skirts and white tops. We’re showing the team in green how to play hockey. They cry, we win a cup and much praise. Off to the shopping centre in our parent’s pick-ups. We take off our trainers and walk bare foot.


Our team spirit is boosted by a 2 liter bottle of freshly squeezed granadilla juice that sweetens the victory. I step on a cigarette butt, unfazed. There are more important things in life. Saturday morning in Africa.

The above isn’t a figment of my imagination – I’ve shared four real moments from my life in Africa which contribute to my love of Saturday mornings and life. I want you to find your own version of Saturday morning and to love. Live, take risks, experiment a little.


As the great Oscar Wilde has said: “To live is the rarest thing in the world. Most people exist, that is all.”

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