I have been posting project photos (as well as other travel photos) on my tumblr site (www.tashadoremus.tumblr.com) but it has been brought to my attention that I really should be using this site as a place for sharing my project with you specifically: the people who have pledged their support.
I hope that the monthly emails, for those of you that have signed up, are informative and interesting (and if you had signed up and have NOT received emails, please let me know!)
Following is a story, written in her own words, by Taghla, who I met in the Saharawi refugee camp in October.
There was a man who was working with his animal moving some sand from one place to another. While he was doing that I was looking at the animal with my older sister and my cousin. We had finished classes for the day. The name of that animal in our dialect is Baghla, and my name is Taghla. They sound similar. While were playing close to it, my older sister wanted to tease me because I was scared of that animal. She told me, “Be careful! The mule is coming to eat you." When I heard that I tried to jump over a big hole in the bathroom covered by some thin clothes and some stones. It was full of the bathroom waste. I disappeared down the hole. My older sister went running to tell my grandmother about what happened to me, but the problem was, she couldn´t pronounce my name because she was very scared and nervous. She was saying, “al Bagla has fallen down the hole," and Albagla, as I said before, is the animal, not me. She couldn’t say my name.
Finally she said, "Tagla fell down", and my grandmother realized what she had said. She started crying and screaming very loudly. She was saying “OH God. Oh God. Please, I really love her, I need her, I don’t want her to die. She is an angel. Don’t take her! She is a child.” She was calling my mother, saying “Your daughter is dying. Your daughter is dying, your daughter," and she fell unconscious. While they were trying to get me out, I was screaming, crying and I was terrified. Suddenly I stopped crying and they thought that I had died, but a big stone had fallen on my head and I fell unconscious. However, I was very lucky because God wanted me to live my life with my family. The thing that prevented me from falling down deeply was a sharp stone which appearing in that hole and caught the hood of my jacket. Because of the stone they could take me out of the hell that I was in. I smelled very bad and all the people brought perfume with them to put on my body. No one could be close to me because of the terrible odor except my mother, who didn’t care about that. She was crying and thanking God when she saw me alive. After that they took me to the hospital. During that time I had a very strong headache which sometimes bothers me until today.
The funny thing is that the name of my story is “Tagla Albagla” which means “Tagla mule”.