Pillow fights – those were the only legal fights allowed in the house. We'd send missiles across the living room ducking behind the chairs as the pillows scuttled across the room leaving trails of feather stuffing. It was a delightful game of war me, my brother and sister played staging ourselves on different corners of the sitting room.
I was the youngest….the baby sister (kid sister sometimes) at first there was threat that I would win the game because I was the only left handed in the family (and apparently we aim good) but honestly I sucked that the game. My head always popped up from behind the sofa in time to get a pillow hit me square on the face. Usually, the trophy for this game was loads of laughs and teases from the winners to the looser (in this case the one who got hit more) – most of the time I was a sore looser and tears would spring up as soon as the poking fun began and I would run to mama and tell on them. Sometimes to really piss them off I would tell our oldest brother Jim who would hiss and bark at them to stop picking on me (while I safely behind him chortling in glee at the fear on their faces). Shee and Swes would stare me down with muted threat almost saying, "Let me catch you alone…" you may have guessed correctly that I was a rather spoilt brat getting about in mischief and all kinds of trouble.
In time our pillow fight contest promoted itself to the next level by spiking the pillows with the TV remote or worse my dad's ashtrays. Most times the game either ended in tears, near concussions or grudging draws bruised faces and egos. It was a fun time, not for the furniture though which I am glad to say did survive. The house was always alive with some kind of monkey business going on one on side or the other…but out there, in the big bad world nobody and I do mean nobody, could pick on any one of us and get away with it. I must have gotten the best deal though, with not one but two big brothers and a no-nonsense big sister many bullies passed up great chances to bully me in school. In school I was like a neon light for them, I stammered, could hardly speak Kiswahili (which most kids spoke all the time) and was left handed in a predominantly rightie public school. I hardly conformed to majority opinions in school and even though I was not a geek or book worm, many found me different and strange. But armed with the veiled threat of the wrath of my big brothers and sister if anyone picked on me made me live in a bubble of relative peace most of my childhood.
Now, several decades later, my brothers and sister still call me kid sister some times baby sister (and I aint no kid or baby you know) and everyone is up and about doing their own thing. Whenever we meet up though we are kids again. At times even I can see there protective faces when they sense an invasion into our otherwise separate lives. Every high or low we face, we are no more than a call away from each other…. And that I must say is my most special gift from God to make up for all the crap in the world today.
So a toast to you all Jim, Swes & Shiru for being champion siblings winning the annual "Sibling" award for just under 30 years now and still going strong…….