A New Beginning

20 November 2013 by Berrie Holtzhausen

Today I am terribly excited. Ndjinaa will have a “friend” before the sun sets tonight. But first we head out to the village where we found Kaputu and meet with the headman.

As the day before, we sit down with the headman and try to find out more about Kaputu’s history but to no avail. He doesn’t know anything we do not already know. We then ask his permission to move her to Kapika’s village where we intend to take care of her. We also ask him if we can take his wife along to Kapika’s village for a few days as she has taken care of Kaputu for the last few months. This will make Kaputu feel safe and more at home.

Kaputu is called and she appears from a hut with nothing. She has no blanket or cow skin (that serves as the Himba bed). Just like Ndjinaa, she has nothing but also less than Ndjinaa. Kaputu has no family and is a very lonely soul. I can only hope to find her family. The thought of her loneliness forces me to vow that I will never again say that I am alone or that life is a struggle.

We arrive at Kapika’s village where we build our standard “Kunene bathroom” like we did for Ndjinaa. The care workers bath Kaputu, cut her nails and dress her in new clothes. She appears as a new human and I wonder if I can make an appointment at Kapika’s beauty parlor. I also want to ask Kapika’s wives if they would be willing to dress and paint Ndjinaa and Kaputu like the traditional Himba women do.

Kaputu. What does it mean? It sounds like the German word ‘kaputt’ which means broken and useless. I can only hope that we will be able to help and possibly heal this broken soul. She was once the daughter of someone who must have loved her. She is the mother of a child who is scared of her and has adopted another mother. The saying here in Africa is not Cogito ergo sum, “I think, therefore I am”, but rather “I am because of other people” and I tend to agree more with the latter than with René Descartes.

Today was again a very emotional day for all of us. Koos is already busy planning what to buy for Kaputu that she will be able to call her own. I am glad Johan and his family could experience this with us.

May love be the only law that governs our lives and the purpose of ADN.

Kaputu1 Kaputu2 Kaputu3 Kaputu4 Kaputu5 Kaputu6 Kaputu7  Nancy, Kaputu, headman's wifeKoos, Berrie & Johan

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