A walk with Kani to the Kani…

Sunday Memoirs
Kani* is a young girl, and the daughter of a close family friend. She has plump, pink cheeks, a long black ponytail reaching her lower back and when she smiles, she reveals her two lopsided front teeth, showing a little of decay as well.

The ponytail sways side to side as she walks a little in front of me. Kani is taking me for a walk in her village to the nearby kani (freshwater spring). She is a city girl with roots in the village, she knows her way around well — what could one possibly learn when walking with a 10-year-old Kurdish girl?
As we walk to the Kani a number of girls from the village joined the walk..

Typical, and not surprising, we greet every single man, woman and child we pass during the walk. Most of them know Kani, and I listen as the 10-year-old repeats the same replies. Some of the women kiss me as well, and even ask me to send their regards to “home” (my family) and they don’t even know me, nor do they know my family.

I follow Kani, taking a shortcut

She takes me through a shortcut around the corner from the mosque and through the gardens of her relatives. An elderly woman calls out to Kani, I tag along, the woman uses the palms of both her hands to hold my cheeks before she gives me a generous number of kisses. She insists we sit at the porch, swearing that she won’t let us go. I doubt any person can refuse her request. A sweet lady, with wrinkles; a hinged, C-shaped back and I can tell she has long, thick, red-colored hair under her veil.

The elderly woman and her little heaven

We sit on a red mat at the porch, looking at a colorful garden in the foreground of a breathtaking mountain backdrop. The garden of the woman is stunning — If I knew exactly what heaven looked like, I would probably compare it to this. I feel she is a queen in a kingdom. I truly believe the little garden in front of the porch is definitely her kingdom. She has separated the different areas. In some areas, it is neatly divided into small squares — an area for fruits, another for vegetables, a square for the onions. The trees are on the edges, evenly spaced. She reaches up and then pulls down a branch and reaches out to give me a fruit I haven’t tasted before. It’s sour.

Getting close to the Kani
By the time Kani and I reached the kani (the spring), our two-person walk becomes a primary school’s excursion. Like a train, through the walk, we’ve picked up passengers until we reach the final destination.

I realized the kani is full of beautiful girls. Women who had come to get water, others who had come to wash dishes; the kani is where the cold water flows — crystal clear and it even tastes different. The kani is where women come to catch up on gossip, where the girls meet for a chat, where they make their plans and talk about the problems related to the crops and the animals.

It is by the kani, in the camouflage of trees, that the deepest secrets of the village lay. It is where a mother asks another mother for her daughter’s hand for her son. It is by the kani where the Kurdish dress is put under the rope belt and white feet are put into the cold water during the hottest gossip. It is near the kani that Romeo hides to get a peek of Juliet. The kani, for a city girl, is just another version of a coffee shop.Β 

A walk to remember…

Every Sunday I am going to start putting up on the blog my weekly column that is published in the Kurdish Globe
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8 thoughts on “A walk with Kani to the Kani…

  1. You have no idea Sazan Xan how much i envy you. For many reasons. For you have all your life in front of you and you are free to organize it any way you wish. For you dont have to worry that in the future you finnaly will stay completly alone somewhere on the street with no home and no more dreams. For you live in your c0untry, which at the same time is the most beautiful place in the universe and people around you accept you as one of them and know that you belong to that world.
    for the last few weeks everything is going wrong in my life and i think it makes me to miss Kurdistan more than i was expected. I resign from doing team leader job in my factory, coz it was too hard for me – i was promised to get the ordinary job after three weeks – its already 5 weeks i am jobless. Thats what european facory did to the worked, who used to awarded every season as a best worker (i got 3 rewards). I am very upset and most of my time i spend remembering Kurdistan, watching the pics, reading the stories from other peoples trips, posting in my blog (not in Blogger, n different website) detailed stories with pics from my staying in Kurdistan. I am afraid that if i didnt know Kurdistan I would not be able to carry on in the situation like now.
    I know i am complaining, but you have no idea how much i miss this country. If someone will offer me the job there, i will take the first airplane with no hestitation. I miss this country very much…

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  2. Thanks for sharing this story with us Sazan! You have to be there to understand the beauty of it all.

    I don't know what heaven is like but I'm already looking forward to it if it is anything like village life in Kurdistan.

    @kulka
    You are absolutely right! There is a sense of harmony, tranquility and brotherhood in Kurdistan that you really don't see anywhere else. God how I miss it…

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  3. @Kulka – I hope things at your work have taken a positive turn, and just remember this is life and it's normal for such things to happen. In simple words, we are supposed to go through difficult days and sleepless nights. Just make sure it doesn't let you down!
    Just know, that anytime, everytime, Kurdistan is waiting for you with open arms… be sure your home is here too. What do you think of visiting and opening the first Kurdish Chocolate Factory??? I think that's an idea for you to think about. Chocolate with “made in Kurdistan” label.
    πŸ˜‰

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  4. @NA – They say a picture tells a thousand words, but for this, you have to be there to see it, feel it … somehow all the senses seem to work at he same time. It is beyond what words can describe. The simple life.

    Thanks for following!
    πŸ™‚

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  5. I have never ever before been in Kurdistan but… reading your blog…well, i wish i could have a sit by the kani, admiring its sound and listening to all those talks, it just sounds like a story to tell πŸ™‚ Thank you and regards!
    Kate.

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