Every child had to have a mulberry bush in the garden – to feed their precious silk worms with the leaves of course! Most of us were proud of our egg yellow cocoons, and Rosemary, the class show-off, was overly proud of her pink ones (beetroot leaves someone said).

Bulbuls or toppies as we called them – Afrikaans for an old man, loved mulberries too; they splattered creamy mauve poop all over the place – normally on father’s car recently washed car.

Rosemary said our cocoons were inferior because they had a hole for the metamorphosis to take place. Hers were blemish free because she put the whole cocoons in boiling water once they were complete, so as to kill the contents inside. One of the many reasons why we shunned her at break.

Allan Taylor, author Luanshya musings


Kechingwe Dekatchu Luanshya



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