Who is Limba Gal?

 

I often get asked what Limba Gal means and why I chose that name for my jewelry art business. In light of Sierra Leones Independence Day this past Monday I thought I`d share a little sumthin` sumthin`.

My family is from Sierra Leone, West Africa, A small coastal country along the Atlantic ocean known for its natural beauty and resources. Sierra Leones population is made up of people from many colorful tribes. My father is from one of the indigenous tribes to Sierra Leone, the Limba people.  The Limba`s originally lived up in the mountains of the Northern province. (Side bar - This is one of the few  places where it gets cold and occasionally snows in the country and until this day my father refuses to wear a coat in the winter time and we live in Chicago y’all!) As a kid I was often lovingly teased about being just like my dad and hence dubbed “ Limba Gal”

On my last visit to my fathers village, Kabala, now a bustling town. I had the pleasure of participating in an old tradition called “Climbing up the Hill”. Every year on New Years day the whole town walks up the highest peak in Sierra Leone called Loma Mountain. When they told me about it, I was excited to participate in something that my fathers and his fathers before him had done.  I expected a leisurely walk up a nice path, but no, I was not ready! I was met with an untamed path of rocks, dirt and trees. I would have worn better shoes if Id known we would be hiking for real!

 We set out at about 11 am. As we headed out we quickly became enveloped in a steady stream of people on a similar mission. Every able bodied person from young to old were on the trek. The mood was jovial with alot of laughing and teasing. Some people were making a race out of it while others stopped along the way to catch their breath and chat. I was so focused on not tripping and rolling all the way back down that I barely looked up the entire time. About an hour or two later we reached the top and what a sight! Blue skies, rolling hills and about a thousand people having a giant celebration on top of a mountain. There was a dj playing music, horses,  families snapping photos, cook outs, dancing and sense of joy and hope for the new year.

Standing at the top of the hill that New Years day was a reminder to embrace life and all the magical moments where they find you.

 

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