My mother’s family
MaMbili was married to Mvesho, Mvesho was Nongidiza’s husband. Nongidiza had a big garden around her home. Mvesho was not working but had many cows, goats, chickens, and pigs. He was looking after his livestock and helping his wife by ploughing mielies, beans, sweet potatoes, amadumbe, potatoes, imifino and pumpkins.
They ate Zulu food, for example isigwamba, pumpkin with crushed mielies, dry mielies with beans, amadumbe and sweet potatoes. They had a machine to crush mielies while dry to make mealiemeal. They were very strong. He sold his livestock if he wanted to buy other things in the shops.
The family wore traditional clothes which were made using the skin of his livestock. Mvesho’s wife wore earrings made of wood. He was a traditional healer, they did not use doctors and instead used traditional medication.
Mvesho’s son was Dingabesho, and his wife was Lungiwe. He was doing the same as his father. He had goats and livestock, but was working in a flat at Kingsyln in Durban. He visited home twice a year. His wife did not visit him in Durban. She looked after the kids and the livestock ploughing with her father-in-law. They ate traditional food.
Dingindawo was not a traditional healer. He was short-tempered and liked conflict. His precious thing was arrows and weapons because he liked war. He was a person who didn’t like peace. He also didn’t believe in God. He didn’t like using discussion to explain, if there was an argument he would start hitting.
His daughter-in-law was not wearing shoes in his yard. They were always wearing traditional clothes made of the livestock skin. Their children were not having kids without marriage. Their marriage was a traditional wedding.
Dingindawo’s son was Mbhekwa, who is my great grand father. He was also short-tempered. He was working in Durban at Kingsyln flat. He was civilised because he wore a suit as an outfit. He was not like his father and his grandfather, he liked Christians although he was not a Christian.
Mbhekwa had two wives, Nota and Boniwe. He gave them a money to buy food in the supermarket. He visited his home three times a year. His wives visited Durban with his kids. His daughters-in-law wore shoes in his yard. He liked peace, singing traditional hymns and Zulu dance, not fighting like his father. He would joke with his grand- and great-grand children. He died on 5 Jun 2011. The number of his grandchildren was 73 and 43 great-grand children.
Mbhekwa’s first son was Mthembeni. He is my grandfather. He had 2 wives, Khanyile and Nosihle. Mthembeni was ‘civilised’ like his father. His wives had a little garden with a lot of vegetables and mielies. Their children did not eat dry mielies. They bought food from supermarket. His children were not eating traditional food. Mthembeni did not have many livestock like his father and his grandfather. He had 11 children and 14 great-grandchildren. My grandmother is the first wife, my mother is the first daughter, I am first grandchild. My grandfather and my grandmother like traditional food. They still cook it when Mthembeni’s wife visits Durban. He is a working at the Cancer Association. He is a Maintenance Assistant. Mthembeni has a lot of girlfriends. My mother is Busi and my father is Nhlanhla at eMkhunya kwaLembe.
My father’s family
The Mdlalose family are the descendants of the Zulu son of Malandela from his first wife. This surname grew quickly after the birth of Nhlaka of MaButhelezi. He is the one who won the war of Shaka and MaMchuni. He was with Shaka in this war. Shaka went with him to the top of the Inhlazatshe Mountain. Shaka told Nhlaka that he will rule the Vryheid area. That why we still have the chief at Vryheid for the Mdlalose family.
Another hero was Sekethwayo. He was a leader of the Zulu warriors . They came down to Baqulusi to prevent the Boers during the Anglo-Boer War. He was buried at Vryheid City Hall during the Anglo- Boer War. Others moved to uMgungundlovu, Richmond, Umkhomaas and Umbumbulu. My family went to Umkhomaas on top of Umntshingwane Mountain, next to the Umkhomaas River.
From that time when Mdlalose saw how Hambaza became a chief assistant (headman), after he died his son took over to be a headman. His name was Galigi. When Galigi died my grandfather took over, his name was Shelani (‘Unkonka omancushe’). He is still a headman today at KwaLende Tribal Authority. Shelani’s wife is MaMphumulo from Umthwalume. My father is Nhlanhla. During the period of Hambaza and Galigi there were no medical doctors. Both of them there were traditional healers. They used traditional medicines. They do not get any grant from government, they support their children themselves. They used to sing the traditional hymns and Zulu dance. Their houses were rondavels and they were made of long grass and wet soil. They did not use floor polish, instead they used cow dung. For defence they used shields and spears. They used the skin of animals to make their clothes. They ate source food. They have a lot of livestocks and fruit from the forest. My name is Nombuyiselo Mdlalose. I am 16years old, I have two brothers. Their names are Mnotho,who is 11 years old and Mlindi, who is 9 years old. I am only the girl from my mother’s womb.