I grew up in a small township called Samora Machel. Oh, my childhood days! I remember those days like they all happened yesterday, when I was still untouched by fear and failure. Every morning I woke up it felt like life was injected into me again. I felt ignited, especially by the noise of my friends on the street, playing and singing. It was just perfect for me. Every one loved and cared for one another. We were just one big happy family.

It happened in the blink of an eye.

I remember it all. It was early in November. My mother and late father were getting a divorce. I was flabbergasted and mad at the same time at how they could be so selfish. Me and my mother had to move in with my grandmother. I didn’t want to leave my home, my hood. Things couldn’t get any worse but they did. I lost my father. I felt like my soul was ripped out. But it was what it was. It was a lot to take in.

Oh, wow!

I’m back in my hood. I have been longing to come back home. A lot has changed. My friends don’t recognize me anymore. I don’t feel safe in my hood anymore. People no longer care and love each other. They hate each other and kill each other. People have turned into animals. They are brutal. I do not know them anymore. They have become strangers. Is this my hood? Is this my home?

This is no longer Samora!
This is hell!
Not my hood!
Not my home!