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Jasmine Dispatch

When I Was Young
December 11, 1999


My name is Bakkar. I collect tickets from tourists who come to visit the big stone dam, Aswan High dam on Lake Nasser. This lake is the largest man-made lake in the world. Before it was turned into a lake, it used to be a beautiful place - the land of Nubia. When I was little, we would dance and sing to the moon during special ceremonies. The drummers would play and we would jump, clap, and move to the music for hours. Then, we would shout to the people who lived before us, "Ay kadoli Nubia!" That means "I love Nubia!"

Vocabulary Box:

dam - a big wall built to block up a river and turn it into a lake.
harvest - to gather up a crop.
ceremonies - special rituals.

During the day, we would float down the Nile. I felt as natural and free as a bird. I dreamed of being a captain. Some days, I would play with my mule, Kiji, in the mountains. I went to school, but I would race home to help my father in the fields with the harvest. Late in the day, I would sit on the mountain top and watch the sunset. I love to remember how the land used to look before the lake was created. The memory of Nubia will live forever in my heart.


p.s. - Please e-mail me at


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