I lied. Shingalinga (sheen-gah-lean-gah) in itself is not a new concept, it’s just one I assumed had gone undefined till my friend Moin-Moin told me otherwise. It’s hard to define but by the time you finish reading this post, you’ll know exactly what I’m talking about.
You wake up one morning, look round your flat and think ‘this place needs a good clean.’ You put your stereo on full blast, get out all your cleaning agents and draw up a plan of attack. If you’re like me, you start with your wardrobe. In one fell swoop, you empty its contents onto the floor. ‘Right, let’s get arranging.’ You fold all your jeans and stack them in a neat pile. T- shirts, another pile. Cardigans next. By the time you get to the flimsy tops that have no discernible folding pattern, the shingalinga starts to wear off. You grab your clothes off the floor and stuff them back in your wardrobe. Back to the storage cupboard the cleaning agents return. Shingalinga over. Flat is still upside down.
Moin-Moin and I went shopping in Paris and were horrified at the figures printed on the price tags. A drab shift dress for €50? We felt cheated. Surely it can’t be that difficult to sew? A quick Google search showed us the fabric hotspot in Paris and off we went to Montmartre. We were worse than kids in a candy store. After spending hours salivating over endless rows of fabric, we brandished our cards and headed home with fabrics, buttons and all sorts of tailoring bric-a-brac. We designed the clothes we were going to sew. Moin-Moin was determined to sew a beach dress for our beach holiday a few days later. All this in the heat of the Shingalinga. The fabrics are still sitting at the bottom of our wardrobes.
My adopted sisters and I decided it would be nice to do something different for Christmas this year. Caught up in the moment, I suggested renting a log cabin in the Lake District. Think Tyler Perry’s ‘Why Did I Get Married 1.’ Everyone bought the idea. I pictured the girls turning up with their respective boyfriends, playing in the snow, walking along the lake and enjoying the amazing scenery. We would have Christmas dinner in front of an open fire; turkey, potatoes, jollof rice, dodo gizzard, mulled wine, pudding… heaven! I had a clear vision of how the holiday would pan out. Intent on getting my dream cabin, I volunteered to plan the trip.
Girls, the shingalinga has worn off!