Celebrating 100 Years Of Life

25 Mar 2018 16:40pm
By Maggy Thomas

WINDHOEK, 25 MAR (NAMPA) – Not many people are fortunate enough to reach the age of 100.
One of the lucky few is Fransina Simon, who celebrated her 100th birthday in Windhoek on Friday.
When Nampa visited her, Simon was sitting comfortably in her living room, admiring the birthday cake and flowers she got from her family to celebrate the big day.
“Mweyapo, mweyapo,” she said, welcoming the team in Oshiwambo.
Born on 23 March 1918 at Onamakunde in southern Angola, the centenarian looks much younger than her actual age.
She said she keeps herself busy every day by sewing and watering plants, among other household chores.
Walking is not as easy as it used to be, but she manages to move around to places like her garden, which she adores.
Simon can also read and watch television without prescription glasses - something many people younger than her are not lucky enough to be able to do.
She told this news agency she has never consumed alcohol or smoked.
“It might be one of the reasons why I’m still alive,” she said.
Simon however insisted that there is no secret behind her good health, although some credit could go to her simple diet of mostly Oshikundu (the Owambo traditional drink made from mahangu millet), pap and ekaka (spinach).
She also enjoys eating wild fruit and berries.
“I praise God every day in everything I do. I praise God for letting me live for 100 years,” the elder said with a smile on her face.
Simon and her mother moved to Oshikango in northern Namibia when she was just three years old.
It was also at Oshikango where she met and married her husband, Kristian Ngulungu, at the age of 22.
Ngulungu passed away in 1961.
Simon had six children - two sons and four daughters. Two of her children have passed away.
Today, she has 31 grandchildren, 48 great grandchildren and five great-great grandchildren.
On Friday her firstborn, Kaunapawa Nelao Max, cried tears of joy.
The 79-year-old Max described her mother as a caring and loving person who made sure that they wanted for nothing growing up.
Another daughter, 64-year-old Elizabeth Bruce-Lyle, flew all the way from California in the United States of America where she currently lives, to attend the birthday celebration.
While the Nampa crew prepared to leave, Simon sang a song from the Ehangano book of hymns.
“Ove awike jesus wange, move handiliyandjele, owu wakongange mounyuni, ondimone elao ne. Shimha ngaa ndikuna, nena ondawanenwa.”
Roughly translated this means, “Jesus you are my only Lord, I offer myself to you, for you have searched for me in this world, so that I receive your blessings. As long as I have you, I am fulfilled.”
Simon’s family plans to hold a birthday party in her honour on 31 March 2018 at her home village of Omangela in the Ongwediva Constituency.