SAFFIYAH EDOO

I am not a fan of podcasts, I tend to find a number of them long, tedious, and sometimes way irrelevant to the theme that was originally set out. It is known that if one remains mired in one’s own opinion without listening to contrary ones to ours, one’s learning remains dangerously incomplete. I was therefore pleasantly surprised to have been proven wrong when I decided to give the first episode of Fam Palab a go.

Many might dismiss the program just by looking at the name, but therein lies the trap and provides a good opportunity to question oneself. How far are we willing to go beyond our own misgivings to give a chance to something that we don’t like at first sight? We might have been wrong the whole time, as this podcast proves, in my view, anyway. Instead of perpetuating the connotation that the expression “fam palab” has, the podcast, in fact, turns it over its head and demystifies its very nature.

The premise of the program is pretty simple: listen to a conversation between two women, the initiator, Shakti Callikan and her guest, who talk about the latter, her life, her fears, her ambition, her insecurities, in short, aspects of her life that might not be perceptible to the onlooker but to which each and every one of us can relate to. The strength lies precisely in the podcast’s simplicity and relatedness factor. While Daniella Bastien (the first guest), talked about how she realizes how the world in which her daughter lives is completely different from hers, despite the environment not having changed much, I found myself nodding along. When she talked about her asking herself what her very first memory was, I found myself trying to cast my mind way back when to see if I could come up with something as far back as early childhood.

As women, we are often talked of, talked down, talked over. Here, women are able to talk, to talk to, to talk about and tell their stories in words of their own choosing. The first episode in promising, here’s hoping that the upcoming ones will follow suit and that the multitude of voices that makes up the Mauritian woman is given a place in Fam Palab. Don’t take my word for it, give it a listen and see for yourself what you make of it.