Remember playing in the street? These are locals’ 7 fondest childhood memories in Malta
Like every country over the years, Malta has changed significantly as time has gone by, especially when it comes to the kind of childhood millennials are experiencing today (particularly when compared to that of their parents or grandparents.) But what is it about growing up on the Maltese Islands that locals miss from times gone by? I collected a few fond memories from a handful of older locals... here's what they had to say.
1. Playing in the street
This was a popular one, and I can totally see why! Many locals played hopscotch, tag, hide-and-seek, Oranges and Lemons, and my absolute favourite, lakstu using long pieces of elastic wrapped round people’s legs and jumping around. The wider the elastic, the bigger the challenge. Let’s just say I got a few bumps and bruises from playing this game back in my day, and never learnt my lesson!
David Jennings / Flickr
2. Biking absolutely everywhere
In days gone by, when Maltese roads weren’t so, erm, chaotic, locals would bike to their desired destinations without fearing for their lives!
Ainunau / Flickr
3. Neighbourhood iklas
Great company, the great outdoors, and never-ending tables of Maltese goodness? Where do we sign up?! The neighbourhood ikla (meal), was an unmissable event. It was a bring-your-own-everything kind of situation and one that would be talked about for weeks – until the next one that is.
Bill Bartlett / Facebook
Another local favourite pass time - this time one that could be played indoors - was marbles. “Us boys used to play with them before our Mużew (catechism) lesson, while the girls used to play with beads. We even used to negotiate and trade the marbles,” recalls one local I spoke to, very fondly.
Adrian Paul Debono / Facebook
5. Countryside walks
Others mentioned weekly countryside walks with family that would consist of capturing frogs and tadpoles in jars. That part is definitely a thing of the past, since frogs are protected nowadays!
sunbeam12 / Flickr
6. Mischief managed!
Locals were mischievous back in the day! The famous ding and dash, or doqq u iġri in Maltese, was a prime sport... it’s technically like training sprints in athletics, right?
UNHCR Central Europe / Flickr
7. Meeting at the każin
While this is still largely done nowadays, meetings at the każin where really popular way back when. Whatever the time of day, it was beer o’clock, or te fit-tazza u pastizz time at least!
Mark Zammit / Facebook
What are your fondest childhood memories?