Friday, 12 June 2009

Give It Away...

A couple of weeks ago, I watched as an entire family escorted their beloved child and brother to the bus stop on his way to school. As I sat in the bus looking around as the bus filled up gradually, I noticed a small group of people coming toward the direction of the bus all fussing around a boy… From the way they looked, it was obvious that theirs was not such a well-to-do family. He seemed like he was the only boy born to a family of about 3 other girls (I’m assuming based on the composition of the small crowd). His stuff was packed in a large steel box (I imagined the content- garri, milk, spoons, groundnut, pure water etc) with a huge red padlock hanging from one of the longer sides and his name boldly painted on the top of the box. I wondered how far whoever wanted to steal the box would go before he would be caught as a result of being tired from carrying that kind of load. The unevenly plastered, oily and shiny skin of the boy reminded me
 that the makers of a certain “Stella Pomade” were probably still in the business. His uniform stood all starched and over ironed with his socks rolled all the way almost to his knee…..
Yet despite their obvious financial stand, it was hard to deny that there was so much love that went around in the family. As they walked towards the bus, he is carrying a little girl of about 2 or 3years and his two other sisters are on either side of him, the younger with her hand around his neck looking like she would break down in tears any minute. His father carried the box while his mother, with a small food flask in her hand (probably containing “her boy’s” food) was trying to squeeze some words of advice to her son….
Eventually, they got to the bus and as he handed his baby sister to his mother and collected the flask, the sister on his left broke down in tears as he hugged her and she between her tears smiled as he whispered something in her ears. It was a beautiful scene. Meanwhile as his mother kept saying words like “keep you things well well o”, “don’t let them steal anything o”, “read your books o”; her husband had gone ahead to put the box in the boot of the bus. The last passenger had climbed in after “our boy” and as the driver started the bus, I looked as his already teary face could not hold back the tears and as he let them flow. His mother’s “don’t cry o” trailed the bus amidst frantic waving from his sisters. As we sat down to begin the journey, I wondered what was going on in his parent’s mind as they once again let their son on another journey to a place where they believed would make him a stronger boy. I imagined them thinking with relief “finally!”
I imagined that they had spent the entire period of their son’s break from school to gather enough funds for his fees when time came for him to return.
I imagined them hoping and believing that he would eventually make good enough grades to help out with the family upkeep.
I imagined his sisters…missing their brother but proudly telling their friends that “our brother is in boarding house”.
It was indeed a beautiful scene and I thought about it until I slept off on the way…I think I had a dream too where between me and myself, the story was completed and I think the boy got married (I love weddings…!) but that one is for another day sha.
I guess what I learnt from that was that no matter what the issues are…don’t let it deny you of your ability to show love to the people that mean something to you. Don’t get so caught up in trying to solve your problems (some of which you will never eventually solve) and forget to help a friend, put on a smile and say a kind word to someone. It would surprise you the extent to which the simple “thank you” to the bus driver or “how are you” with a smile to the gate man would go.

Have a blessed weekend everyone!!! Luv ya…!


  1. Hmmmmmmmm. Really touching. That's why I appreciate the saying money can't buy love.

    The family you described has no money but they've got LOVE.......Money can't replace that. Material things can't either.

    Nice piece.

    And thanks for your comment on my blog. Really learnt from it...something about the man made to till and tend the garden and the woman made for the home.

  2. Awww, this piece brought tears to my eyes. You write quite well. Just came across this blog. Thanks for sharing.

  3. ...and i walk away from this post with this " matter what the issues are…don’t let it deny you of your ability to show love to the people that mean something to you." in my minds eye.

    Thank you.



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