Category Archives: Lifestyles

Ala! Mke Mwenza?

Tatizo la kutoweza kumpata mume lilimsumbua sama Bi Janet. Alichekwa kuwa amekuwa bikizee na hatampata mume katu. Ingawa alikuwa na mali ya kutosha, hakuweza kupatana na mume yeyote wa kumkonyezea jicho ama kumuomba namba ya simu kama ilivyokuwa ada kwa marafiki wenza wa miongo mingi. Alienda mara kwa mara kwa rafiki yake Yunia ambaye alikuwa mkewe Diwani eneo la Manatwa ya kati. Alimweleza vile alivyokuwa amesononeshwa na jambo hilo na kutaka kufafanuliwa fumbo ambalo kwake lilikuwa kama usiku wa giza.

Wachanganuzi walibaini kuwa ni kwa sababu alikuwa na madaha kama tausi. Wengine walisema ya kwamba sura yake ilikuwa imechuchuka. Licha ya kuwa mkakamavu na mwingi wa kutabasamu na waume kama wanawake, hakuwa amepata mme alipotimiza umri wa miaka thelathini na mitano.

Ilikuwa ni katika hafla ya kuapishwa kwa gavana wa Kauti ya Isilala amabapo Diwani Mizigo alimtambulisha Janet kama mkewe. Ijapoluwa Yunia hakuwa mehudhulia hafla hiyo, taarifa ilimfikia ya kwamba amepata mke mwenza. Habari hiyo hakuipokea kwa furaha. Ilimsononesha na kutonosha kidonda moyoni mwake. Akawa amageuka na kuwa mwenye uhasama mkuu na aliyekuwa rafiki yake wa kufa kupona, Janet. Alitamani ajinyonge lakini akawa mwenye subira. Rafiki wa jana alikuwa amegeuka na kuwa adui wa leo.

Habari ilieneo kote Manatwa kama moto unavyoteketeza godoro. Watu wakawa wananong’onezana wawili kwa wawili, wengine kwa vikundi vywa watatu. Wengi walimshtumu Yunia kwa kuwa alimzoesha Janet kuwa karibu naye mno. Jambo ambalo wengi walisema ndilo lililomfanya Mizigo kumkonyezea jicho Janet. Haya yote yalikuwa mazungumzo amabayo Yunia hangetaka kuyasikia.
Yunia alijitia ububu wasije wakachaniana nguo kadamnasi ya watu. Alielezewa ya kwamba Mizigo alikuwa amemjengea Janet majumba ya gorofa na kumwekea biashara kuu jijini alikohamia baada ya kumuoa. Akapewa jukumu la kuandamana Mizigo kwa hafla zote. Janet akawa anajitambulisha kama mkewe Mizigo.

Huko kijijini Yunia akawa mpweke. Msaibu yakawa mengi na yasiyokuwa na kikomo. Mizigo alisitisha safari yake ya mara kwa mara. Akawa hapatikani. Mwishowe akakoma kabisa kuenda kwake kama alivyolikoma titi la mamake. Ilimbidi Yunia atafute namna ya kuwasomesha wanawe watatu ambao walikuwa wamesajiriwa katika shule ya kifahari. Pesa zilipomwishia akawahamisha wanawe katoka shule ya bweni na kuwapeleka shule ya kutwa iliyokuwa karibu na nyumbani.

Yunia alijikakamua na kumwachia Mola yote. Alimwomba Maulana aweze kumkengeusha mume wake (wao). Hata ingwa wengi walimcheka sana Yunia, mambo yake alimwendea vizuri kwa upande wa watoto wake. Walihitimu vizuri masomoni na kusajiriwa katika shule za kitaifa ambako walitia bidii ya mchwa wasije wakamtoneshea mama yao kidonda ambacho kilikuwa kingali kibichi.

Baada ya miaka kadhaa, wanawe Yunia walimaliza masomo yao na kupata kazi zenye malipo ya juu. Habari zilimfikia Janet huko jijini. Akawa anamwonea gere mke ambaye alimnyang’anya mmewe. Kwa upande wake masomo aliwachenga sana wanawe. Hakuna aliyeweza kutamka “ba” wala “cha”. Aliwazoesha maisha yenye furaha na kuwaelezea kuwa hata kama masomo yatawashinda atawapa ajira kwa kampuni amabazo alikuwa anasimamia.

Kwa upande wa Mizigo, mawazo yalikuwa hayampi usingizi kwa miaka mingi. Afya yake ikazorota. Akawa hana sifa uongozini mwake. Alijuta kwa nini alichukua hatua kama hiyo. Akawa hana la kufanya ila tu kurejerea nyumbani na kumsihi mkewe wa kwanza amsamehe.

Akamwandikia barua iliyosoma;

Mke wangu mpendwa,

Pokea salamu furifuri kama mchanga wa bahari kutoka hapa kwangu. Natumai u mzima. Mie ni mzima kama kigongo.

Najua hutaraji kupokea barua kutoka kwangu. Uhasama kati yangu na wewe umedumu kwa miaka mingi. Nakumbuka vita nilivyokupiga na kukupa taraka. Cheche za matusi nilizokurushia na kuoa rafiki yako wa jadi.

Naomba msamaha kwa yote niliyokutendea. Sikukusudia maisha yaniendee joshi kama alinyoniendea. Najua una kidonda ambacho kwa hakika hakijapona.Madhumini ya kukuandikia ni kukujulisha ya kwamba nimeshidwa na maisha haya. Nataka nirejeree nyumbani. Chuki na masimango ya familia na jamii yangu yananivunja moyo kila wakati.

Nisamehe! Naomba unipe jibu kama utaipokea barua hii. Nasubiri kwa hamu.

Ni hayo tu. Mengine nitakueleza baadaye.

Mmeo,

Mizigo.

Mizigo akawa anasubiri jibu kwa muda mrefu alisilipate. Akaamua kukusanya virago vyake na kuenda kuomba msamaha moja kwa moja. Alipofika kijijini matwana, alipatana na kundi la watu wakikarabati barabara ili magari yaweze kupitia. Barabara zote zilikuwa haziendeki hazipitiki.Wanachi walipomwona walikuwa wanataka kumpiga kwa mawe. Wakazuiliwa na kijana mmoja aliyekuwa anasimamia kazi hiyo.

Mizigo alinyemelea pole pole kuelekea nyumbani. Alikuwa ameponea kifo. Alitamani kuyarekebisha makosa yake yaliyokuwa yanamsumbua alikini sana. Kwanza alikuwa amemkosea mkewe na watoto. Alitamani awaone watoto ambao hakuwa anakumbuka jinsi walivyokuwa wanakaa. Alitamani ajue hali ya mkewe. Alitamani alitamani…….. La pili alisumbuliwa na mawazo sana kwani jukumu la kusaidia wananchi lilikuwa lake lakini aliwageuka na kuhamia jijini. Alikuwa ameponea kifo kwa makosa yake. Alikuwa amewatesa waliompa kazi.

Alipofika nyumbani, alipokelewa na sura ambayo haikumpendeza kamwe ya nyumba ndogo ambalo mkewe aikiwa anaishi. Alikumbuka jinsi alivyomjengea Janet majumba makubwa jijini. Angalau angemjengea ima fa ima alipokuwa anamjengea Janet. Kijia cha kuelekea mlangoni kilijawa na nyasi na mfereji uliokuwa watiririsha maji. Alinyemelea kwa mwendo wa pole. Alipokuwa akinyemelea mlango ukafunguliwa. Mbele yake alikuwa ni mkewe. Wakatazamana kama sinema. Pakawa hamna aliyezungumza na mwingine. Muda ukawa wasonga.

Baada ya dakika chache, kijana mmoja aliyekuwa na sare ya shule alifika huku akimbia. Mikokoni mwake alikuwa ameshika kijibarua kilichokuwa kwenye bahasha ya kijani kavu. Alikuwa wa shule ya msingi ya Mambo Jana iliyokuwa kijijini Matwana. Aliwasalimu wote kwa kuwanyoshea mikono Yunia na Mizigo. Akampa Yunia barua hiyo na kumweleza ya kwamba alikuwa amepewa na mwalimu mkuu amletee. Aligeuka mbio na kukimbia kwa kasi kuelekea alikotoka.

Yunia alimtazama Mizigo ambaye alionekana kuitazama hiyo barua kwa mshangao kwa mara ya pili. Hamna aliyetamka jambo. Yunia akararua mwisho wa bahasha kwa umakinifu na kutoa barua yenyewe. Alisongea kado na kujishikilia kwa ukuta wa nyumba na kuanza kuisoma barua ile. Mara aliposoma kidogo alitikisa kichwa. Hatimaye akawa ameimaliza na kumgeulia Mizigo.

Waliangaliana tena na kusongeana. Mizigo alitamani amweleze Yunia kuhusu ile barua ambayo aliifahamu. Yunia alitamani aweze kupata ushujaa wa kumsomea Mizigo, mme wao. Hayo yote yakawa ni ndoto tu. Wawili walikumbatiana huku wakilia kwa kwikwi. Wawili wakawa mmoja.

Mgurumo wa magari ulisikika kwenye lango kuu. Magari matatu aliingia na kuegeshwa karibu na nyumba ya Yunia, na Mizigo. Vijana watatu walishuka na kuelekea walipokuwa Yunia na Mizigo. Mizigo aliweza kumtambua mmoja kama kijana aliyekuwa anasimamia ukarabati wa barabara na aliyewazuia wananchi kumpiga kwa mawe lakini hakumjua kwa jina. Wote wakamsalimu Yunia kwa furaha. Wakamgeukia Mizigo na kumsalimia. Yunia akawa na soni. Wanawe hawakuwenza kumtambua baba yao. Baba hakuwafahamu wanaye. Ilibidi awaelezee.

Wote wakakumbatiana kwa furaha.

Vijana wakaeleza sababu yao ya kuja pamoja. Walikuwa wamekuja kumchukua mama yao wamhamishie kwenye nyumba waliyokuwa wamemjengea. Walikuwa wanakarabati barabara ili magari yaweze kupita. Kijana Mararo aliweza kukumbuka jinsi alivyowazuia wananchi kumpiga Mizigo ambaye walisema aliwatendea mabaya kama Diwani wao na kutorokea jijini.

Wakasherehekea upatanisho wa kiajabu.

Heshima na furaha ikadumu milele.

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Queen in Pain

The last few days of my aunt Rebecca were punctuated by intense suffering, incessant whims and visible pain. She bravely soldiered on. The amazon was wasting away as each day unfolded but she chose to hold on. There was life in her eyes; they still radiated her past glory but her frail self is in defiance.

She chose to twist the turns and arguably, she made her final days the most phenomenon of her years. She was generous with her time; her words depicted a rare sense of calm. She thrived in this halo, seemingly her condition imposing, clothed into this explicit individual who was jolly to be with.

Since her cancer diagnosis, Rebecca had slowly turned into a blurry reflection of her former self. Her prosthetics limited her movement before she was indefinitely confined to her bed. Feebly clinging to the apron strings of nostalgia, she literally refused to ail. Her hairline had receded and all she could show off was a bunch of stringy strands on her scalp. She was thinly and weak till she barely walked. She was exhausted, and to me, each day seemed her last.

Every morning I met her ashen face, shared somber moments after which I would softly sob into my hands in her backyard. She preferred to smile instead. She was conceding, her pain notwithstanding, and seemingly growing into an imminent crescendo. I saw her gradually waste away, and even in my sleep her frail voice reverberated in damning tintinnabulations.

It was one of my then not-so-frequent visits that she beckoned me to inch closer. Her voice was reduced to a whisper. She wanted me to call to her bedside, her daughter in Australia. Part of me went numb and for a brief moment silently stared into her weepy eyes. I knew at that moment she was not to live past her fiftieth birthday a fortnight away. I swallowed painfully and was hushed tones till I took to calling Stella.

On a cold night in July, my aunt went to be with the Lord. She died softly in her sleep. I chose not to cry that day. It was most befitting for the queen in pain. Her Bible beside her haggard corpse, she looked like one in her sleep. She was calm, happy in her new state. It struck me I was not to see her again, but I had lived her pain, I had seen the damsel in distress waste away.

Stella was most dispirited. She did not make it to share her mother’s last moments. My dad was dejected. They just didn’t come to terms with the loss. Aunt Phoebe had collapsed at the news.
Burial preparation was intense grief. We all knew how much we would miss Rebecca. She was instrumental, sensational, was our Rebecca.

On a sunny Saturday, my aunt was laid to rest. The requiem mass had been solemn but dignified. She was eulogized as she would have wished with speeches brief and concise. The epitaph was classy and ingenious, and the wreaths, beautiful as she herself had been in her lifetime. I remember it rained that evening.