By Amie Sillah
Mama Magga saw him staggering into the compound and exclaimed;
“Again drunk to stupor! What’s wrong with you? I am sure you are again with your stupid old useless friends; you cannot give fish money but you can drink to stupor!” She charged.
“I am ashamed of you; they estranged you from your super rich son and also intertwined you with liquor to render you useless and worthless!”
“My ‘friends’ set me up to make Mama Singi to ridicule and insult me. I did not want to drink but they dragged me to the Joint and how would I know they were up to something? You are very right my dear wife I’ll leave them they are not good associates and are only a bad influence in my life.”
“It is a promise oh! It is a promise meant to be kept and never let me remind you again!” She posited as she helped him into the house.
A Poor Diet
Every day is a worrisome day thinking about what to eat Mama scrapped her garden and take to the village market anything she can lay hands on with the little money she prepares anything it can fetch; today is an unlucky day as only ‘nyaakatang’ (bare rice) with locust beans (netetu) and some dry fish (gejah) was available. Pa Billey ate with a heavy heart as he picked up his food.
Mama Magga sobbed bitterly;
“I am a stranger in this country your family reject and label me with all sort of evil names accusing me of being responsible for your predicament, what do I do to them? Our only super rich son also rejected us and is benefitting our tormentors, what trouble life is this? But I’ll continue to pray until Allah answers our prayers.” she said sobbing.
The Old Friends
They came to his home and he snubbed them while Mama left the house so as not to greet them.
“I wish they leave him alone, they are a bad influence to my husband; they increase his troubles,” she soliloqued.
“Aren’t you wicked friends? How can you take me to the Joint and left me stranded? Aren’t you the ones who invited me? You are no longer my friends and never come to my house again you are bad influence to my life,” he charged them.
They were ashamed as they apologized for their action.
“I have paid for the bill I don’t know why Mama Singian behaves as such, she is a greedy woman but I’ll deal with her.” Pa Filly lied.
“Leave my compound and let me never set eyes on you again!” he bragged.
The duo went to attack Mama Singi. But they first let her served them their delicacies of bush meat before asking her questions.
“How is Pa Billey? Is he coming to the Joint of late? It’s a long time we have not seen him.”
“He did not settle his bill and I seized his watch, mobile phone and new sandals and it will not be returned until he settled his bill.”
“You did what? How could you treat a community elder as such? His wicked super rich son makes him a laughing stock but he is a kind man who has helped a lot of people when he was able and you should remember that no situation is permanent; how much did he owe you?”
“He owed me D300.”
“Only D300? What you seized is more than D300, and also how can you let him go home barefooted? That is very rude of you!” He charged he then paid the bill for him.
“Talking about his super rich son, is he part of a cult? That’s the gossip going around town.”
“He is and if Billey eats his son’s money the son will die. He gave me money to give little by little to let him survive on crumbs but it has to be unknown to him.”
“So that’s why you are always paying for his Joint bills?” He shut her mouth;
“It is a secret and don’t tell anyone. I am a family friend and have sojourned into the world with his father in search of greener pastures, that man you see in rages was one time an influential diamond dealer respected by all and sundry. Keep your mouth shut and keep my ‘little secret’ or else I’ll have it shut for you.”
“I pity the parents, ritual money is evil oh it is evil!” She exclaimed.
“Give me my friend’s properties.” Mama Singi called on Jonsaba to bring in Pa Billey’s items.
Ify’ Two Friends
She visited Nyonkoling’ Fashion Shop and met their other friend Jaha, the girls admired her outfit.
“Didn’t you know that her husband is one of the richest guys in town and one of the hottest?” Jaha posited.
“Is it? You two are hot and sexy too!” The trio burst into uncontrollable laughter.
“You are welcome come inside.” They went into her office inside the shop and she offered them soft drink while they chatter away.
“Your mouth smells can only be uttered by a true sister; you are a graduate! For God’s sake try and do something, keep yourself busy, your super rich husband should find you a job or better still open A business for you. This is my candid sisterly advice.”
“Bangs wouldn’t let me do that as he gives me a fat monthly allowance which is more than a graduate’s salary. What do I need to work for?”
“Work and be independent for once, tomorrow is pregnant the piper determines the tune.” Ify just laughed over it. Then Nyongs continued;
“Gossip has it that your super rich husband does not take care of his parents who live in abject poverty and penury in the village?”
“Who told you such lies? My husband takes care of his parents and why do you believe them when you call yourself my best friend? I am out of here to leave you with your gossip!”
“You are my bosom friend and that’s why I am enquiring from you whether you’ve heard about the gossip? You should thank and not be mad at me!”
“She is angry with you, you should not have ask her!”
“If I did not ask her to confirm who else would I ask? Let her hear the gossip and do something about it if it is true.”
“You’ve done nothing wrong but she is upset and covering up!”
“If it is the truth she will know I love her and wish her well and she’ll open up and come around.” Nyongs posited.
“Really?” Jaha asked and Nyongs shook her head.
To be cont.