© Pauline Mumbi
In life there will always be someone you can lean on, well what do I know about life? . Anyway, I do have someone I lean on everyday, he always encourages me and guides me throu-gh my day to day struggles. His name is Jesus, a friend of mine (Sandra) introduced me to this man in 6th grade in the village.
My grandmother didn’t oppose my belief in him but she didn’t seem interested. At first it was very weird because Sandra talked about him a lot, he seemed like this super natural
being .. Something I can’t explain. Someone so great ….. so great but he wanted to be my friend. She also mentioned that he has a father and he and the father love me. It was more complicated than I explain it but overall he has been my friend.
I took it this way, she may actually have been lying about this man but the more I listened to her, the more I believed in his existence. She actually gave me a book, in that book there so many wonderful stories about him and his father. Its amazing how much power he has, she mentioned that he lived on earth and then went back to heaven and one day will join him there. I believe my parents are there to. Anyway theirs more I can tell you about him but let me tell you more about my life.
My aunty is not Christian neither is my uncle, but they go to church every Sunday. They do, actually they dress very well for Sunday service and I believe they really make a great statement at church.
The twins are in what is called “praise”, from what I know that should be a choir or something. Anyway as far as am concerned, they sing in church. I do not at all call them Christians because from what I know re-ading throu-gh the bible… there character and behaviour does not match that of christians.
Theirs a man called “papa” well that’s as much as I know about his name. Papa is the leader of the church. The church that my family attends. I have been there once or twice, on those few occasions I had to ride at the back of my uncles truck. At least it was a fancy truck, so when we got to the church I was less embarras-sed.
Let me tell you about “Papa”. He comes home very often and that makes all of us really busy. We haveo to prepare a buffet for him and his disciples, he has a very extravagant lifestyle and he preaches wealth and prosperity all the time. He has a de-ep annoying voice and I have no idea if that’s the ” kingdom thing” but then again my Bible tells me a lot of different things about these self proclaimed men of “god” or “gold” if you may. My aunty invests so much in this man, the offertory they give him to perform some magic tricks is hvge. I know it’s magic because I saw a lot of those in the village. It all seems like a whole bunch of hypocrisy. I’m not in support of that and I often sound bitter when I talk about it.
Anyway, the mansion has 4maids in total, I’m the Fourth.
Working like a maid in my own uncles house is humiliating, I don’t get paid to work so you can imagine the other maids look better than myself. My own pay is the roof over my head and the old pots and pans that my aunty donated to me. She equally allowed me keep the boxes of books I carried from the village which is fair enough for me.
The food I eat is usually what the maids eat, usually…. not always. Because sometimes a well wisher brings me food throu-gh the gateman. That well wisher is a person I met on my way to the market one day, in fact we met again a couple of days after. That well wisher bec@m£ my very good friend despite her age.
Mama Patricia is heaven s£nt, she is a chef at a nearby restaurant in town and she took keen interest in knowing my story. When she felt pity and offered me a hand, i was
embarras-sed. I thought she was suggesting that my situation was very bad.
Mama Patricia donates a couple of things that help with my upkeep and the gateman helps out a lot in getting those items to me without the knowledge of my aunty.
“Yande! Yande! Yande come here you fool before I kill you with my ba-re hands.” Mrs Yande yelled.
“That’s my aunty calling, I nee-d to run. If I don’t get to where she is in 3minutes I will definitely die..
Yes she has hit me a couple of times and I have scars to show for it. By the way she addresses me by my sir name and not my first. She says Yande suits me more. From what I hear, my name Yande is an expression of surprise. I don’t know if that is true.
Anyway according to her, I am a surprise……. a very unplea-sant surprise.
” Yande I nee-d you to pick my dresses from the laundry, you will be going with the driver.” Mrs Yande said.
I nodded my head in agreement and waited for her to finish talking.
“We are having a p@rty tonight just here at home and I hope you can dress your best because you are invited.. And not as a maid this time” Mrs Yande said before walking out.
“Dress my best?” I thought.
I don’t own any nice clothes and I don’t see why this event is so important that I should be invited.
By mid day the driver and I were back from the laundry and I went straight to look for an outfit.

Well I alre-ady knew that I don’t own any nice clothes so i went to shower before i could figure out what to wear. As i was showering i noticed it was that time of the month. The most painful thing about being a poor young lady was when i had my monthly call, my aunty would never give me money to buy sanitary towels so I either rolled a lot of
tissue or recycled some pieces of cloth. Anyway that’s exactly what I did before I dressed for the p@rty.
Ms Chileshe, one of the maids from the mansion c@m£ running to my cottage in the evenings as I sat
re-ading a book.
“Mwansa! Mwansa!” The event is about to start, people from church are here you nee-d to step out.”
When she said those words a cold breeze hit me.After tying my long natural hair, I got up and looked
at my floral dress, even the mirror couldn’t hide the imperfections on my dress.
It was an old fashioned dress with hvge shoulder pads and bu-ttons in the front that started from my
cle-avageall the way down to the end of the dress.
It certainly didn’t look like what girls my age wore but it was my best. Joy and faith usually donated their old school shoes to me and that’s all I ever got from them. So to finish off my look was an old pair of Bata school shoes. I was embarras-sed and uncomfortable but that’s all
I had.
“You look good” ms Chileshe comforted me.
“I know I don’t you don’t have to say anything” I said as I walked past her.
“You have a beautiful face and your hair is long and beautiful. You’re the most beautiful girl I know” Ms
Chileshe said.
My eyes were teary but I walked to the mansion with confidence.
“Oh you are finally here…” My aunt said as I walked into the kitchen.
She seemed to have been directing the maids before I walked in.
“Yande plea-se get the tray over there and serve those drinks to the guests” my aunt said.
I quic-kly picked the drinks and went to the front of the house where everyone was. I saw a lot of familiar faces in the crowd so I quic-kly gave the drinks to strangers and I sat in the corner waiting for the p@rty to be over.
“We are here to celebr@te a great milestone in the twins lives” my aunt said throu-gh microphone. I couldn’t see her from where I sat but I heard her loud and clear.
“Well as you know my twin daughters have left high school, so basically we are celebr@ting their trip to the USA. They have Been great kids and they deserve it.. So this is a farewell to them and hopefully they have a lot of fun” Ms Chileshe said.
At that time my heart sunk and I shed tears. Surely this life had to be fair. I was living in a chicken run,
I could ba-rely afford anything and now my aunty and uncle were throwing a p@rty for my cousins to
go to America?. That explains why my aunty wanted me at the p@rty, she could never miss an opportunity to humiliate me.
I got up from my sit and decided to walk to my cottage but i was ma-king a very big mistake, the back of my dress was messed up. Nearly everyone noticed and they pointed at me and laughed.
It was the most embarras-sing day of my life and like my life wasn’t ha-rd enough. I cried bitterly that night and questioned the existence of my God. Was he really there or was he just a myth.
Could my life get any worse?
To be continued…

NEXT (episode 3)                                                                                        PREVIOUS (Episode 1)