The news of my soon-to-be departure to Europe was the talk of the village. I was about to be the first person to have ever visited the white man’s land. Not just any, but the land of Queen Elizabeth the First. I was not going to visit the Queen or her palace, but none of that mattered to me nor my people.
Mr Benjamin Lewinsky was a tourist at my village and a good friend of mine. He had promised to take me to England on his next visit. I have always wanted to explore the world within and outside Africa. Most especially to visit the place our grandfathers only told us stories about. I was getting the attention I never had before. Everybody wanted to be friends with me. Inda of all people! The same person that was almost invisible to everyone, prior to my glory anthem— the news of my travel to Europe. The women, men, fathers, warriors all respected me. Not excluding the self-proclaimed ‘Lion’ in the person of my King. Girls that never paid concern to my existence are now the ones fighting among themselves to be called my date. I was a celebrity in my own sense.
“I never even travel yet, and they are worshipping me like this. Chai, I said to myself.
The morning sun was bright as always. The scent of mud was all over the atmosphere; evidence of yesternight’s rainfall. The gong from the King’s palace echoed with the voice of the town crier.
“Great people of Kankara, the King summons you all to the palace. Great people of Kankara!” he pronounced.
“What could be so important this early morning?”
“Good morning mama. I think it will be best we go and find out from the Lion himself,” I answered.
The entire villagers were present at the King’s palace. We were all anxious to hear what he had to say this time; the last time he summoned us, he gave the information of my travel to Europe. Could this be another of such news? Everyone waited patiently for his arrival.
“Quiet! The King is here,” the Kingsman instructed.
“My people. Thank you for honoring my unpleasant call this young morning. The reason was such that I need to inform you all as it affects us all. We all know about the construction of the sugar factory, sponsored by the Lewinsky Foundation, as well the preparation for our very own son Inda to visit England. Well, unfortunately this might not become reality. I received a call from Mrs Lewinsky last night, and she informed me about the painful exit of her dear husband. I’m sorry to inform you all that Mr Lewinsky has passed on to join his ancestors,” the King said.
I was shocked to my bones. My dream shattered to my hearing. I lost a very good friend, and also a lifetime of dreams that almost became a reality.
Things went back to the way they use to be. I became invisible to everyone. “That boy that almost visited Europe,” was the phrase I was remembered with. The women that once fought for me, now fought with me. The girls that wanted to be my date, now wished I was dead. The respect I gained, I lost all.