OK, I don’t really know where the journey starts for most people but mine begun when I was born. When you are born in a family of teachers and academics, you pretty much know where your life is headed, if you are not rebellious that is. My parents were teachers, my uncles and their wives were teachers, those who were not teachers had good careers, backed by PhD’s, master’s degrees or were working towards attaining these status changing qualifications, with an exception of a few “references”; the ones that were referenced not to become like them. I stayed with my mom’s older sister whom I called maiguru (aunt). I am going to tell you a story that happened at our home one day after school when I was still in primary school. I wanted to sneak out to go and play before I did any school work.

Maiguru: “How can you go to play before you do your homework? That’s what uncle Nicolas used to do and look where he is now, he is a burden to everyone, I want a child who hears and listens, OK? You can only go to play after homework is done”.

Me: what if we didn’t get homework today maiguru?

Maiguru: What did you say? Do you know what home work even means? It simply means work that you do at home, no matter who gave it to you. You always have homework so long as you have a home, if your teachers don’t give you, you give yourself, if you can’t give yourself, ask me. You are in a house with teachers, take advantage of it.”

On this day I thought I could rig the system and did my homework during a free period at school.

Maiguru: so Rue, have you done your homework?

Me: Yes I have done it

She looked at the time and figure out there was no way I could have finished my homework.

Maiguru: Where did you do your homework, come with it, and let’s see.

I ran to our “Speya” (what we called the spare bedroom) and got my book to show her my neatly done sums that teacher Sambo had given us to do.

Maiguru: Did you not hear what I asked you? I said ‘where did you do your homework?

This was a trap and I knew it, so I tried to be clever

Me: I did it here; in my homework book’,

I said this as I handed the book to her.

Maiguru: Hey, im not a fool, I said where did you do this homework?

Looking towards the kitchen to the house maid who was more of a sister,

Maiguru: Chipo, did Rufaro do her homework when she arrived?

I quickly jumped in to redeem myself

Me: I did it soon after school before I started walking home, I was waiting for Melody (cousin) so I just decided I would do it because she was taking long to come.

This was no redemption, it was a statement that would later on get both Melody and I into trouble after my own matter had been ‘sort of’ dealt with. Maiguru produced a slight smile, the kind that says ‘I am not a fool’.

Maiguru: That’s good mwanangu (my child), so tell me the definition of homework again?’

Knowing that I had lost this battle I look down and with a soft voice I say

Me: Its work that you do at home.

Maiguru: Exactly, now go get your “Nhaka yeupenyu” so that I give you ‘HOMEWORK’.

I had told my friend Bertha I would come over to play “hwishu” with her, the story didn’t end here, i had to make a plan LOL, part 3 loading