listening to an argument - debate, they call it - about language and colonialism. Femi Kuti, the Nigerian artist, is making some infuriating suggestions about neo-colonialism, a debate I haven't been on the same page with M'lauzi.
He's arguing that English colonised our minds. A lady on the panel challenges him that he's going too far. "How could we easily hold this conversation without English?" she asks.
The musician insists Africans used to communicate before English. "We could have found a continental language," he argues making me regret I have bought a ticket of R150 for his concert tonight. (By the way, he show was brilliant, he atoned his sins quite well!)
The woman holds her fort, the moderator gives me the mic and I argue we're pushing the colonial card too hard. "Femi is in some time-warp," I argue unconvincingly.
But those who bash the colonialists win the debate. Herd mentality, I conclude.
Then we go out for tea. I stand at a bookstand. Books are going between R55 and R150. I have some cash and I really want a book. I forgot the one I'm currently reading in either Cha3 or Rex's car.
I'm torn between The River Between
and Arrow of God
. I read both a long time ago but it won't hurt to re-read them, I conclude.
But my eyes catch another one. The two books are going at R150 each while this one is going at R105. It's not the price that catches me. The name of the author sounds familiar, it's like I have heard it minutes ago.
I made my mind to buy this book.
"Can I autograph it for your?" says a voice from behind me, female. I turn; it's that woman who thought like me on the panel!
Then we got talking. "I heard your name from a friend's lips," I say. "Steve Sharra."
"Yeah! He's my Facebook friend!" she says. "You must know my other friend, Stanley Kenani. A brilliant writer! He stays in my house!"
Then we got into some Kenani gossip about what an accountant is doing with letters! She too confesses she's a lawyer by training!
Kenani and Sharra should know who this woman is.
---Tenthani is in Cape Town, South Africa at the OpenForum organised by the Open Society Initiative for Southern Africa (OSISA). MaraPost was honoured by the OSISA invitation to the OpenForum ©2012 The Maravi Post. Reproduction authorised, with usual acknowledgment