Once again, I ignored the ancestors’ call

Dear nephew Milambo

GREETINGS from this land where making faces at a phone camera is more important than genuine conversation.

My dear son, I hope that by the grace of Limatunda you and your entire family, and all the people of my beloved Ukumbisiganga are enjoying the protection of our ancestors led by Chief Mirambo.

Here in the city things are not bad my dear boy, although a few days ago I felt as if the ancestors were signaling me to join them, because the way I was feeling my dear boy, I was ready to heed the call.

My dear son, I thank Limatunda that now at least I can sit on my own and even write a letter, because a few days ago things were bad, because I was very sick.

It started as a slight headache in the morning as I was holding your sister Amani in the living room. I thought that maybe it was because I was coming from outside where the sun was blazing as if it had an interior evil motive.

I told your aunt about how I felt, and she told me that it might be because of the heat outside, but to be on the safe side she brought me a painkiller and a glass of water, which I swallowed.

By afternoon, the headache was back with a vengeance, while at the same time my body felt as if I was put in the same ring with Mike Tyson, George Foreman and Rocky Marciano after I insulted them.

At that time your aunt had gone to visit a friend of hers together with the baby, so I decided to go to the bedroom and get some rest, hoping that the feeling will go away after a proper rest.

My dear nephew, your aunt found me a few hours later, huddled in the blanket, shivering as if I was standing naked in the middle of Alaska, although the temperature in the room was high at that time.

She says my body was so hot that she became scared, while I was mumbling incoherent things due to the fever.

With the help of the gardener, they managed to bundle me in the car and drove me to hospital, where doctors fought frantically to reduce my body temperature.

The doctor later told me that high fevers that linger or worsen can cause significant health complications if left untreated, including seizures, brain damage, and even death.

My dear son, I could swear that during my hallucinations as I mumbled to myself, I saw a host of Nyamwezi heavyweights, including Chief Mirambo himself, Chief Fundikira and even my dear father, Mzee Tambwe wa Tambwe (May his soul continue to rest in peace).

I really thank Likube for bringing me out of that hospital alive the next day, because I was sure my trip to join the ancestors had finally materialised.

As I am writing this, I am still recuperating, with your aunt hovering around like a protective mother hen to make sure my road to recovery is smooth.

My dear son, apart from that health hiccup on my part, things are okay. We really thank Limatunda because your little sister Amani is growing at a very fast rate, and I believe if she continues this way, soon we will have to start looking for a convenient school for her.

I was disappointed when you informed your aunt that you will not be able to come to Dar es Salaam on the agreed date, but I believe that everything works out for good, and all the same, 22nd is not that far.

Your cousin Yassin will be arriving with his family early next week, so at least the house will start to become busy as we wait for your arrival.

I hope they will not be forced to reschedule their flight because he told me that their son was not feeling very well, but I believe by then he would have recovered.

I talked to Mjasiri the manager and told him that I will soon send them a bonus for the festive season, so if possible you can confirm with him before you come over.

And please don’t forget my tobacco, because I know sometimes you have a tendency of forgetting things, although I also told Mjasiri to remind you in case you forget, and he told me he will soon have my package ready.

My aunty Sophia also called me a few hours ago, and she told me she returned a few weeks ago from abroad where she had gone to visit her son.

If I had known that she was back, I would have invited her over for the festive season, because as I told you before, I usually like her company very much, and also considering that she is the only aunt I have left.

I should alert you that this Christmas I have also invited a neighbour and his family, and this is because of a very special reason my son.

You see, this chap is a pastor of a tiny church several metres behind our house, where he has erected a makeshift structure where he conducts his Sunday services from.

There was a time I passed his church one Sunday, and I counted the number of worshippers attending Sunday service, and I can assure you they were not more than ten people, including his wife and four children.

That is why I understood why those fellow lives in abject poverty, because apart from the church structure, there is another small structure made of worn-out iron sheets, and this is where he sleeps with his entire family.

I stumbled across him last week for the first time and we talked for several minutes, and from what I saw, he is a decent fellow who is genuinely concerned about his family.

That is why when I suggested to your aunt that we should invite him and his family for Christmas, she did not have any objective whatsoever, so they will join us that day.

My dear son, let me end here for now, because I feel my body is slowly becoming exhausted.

May Limatunda and all the Nyamwezi ancestors watch over you.



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