There are dogs and then there are pitbulls

Dear nephew Milambo

GREETINGS from this land where the number of cars is bigger than the number of drivers with brains.

I hope that by the grace of Limatunda you and your family are all doing fine, and all the people of my beloved Ukumbisiganga.

I hope that the power of Liwelelo and the watchful eyes of the ancestors led by Chief Mirambo has been hovering over all of you.

Here in the city things are not bad my dear boy, we thank the ancestors that everything is going well and right now the weather is not that bad, although sometimes during the day the sun is unbearable and at night the weather is very cool.

I hope that you finally got your driving licence, because I understand how you have been looking forward to getting it for a very long time.

But let me tell you something my dear son, getting the licence does not mean that now you know everything on the road, because most accidents are caused by people who have driving licences.

Keep calm. Don’t worry. Like anything in life, learning takes time. If you have a licence, it means you can drive.

If you are not sure, then just drive slowly, and don’t think people may judge you and think that you are an amateur. Just take deep breaths and think that you are alone and no one is there. Keep driving slowly and you will be more and more comfortable.

But I have trust in you my dear son and I know that because you are always brave, driving a car should be a child’s play to you.

I told your aunt and she was so happy for you, so I think I should tell you in advance that the next time you come over, you will be the official family driver, that is what she said.

My dear son, I remember I told you that I bought the Pit-bull dog which my American neighbour was selling a few months ago, that is why I think I should tell you that the dog has proved to be a very good guard.

Getting the dog to know me was a real process, but I thank Limatunda that after a few weeks it finally settled down and accepted me as its new boss.

It was a challenge with your aunt and the house girl though, because every time it saw them, it was as if it had seen a real enemy and itched to tear them apart.

But I thank Limatunda that after a few more days, it got very used to your aunt, and as you know your dear aunt is very good with dogs, that is why I believe now she is closer to the dog than me.

Not that I am complaining though, far from it, because I believe it is good to have more than one person taking care of the beast, although the house girl is still terrified of the animal, and the dog always looks at her the way a cat eyes a fat rat.

Before I bought it I had to involve a friend of mine who is a very good dog trainer and he told me that training a pitbull is not as hard as it may seem and can be incredibly rewarding.

He told me that the dogs are strong-willed dogs that require proper and consistent training in order to become well-behaved members of the family. With patience and dedication, he said you can teach the dog to trust and obey commands.

My dear son, the reason I am telling you about the dog is because two days ago I got to experience the real ability of the beast, because a young fellow made the mistake of breaking in our compound, but fortunately he lived to tell the tale.

That day we came home very early, and after taking dinner, I went outside and released the dog and spent some time with it before retiring to bed.

Early the next morning your aunt was the first one to wake up because she had an early appointment and usually when we go outside, the dog is usually there to greet you, wagging its short tail as if its life depends on it.

But that day when your aunt went outside, the dog was nowhere to be seen, and after calling for several minutes without a response, she came back inside and told me that the dog was missing.

I knew that was impossible because there is no way it could have gone outside because of the fence, so I quickly went outside to find out what had happened to the dog.

My dear son, you know we have a big compound, and I found the dog on the furthest corner of the fence. What was amusing is the fact that it was sitting facing a young fellow who appeared to be in his early 30s.

What happened is that late at night several youths decided that it was a good idea to rob our house, so what they did is that they made a hole at the fence big enough to allow someone to go through.

The fellow we found was the unfortunate one who was the first to enter through the hole, and came face to face with the dog.

My dear boy, those dogs are trained killers, because while the young men were making the hole, it sat on the other side silently without making a single sound, and waited patiently for the first intruder to enter.

When the young man entered and saw the dog, he was wise enough to freeze where he was, because as soon as he tried to make any move, the dog growled a warning, informing him that any stupid move would be fatal.

And that is how we found them in the morning and you will not believe it, but even after seeing me, the dog did not move, as it continued to stare at the unfortunate young man, waiting for him to make the mistake of trying to escape.

It was after the local militia had come and took the fellow away when the dog finally relaxed, and I can assure you the fellow was thankful when he left our compound and into the hands of the law.

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