The Epitome Of Irrelevance
I was in a little village in a district called Mbarali in mbeya last year in August,.. me and my team of journalists were doing a water research project and I wanted to see the actual situation we were dealing with because I mighty hate sitting around behind the desk and getting feedback reports, I like to go to the field, mingle a little. Meet the DC, tell him I wanna be president someday…watch him roll his eyes glow as he thinks ‘Stupid kid’ smile and wave …Go to the schools see the children, put on a little music dance around with them and take pictures. Funny enough the team was so accustomed to calling me Jack and not Jackie...so the first time they went over there and informed them that the live debate would be monitored by Jack the project manager, they figured Jack had a beard, There was no time to mention that Jack had boobs and painted her nails in weird shades of blue and orange and sometimes only sometimes, she clipped her own eye brows(extremely brave), not that It would make a difference everyone thought.
The village chairman arranged all their people who were representing the various villages from different wards for the live debate to be aired on the radio, they expected a tall firm serious man with a mustache and a little goatee. The look on their faces as I got out the car, a short girl with bouncy hair and little beady lawyer eyes, one village chief couldn’t hold it in anymore and had to ask ‘we thought Jack was a man, ’
‘Funny’ I replied ‘ I hear when I was born my mother told me the same thing, history has to stop repeating itself like this’
roar of laughter then back to work interviewing villagers and water engineers, children, women, teenagers…till lunch hour and I was starving …I walked into 3 restaurants where they all didn’t have food. The first one said ;Lunch hour was 2 there so they didn’t start cooking till 1, the second said the cook was at the village meeting which we had just come from, the third one was the most annoying, ‘You want food? At this hour?’ I scowled at the restaurant owner for a minute ‘No of course we don’t want food, we were exploring your beautiful restaurant, admiring it and wondering If we could sit here for a while and chew on your carpets’ sadly she didn’t follow through on my sarcasm and proceeded to tell the whole village that the little girl who came with those journalists asked to eat my carpets. (Rather complicated explaining that to the village chairman by the way)
We managed to get food at restaurant number 4…where we sat down with a couple of interesting young men, they made handmade generators that run for 2 -3 hours only but sadly they were forced to stop making them by the district because they had been told those generators were ‘harmful’, they looked somewhere between 15 and 19, nothing over. I looked up at them and said hello and we exchanged greetings in their language (I picked up some of their language greetings, comes with the interviewing). I asked them if they were at the meeting and they said no. I asked them why they said they didn’t think their views can help and they were ‘busy’ trying to make these generators less harmful, So I being inquisitive, asked them why they thought they views wouldn't matter, a sad response followed through
‘We haven’t had water in this village since independence, we have never seen taps, the wells we use were built by Danida in 1989, we have seen people like you come here ask questions, act shocked build hope in our mothers eyes and then after a couple of months, you leave’
I had no come back line, nothing smart or funny to say, I just sat there trying to stomach what I just heard, It took me a while to digest it, especially the statement ‘Hatujawahi ona maji ya bomba toka uhuru hapa’
Long story short by the time our research was over the little village in Mawindi was in the water budget for 2014, now we have to follow through and make sure by late April to these guys see tapped water this year for the first time since independence and yet till date that statement bothers me and haunts me.
What do you worry about when you wake up in the morning?
Mine,in perfect order respectively…every morning
I worry about my hair, my nails my teeth, my toes, should I match my toe nail polish to my fingers? (Toughest decision of the day) What color should I wear? Will this skirt show panty lines? Am I gaining weight on my derriere? Has my derriere even grown? Why is it not growing?
But Do you ask yourself relevant futuristic questions? Do you have answers for them?
What are you doing everyday with your 24 hours and will it matter in 5 years?
And are you doing the most important thing you can do right now?
If the answer to of all those questions is no…then whatever you’re doing is probably the epitome of irrelevance
Figure out your priorities and establish your goals ….some kids out there in some village that doesn’t even have electricity are making generators and they haven’t even seen tap water since independence, they’re not on their bums complaining… What are you doing ?