It was 8am and Tongai was already at work, picking up trash around the City of Harare, alley after alley. He already felt tired but he knew he had to continue to get by. As they stopped by the hospital he rushed to pick up one of the bins, he saw something in the bin and paused.
His facial expression changed, he stood still with disappointment written in his face. There was a Khaki envelope with his handwriting on it at the top of that garbage. His application to the school of nursing had obviously been rejected. The other men shouted,” Hey, we don’t have all day, let’s go!” He quickly got back to work hurt and pondering about life. He had hoped so much to become at least a male nurse and probably work his way up the medical field.
He had been garbage collecting for two months just to get by in the city and be able to raise fees for applications. When evening came he sat on a stool in his room in Mbare and began to write a short note, which was to be delivered to be delivered to his rural home. He basically sent the message that since he got to the city he had not had any luck securing a job and he was still raising money for his little brothers exam fee.
He unfolded some blankets from the corner of the room and spread them on the floor took a photograph of his mother and lay there and tears rolled out the corner of his eye. His mother had raised him single handedly, she never spoke much of his father and now she was gone leaving a void in the boys life. Tongai was 23 years old but he had gone through more strife than the average 28 year old because responsibilities in his life came at an earlier age than the average man. He worked for the city council during the week and sold rat poison during the weekend.
Many time s he had contemplated using the rat poison on himself but he was strong enough to ignore the thought. He kept his mothers picture everywhere he went and prayed to God for a change in his life.
The next day he went to the bus station and gave one of the drivers the envelope. The driver would deliver it to his family in his rural area. Right then he was called for an interview by a printing company. They told him to go for the interview on the following Monday.
He was so happy, he prayed every day until that very day and when Monday arrived he was smartly dressed waiting to be called into the office. He got into0 the interview and as he got in he was introduced to a panel of three interviewers. A man who was in the panel stared at him for a while, as if he knew him. Tongai gave them his brief history when he was asked to and as he did this, the man requested that the interview be halted.
“Are you, the son of Stella Manyame?” he asked. Tongai nodded his head in approval but bamboozled by why he was being asked so. The man asked, “Are you sure?” Tongai nodded again.
“Yes, I am.”
“How is she? How is your mother doing?”
By this time the other panelists were angry for their time wasted but the man told them to bear with him.
“I think I have found my long lost son.”
Tongai took out a picture of his mother as tears rolled down his eyes, and Mr. Gwasira, the man in the panel moved close to Tongai and knelt before him in tears.