By Albert Nyakundi Amenya – The Banana Peddler
Beloved Gusii brethren, a man’s dog stands by him in prosperity and in poverty, in health and in sickness. He will sleep on the cold ground, where the wintry winds blow and the snow drives fiercely, if only he may be near his master’s side. He will kiss the hand that has no food to offer; he will lick the wounds and sores that come in encounter with the roughness of the world. He guards the sleep of his pauper master as if he were a prince.
When all other friends desert he stays put. When riches take wings, and reputation falls to pieces, he is as constant in his love as the sun in its journey through the heavens. If fortune drives the master forth an outcast in the world, friendless and homeless, the faithful dog asks no higher privilege than that of accompanying him, to guard him against danger, to fight against his enemies.
And when the last scene of all comes, and death takes his master in its embrace and his body is laid away in the cold ground, no matter if all other friends pursue their way, there by the graveside will the noble dog be found, his head between his paws, his eyes sad, but open in alert watchfulness, faithful and true even in death.
Why am I saying all these? It is because our people have distanced themselves from Don Bosco. Arguably, most of us Kisiis are good in playing holier-than-thoughs. We pretend to castigate Don yet most of us are unattractively pedigreed. We, the Abagusii are a contrary of the Agikuyu (Kenyambi). Ours is the olden pathetic I-don’t-care charade as long as you are not directly related to me.
In Central Province, a man caught in similar circumstances is a hero because they’ll say “alikua anatafuta” (he was hustling) In Kisii, they’ll raise eyebrows and say “oyio nerichambasi ritindi” (That was a dangerous criminal). Conversely, I am not quarrelling with my people’s views, I am only reminding them to be there for their brothers and sisters at all times.
There are no trees in Gusii Land that grow money. You must work hard to get it as long us no one is injured, harmed or dead in the process. Bro Don was unequivocally good at the game. Let us join hands and fight for our brother. Today it is him and tomorrow it might be YOU, your relation or your friend.