Coming Home to a really chilly Bulawayo is always fun, nothing has changed, its like living in a time warp.
My girls always hated any changes, I was never allowed to move any furniture around as it would upset them, and they insist that we hold onto the dear old Family Home, even if we spend so much time away, and they are unlikely to come back and take over the empire that HeeHoo has so amazingly built during the special years of our lives.
The only trouble with a 66 year old house is that it requires constant attention, and my trip home has been to get as much maintenance done as I can. Majestic roof repairs, pool repairs, leaking taps, leaking roofs, leaking tanks, etc etc, but to add insult to injury the sixty foot long, six foot high, beautiful brick wall between us and our neighbour, decided to gasp its last breath the day before I arrived home and collapsed all over my beautiful garden beds with a giant sigh!! The wall had been there for over fifty years so why it decided to give up the ghost now is a mystery!!
Bulawayo city is an enigma, there is not a single policeman anywhere to be seen, not a single road block, no-one at the school crossings, no-one in uniform even cycling or walking around, where are they all is the question that everyone is asking
There must be literally thousands and thousands of policemen lurking somewhere, as six months ago there were thousands and thousands of them manning roadblocks throughout the country
Are they all in training for the forthcoming elections Are they on R and R Have they been dismissed for corruption at the roadblocks Are they lazing around the police posts I do wish someone could tell me
Sadly the absence of a police presence has resulted in a serious downturn in the driving and in general law and order in the country. The Bridge Girls gave me all the gossip at bridge last night and no doubt the Mosaics girls will fill me in with some more delicious gossip tomorrow!!
Our little Black Cat is ecstatic to have me home and spends all night trying to find a warm place on my chest. We worked out that she is 116 years old!! Joyce looks after her like a mother and takes over the elaborate feeding duties and she also sleeps with Joyce at night when we are not here!!
I was pleased to see an amazing amount of residential buildings rising in some of the new suburbs. And on the subject of the city going forward - the hundreds of vendors who sell from the street corners are looking pretty upmarket!! They have graduated from selling their wares from a plastic bag laid out elegantly on the pavement, then they rose to a cardboard box with wares neatly and fastidiously displayed, and now I notice that most of them have climbed to greater heights!! A lot of the vendors can now even boast a makeshift table upon which their wares are exhibited!!
The on-going cash situation is still pretty serious and I was allowed to draw a princely 100 bond notes today, thats my weekly allowance of cash. The shops are charging one price in Bond Notes, giving 15 percent off if you use a 'Swipe' card and giving fifty percent off if you pay in genuine USA dollars!!
My heart goes out to the poor and the elderly who have to live this life of 'Quiet Desperation'.