Dear mangoes and tomato roadside sellers, it’s been a few months since I left you and went outside countries like my people would say. I always think about my home but this week I was really tempted to write after reading about a film through the Guardian site. I love mangoes so much but I promise you weren’t really on mind when I decided to read this news article; I was just interested in news about just small part of the land. It was supposed to be about racial issues. I read keenly about this new documentary that was really shot during terrible times in one of your villages, is it called Zimbabwe? Yes Zim, as you romantically baptised it. I wanted an update on what the village chief, Robert Mugabe was up to these days. All the stories about land grabs from white people I have read and re-read and honestly I still don’t know how it came to this and how the village and the chief will find a real end but I was quite taken up along the way. This documentary maker was struggling to get ways of comparing life in the rest of the villages to Mugabe’s. If I remember well he tried to explain what happy people in the rest of land are really about. And he summed it up: “But in Zimbabwe, it (life) had stopped. It was not like in the rest of Africa, where you could have people selling mangoes and tomatoes on the roadside; it was like a country that had shut down.”
Pictures of roadside stalls in the city and on all major highways headed to the countryside came to mind. I was really amused at this person’s ability to compound happiness into mangoes and tomato selling. I tried to search for other things he could have pointed out not because the mango selling business is bad measurement but because I could name a million other things that we are better at and make us happy people. In the end this tired referencing about Africa tired me and wished he had just made his film and just kept quiet and let the pictures speak.