"I DON’T HAVE to work hard, after all I am the only heir to my father’s property.” Those are the only words that haunt Octra every second of her life. As she rises from the cold and moldy floor, her now aching body is barely warm enough, but the chores outside the animal shed do not care about that. The horrible smell from the stables reminds her that the horses need a bit of washing today.
Usually, she would do her work with a grumpy face and unwilling heart, for it is not the job she had dreamt of as a child. But today she sings the local songs sang at the market every Thursday. For it is the end of the month, the day she gets her pay. The boss walks in and throws a coin at her face “Twenty shillings take it or leave it” he shouts and storms out to his car. Startled by the scene, she falls down to the floor a tear dropping from her now red eyes and whispers to herself,” I am an African child and not banana peelings.”
Relating Octra’s unfortunate life to our daily lives, most of us tend to sit back and wait to be given everything on a silver platter. We do not work hard enough to build the life we all wish for, but instead wait for someone else to drop it at our doorstep. What we often forget is the world is a selfish place and nobody will give you anything if you do not work for it. And if they do, someone else will probably come along and snatch it away from you.
I give you a gold necklace; yes you know its value but not as much as the person who spent months at the mine digging for it. So as you swim in the wealth of your parents or guardians, let us not forget to create our own wealth. For what is not yours may vanish within a blink of an eye. Why limit your abilities by working for “banana peelings”?
Why waste time daydreaming, instead of working for your future? The Good Lord has always given us the desire to know the future, but he also offers wisdom to make that future as bright as possible. Are you still choosing to work for banana peelings? Are you still saying that the sky is the limit? Well a wise man once said, “Don’t tell me the sky is the limit when there are footprints on the moon!”
Lilian Awuor, S6 Arts
Riviera High School