“Lending Money to a Stranger”

The human mind can sometimes play tricks on its owner. Sometimes, you may look at someone and you cannot figure out exactly where on earth you ever met that face or better still, if you have ever met that person anywhere at all!  

The human mind can sometimes play tricks on its owner. Sometimes, you may look at someone and you cannot figure out exactly where on earth you ever met that face or better still, if you have ever met that person anywhere at all!  

At such moments, when you cannot put a face to a name to come up with the exact identity of someone standing before you or on the other side of the phone line, all you do is simply pretend to know the person and pray that, your mind will sooner than latter piece the identification information together and give you a clear picture.

For the bold ones, they normally inquire as to where they ever met the characters standing right in front of them or otherwise; this takes a great magnitude of courage to do so.

A few months ago, as I was busy minding my own business, a beautiful young lady approached me and greeted me by my nickname (I was known by that many years ago), a name I have not used in a decade, I last remember being called so during the MINUAR days (mid 1990s).

Someone saluting you by such a name is bound to be someone who really knows you;  not knowing such a person can be very offensive.  Under such circumstances, the best thing to do is to pretend to know that person.

Cutting the long story short, the cutie introduced herself as Nunu and told me that she had a small problem and wanted me to lend her just twenty thousand francs and that she would give me the money the next day.  

Who the hell was this Nunu?  The problem is that, there are many Nunus, in Kigali; Nunu is a sort of nickname or pet name.

I could see a con woman or con girl in front of me.  Maybe she read my mind, she quickly pulled out a not so expensive and neither cheap Nokia phone, “have this, I will take it when I pay back”, she suggested!

Going by the look of events, she had literary tied my hands behind my back; I had no way out but to “lend” her the cash.  Taking her phone for security had its own problems, what if I lost it, what if my “chain keeper” came across it, what if this or that happened, e.t.c.

I decided to give her the cash but not to take her “ngwate”, a gentleman has to die like one; don’t they say that, “abagabo bararya, imbwa zikishura”
(men eat and dogs pay).  

With this “créasse économique”, I swallowed
hard, dug deeper into my pocket and produced the hard earned 20K.

She thanked me heartily and promised to pay on time and that, if she failed to appear, she would send her mum!  Was this yet another bait?  I wondered!  Enough was enough, I decided to ask her who she was, after all, I had already “lost” the 20K and I was not ready to be turned into a “garden”!  Before I could ask, she volunteered, “my mum works with PVK (read MVK), I will give her the money, in fact she is the one who sent me to you”.  

My mind began working in overdrive, I figured it out. The only lady known to me and working with MVK..., ah, she was Tedora’s daughter!

She had grown up pretty fast, the last time I saw her was most probably ten years ago. At the time, she was around ten years old

Mfashumwana@fastmail.fm

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