Lemme tell u a story of about 17 or so years back (I will use real names apart from Sheldon coz the S real name is unique n everyone will know the lady)
So I was in my senior 5 and I was a victim of a strike. The day began well, I discussed for classmates all day ( Backhouse 1) and so I chose to ” hibernate ” at night. In school it meant getting a safe lone place to read alone.
That hibernation I will never forget. I chose an S. 3 class that I didn’t know S. 4s were planning to use for a strike.
I was busy integrating when I heard noises I didn’t fathom, I ignored and stayed reading till I saw lights being turned off. That’s when I knew there was trouble.
The gals I saw were Doreen (this one was small like a straw, when she walked, you wondered when she would break)!
I saw Rhona as well in my shock stupor ( this one shocked me till this minute. She had been a deckermate )
Then I saw Joan ( this one was prefect so whatever led her into these things I don’t recall
I saw Patience ( a tall beautiful lady, who you would wonder why with all that beauty the brain would think bad)
And Sharon ( this one was a badass. She walked on springs while pocketing like the universe belonged to her short plump self)
And lastly Sheldon….. This one was a Kabale gal. Beautiful as they come, but could not spare a villagemate.
Anyway they rained blows on me as the main course and poured a basket of rubbish on me as dessert. I still don’t know how I found the door but God protects his own.
I waltzed to the staff room across the hill crying in subdued sobs. I have no idea how Badass Sharon, Stick gal Doreen and Joan knew where I passed in the dark.
The devils advocate piglets followed me with sticks imagine. U would think I was Nambooze and they were NRM,, hhhmmm. A snake whose fangs need to be put to rest. I have never been as traumatised. What had I done to deserve that. I heard them say, ” she is the one, she is the one, ” I rushed in the dark past the Home economics room like a haunted FDC supporter and reached for the promised land (the staff room) . I found Hungerline and Kananasi. (Julius and Justine). Those first funny names were nick names.
The trio that had sticks and the attitude of a vampire reclined and left me in the hands of the teachers. I narrated the tragedy and they took note but told me to just go rest. I had to keep my books in my real class that was right next to the staff room then. Now the challenge was getting to the S. 5 Dorm minus being clobbered. Remember Ofwono Opondo, Abiriga and Kibuule were waiting to finish the daylight out of me in the dark somewhere like a midnight ghost. Life has never been so big. Like they say, I wanted the night to swallow me.
Anyway, after awhile I had to dive to the dorms .i waited a little longer, the battalion couldn’t stay in one place. They had more mercenaries to coordinate. I rushed behind the tanks, passed behind the bathrooms of St Catherine like a real thief and stole my way to the A level dorms. I dipped myself in bed and cried myself to sleep. Oblivious of the chaos in the place, my classmates discussing all around me coz exams were next day and the pain I felt in my heart.
The following day, most of the girls were beaten. Not for beating me but for telling the women that had no children how they were infertile and would never give birth. Telling the Slim teacher he had HIV, telling the unmarried woman she would never get married as she was an ugly spinster, stepping on dining hall tables and all the havoc their little adolescent minds could tell them.
Sometimes I wonder if the abuses they reigned on the teachers haven’t got to them. Are they all married happily, with children and are HIV free? Only God knows for sure.
Back to me, I woke up the following day anew . The trauma was there but not that evident. I had to be strong to do my mathematics paper . I had not to break down no matter what. And I never did. Being an introverted melancholy meant I told no one, not even my close friends or even my classmates what happened.