Sunday February 2 2014

Load-shedding and dear Marie-Turi



Gather round children, I have a tale to tell.
Once long ago in the land of bananas, where the women were beautiful and warm and the men were kind and strong, there came a drought. The drought caused the wise leader and his officials to scratch his head and wonder how he could ensure that all the Bananaland dwellers had enough electricity, despite the dipping water levels. What to do? At last one of them rose up with a cry.

“My liege!” he shouted. “Let us have a system where everybody is denied electricity in equal measure!” “Very good Sir ThinkALot!” The visionary leader exclaimed. “We shall call this, load-shedding.”

And so, the dwellers of Bananaland had to endure darkness for many a month. Stored food went bad and many a restaurant and bar owners made a killing as Bananaland’s citizens sought refuge from their darkened shelters.
On one of the ridges of Bananaland lived a pretty lady. She worked at a reputable company and drove a nice car. The kind of car that made one look twice. Let us call her Lucy. Lucy was a devoted fan of the Mexican soap operas that played all across the land between 7p.m. and 9 p.m. Her favourite was Marie-Turi.

As you can well imagine, load-shedding spelt the end for her favourite soap. And so came the day when the final episode of Marie-Turi was aired. But alas! It was the turn of Lucy’s home ridge to endure darkness. Lucy was distraught. How would she ever find out whether Pedro-Alejandro was Marie-Turi’s father or not? Would Marie-Turi end up with Lucio, the love of her life? Would the evil plans of Valeria, Marie-Turi’s wicked cousin and contender for Lucio’s affections, succeed? There was no choice.

Lucy bit her lip in determination. She jumped into her mean machine and drove three ridges away. She endured the badly-damaged roads that characterised Bananaland’s capital city and arrived half an hour later at M- Ridge. Yes! There was light! She strode into her best friend’s house to watch Marie-Turi only to find the end credits rolling on the screen. She had missed it all.

There was much weeping and gnashing of teeth that night. Lucy would never be the same again.
It is not easy being a devoted follower of Mexican soap operas.