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07.08.2020 Feature Article

God has killed me - Part 3

God has killed me - Part 3
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While stretching his body Mr. Karl laughed and smiled: "Here in Ghana it seems to me you have more church buildings than citizens...oh my God have mercy on your people!"

"I love your sense of humour, Mr. Karl. I can see, you are feeling better now and are in good spirit...that is very good!" said Princess and asked him to follow her.

In his left eye Mr. Karl saw the public-school building standing close to the street with a football pitch besides it. Young girls and boys were standing outside chatting in groups. They made sure not to mix, boys sitting on stones by the roadside and girls closer to the school building. They were all dressed in uniforms, top orange, down brownish. They were cheerful and laughing taking no notice of the opposite sex.

"Mr. Karl...please...follow me!" was Princess wondering why he took notice of the pupils that were not ready to walk home. School had ended hours ago but the pupils had no reason to go home that day. "We pass here! Please, Mr. Karl...make sure you do not hurt yourself. Here is a bit dirty and someone like you certainly has to close his nose...that is our life here, Sir."

Mr. Karl walked behind Princess in between houses and structures that fantasy would call houses. His eyes spotted two types of structures, one made from concrete while the rest was constructed with wood. In any case, the paint on all houses were an issue for dreamers of the past and Whites with the hope of better life for the masses in Africa. They were mostly one storey buildings, one room apartments side by side in small blocks, some self-contained, most of them had bath facility and toilet outside in the courtyard or along the paths leading all through the Village. They were passing one four single room apartments with small kitchen inside close to the way someone had to pass through wanting to cross Tema-Accra Beach Road and walk along the shores of the Gulf of Guinea. Someone had put up a small stand in front of one apartment selling sachet water, drinks, and sugar bread. Butter bread was not so popular in her corner with the people around for which reason the person left this business for others living further up the way. While passing that block a middle-aged man stood outside, half naked, round face, belly just big enough to see him as a man standing well in life and holding his position. His Rasta hair was not indicating that he would go for weed but most certainly a man that did not belong to this place, someone very special. The man greeted him and asked where he would come from.

When Mr. Karl mentioned for short his country of birth, the unknown man replied: "I am in love with you Germans...so, so much. Trust me. You are the best people that I know of." Princess indicated they had to go as her mother was waiting, so he added: "Certainly, we will meet again...and it will be great!" He smiled and waved both good-bye.

"Mr. Karl...please follow me...this way, please," guide Princess him through the Village streets, ways with soil only, no pavement with stones of even gravel. It was not the better part of Sakumono Village in fact a very run-down place close to be called a slum. No person living in that area would ever call their home that way only people from outside would do that. "Be careful," smiled Princess at him while crossing over a trickle of dark grey water flowing from the street area above down to the lower section of the slum to end up finally in the Gulf of Guinea. An underground concrete pipe would take the mix of human waste, animal pee, washing powder, soap and human toilet below the Tema-Accra Beach Road to the open Sea for fish not to find a nesting place near the shores of Sakumono Village. "I know the stinch here is too much. We can even smell it inside our houses. But do not worry Mr. Karl, you will get soon used to it. As long as it only hits your nose, that will be over soon, but you must be aware that it does not cause you any harm...I mean that it does not make you sick as you never know what is inside, all the germs, viruses and bacteria’s...that can cause anyone of us serious health issues. so, please Mr. Karl...when you walk around here walk very mindful, keep your eyes always open and on the ground. Never walk without protective shoes so that you can stay safe always. And stay away from the houses around a bit as you might never know out of which house all of a sudden and unexpectedly someone would through something out into this open trickles. Life here is not so easy for people that are not used to our lifestyle. But here at least we feel home among nice people. In other areas of our country, especially in the villages, it is a totally different story. But I hope you will stay in Ghana for quiet sometime in which case I guess you will get to know all the corners of our country and better understand who we are." Princess oved further on uphill again closer to the street they had got off the Trotro.

"Very complicated...cutting corners here and there," laughed Mr. Karl while his shirt was wet completely, and he felt the long trip in his body ready to fall asleep at any time.

Princess stood before the entrance of a dark blue painted apartment block, a one storey building with small windows and doors all covered by mosquito nets, some of them broken in the corners of the windows repaired from inside with cloths covering the holes and said with happy voice and a big smile on her face: "So, Mr. Karl...please...this is our home...and now also yours. Please, come in and greet my family. They will love to meet you...so please, come in. " Princess opened the thin wooden door that was not more than a cardboard keeping insects out, but noises shared. She called her parents, saw her mother first sitting on the old read and black designed Afghan carpet and introduced both to each other. Few minutes later her father appeared from the indoor toilet, washed his hands in the sink of the kitchen and greeted him with love in his heart. Both parents were happy to see him and asked him to take a seat on the old couch that was covered in cloths not making the washed out colours underneath visible.

While the mother was rushing into the small kitchen to bring out chilled water from the fridge and serve their German guests, took the father the opportunity to ask Mr. Karl about the city he came from and what exactly had happen to him. Princess kept herself in the background smiling always. She was really so, so happy to have Mr. Karl brought to this place. She could not tell anyone why she felt so happy, in fact privileged, to have him in their home. Her instincts seemed to understand why this moment had come and why it was so important for them to have Mr. Karl right here, right now with them. As a strong Christian she always knew nothing in this world happens by chance, everything happens for a reason even when it happens or as it does not happen, the reason why a situation and life is like that has a meaning. What we cannot see now, later in retrospective will make sense to us, that is what she strongly was believing in.

Princess parents were humble people, not well educated but always taking great care of their thinking and acting. They respected all people around and beyond, had great passion for good authorities that would lead people into a better future with vision and honest hearts as they were strong in believing in God and his great plans for them as a family and the country at large.

"As you have come here, even never ever had wanted to come as you are telling us, and now finding yourself in this terrible, terrible situation with everything lost, taken away from you," said Joseph Trebarh and smiled with great wisdom in his eyes, “I guess that this extreme situation in your life does not come out of the blue. Out of the blue, so unreal, so unexpected for you...yes, possibly...but I think from what life has taught me...I think it has a deeper, a much greater meaning that we can imagine at this moment in time. Something like that, coming all the way from Germany, leaving your great country and personal comfort zone behind, your social security, your great life, your protection by laws and authorities...and end up in this mess. No, this has a greater meaning, for sure. And the picture of Joseph and Job that had lost everything and handed over to the misery of life...no, your situation is as devastating as it is...I think in the end it is a blessing to us all."

Mr. Karl looked at the father with disbelieve. He was a Christian but of the German style, not familiar with African Christianity that is of its own. His eyes wide open, his mouth finding it difficult to voice the right words said: "I am so, so grateful, Sir, that you give me the opportunity to rest here and come back to my senses. Also, that you volunteer to feed me and give me water...I am deeply humbled, Sir. One thing life is always teaching me that the once that do not have much for themselves are mostly the once that share so much with others in need. And to know that makes me very humble indeed. I always do my utmost best to learn from people like yourself. So, I hope and trust you will teach me the way...your way and let me understand more about all this around me now."

"I will teach you our ways and Mr. Karl," was Mary Trebarh, the mother, entering the living-room with some dry biscuits on an old small porcelain plate with simple painted flowers on it, "and you will teach us your ways so that both of us can learn from each other and have the best time of our lives ever...right?"

Mr. Karl looked at her, than at Princess who was still sitting in her corner smiling constantly being happy to have Mr. Karl in their home and saw how much both of them looked alike which made him smile and happy at the same time while saying: "You never know the moment you are in a situation what the meaning is, but struggle to make the best out of it. I guess, when someone like me finds himself in such a mess that I am in now, it must have a meaning. God can never allow anyone to fall that low without raising him up above what he had before."

"Never!" agreed Joseph Trebarh and smiled. He was leaning over the old couch table with a white clothes bought at Kantamanto Market, the market for used clothing from around the world located in the heart of Accra, years back about to turn yellow after years in use and took the hand offered to him by Mr. Karl. "Never in this world, Sir!"

"He must be tired," said Mary Trebarh and tried to end her husband´s wish to talk and talk. Princess got up ready to assist her mother. "While my daughter called me from the Airport, I have prepared the little room in which we normally keep our food stuff and washing to prepare a bed for you to rest. This room, even it is only very small, but it is all we have to offer."

Karl-Heinz Heerde
Karl-Heinz Heerde, © 2020

The author has 461 publications published on Modern Ghana.Column: KarlHeinzHeerde

Disclaimer: "The views/contents expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author(s) and do not neccessarily reflect those of Modern Ghana. Modern Ghana will not be responsible or liable for any inaccurate or incorrect statements contained in this article."

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