Torn Apart: BOYD PHIRI
IT’S festive season again, I am sure everyone is making some plans to paint the hood red, if not brown, the colour of opaque beer.
This is not to say that the hood is never a hive of activity any other time of the year, but any holiday season comes with a difference.
Every aspect of life in the hood receives some dose of vim and vigor, even vagabonds want to increase the number of sympathisers and their uptake from garbage dumps.
Alangizi (marriage counsellors) also want to cash in on marriages in a state of difficulty and those just about to take to the aisle.
Prostitutes want to increase the number of clients per night for more cash, witchdoctors want to attract more people to their services such as “protection from poverty”, thieves want to increase the number of house break-ins per night, some pastors expect more from their congregants’ pockets, and above all, drinkers want to drink themselves stupid.
If you look beneath the surface, the whole range of stupidity increases in size in the hood during the festive season.
Of course, people in the hood dream of good things every day and night depending on what they need at a given time.
Expectations are high in the hood again this festive period. No-one wants to be left out from the shopping spree, even loan sharks in the hood know it.
Of course, this is the only time when most people would want to take a break from eating veggies like impwa, bondwe and a daily intake of kapenta for their protein needs.
This is also the time when you receive requests from some relatives asking you if they could come and spend their Christmas at your home.
Call them festive period relatives; they always check on you at the end of the year to see if you are able to supplement their festive period budgets for booze.
But you can’t blame people in the hood for expecting too much, after all, festive period is meant to show love to one another as it is also a time we remember the birth of Jesus Christ.
But those expecting a lot from big buyer, someone overly generous only in watering holes in the hood, should understand that this time around he wants all potential beneficiaries of his rounds of alcohol to have TPINs (Toughest Patron Identification Number).
Forget about the Tax-Payer Identification Number (TPIN) being propagated by the Zambia Revenue Authority.
Big buyer has realised that some scroungers in bars vomit after taking more bottles of beer than they regularly take, thereby making his expenditure go to waste.
The barman, as the custodian of big buyers’ expenses, will be there to check your TPIN this festive season.
Obviously, the festive spirit is everywhere in the hood making everyone heighten their expectations. Even some cops expect to receive gifts from thieves and vice versa.
Inmates also expect to receive gifts this festive season, of course, not from prison authorities, but church organisations which provide spiritual support to prisoners.
Needless to say, the festive season comes once a year, but the bills come every day, which is why most people in the hood want to forget about their problems, even if it means just for few weeks.
But one thing is true, the festive season is not really a time for overindulging – but reflecting on our lives, especially on the birth of Jesus Christ our saviour.
Remember that at the heart of the festive season is Christmas Day, the birthday of Jesus Christ our personal saviour.
In other words, Christmas is the opportunity to worship God because He has humbled Himself and appeared in human form to save us.
Even as you spend money on merry-making, be sure to worship God this period and to pronounce good news of the birth of his son Jesus Christ.
Definitely, this is the best way to remember Christmas even when everyone gathers around the elaborately decorated Christmas tree and the room is bathed in festive lighting.
Let your mind focus on Jesus and you can simply forget about your everyday worries for He is born to save you. I am sounding like a preacher, don’t I?
Anyway, regardless of whether this festive season is a religious or more of a cultural celebration to others, you can not escape the magic of the festive season.