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VAS

Jailed for 'sleeping' on the job

STUDIES
By | June 20th 2011

With Anastacia's continued absence, several things have increased in frequency including ulcers, migraines and curses. On the latter, I am only thankful that Nema laws are silent on polluting the environment with foul language!

The only thing that has kept me going though was the knowledge that the landlord’s daughter was scheduled to come back from her business trip in Tanzania anytime now.

But as if to prove that misfortune is attracted to me the way Finance ministers are attracted to raising taxes on beer and cigarettes, I got a message from her saying she had postponed her trip back.

"HECTIC BUSINESS TRIP, WILL TAKE SOME TIME OFF TO SEE THE BEAUTY OF THIS COUNTRY," the SMS screamed in capital letters.

Having now effectively wiped the smile off my face, I could only hope that if she was planning to go swimming, she would find herself in shark-infested waters! That would serve her right for putting me through the hell I was now going through in the hands of Gloria and Jicho Pevu, who neither feared me nor sucked up to me, very important ingredients for leading effectively!

No sooner had I received the SMS than I heard a commotion outside the pub. Investigations revealed it was the sighting of the dreaded city council license department inspectorate van that was prompting businesses to close.

In my case there was nothing to worry about. The landlord’s daughter might have many faults like going weak at the knees every time she comes across a fast food joint but non-renewal of licences is not one of them. So I just stood there watching and enjoying the sight of penny-pinching business persons operating without a license disappearing like fuel from a tanker that has overturned at a busy trading centre. It served them right. What makes them think they can operate a business without a licence? If they want free things, where were they when Italian missionaries were giving away free blankets to lure people into Christianity!

When the city council licence inspectors and a horde of city council askaris approached Stacy’s Pub, I knew it was just procedure. Without prompting I pointed to the framed licence hanging on the wall inside the counter.

"What’s the date today?" one of them asks after a pause.

Like an obedient boy scout trying to please the troop leader, I answer and then add, "why?" My suspicion is that perhaps they have introduced cost cutting measures at the city council which have seen them doing away with calendars.

"The renewal is long overdue!" the inspector declares with a look of a dentist who has been starved of someone to inflict pain on but has finally found a patient with a huge cavity.

"What!" I exclaim as the keys fall off my hands.

I check the licence. It’s true we are late by a fortnight. I begin to realise that perhaps the landlord’s daughter didn’t delegate this responsibility out of love for me. And as the city council askaris start to haul me to their van I tell myself that if any of these guys applies for the vacant position of chief government hangman, I will put in a good word for them — for they are ruthless and lacking in sympathy!

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