So many entertaining things happen in my life in Swaziland. These are the moments I will want to remember because they make me laugh, and they show insight into my daily routine. These moments are often hard to photograph and usually last only a minute or two. I will start sharing them with you in this occasional series.
I am sheepishly admitting and sharing this moment in my life, that has actually happened twice, both within a month or so. And at month 22 and never before.
I got on two different khumbis whose destinations I had assumed, and I assumed wrong. The end destinations are printed on the khumbi, but that doesn’t always tell you all you need to know.
The likelihood of catching a khumbi direct to Mbabane from my community is slim but possible. If I am going beyond Malkerns, that’s usually the direction I am going. But sadly not on this day. I was actually going to Matsapha to meet a friend for pizza at Rudi’s.
Coming on a khumbi from my house, you eventually end up at a T-junction in Mahlanya. And the khumbi turned left, instead of going straight into the parking lot used as a khumbi and bus stesh. This was odd. The khumbi only had a few people, and I always pay attention even if I am reading a book. I wasn’t even doing that on this journey. The conductor nor the driver asked my destination and I never heard them say they were going to Mbabane. There was the possibility of them using the side entrance to the stesh, but the khumbi continued past that. I had to embarrassingly ask the khumbi to stop because I was going in the opposite direction, walk back to the stesh, and get a new khumbi actually going to my destination.
The second time was when I was coming home from Ezulwini. It was late in the morning, and I knew I would have a long wait ahead of me if I wanted to get an appropriate khumbi so I only had to change once to get home. I did not want to wait so long on the side of the road, so I jumped on the first khumbi that came, planning to change at Mahlanya for a khumbi that would go to Malkerns, where I would change again to get one home. Once again I got on a khumbi that did the unlikely but possible thing. I think I was reading but also not paying very good attention. I was vaguely aware of our location. I started fumbling through my bags to get money to pay for my upcoming junction. But then, when I looked up, we were taking the Lozitha route to Manzini instead of the Mahlanya route. We would not be going past my stesh and I admitted defeat and went to Manzini. I made a few delightful purchases: plantains, avocado, and fabric. Then I got on the correct khumbi that would take me the whole way home. This misadventure had cost me all of my spare time before going to school, so I quickly grabbed some food, changed my clothes, and departed yet again.