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God of Hunger

over by any other.’ And Poland? „There are some grounds for believing that the
elimination of an upper class at a more developed stage can be a disaster for a
country: and most certainly when the removal is due to the intervention of
another nation.’
*
Of culture and its associated social ramifications Marisha was to hear a lot
more of in the course of her work; especially in her many contacts with what
were being referred to in the media as „the chattering classes.’
She did not learn much more from Milosz than she now already knew, but
mention of meeting him boosted her reputation amongst the chatterers.
*
Tiring of the culture show in London and finally wanting to slough off her skin
as the chameleon she was expected to emulate at sensitive meetings, Marisha
flew to Dar-es-Salaam, seeking Jozef.
There was no one there to ask about him. Or no one she thought should even
know he existed. She went to Songea where his family had their business, but
again nothing. No one even remembered the family let alone Jozef. Her last
throw was to try Kongwa where he had been to school. And there she spoke to
Mr. Patel who revealed as much as he knew. It did not surprise him that people
in Dar-es Salaam and Songea were different or indifferent.
He explained to her that the Teacher’s, Mwalimu’s, policies of tribal admixture
and displacement meant an ethnic transformation on a national scale. No one
was where they had been. But he certainly knew of Jozef and told her the tale of
the great slaughter and of his escape in the family’s Peugeot. He knew
something of the Selous Scouts from letters he had received from family
members in Zambia and Zimbabwe and suggested she fly to Harare to discover
what had happened. “If you see him please tell him that I consider myself lucky
to have lost my pick up and to have kept my thing.” “What thing?” she asked.
“Oh, he will tell you if you find him.”
*
In Salisbury, now Harare, Marisha booked into the prestigious Meikles Hotel.
This had remained the last watering hole where the white tribe could still
exercise exclusivity through the power of the purse. It was only ministers and
their entourage who could afford the prices charged. And even they, after the
first exercise of privilege preferred to drink amongst their own kind.
By conversing at the bar Marisha gathered up the sequence of events in Jozef’s
life after his raid on Kongwa.
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