Leicester, The Midlands – from the lens of an African ‘rookie resident’

Leicester City, UK Capital of sport and culture//Copyright Crimson Tazvinzwa/https://aiwa.press/

‘I come from a country where we don’t drink alcohol except eat bullets’ – Crimson Tazvinzwa

In light of the terrorist attacks at Mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand that left 50 innocent people dead and scores injured – and obviously both local and global attention zeroed on the despicable heinous attack; it is understandable people are talking about it everyday these days – new discourse on the definition of terrorism whether it ‘is immigrant’, homegrown or both.

But listen to this.

This last Sunday at Haymarket Leicester bus station I was confronted by a stranger …all he wanted was a lighter for a fag. Of course the guy was ‘way way worse for wear’ and could barely hold steady his can of cider- above the limit but could still just about talk – how miserable and depressed every people look in winter.

He also asked me: “Where are you from?”. I’m getting used to this type of interrogations from strangers – especially from my fellow immigrants. Anyways I let him know I am from Southern Africa, Zimbabwe; and that I have not been able to travel back there since I left 2000 to which he commented:

“Oh! Aah! Zimbabwe? Is it one of those ‘sh++ hole’ countries? To which we both laughed.

I then inquired his country of origin and he told me to which I was understandably shocked. It is a very religious country where alcohol is banned and women cannot just wonder off on streets without a ‘male escort’, could be a small boy or adult.

Any way in our brief encounter I protested why he was drinking; an act against his religion.

He answered in the most direct and eloquent manner:

‘I come from a country where we don’t drink alcohol but eat bullets’