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Remembering Gift Phiri the Quaffmaster!

20 Apr 2020 at 10:33hrs | Views
Why my brother? Words fail me. I dont know what to say? I usually have words to describe those that depart this world whom I associate with a lot but this time around, I am not sure where I should start.

Why Gift Phiri? Why my boss? Why my dear Comrade? Who will share with me that laugh, that squicky naughty laugh, that was your trademark? You should have given it to me for the last time before you breathed your last so that I record for memory's sake. Comrade, you have broken my heart to smithereens, pieces that I will not be able to pick and put back together.

I remember those days at Indonsakusa/ Ilanga when we were both trying to find our feet in this thankless profession called Journalism. I remember you in those designer suits as you sat and shared your broad smile when you joined Miriam Madziwa, the then boss at Kindness Paradza's Tribune newspaper.

The smile never faded. It was your trademark. You shared it more at the Associated Newspapers of Zimbabwe (ANZ). Not only that, I have tales to tell about you. We thanked Geoff Nyarota for taking us to Botswana for what was a holiday-cum-training. Boy Oh Boy, fun was had. You quaffed that liquor like there was no tomorrow. Remember St. Louis 24?

 I can even tell you that you bought 24 of those cans, yes, four six packs and you quaffed them into the night and the following day. My roommate at Cresta Tapama Lodge in Francistown. By the way Gift, you and I know what the heck happened during that holiday. Remember our agreement...?

 To keep the story for another day. Now that you are gone, Gift, who will help me share the lighter moments of that trip? As I retrace these moments, it is only the heart that can share how I feel at this point. It is as if the whole world has been taken away from me. You were as if you were my brother, blood brother. But it is this thankless profession that brought us together. I will live to share your stories.

 And I know you will be with me as I do this through and through. You have not passed away from us, but you have been promoted to the high heavens. Rest in power my brother. Rest on Peace. Rest in the hands of the Almighty.

 Till we meet again, May God be with you and comfort the family at this sad time. Go well, Gift Phiri! Go well my hero! Go well my brother. Go well my dear friend. I will always cherish the good times we spent together. Rest In Eternal Peace, Gift Phiri...!!!

Source - Nkululeko Sibanda
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