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Dan lavil Nairobi, ki ti bien anime, ek lwin avek enn klima ranpli ar lamour ek latansion, ti ena enn group zenes SDF ki ti pe viv laba. Zot pa ti pran traka landime. Enn gramatin, kan zot ti fini dormi lor
sa trotwar bien fre la, bann garson-la ti pe ramas zot matla. Pou zot pa gagn fre, zot ti fer enn dife ar bann salte. Parmi zot ti ena Magozwe. Limem ti pli zenn.
In the busy city of Nairobi, far away from a caring life at home, lived a group of homeless boys. They welcomed each day just as it came.
On one morning, the boys were packing their mats after sleeping on cold pavements. To chase away the cold they lit a fire with rubbish.
Among the group of boys was Magozwe. He was the youngest.
Magozwe ti ena zis sink-an kan li finn perdi so paran. Apre zot lamor, li’nn al res kot so tonton me li pa ti ena enn sou lafeksion pou Magozwe. Li pa ti pe donn li ase manze ek li ti pe fer li travay bien dir.
When Magozwe’s parents died, he was only five years old. He went to live with his uncle. This man did not care about the child. He did not give Magozwe enough food. He made the boy do a lot of hard work.
Si par maler Magozwe ti plengne ouswa reponn li, so tonton ti bat li. Kan Magozwe demann li si li kapav al lekol, tonton-la plis bat li ankor. Li dir li koumsa : « To tro bet pou aprann ». Pandan trwa-z-an, Magozwe finn siport sa tretman-la, lerla li’nn sove depi kot so tonton, ek li’nn koumans viv lor lari.
If Magozwe complained or questioned, his uncle beat him. When Magozwe asked if he could go to school, his uncle beat him and said, “You’re too stupid to learn anything.”
After three years of this treatment Magozwe ran away from his uncle. He started living on the street.
Lavi lor lari ti difisil e laplipar bann garson ti pa ti pe resi gagn manze. Parfwa, gard ti pe trap zot e parfwa zot ti pe gagn bate. Kan zot ti pe malad, personn pa ti pe ed zot. Group-la ti pe bizin debrouy ar sa tigit kas ki zot ti pe gagne ar sarite la, ouswa kan zot ti pe vann plastik ek bann lezot obze resiklab. Bann lager ki ti pe eklate avek lezot group ki ti pe rod kontrol lavil ti pe rann zot lavi pli difisil.
Street life was difficult and most of the boys struggled daily just to get food. Sometimes they were arrested, sometimes they were beaten. When they were sick, there was no one to help.
The group depended on the little money they got from begging, and from selling plastics and other recycling.
Life was even more difficult because of fights with rival groups who wanted control of parts of the city.
Enn zour, Magozwe finn fouy dan poubel ek finn trouv enn vie liv. Li finn netway so lapousier ek finn met li dan so sak. Bann zour ki swiv, li finn pran labitid pou tir so liv dan so sak ek get bann zimaz. Li pa ti konn lir.
One day while Magozwe was looking through the dustbins, he found an old tattered storybook. He cleaned the dirt from it and put it in his sack.
Every day after that he would take out the book and look at the pictures. He did not know how to read the words.
Bann zimaz-la rakont zistwar enn garson, ki’nn vinn enn pilot kan li’nn vinn gran. Magozwe ti pe reve li enn pilot. Parfwa, li ti pe mazinn limem kouma sa garson dan zistwar-la.
The pictures told the story of a boy who grew up to be a pilot.
Magozwe would daydream of being a pilot. Sometimes, he imagined that he was the boy in the story.
Ti pe fer fre. Magozwe ti pe demann sarite lor lari, kan enn sel kou, enn boug koste ar li ek dir li koumsa : « Bonzour, mo apel Thomas. Mo travay pre isi mem, dan enn plas kot to kapav manze », li dir. Li montre li enn lakaz zonn de-lwin avek enn twatir ble. « Mo espere to vinn manze », li dir li. Magozwe get boug-la, apre li get lakaz-la ek li reponn li : « kitfwa » apre li ale.
It was cold and Magozwe was standing on the road begging. A man walked up to him. “Hello, I’m Thomas. I work near here, at a place where you can get something to eat,” said the man.
He pointed to a yellow house with a blue roof. “I hope you will go there to get some food?” he asked.
Magozwe looked at the man, and then at the house. “Maybe,” he said, and walked away.
Bann mwa apre, nou ti zenes SDF ti’nn pran labitid pou al get Thomas parla-parla. Li ti kontan koz avek bann dimounn ki res lor lari. Thomas ti pe ekout bann zistwar ki bann dimounn ti pe rakonte. Li ti serye ek pasian. Li ti ena bon manier ek respe. Sertin garson ti pe komans frekant lakaz zonn e ble pou gagn enn manze midi.
Over the months that followed, the homeless boys got used to seeing Thomas around. He liked to talk to people, especially people living on the streets.
Thomas listened to the stories of people’s lives. He was serious and patient, never rude or disrespectful. Some of the boys started going to the yellow and blue house to get food at midday.
Magozwe ti pe bien asiz lor trotwar ek ti pe get bann zimaz so liv kan enn sel kou, Thomas vinn asiz akote li. Thomas demann li : « Zistwar-la ki pe rakonte ? » Magozwe reponn : « se zistwar enn garson ki vinn pilot ». « kouma li apele garson-la ? » Thomas demann li. Magozwe reponn li trankil-trankil : « mo pa kone, mo pa konn lir ».
Magozwe was sitting on the pavement looking at his picture book when Thomas sat down next to him.
“What is the story about?” asked Thomas.
“It’s about a boy who becomes a pilot,” replied Magozwe.
“What’s the boy’s name?” asked Thomas.
“I don’t know, I can’t read,” said Magozwe quietly.
Kan zot ti pe zwenn, Magozwe ti pe koumans rakont Thomas so zistwar. Zistwar so tonton ek rezon kifer li finn sove. Thomas pa ti pe koz boukou ek li pa ti pe dir Magozwe seki li ti bizin fer me li ti touletan pe ekout li avek latansion. Parfwa, zot ti pe koze devan enn repa ki zot ti pe pran dan sa lakaz ek twatir ble la.
When they met, Magozwe began to tell his own story to Thomas. It was the story of his uncle and why he ran away.
Thomas didn’t talk a lot, and he didn’t tell Magozwe what to do, but he always listened carefully.
Sometimes they would talk while they ate at the house with the blue roof.
Kan ti ariv apepre zour kot Magozwe gagn di-z-an, Thomas donn li enn nouvo liv. Se zistwar enn zenn vilazwa ki’nn vinn foutborler kan li’nn vinn gran. Thomas finn lir sa zistwar-la ar Magozwe enn kantite fwa ziska enn zour, li dir li : « Mo panse finn ariv ler pou to al lekol ek to aprann lir, ki to dir ? » Thomas explik li ki li ti konn enn landrwa kot bann zanfan kapav reste ek al lekol.
Around Magozwe’s tenth birthday, Thomas gave him a new storybook. It was a story about a village boy who grew up to be a famous soccer player.
Thomas read that story to Magozwe many times, until one day he said, “I think it’s time you went to school and learned to read. What do you think?” Thomas explained that he knew of a place where children could stay, and go to school.
Magozwe kalkil sa nouvo landrwa-la ek lide pou al lekol. Be si so tonton ti ena rezon, si vremem li ti tro bet pou aprann ? Aster si bann-la bat-li laba ? Li ti per. « Kitfwa li ti pou meyer mo res lor lari mem » li panse.
Magozwe thought about this new place, and about going to school. What if his uncle was right and he was too stupid to learn anything?
What if they beat him at this new place? He was afraid. “Maybe it is better to stay living on the street,” he thought.
Li konfie so bann lakrint ar Thomas. Avek letan, Thomas resi fer li konpran ki lavi laba kapav meyer.
He shared his fears with Thomas. Over time the man reassured the boy that life could be better at the new place.
Lerla Magozwe koumans res dan enn lasam, dan enn lakaz twatir ver. Li ti partaz sa lasam-la avek de lezot garson. Antou ti ena dis ki ti pe viv dan lakaz-la. Laba ti ena ousi matant Cissy ek so mari, trwa lisien, enn sat ek enn vie bouk.
And so Magozwe moved into a room in a house with a green roof. He shared the room with two other boys.
Altogether there were ten children living at that house. Along with Auntie Cissy and her husband, three dogs, a cat, and an old goat.
Magozwe koumans lekol. Ti difisil. Ti ena boukou pou ratrape. Enn-de fwa li ti pe anvi abandone. Me li ti pans so posibilite pou vinn pilot ouswa foutborler. Ek parey kouma sa de garson dan bann zistwar-la, li pa abandone.
Magozwe started school and it was difficult. He had a lot to catch up. Sometimes he wanted to give up.
But he thought about the pilot and the soccer player in the storybooks. Like them, he did not give up.
Magozwe ti pe asize devan laport lakaz twatir ver la ek li ti pe lir enn liv depi lekol. Thomas vini ek asiz kot li. Li demann li : « ki zistwar sa ? » Magozwe reponn : « se zistwar enn ti garson ki ti anvi vinn profeser ». « Kouma li apele garson-la ? » Thomas demann li. Avek enn sourir, Magozwe reponn li : « So nom se Magozwe. »
Magozwe was sitting in the yard at the house with the green roof, reading a storybook from school. Thomas came up and sat next to him.
“What is the story about?” asked Thomas.
“It’s about a boy who becomes a teacher,” replied Magozwe.
“What’s the boy’s name?” asked Thomas.
“His name is Magozwe,” said Magozwe with a smile.
Written by: Lesley Koyi
Illustrated by: Wiehan de Jager
Translated by: Shameem Oozeerally & MIE French Students