Growing up is sensational. Hopes are high and time seems to fly overtaking the fun and leaving sweet-sad memories in the process. I remember my teen years, a time filled with so many changes as I started developing into a man. It was an exciting time, despite the occasional disconcerting doubt that clouds growing up.
Then I lost friends as we parted company with each boy or girl returning to his or her home to chase a fantasy nurtured through years of dreaming. I remember some of my best classmates; students who took prizes for academic excellence with ease. I always thought one day they could turn out to be fine doctors, lawyers and engineers for they were education gladiators.
But Zimbabwe is a country that is only good for dreaming and not fruition. My friends are victims of economic hardships and the HIV pandemic which saw them succumbing or took away from them the people who might have helped them realize their fantasies.
An economic meltdown in the last few years has forced many of my friends to drop out of tertiary education and being forced into jobs that do not require a degree.
I am also a victim and I know that there are thousands of would be lawyers and doctors out there who have been reduced to menial labourers. I mourn for the brains that are going to waste because parents are dying too soon, forcing children to drop out of school.
My government boasts that there are now ten state universities across the country, but that is little comfort for the child orphaned by the HIV pandemic and who does not have a parent to bankroll his education.
In Zimbabwe for we pray it is a dream deferred. One day we pray sanity will return and common sense will be spread by politicians, the very same leaders who accumulate academic degrees because they have the money. We, the ordinary folk, hold on to the dreams we have nurtured since childhood.
But time waits for no man, and not even “we” the people can help but feel overtaken with shattered dreams.