Long Walk Original Manuscript (Image #27) - Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory
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Title: Long Walk Original Manuscript (Image #27)
Transcript: though we played together on equal terms and, at times, even fought it out physically. But were I would soon be disillusioned. It was a painful experience to discover that in this new environment I was a person of no importance. The boarding master received me without any blowing of trumpets and my fellow students treated me no differently. Even more, I was to discover later that most of them would beat me hands down in the classroom, in discussions, singing, sports and dancing. The Standard VI classroom was on the first floor and the following day I carefully climbed the steps and entered. The room had a wooden floor and, wearing boots for the first time in my life, I walked like a newly shod horse, the boot crashing down with the heel first and thereafter the front part. A girl student Mathona, watched this exhibition with obvious amusement and remarked to her friend sufficiently loudly for me to hear: "Chum, I'm not used to wearing shoes". I realised sdhe was referring to me and the truth of the statement hit me badly and I went completely wild with anger. I almost manhandled her. Little did I know that she would later become my best friend at that school with whom I would share many secrets. Though I took part in sports and games my performance was generally less than mediocre. However, I continued playing purely for the love of sport and for the experience. We played lawn tennis with home made wooden rackets and soccer with bare feet. In spite of that our centre forward, Wycliff Voyi, always sparkled and potted goals against better equipped teams. In athletics, Thinzi was the star, ran like a springbok and would collect many a trophy. I considered both of them to be exceptional men and enjoyed watching them in action. With a few stringent exceptions, the only contact allowed between male and female students was in the classroom and during intervals. Student complaints regarding diet are as old as boarding institutions themselves and we also had our list of grievances and made demands for improvement. But this is a
Extent and Medium: 1 page