Hazardous Silent Treatment

Hello! I haven’t written in a looong time and I’ve lost a step or two. Here begins my blogging road to recovery…

She’s hurt and she wants to talk about it. He’s angry and he doesn’t want to talk about it. She talks to him, but he remains silent and tries to avoid all conversation with her. She starts getting frustrated. He gets angrier and resolves to keep ignoring her. And so the silent treatment builds.

Researchers have found that the person giving the silent treatment and the person receiving it should….

Wait, you really thought I was going to write about relationships? A gigantic NO!

There’s a blind curve adjacent to Pretoria Portland Cement’s Bulawayo factory, just over 10 kilometres east of the Bulawayo city centre. In the past few years, there have been four or five buses involved in fatal accidents at the curve. The most recent one occurred just a week ago. The curve is notorious for causing fatal accidents, most of them involving single vehicles skidding off the road before crashing or overturning. Contrary to what you would expect, that section of the road has not been changed by a bit.

Local residents of Cement Siding, fed up with the accidents, took to the curve a few years ago. With the help of the police, who barricaded a section of the curve, they held a prayer service there. It is normal for locals to engage in ‘cleansing’ rituals when they feel that unforeseen, similar deaths occur at the same spot repeatedly. In this case, it was Christians who took up the task. And they had the support of the police department.

There was a quiet period following that prayer session – right up until last week, when another bus overshot the curve and crashed, killing at least one person on the spot. The blind-curve-accident had struck again. At least one more death. Yet again – for the umpteenth time – the curve had caused an accident, but what seemed to be on most people’s mouths was the question, “Did you go see it.” The answer was almost always, “No, have you?” Not many people seemed to be talking about the underlying problem, and that it had to be solved. The responsible authorities, as always, did not say a word or take any action. They just came by to clean up the scene. And then…silence.

I wonder why the roads authority and even the district authority haven’t identified this recurrent tragedy as a serious issue and attempted to rectify it. Not even a lazy gigantic sign reading “CAUTION. DANGEROUS CURVE AHEAD” has been erected. And having guard rails built along the curve seems like a pipe dream. Nothing has been done beyond the accident clean-ups. But, at the very least, they could begin by acknowledge the problem. Perhaps a dialogue with interested parties could set things in motion, and the situation could be ultimately rectified. But the silent treatment is all there is.

The residents who once took the matter into their hands, by taking it up to the Lord, have virtually given up. I am not sure if any of them is willing to engage the police again, or some administrator or politician about the accidents. They’ve given up on the dialogue, and now they perhaps feel that it is not their concern anyway. And so the fatal accident count will continue rising for that blind curve on the Bulawayo-Harare Highway, just over 10 kilometres east of the Bulawayo city centre. And the authorities will keep silent about it.

Researchers have found that the person giving the silent treatment and the person receiving it should both take some responsibility.


4 thoughts on “Hazardous Silent Treatment

  1. Very good and well connected! Intro and Conclusion; I like the quiet humour in this sad tale of an avoidable or at least, rectifiable situation claiming innocent lives. When it gets fixed, remember that you took a major and primary step forward!


  2. It has really been long, you got me there, i thought you were going to write about relationships and i was curious because that is so unlike you kkkkk, i love this!!! Keep on writing!!!


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