'He told me that I had wasted his life and I saw red, for I had truly gone out of my way to get him sorted.'

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'He told me that I had wasted his life and I saw red, for I had truly gone out of my way to get him sorted.'


Rosemary remembers life in Bulawayo. In particular she remembers Romuald whom she decided to take under her wing to help him obtain a better life for himself.


Rosemary McCloskey


Trinity College Dublin




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Rosemary McCloskey

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Work and Employment


Life Story

Spatial Coverage

Bulawayo, Zimbabwe

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The college started and I had been suffering badly with a back problem ever since I had left home. It was getting worse and so bad was it that I was getting Voltarel injections from the sister in St Anne's hospital in Avondale. Harare. They sent the medication with me to Bulawayo and I was going each morning to Sr. Carol Burke in Mater Dei hospital, for them. She decided that this was not doing much good and on my second morning for college she asked me to come into the hospital, where she brought Mr BAV Ncube, an orthopaedic surgeon, to see me. He decided that I was unable to go to work and telephoned the college saying that he was admitting me. I had to go back to the house to get my things and then Br Turner sent someone to stay at night in it. I was in traction for a month and knew no one. The college lecturers used to come to see me and they all looked much the same. Ms Chakanyuka used to come on Sundays and one Sunday I asked her how I would go about getting a place in Bulawayo Polytechnic for Romuald, who had decided he would prefer to do electrical engineering. She told me to leave it with her. She was impressed that I had taken an African under my wing intending to educate him. It was in November that year that Romuald came to stay with me. He brought his little half-sister Alfreda, with him saying that his step mother would like me to keep her. I had to refuse, for I had no way of looking after a young child of four with working full time. Later I agreed to take Raymond his half-brother and send him to school in Bulawayo. Romuald was not very patient and I got a bit frustrated because there did not appear to be any word about the place in the Polytechnic. One miserable Sunday afternoon we had a big row and I ended up hitting him. He sat and let me!! He told me that I had wasted his life and I saw red, for I had truly gone out of my way to get him sorted. I left the house and headed for the college but en route I saw Ms Chakanyuka who was on her way to collect someone from the railway station I ran and asked her if anything was happening and she assured me that I should bring Romuald to the Polytechnic next morning. It was a wet morning and I remember I got soaked a few times running around trying to speak to various departments with regard to this electrical engineering. I found out eventually that this course was not beginning until May. Imagine my chagrin at this news! I was very forward when I think of what I did. I insisted in seeing the principal and he offered me either computer studies or rubber and plastic technology. I eventually got Romuald to agree to try the computer studies. Well'_'_. Look where this led! He met his wife there and they are married with four of a family. She is a wonderful lady with brains and a hard working disposition and she is the main stay of that household. It is amazing how God works in one's life. We think we know what is best and yet He often puts a spanner in the works and turns things around to work out much better and of course in the way that fits His plans.


Irish Research Council for Arts, Humanities & Social Sciences (IRCHSS)

Research Coordinator/P.I.

Dr Kathleen McTiernan (Trinity College Dublin)

Senior Research Associate

Dr Deirdre O'Donnell (Trinity College Dublin)


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