• June 8, 2023 6:47 pm

Synopsis of the Short Story , ‘Window Seat’ in the Anthology Memories We Lost and Other Stories

ByMary Wahu

Oct 26, 2021

The story Window Seat has its setting in Tanzania. It is authored by Benjamin Branoff. The narrator is a mzungu who boards a public transport daladala and has a window seat. Through the narrator’s eyes ,we are able to appreciate the challenges of urbanization facing most of the developing countries in Africa.

The daladala has a capacity to carry a maximum of ten passengers but it is overloaded with fourteen more passengers. Of which , during rush hour four more people would stand with the conductor making it up to 28 passengers.

At Mwenge, noise pollution is apparent. Horrible music plays from a large stereo of a man selling CDs. Apart from that, conductor screams at the top of his voice to persuade people to board his daladala.

The narrator then heads towards the post buses after alighting from the old minivan,he notices that the town is crowded. There is high population. The mzungu sees a beautiful lady but fails to meet and greet her. The lady is a Foreign exchange student whose name is Monique. The Mzungu refers to her as Le fille . The bus has to manouver through a sea of people who walk  dangerously close to it. They do not seem to care of the possible dangers and it could also be as a result of lack of pavements and poor infrastructure.

After the next stop we meet Kanga. She looks healthy and beautiful but we can tell that she is poor , deprived of luxuries and has to endure endless work in her lifetime. She seems amiable or sincerely friendly.

After the bumpy 45- minute ride , The narrator is shocked to find his wallet missing. In the crowded bus, anyone could have taken it but all evidence points to Kanga.

It is therefore evident that developing countries are faced with crimes and insecurities due to poverty.



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