What's with this mourning hard to score a funeral to die for... andizi

Kwanele Ndlovu Singles Lane
We don't need all the fanfare that go with funerals theses days. Do we? /ALON SKUY
We don't need all the fanfare that go with funerals theses days. Do we? /ALON SKUY

I have never been bothered by who will attend my funeral, really. I think, considering that I will be dead and all, it is basically beyond my control.

Personally, I do not see the point of funerals, and struggle to understand why our people have such a lengthy process just to bury a body in the ground.

If we are to be honest, there is always an option of taking your loved one from the funeral parlour straight to the burial site. But no, we want to sing to the dead and then eat rice and curry afterwards. And drink.

It has been for this reason that I barely find reason to attend funerals. I have made many excuses from being sensitive to spirits at the cemetery, to my anxiety being triggered by a concert of cries.

And pray that nobody actually comes to my funeral so that I can experience the real meaning of "rest in peace".

Oh, but that is not how mother and her entire community feel about attending funerals back home.

No. They somehow think that the number of people that attend your funeral is directly proportional to the number of funerals you attend throughout your lifetime.

I made a random call this Thursday morning to her and asked ".who are you burying this weekend?"

And she actually had an answer. On the first weekend of the month during a lockdown, my dear mother is planning ukuyovela at a funeral!

My mother insists she has to show up, lest she breaks protocol in the tightknit community.

She has a theory about attendance of all funerals of people in her immediate vicinity in the area, and of course all the church folks' and their relatives' burials.

There are silent rules that were apparently enacted some lifetimes ago.

And the sanction for breach of some of these range from people shunning your funeral altogether, to some just dropping off a pack of potatoes or crate of cold drinks and not staying for the actual funeral.

At worst, the very priest you need GPS coordinates for that golden path to heaven may just refuse to bury you.

But if you are lucky and have all your church bills paid up and updated, the priest will be there and take the opportunity to speak ill of funeral absenteeism.

According to mom, her attendance in all these funerals not only serves to support those in mourning, but also secures an audience for all her children's funerals too. Mine too.

I shiver at the thought of it.

Thanks to my mother's unshakeable community spirit, I now have a pre-booked funeral.

The bulk of the patrons will be strangers in church uniform, banging on their Bibles and praying for my soul.

And my mother's buddies actually cry at funerals, they weep real tears.

They take mourning literally and take the opportunity to speak about their pain.

Basically, while I lie cold and unawares, a pensioner will burst out in hymn in soprano and march to stand a little too close to my casket and basically start saying all these beautiful things about my mother!

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