Continued from Unknown location Part 1
A few days passed on and by now a million thoughts had gone through my mind about how a day that started out so well could bring me to this unknown location. I had no idea where in the world I was, all I knew is that I had crossed oceans to get here. I was now in a dilapidated house with a few other ladies, different races, sizes and age groups. I wondered what their story was, if they had also been served the warm, tasty cappuccino that greeted me back in that Johannesburg office.
“How did you end up here!?” I asked the lady who was lying next to me. It was the first words I uttered since I arrived here. I only watched as they brought in more women into the room, as some women would disappear in the evening only to return the next day. It also took me a while to eat. It had nothing to do with the food not looking tasty, I had wished to starve myself to death but decided in my heart that I was going to get strong and find a way to fight this. I was going to pray for a miracle- my case needed a miracle.
“I don’t really know”, she said in a Shona accent. I recognized it since I had a lot of Shona friends. “I went to the mall with my boyfriend, it was our anniversary. I went to the ladies’ room after we watched a movie and a lady walked in pushing another on a wheelchair. At that point it was just the three of us in the bathroom. She walked up to me with a smile and as I was still figuring out what she wanted, she stabbed me with something and that’s the last I can remember. My bet is I was carried out on that wheelchair-drugged. I woke up in this room few days later- I think.” At this point, tears were running down her face in a black river of mascara that she hadn’t washed off from last night. She was one of the ladies who disappeared last night. Her tears looked like they were coming from a dead place. A place that did not want to feel, but felt betrayed by the feelings that released the waters.
“Where do they take you at night”, I enquired. “You will know soon enough.” “I pray that God will take us out of this place, we should pray. Do you believe in prayer?” She looked hopelessly at me with a look that said, you have no idea and nothing can save us.
Was there any hope for me? I hadn’t told my family and friends where I was going. I lived alone and it would take people longer to notice that I am missing. Where would the police begin their search? I practically disappeared without a trace. “God, I have always learnt that you are an omni-present God, that your hand is not too short to reach me neither is your ear too deaf. Please hear my cry and get me out of this place.”
I prayed this prayer for weeks on end. I watched days go by without any sign of help. I was now part of the disappearing ladies of the night. We worked the streets and came back with cash. Our bosses waited for us outside to ensure that we do not run away. It really wasn’t easy for us to run away. One particular night, which started off like a usual night out, I went into the room with one of the men and to my surprise he stopped just as he was about to take his clothes off.
“What am I doing!?” he screamed. “This is not worth it!” I sat there wondering if this was a test or if this man had just changed his mind. Should I force him to pay because if I go back without money they will beat me up. He took his phone out and at that point I thought, what if he is the police? I will now be a jail bird in a foreign land- great! “Hi love. I just wanted to check on you. I had back to back meetings so I couldn’t call earlier. Please kiss Thendo and Takalani goodnight for me when you get this message”. South African!!!! Those are South African, venda names. “Aaah. Vha ri mini?” I tried my luck to greet him in tshiVenda. I had picked up a few phrases from a local show Muvhango. “Thate? Muvhango? Vhafuwi?” I threw in any word I could think of. He quickly turned with a shocked look on his face; clearly, he understood what I had just said.
We spent the night talking about how he was on a business trip and had been stressed and tempted to go look for “fun on the street” since he had been away from home for a couple of weeks. “Yes, that doesn’t justify why I am here. There is no reason good enough for me to be unfaithful to my wife and I just couldn’t go through with it. This has definitely exposed my weaknesses even to myself. I always thought I would never be tempted to such an extent. I am a well-respected man in my community.” I narrated my story, how I ended up in…Mexico, on that bed. I now knew where I was after he told me “Look, I want to help you. I got to help you, but I first need to figure out my story. Where will I say that I found you??”
“Ladies and gentlemen. Please fasten your seat belts. We are approaching OR Tambo International and the plane is about to descend”. I couldn’t believe it. I was finally going home. Mr Mulaudzi made a mistake that saved my life. He managed to take me to the SA embassy and arrange for my safe travel home. He was so shocked at how things came together for my good and at how he was convicted about his weaknesses that he decided he was going to change his life around. He was going to finally go to church with his wife and follow the Jesus she had always talked about. I sat in that plane and thought of all the ladies I had left behind. How I was going to help them, because I definitely hadn’t gone through this for nothing. The omni-present God had located me and saved me, even in an unknown location.