Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Girl on her Knees in a Mechanic’s Yard

It is the customary cavernous space three-sides surrounded by high-walled properties. It is cramped squalid with junk, scrap-cars and a few good cars. The master mechanic and his bearded boys are not in sight. There’s just a gamine girl of 12 or 13, who is ‘dregged’ down on her knees in the middle of the yahoo yard. It is a searing, sunny day. I wonder who left her there, and why.


  1. hmmm
    well, girls can do anything a man can do and more :-p my father taught me. I started doing handy-work with him since I was little and now know everything about renovating a house for example.
    If you like my stories nana I opened a new blog

    I hope you will support me!

  2. My estimation, Adaeze, was that this was a bad situation I was witnessing. Most of the defilement (=statutory rape) cases in Ghana involve mechanics, carpenters and such artisans. That little girl had not business being there. I still wonder where the mechanic or his bearded boys were.

  3. Oh my I got it all wrong. Wish I could delete that comment now it just looks stupid!
    I didn't get the first part about being surrounded by tall buildings. I have no experience with this, here, rape of course happens everywhere and anywhere, but usually not in broad daylight. That it's mainly carpenters and mechanics I have not heard of, but that may be the case in Ghana. I know about it all too well and plan to write about it on my blog when I am ready.
    Pardon me for asking, but what do you think is appropritate to do in those situations (witnessing a girl in distress). Couldn't anyone walk up to her and make sure she was ok? Or that doesn't happen? I am interested in how this is handled in countries like for instance I have no knowledge about it it needs to be increased..

  4. Pardon me Nana as I read my comment I see it could be difficult for anyone but me to understand. I am tired tonight.. Let me clarify; when I said I have no experience I meant I have not witnessed such situations in broad daylight in any other country than Norway and wouldn't know much about them.
    When I said I know about "it" all too well I meant rape and not it being committed by mechanics etc. So sorry for taking up all your comment space.

  5. It was not stupid. Maybe I was too subtle. You could try and intervene, but that might have physical risks. I do not think people really need any more information. A girl has not business around do many guys or even around 1 older guy in a quiet, secluded place. If she's there, she's being coerced, tricked or manipulated.

  6. You are often subtle but once I read this again I don't think there is needed anymore information at all - the message is clear.
    I guess the one part that made the difference I did not get - that it was a quiet secluded place. I wish however that more people would intervene in these kind of situations, although I know how it can be standing on the outside watching in aswell. I know both sides. It's tricky.

  7. where are her parents???

    and yes, one is sometimes limited to be helpful in all these kinds of cases given the two sides of the coins that are played out in different life-threatening collours these days!

    omg! how we defile this earth so!

  8. Dear Adaeze,

    Yes, it can be a feeling of powerlessness watching these things as you pass by the scene.

    There are many criminal offences created for preparing to commit an offence (e.g. Stealing) rather than actually committing the offence.

    Such an offence for preparation should be created for sexual predators!

  9. Dear Novisi,

    Her parents probably had her with no idea how they would look after her (physically, emotionally, whatever). Maybe they are chasing money, unavoidably neglecting her. I don't know, and I always feel helpless in these situations.

  10. I couldn't have put it better myself:How we do defile this earth!

    Rape is a terrible act in itself but when a child gets into the equation, it doesn't get any more evil than that.

    I wouldn't know what to do if I stumbled upon this... the feeling of helplessness can only make it worse; almost as though you were aiding and abetting...poor child

  11. Dear antye504,

    Aiding and abetting? I would feel bad not being able to help, yes. But I would not go as far as blaming myself whether I intervened or walked away.

  12. Maybe, its just my overly active emotions but walking away in a sense is passively catalyzing (if there is such a thing) the wrong.

    Its like how you cannot completely blame the offending party in an abusive relationship; you yourself are partly blamable when you have the ability to up and leave but you just sit there, eat it up and complain about it.

    You know the whole sin of commission and omission thing, when as opposed to 'doing wrong' you 'don't do right'...

    Sad thing is there's probably not much you can do...

  13. Dear antye504,

    If you put it that way, then I understand you. You were expressing the feeling of helplessness in another way. Sad, really.

  14. Did you read de luks on her face?(dat can make u judge her aight or wrong) N also, if she was kidnapped dere...she can run away since dose wild animals r not around. Buh if she 'nos y she is there n 'nos de consiquences n she's compromising wif de situation den i think she won't win ma sympathy.

  15. Dear Naa,

    She looked sad, but I daresay it would make no difference if she had a happy...ish look on her face. Point is, at her young age, she may feel happy, but she may have been manipulated or 'brainwashed'. Vulnerable people must be protected. Whether it is forced or consensual sex, I have sympathies for every underage girl who gets into it!

  16. well, there is nothing a helpless soul like her can do in such kinna situation if she apears dat innocent. where r her parents. You shld ave drawn near to know more n see if u can afford any solution if only u can to wat ever is wrong there.

  17. Hmm, Naa, I should have, huh?

  18. Anonymous14 May, 2009

    I am too embarrassed to ask, but what does dregged mean?

    A sad story; if she was indeed abused!

  19. Dear Anon,

    'Dregged' is based on the word "Dregs" which, as you know means, in one sense, the worst and most useless parts of something e.g. the society. It is a noun, really, but I wanted to pervert its use and make it a verb. That is why I put it in inverted commas. It was one of the subtle hints I put in the piece to show that I thought something was terribly wrong with the scene.


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