Tafadzwa Zimunhu Taruvinga, a young Zimbabwean, enrols to study economics at Rhodes University in South Africa. There, foreign students have to pay a hefty R25,000 minimum initial payment for tuition and residence. But foreign currency is increasingly elusive in the ailing economy back home. Determined to graduate with a Rhodes degree, Tafadzwa finds his first waiting job at a local restaurant. His income, even though it is paltry, will subsidise his mother’s contributions.
The Educated Waiter is the memoir of a graduate, waiter and immigrant. A go-getting African. His story is a poignant recollection of his experiences in South Africa, Germany, the UAE and Zimbabwe – on his quest to finding a better life. He indefatigably confronts poverty, classism, racism, xenophobia and bullying.
Published by MFBooks Joburg, the book will be available in October 2019.
About the author
Tafadzwa Zimunhu Taruvinga was born in Zimbabwe. His memoir explores his conquest of the hurdles that would otherwise have prevented his education and personal growth.
“…I poured the boiled water into the bowl and carefully added a few granules of Knorr powder soup over the crushed smithereens. I mixed it all together, gnashed my teeth and forced down each bite. I was hungry. For most it would seem to be unfathomable, eating a meal that wasn’t one. But I wanted to graduate with a Rhodes University degree so badly that ‘Knorr cornflakes’ seemed like a reasonable meal.
‘This is not so bad,’ I tried to convince myself as I forced down the putrid slush. In truth, it was horrible. I was all too aware that the inedible concoction was the price I must pay for my education.
When the plate was clean, I washed down the meal with a glass of warm water. Then I rinsed my zebra bowl, the plastic spoon and the glass, and I wiped them dry. For dessert, I wept quietly…”