After a long period of time a trap door in what must have been the ceiling, opened and one of my captors came slowly down carrying something. It was a bucket made of wood and it held three bowls. One of rice, one of water and one of, I presumed, Goat’s milk. On top of these was some kind of bread; a kind of flour and water mix cooked obviously over an open fire because it smelled and tasted of smoke.
That meal seemed to have to last for ever. It was hours before he came back. Again with the same fare.
I had no facilities other than a bucket I had found on one of my sorties; it was in a corner of the room. I had to fumble my way to it for all my necessary daily evacuations.
The smell became much worse. They did occasionally empty the bucket, but only when it was full.
If my captors could speak English they made no attempt at it, and if I asked any questions I was ignored. I did wonder if I was being held for ransom. If I was, for goodness sake someone pay up and let me out of this cesspit. I also wondered if the United Nations were looking for me. One thing I knew for certain, Uncle Lawrence would not let my, or Nick’s disappearance go unnoticed.
The men seemed to be dressed in some kind of bulky clothing which I couldn’t quite distinguish in the darkened room, but I knew where they were at all times, I could follow the smell.
The place was crawling with livestock which I couldn’t see, only feel. It crawled up my skin and into my hair. I scratched and scratched until I had almost no skin left.
I was hungry, thirsty, itching and worst of all, I was deprived of any social contact. I didn’t hear a single solitary voice all the time I was there.
I also mourned Nick. I was sure deep down inside that if he was still alive, he would have rescued me. So he had to be dead. I felt sick. Not only physically , but mentally too. I cried like a small child. I wailed for my Mummy.
It was then that I realized that I was probably going mad. That thought saved me. I started writing stories in my head. I had whole families which I moved around and communicated with.
. All the events in all of their lives were shared by me. I knew all about them, their likes and dislikes,
. Their clothes and hairstyles., their problems even with shoe sizes. I had made my own family and I was living with them. It certainly took my mind off my own discomfort.
I no longer felt hungry. I ate the food when it came, and drank the milk and water, but if it didn’t come, it didn’t seem to matter anymore.
Thankfully the men who brought it didn’t seem in the least bit interested in me. That had been my worst nightmare at first, that they would be., but as time went by I realized I didn’t count as a human being. I was a commodity, just like one of their other animals.
I had no conception of time, of day or night. There was no light to tell me if it was daytime, or stars to indicate night. I existed in a hell hole, and I had not gone mad. That to me was my greatest accomplishment. I felt I had won a battle.
My long curly sable coloured hair was matted, filthy and crawling with life other than mine. There was nothing to do but scratch. No water was provided for washing and my skin felt dirty and crusted with sores. Thankfully, in one way, I couldn’t see them.
I had never felt so alone in the whole of my life.
I had had a normal, nice childhood, good parents, good education and I had ended up here in this hell all alone.