Slice Of Life: Street reading to stay sane

Tumisang Mofokeng. (Delwyn Verasamy, M&G)

Tumisang Mofokeng. (Delwyn Verasamy, M&G)

My favorite books are Animal Farm by George Orwell and Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe. I like Animal Farm because it exposes our leaders, how they can be manipulative and corrupt. Things Fall Apart shows that even powerful men, sometimes in life, can fall.

I love reading and I would like to read more books but I can’t afford to buy them or get them at the library. I find books in the streets like this one – it’s still wet. I want to dry it and clean it so I can read it.

You know, reading encourages me not to give up in life. Because it’s quite tough, especially for me, living on the streets now for six months with nobody, no family and no friends.

I eat at the shelter and I keep reading so that I can stay positive, actually. Because you see, if you are living in the street, I’ve seen most of the guys they end up becoming psycho or mentally disturbed. Some don’t even bother to go take a bath, they just give up on life.

So I keep reading so I can be motivated. So that I can motivate myself to keep my sanity and to try to get off the streets. I like to read stories that will motivate me, stories I can relate to. Especially about people who come from nothing and became something.

There are so many stories that have stayed with me but there’s a quote by Mahatma Gandhi and it’s a quote that I always go back to. It speaks about how your thoughts will become your actions, your actions will become your character, your character will become your habit and your habit describes your destiny. That really motivates me. – Tumisang Mofokeng, 25, as told to Govan Whittles

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