Friendly Treatment

Godfrey Kalyesubula

© Copyright 2023 by 
Godfrey Kalyesubula


Photo by Ting Tian on Unsplash
Photo by Ting Tian on Unsplash
The persona in the 1980s hit pop song “Sad Movie” relates a moving account of how she goes alone to a cinema to watch a movie. While it is running, she spots her darling boyfriend with her best friend in the deepest aura of intimacy! That shocking discovery breaks her down and she starts shading liters and liters of tears!

It is quite possible that scores of people pity her, express their solidarity with her and condemn the boyfriend and the best friend to be the most evil on Earth! Please take note that yours truly is not among them! To me she is just a most selfish person who should undergo a series of serious tutorage modules concerning the art of friendship. I consider myself a generous and selfless person. For that matter, I invite her and all those with such a false attitude towards friendship, to be my students in the following lecture. Brace yourselves for class.

The key word for a true friendly relationship is “sharing”! Friends are supposed and expected to share whatever they happen to have. The Scriptures command us to do share! “Love thy neighbor as ye love thyself” – they state! How then is anyone supposed to fulfill that command when they do not share? It is that simple; we have to share with our friends everything we own or experience. I happen to know of some true stories about people who have observed the sharing ritual to the letter. I will now share with you these remarkable stories.

I will start with one from a very reliable source – my own grandmother; Dorotiya Namuli who departed some three decades ago. As children, she used to gather us around her and entertain us with a series of an extensive collection of tales (I cannot tell whether they were fiction or nonfiction but I am inclined to believe they were the latter).

One memorable evening, she related one in which a duo of thieves, of course out of friendship, plotted to steal goats from a certain prominent farmer somewhere under the darkness of night. When the two reached the goat-house, they started drilling a hole through the wall in which they would pull out the goats. When the hole was completed, the first one of the two extended his hands, then the arms through the hole to start on the task of harvesting where he had never sown.

Immediately, something heavy and powerful struck his arms – filling him with unimaginable pain. But of course he was a well-brought-up fellow who could not enjoy something without sharing it with someone else; especially someone as close to him as his comrade in the goat-stealing mission. So he responded to the punishment with an ecstatic “Ah…Oh…Oh my God! I`ve never felt such a meaty fatty goat like this one! Come closer pal, extend your arms through the hole and feel it yourself! You`ll understand what I mean”.

The greedy friend needed no further encouragement and in a blink of the eye, he promptly received a similar fitting punishment from the blunt object inside the goat-house. Now, tell me: if that was not a display of true friendship, what was it!

Recently, Irene (not her real name) a sophisticated young lady working with an international NGO was taking a stroll along a Kampala street. Suddenly she felt hungry and rushed into an up-market Indian restaurant. A menu was promptly handed to her and just after giving it a casual glance, she ordered a “tandoori curry-something” which had a strange Indian word at the end. When the food was brought to her, she greedily took the first bite, and she was done! It seemed the chef had used a whole sack of hot red peppers to prepare the dish! Luckily for her, she had ordered for water to wash down the meal so she put it to good use to extinguish the fire the solitary bite had ignited inside her mouth.

With a long face, she paid the bill for the food she had barely touched and left the restaurant, swearing never to try Indian cuisine another time. As she turned a corner towards Kampala Road, her cell phone sang. To her delight, it was Jacqueline her best friend on the line.

Irene, where on Earth are you?” Jacqueline enquired.

Wow! Jackie dear! Guess what! I`m just coming from having a most delicious meal you can ever imagine! You can never believe it but it`s incredibly tasty! It`s an Indian restaurant with mouth-watering…..”

And she went on to explain the details to Jacqueline, ending with recommending to her the very meal she had run away from. Some two hours later, Jacqueline rang Irene to complain about the hot-peppered meal. Irene`s response was a jokey “Oh Jackie dearest, hot pepper is the in-thing for the new modern young woman!” As she reassured her friend, inwardly her heart was singing a sweet melody because she had shared out her misfortune and suffering with her best friend Jacqueline. After all, isn`t that what friends are for? To share with them everything!

Just the other day, the stars miraculously shone on me when I overheard a group of senior citizen men recalling their youth-days` rather immoral escapades. One of them particularly amused me a lot while, at the same time driving home effectively the relevance of the principle of sharing with friends. That man related an interesting incident involving his close pal and himself back in “the good old swinging sixties”.

The two were senior civil servants who were leading a loose lifestyle. One evening, he visited a brothel in Nakulabye, a suburb of Kampala city which was then part of the city`s red district. He shortly made his choice of a shapely Congolese “chic” who apparently took him on a journey to the moon and the stars. The next morning when he visited the loos, he realized he had a painful problem with the passing of water from the bladder and he knew exactly who to thank for it.

So before going to a clinic to get treatment, he sought out his closest friend and provided him with all the necessary notes about his Nakulabye hunting grounds and, to a particularly tasty prey. We can only imagine what happened next, but the man`s audience applauded him enthusiastically – a confirmation signal that he had displayed true friendship towards his pal.

Now allow me to take a pause and ask you; do you still need any more proofs? I can assure you that I have got a lot of them safely stored away in a huge basket in my granary.

In case you need some more, feel free to pay me a visit at my humble abode in Wakiso. For now, start making friends and treating them as friends are supposed to be treated – sharing with them everything! And when I say “everything” I mean EVERYTHING! Why do you need to have enemies when the formula for keeping friends is that simple?


I am a Ugandan living near Kampala, our capital city. I am a teacher by profession who has been teaching English Language and Literature in English in high schools for over three decades. I love reading, both fiction and nonfiction. I am also very passionate about writing which I do all the time during my free time. In fact I hope to become a professional writer soon. ”Friendly Treatment” is one of my recent nonfiction writings.

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