South Africans have been arriving regularly of late.
Sweat was pouring off the face of the man with the long white hair and beard.
“Hell! it’s hot here!” he gasped.
His companion – with the piercing eyes, hawk nose and trim goatee – said: “What do you expect? It’s Hell…”
The white-haired one looked around in disbelief: “Every time I think I will wake and find it’s been a nightmare … but it’s not.
“I told people religion was the opium of the masses and that places like Heaven and Hell are figments of the imagination. But I was wrong.”
The goatee man said: “I understand, Herr Marx. I followed your teachings and when the Bolsheviks said ‘Please tell us Comrade Lenin’, I said: ‘The proletariat of today takes the side of socialism, which enlists science in the battle against the fog of religion, and frees the workers from their belief in life after death by welding them together to fight in the present for a better life on earth.’ “Boy did I get that wrong, too!”
The two old Communists sat quietly and then Marx remarked: “But it’s quite amusing watching the comings and goings next door as they sort out who goes where.”
“Indeed,” said Lenin, “the place used to be called Purgatory – apparently the Catholics still have some clout around here – and they kept Robert Mugabe there for a while before deciding he belongs here with us.”
“That one annoys me. Calls himself a Marxist and travels in limos and lives in a mansion … never mind spending millions of dollars on a hospital in Singapore trying to delay his arrival here.”
Lenin rubbed his bristly chin and said: “I wonder if that place is going to change much since that South African arrived? What was his name? Something Watson wasn’t it? He said Purgatory was not appropriate and that he would do things the way his company, Bosasa, did it back home.
Then he renamed the place Lindela and now people sit there for ages unless they can bribe their way out.”
Just then, a group of South Africans arrived – as they did regularly. One man was singled out and chased over towards Marx and Lenin by an attendant with a pitchfork belching flames.
The other South Africans were told they were going the other way … and started singing and dancing. “It’s a pity I no longer dance – because the toyi-toyi they do looks really cool,” said Marx.
“It’s a celebration in their country … and they’re happy because the taxi driver who brought them here has been sent straight to us!” returned Lenin.
Marx suddenly looked mournful: “Comrade, did we waste our time? Was it all for nothing? I saw Fidel here the other day and he was very angry he couldn’t bring his billions with him … he’s just a capitalist in a uniform!”
Lenin nodded, depressed.
He looked at a copy of The Sunday Independent. It hadn’t caught fire because it was impregnated with so much bulldust. “Here’s an opinion piece by Ace Magashule, using socialism to justify what he and the other thieves have done to that country!”
Marx thought a little. “The ANC always do that and throw in a bit of racism too. It’s quite clever, if you think about it. Their people never question them, either. But it’s a pity they give us a bad name.”
Lenin nodded: “Look on the bright side, though…
“They won’t be able to bring their fire pools, Range Rovers or designer shoes with them when they get sent here.”
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