This was definitely not the kind of morning she had in mind the
previous night. Betty had made a scrumptious meal for her
hubby. Her beautiful daughters had licked their plates in
satisfaction. A clear indication that her chicken curry recipe had
not been a flop. She had cleaned up after dinner and sent them
off to bed. She was still up, doing whatever it is that mothers
do when everyone retreats into the comfort of their blankets.
Betty belonged to an age-group of women who had a bedtime
ritual. It was one that they adhered to with religious dedication.
You know the works; facial cleansing, teeth flossing, facial
moisturizing and of course the eye cream. This ritual was an
absolute must, anything to keep those wrinkles at bay. Ha, yes
this is how deep they had sunk in the pit of vanity. But it was
worth it. Their faces did a great job at defying age.
Finally, when the lights were out, Betty slithered into the bed
like a snake next to her snoring husband. Why is it that men are
so easily grasped by the latches of sleep? I mean, before a
woman unthreads the events of the day, he is in hot on the trail
of building his third castle.
It was not long before Betty drifted into the land of dreams.
She was deeply intertwined into the sweet melody of sleep,
when she felt her husband’s firm grip on her hand. His other
hand was on her head, shaking it with intense roughness. He
was throwing off her sheets. ‘Get up! We need to go. Now!’ He
was yelling at the top of his lungs. ‘Get the girls. We don’t have
much time! We have to get moving right now!’

Caught up in a mist of confusion, Betty wanted to ask him what
he had done with her husband? You see, when one has walked
the annals of marriage for several years, familiarity is
inevitable. It has a way of claiming territory. Betty knew her
husband well enough to predict his next move. Yup. This is
what marriage does to people.
Can you now see why she was a bit puzzled at his tone of
voice? He was a calm man. A wonderful father. I guess he was
what they-whoever they is-often referred to as a ‘good man’.
And now he was shouting all over the place with? What had
happened to his decorum? He was like a traditional rainmaker
negotiating with the powers that be-the gods of rain.
What Betty did not know was that imminent danger lurked in
her hood. The atmosphere in her home had a pungent smell of
impending disaster. Her husband was wrapped up in such a
frenzy that she found herself obeying orders blindly. The sun
must have been deep asleep because darkness had covered the
place.
The thing about haste is that it breeds confusion. And the thing
about women is that they like to ask questions in order to feed
their streak of curiosity. I guess it has something to do with that
extra sense that we so often proclaim to be in possession
of;The sixth sense.
In spite of all her gazillion questions, Lot would not tell her
where he was taking her and their daughters. ‘Honey, I will
explain later. Now is not the time. Trust me. No, don’t take
anything, we don’t have time to pack!’ In that same moment,
the girls peeped in her room and beckoned her to hurry up.
‘Am I the only one who does not know where we are going?’
Betty wondered.

As she rushed past the door of her bedroom and headed for
the front door, she yelled again ‘For God’s sake can someone
tell me on earth is going on! Where exactly are we going?
That’s it. I am not taking one more step until I know where I am
being taken! Somebody start talking!’
And just like that… Lot knew he would not win this one. In
exasperation, he said ‘Look, a fire is passing through this city.
Word has it that it is so intense that it will lick everything to
ashes. We are to head south and seek refuge in that mountain.
I know it is infested with monkeys. I also know you are not
particularly fond of them, but we will survive. So if I were you, I
would stop with the questions and get going!’ A mask of horror
and trepidation attached itself to her youthful face. Funny the
way stress changes one.
As the gravity of the situation pulled her in, she said ‘Maybe we
should each strap a little bag on our backs for essentials? How
are we supposed to walk away just like that? With nothing?’
The look on Lot’s face said it all. It was the perfect combination
of rage and disbelief. ‘Listen Beatrice, (Lot always addressed
her as Beatrice. A name he said, always reminded him of the
pretty young woman whom he had met 15 years before and
whom he had fallen hopelessly in love with). We have to flee
now!’ He shouted, louder this time. Perhaps in the hope that he
could hammer sense into his stubborn wife. She started
running. Albeit begrudgingly. The daughters took to their heels.
‘Oh, one more thing,’ Lot yelled from the back. ‘We are not to
look back. Whatever happens, you must keep running. Slow
down if you must catch your breath, just don’t stop. You got
that?’ It must have been a rhetorical question because no one
answered.
Obviously, things were going way too fast for everybody. In a
matter of hours, the life they had acclimatized to, was just

about to be wiped off by the winds of change. Completely
overhauled. They continued to run, from the familiar to the
unfamiliar.
Betty tripped and fell. Her long robe got trapped in a thicket.
Lot, her knight in shining amour pulled her back up to her feet.
The first gleam of dawn started to make an appearance as
darkness slowly began to fade. The girls were way ahead of
their parents. Obviously, they did not have to contend with
squeaky bones like their old folks. Betty continued to run (or
what appeared to be running) on the steep climb. Let’s just say,
that she was not much of a runner. In fact, she loathed the
practice.
Often times, when seated at the veranda of their house, which
overlooked the city of Sodom, they would indulge in some
hummus. It was always at the golden hour. Along the beach,
plenty of people jogged, showing off their hot bods. Toned
muscles drenched in sweat, glistened under the evening sun.
Betty would always wonder why anyone would subject
themselves to that level of torture. For her, all the running and
panting for breath, made no sense. She always told Lot that she
would never take up running. She had better things to do with
her time. Like cooking. You could count on her to host brunch
for as many as 20 people. Her culinary prowess could pull it off
successfully, to the last detail.
You can say that Betty was a ‘details’ person. You only needed
to visit her house to see the skillful display of her interior decor.
Somewhere in her DNA, was a sliver of finesse. Her second
favorite place was at the local cafe. True, the croissants were to
die for, but there was more to it. It was a haven that she looked
forward to retreating on Saturday afternoons. Over endless
cups of tea, Betty and her five besties would indulge in stories
about marriage. They would share dreams and reminisce their

days as single women. That, and the usual chatter of girl gossip.
Every step that she took away from the familiar, took her closer
to the unfamiliar. And that stirred uncomfortable emotions
within her. She knew that life as she knew it would change and
in ways that she was not sure of, let alone ready for.
Do you now see why she was finding it unbearable to uproot
everything? And for what? For the unknown. Surely that could
not have been easy.

We all know that Lot and his daughters had to throw
themselves back to the game of life without Betty. Her soul was
so deeply entrenched in her life that she really could not be
torn from it. She had to take one final look at the land that she
was deeply rooted in. And just like that, Betty began to
crystalize into a pillar of salt in the watchful eyes of a husband
and daughters who loved her so deeply.
To say that Lot and his daughters were in shock is an
understatement. He broke down and sobbed bitterly for the
wife of his youth. Like shards of glass being pushed deep into
his soul was what his loss felt like. Needless to say, his
daughters were inconsolable.
A husband who enjoyed the warmth of his wife in bed had to
find ways of surviving without her. Her daughters had to figure
out this thing called life on their own. Without their mother’s
council, they lost direction. After all, it was her council that
wiped off the stench of their mistakes. Without her, they were
floating in an orbit of uncertainty, as she was the stabilizer that
kept them tethered.
All this to say that I fully understand where Betty was coming
from when she looked back. Because change is big. Change is

unsettling. Change is daunting. For those of you going through
the winds of change, show yourself some kindness. Do not be
too hard on yourself. It takes strength to transition from one
dimension to the next. And because no one is immune from the
complexities of change, all you need is one step at a time. Then
the next one gets illuminated. One day at a time. Soon enough,
you will go the whole nine yards.
As for Betty; Look, I don’t know what her name was. The Bible
did not give me her name, her ID or even her staff number. So I
took the liberty of calling her the first name that popped in my
mind.
Also, naming the nameless has never been a crime, so I went
for it.
Change is always tough. Even for those who see themselves as
agents of change, the process of starting a new thing can
cause times of disorientation, uncertainty and insecurity.” –
Joyce Meyer