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Cesiri Tono – Tune In

Story lines from Cesiri Tono

Woshi’s Story
Woshi is a beautiful, young peasant woman who runs away from her rural village to escape an arranged marriage. Unaccustomed to life in the city, Woshi looks for work. She ends up at Tanti’s bar and inn. Tanti pretends to be Woshi’s friend and offers her a job and a room. She introduces Woshi to her friend Filiberi, a rich, corrupt plantation owner, and Woshi becomes his mistress. Sibiri, Woshi’s ex-fiance, shows up one day at Tanti’s bar. Before eventually throwing him out, Woshi again becomes involved with Sibiri. Tanti, increasingly resentful of Woshi and jealous of Filiberi’s attachment to her, casts Woshi out of her inn and informs Filiberi of Woshi’s infidelity. Heartbroken, Woshi ends up on the street, until her friend Akissi invites her to move in with her. Akissi teaches Woshi to sell fruit at the marketplace. Woshi eventually makes enough money to run her own bar and live in her own apartment. She spends the remainder of the series helping improve the conditions of the children employed at Filiberi’s plantation and campaigning against child trafficking.

Abdoulaye’s Story
Abdoulaye lives in Burkina Faso, and he is ten years old. More than anything in the world, he wants a bicycle, especially after he sees his friend Barou riding one down to the swimming hole one day. All of the children talk about leaving to find their fortunes, knowing that if life continues as usual, they will never be able to afford bicycles. Kunandi and Lagare, two other young boys, find work in town, helping Senteja at her bar. Abdoulaye, however, is promised work – and a bicycle – by a local cocoa plantation owner. He and his parents immediately agree, counting the offer as a stroke of good luck. Unfortunately, Abdoulaye’s initial enthusiasm evolves into fear and misery when he arrives at a remote and inaccessible plantation, where he is forced to work ten to twenty hours a day. Daily survival becomes an acute challenge, and Abdoulaye wonders whether he will ever be able to escape.

Akissi’s Story
Akissi, a transitional character, is an orange seller, and has many lovers. Others in her community, particularly her friends Amijan and Jigiba, disapprove of her behavior around men. When Akissi visits the clinic, she discovers she is pregnant. This is devastating, as she is unmarried, and does not know who the baby’s father is. Zangoroba, an older admirer of Akissi, asks for her hand in marriage. Akissi, who had being drinking heavily that evening, rudely repels his advances, announcing to him that she would never marry a man his age. As her pregnancy advances, Akissi drops out of the life of the marketplace and town center. Solo, a friend of Akissi’s, returns to the town after being away and asks about Akissi. He is told of her pregnancy, just as she arrives, with neither a pregnant belly nor a baby on her back. Akissi informs him that she has lost the unborn child. After this sobering event, Akissi resumes her activities at the marketplace, and becomes very successful selling fruit. She drinks less, abstains from relations with men, and concerns herself with the welfare of her friends Jigiba and Woshi. As Akissi’s situation improves, she helps support her friend Woshi on the road to self-sufficiency.