By JAMES GUMUNO
WHEN Aina Vero adopted seven-month-old Nicky Moimkua nine years ago after his mother said she could not look after him, little did she know that one day the little boy will save her life.
It happened last Thursday at Hagen Tee in Mt Hagen, Western Highlands when the family home caught fire around midday.
Aina was busy sewing inside the house unaware of the fire. The neighbours living in the same building had fled leaving her inside.
They had checked the door to the bedroom where she was and found it locked. So they thought she had gone to town.
Nicky, 9, was playing with other children near the Hagen Primary School about 300 meters away when he heard that his house was on fire.
“I see the big flame coming out from the windows and through the door of the building upstairs.”
The landlord’s two little children and a teenager staying with them had fled from the burning building.
Nicky asked those standing around whether they had seen his mother Aina.
“They told me that they didn’t see my mummy.”
Despite the heat, Nicky ran to the unit where his family lived on the ground floor and kicked at the door several times “yelling at my mummy that our house is on fire”.
To his relief, his mum heard his shouting and opened the door. She saw the flames. She managed to run out with the suitcase containing her two daughters school certificates.
Nicky, helped by another boy, managed to save two mattresses.
Aina admitted that she was not aware of the fire as she busy sewing.
“ They (bystanders) told me they did not see my mummy. I ran and kicked at the door yelling: Mummy, mummy, the house is on fire.”
“The two children of the landlord and another boy on the top floor ran away without alerting me. They saw the house locked and thought I probably went to town.”
She owes her life to Nicky, the boy she adopted when everyone else wanted to abandon him.
She calls him her brave little hero for saving her life.
“I did not know that Moimkua will one day save my life. I saved his life once by looking after him when his biological mother decided to throw him into a rubbish bin when he was just seven months old.”
Nicky’s biological father was a policeman and his mother a housewife who complained that he never gave her any money to look after the toddler.
In early 2011, while at the Mt Hagen Hospital, Nicky’s biological mother handed him over to her husband’s mother to take him home and look after him. But she too was reluctant to look after the little boy.
The biological mother was desperate saying without financial support, it was very hard to raise an infant in the city. She even threatened to put the little boy in the rubbish bin.
When Aina heard that, she felt sorry for Nicky and volunteered to look after him.
“I took him into my house without informing my family members beforehand.”
The family accepted Nicky as one of their own.
When he turned seven, Aina took Nicky back to his biological father. But he could not accept him.
“I took him back home and put him into school. He did his prep last year at Kutn Elementary School in Kerowagi district, Chimbu. This year, he will be in Grade One in the same school.”
Aina and the family are happy to have Nicky. Their only problem right now is to look for a new home and put their lives back together after that fire.
She saved his life, now he has saved hers.
As the proverb goes, one good turn deserves another.