The Saba Islander

by Will Johnson

Consulting the Obeah Man

I got a call from a friend the other day. He said:”Johnson boy, the rumor is that you have taken the Inspector of Taxes to the Obeah Man.”

Not yet! Here is what happened. Sometime back when the new taxes on real estate were introduced when I was sitting on my verandah contemplating on life, taxes and death, two ladies gave me a shout out from the road. One of them was a granddaughter of my deceased cousin on St.Eustatius, Peter Ann Spanner. When she handed me the large envelope she joked that she had brought me a present. I thought it was a refund on the taxes I have paid the last ten years. (I will have a seperate story on that one and a challenge for a match-up for anyone complaining about taxes.)

Anyway just after the ladies left I received a call from a high official(and a good friend) in The Netherlands who jokingly asked me if two ladies had visited me and if I was going to protest. He said that there were those expecting that I would protest. I let the document lie for awhile and then had a couple of viruses which put me a bit out of circulation and out of the protest mode.

One day I decided to open the envelope and the assesment while high was not one I would normally protest. But since it seemed that expectations were created that having built up a culture of protest around my person that one from me would be forthcoming I decided not to disappoint. Also I noticed from the date of the assesment that I had opened the envelope just in time and so I decided to send in my protest. And in protesting I went back to the first settlement of Saba by my pirate ancestors up to the recent settler coming into our island and trying to take over the place. Everything I had on my chest I let go in one shot, one long letter that is.

In ending my letter I reminded the Inspector that even though I was not at the stage yet of  taking him to the Obeah Man, that I had taken one of his predessors  to the Obeah Man and that the Inspector was now walking the streets of another island and in the high day staring into the sky and counting the stars.

A few days later another call came in. The person was laughing out loud on the phone. This time the caller informed me that he had received a call from the top Inspector of Taxes in The Netherlands with two questions to him:

First Question: Who is this Will Johnson on Saba?

Second Question: What is an Obeah Man?

So now you know the rest of the news!!

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