Her mother was often sick and needed Albertina to look after the home. In her last year of primary school, Albertina was the oldest pupil in the school. She was chosen to be the head girl and wore her badge with pride.

Her best friend, Betty, told her about a competition, saying, “You must apply, my clever friend.” “What is the prize?” asked Albertina, growing curious.

“A scholarship to high school!” said Betty. “You must apply. You’ll win it, for sure.”

Albertina studied until the candle burned down. She practised sums. She practised spelling. She sharpened her pencils and gave her shoes an extra shine. Next morning she passed Shishi in her paddock. The horse whinnied and stamped the ground.