Just one of those days…

Just one of those days…

Wobbling up a ladder, planing and sanding an Oregon pine beam for our new kitchen, I felt my phone vibrate. Our newly born foal had a frightful diarrhea and would I please come over to help.

It had been one of those days…I hadn’t eaten lunch, so just popped a chewing gum in my mouth hoping it would take the hunger pangs away. I jumped into the car, and headed up to see what I could do. The foal, only two days old had gutsed itself on colostrum so I couldn’t understand how it could possibly get diarrhea.
When I got up there, I found a very uncomfortable mum, huge udders and a very thirsty foal. I avoided mummy’s kicks while I drained the milk out, held her while the foal suckled and now, with milk streaks on my bare feet and grease stains on my cheeks, horse hair everywhere, I headed home for a bath. Coffee first though. I wanted a strong cup of coffee with thick cream.

Yup – it was one of those days – I didn’t have cream. Luckily I remembered this on my way down Hillside Road, not at my gate!
No probo – I turned left instead of right, at the robo and parked in the little sloped parking slots I am so thankful for in Bulawayo. Another thing I am thankful for is that the security guard who works this parking lot wears a smart uniform, helps me reverse and never solicits money to look after my car. So I ALWAYS give him a coin.

Another thing I’m thankful for is that here in Bulawayo we don’t have poor-whites in the car parks. I don’t know what it is with them, but their body language is just perfect for that guilt complex I have sitting there in my tummy…waiting. In Johannesburg they are even at the robo’s. Where Rabie crosses Republic in Randburg, there is a scary, tall woman who stalks along between the cars and stares you down. I avoid her if I can and if I can’t, I run up my window. On our recent trip I watched with glee, a man in an open BMW try to keep looking forwards while she harangued him!

Have you noticed, poor whites are never white. They are always brown. Why is that?

I parked my car, greeted the security guard and walked into the shop. I always walk fast, not only when heading home for coffee and a bath, its just me. Almost level with the tills, I was stopped by the shop security.
He told me I couldn’t go into the supermarket.
“How come?” I asked in between chews.
Because I didn’t have any shoes on, he said.
I had shoes in the car, but didn’t want to put my dirty feet into them, and I only wanted a bottle of cream which is in the fridge closest to the door.

Still chewing and looking down my long nose at him I said, “You’re kidding, right?”

I glanced over at the fridge intending to ask him to fetch me the bottle of cream and saw a reflection of myself in the glass door.
I saw a person dressed in dirty shorts, no shoes, ankles splattered. Brown skinned and chewing gum, with hair hanging un-brushed and dusty, I thought the guy had a point. Its not often I really look at myself and see how others see me.

The arrogant look was entirely out of place on this brown skinned, poor-white. So I nodded at him thinking I would go to Greenvale where George certainly won’t kick me out, shoes or no shoes.
Leaving the supermarket, I could only smile at the flabbergasted car guard as he took my proffered coin. Open mouthed, he stared from me to the supermarket guard, to my car, unable to believe his eyes. He tried to change my mind, remonstrate with the other guard, but I was gone, off in a hurry, for that mug of creamy coffee and deep bath…
My novel Silk Threads can be downloaded here:

And Jack and Jill, here:

Please take a look


10 responses »

    • Bad, real bad. Sanding dust is terrible and I was tired, so I get those dark rings round my eyes and the dirt streaks on my feet were the best…and the chewing gum – also when I work on the house, I put on my oldest shorts (with holes and stains)…it wasn’t only that I wasn’t wearing shoes, that is obviously the only thing he could think of. Poor guy – must have got a boloking from the shopowner

  1. Bulawayo still prides itself on keeping up appearances! I always remember not being able to get into any shops barefoot – even as a child. Esigodini was different 🙂

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