Heine's Ramblings and Rumblings

Monday Morning Smile: Only in the Cape……lovely story

1 Comment

From Eric Sommer :


Only South Africans can appreciate this story (or those who’ve lived here a long time)

On Sunday I popped down to  the local convenience store at the Engen service station to return  some DVDs and pick up a few things.  On the way I passed a scrap metal cart  being pulled by a donkey.  Whenever I see this sight I feel the same as I  do at the scene of a car accident – I really, really don’t want to look  but some awful compulsion always makes me have a quick glance to ascertain  the state of the poor beast of burden.

I was standing in the check-out queue waiting to pay when my  attention was drawn by a sudden burst of noise and activity outside on the  forecourt. Through the window I saw that donkey and cart were pulled up  alongside the pumps for “refuelling”.  The donkey had its nose in the  watering can generally used to top up cars, and the cart passenger was swabbing  down the poor creature’s sweaty flanks with the squeegee thing usually used  to clean windscreens and score a  bigger tip.  The driver and passenger were having an extremely loud and  colourful conversation, none of which I could understand apart from the “voks” and  “jou ma” comments, but which must have been extremely funny judging by  the toothless guffaws.

The terrible misuse of the squeegee caused one of the (bored and  almost lifeless) pump attendants to amble across lethargically to this  comic tableau and confiscate the item.  There followed an  incomprehensible diatribe accompanied by lots of hand gestures which ended with the  attendant shambling reluctantly back to the cashier window and mumbling a  long story, at which the cashier shrieked indignantly and told him  “nee man, hulle moet vok off”.  She then explained to her intrigued audience that  the donkey would only move away from the pumps if it was given some  apples.

It seemed obligatory to  donate the bag of apples I had just purchased for my son.  This was met  with huge toothless grins, much bowing and God Bless You Merrems.  As  I returned to my car I had the happy honour of over-hearing the donkey  being told loudly that it must be the “most vokking fency-schmency blerrie  vokking perd on the whole of the  Cape-Flats, eating epples from vokking  Woolwurths”.


One thought on “Monday Morning Smile: Only in the Cape……lovely story

  1. Oh how I can identify with the above story! (lived in Botswana for 25 years and encountered numerous such precious moments. They are true gems! And the kind hearted apple bit is heartwarming and appreciated way beyond that which appears on the surface by the recipients. (Looks like Heine did realy discover his inner self the other day….)
    Dane Willers

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