Hope you all had a blessed and safe long weekend. Our thoughts and prayers are with those that lost loved ones especially the Wits students. Stay blessed and keep well… Mike, Thozama and Khanyi
Do you know how many missing kids things people retweet in a month on Facebook or Twitter? To us yes we might feel sorry for the family searching but in reality most of us have never considered the “what if the person was my little sister, daughter or even, what if it was you that was missing?” question! We take it for granted that we are always ok but what happens when someone you love disappears. They are not dead, that’s certain but are they alive? If they are, why are they not calling home? It is so painful and difficult to fathom where to from there once they can’t be found. My husband was missing. I am not going to say he had run away because who runs away and leaves the car behind. Maybe he had runaway and changed cars so we could not track him down but then again that would be stupid! It sounded ridiculous that I had even thought of something like that.
“Nthate what’s going on?”
I asked my father because he too seemed worried and a man like my father does not frighten easily.
“Where the car was is not a good place! I don’t do that route because if it’s not hijackings its accidents! The taxi guys in that area also don’t play well with others. They shoot first and negotiate later.”
He explained. My husband had nothing to do with taxis so this could not be it. Our car also had GP plates meaning local rivalries had nothing to do with us.
“Have you called the police already?”
He asked me. South African Police Service, eish, I think of all public servants they are the ones not one person loves entirely! Please note, I did not say we hate them! SAPS is like the kleptomaniac at home whom to keep the peace is the one you give all the money to hide because not doing so means he will steal from you. In his hands he can’t because he knows you gave it to him in front of everyone else. That’s the best way to do it. There are different shades of SAPS, brilliant at times (not often), seemingly unbothered (some of the times) and downright incompetent (rest of the times). If you have dealt with SAPS directly then you will have experienced at least one of these shades meaning that for most people, even before you go to them to see which shade will meet you, you are frustrated!
I started to explain but he cut me off,
“Why not? Call them now and call your insurance?”
I don’t know why I was calling the insurance as the car had been found but I did so in any case. To the police I explained what had happened and they said that they didn’t have cars at the moment but will send someone as soon as possible. I have never understood this part about SAPS, they are the police unit in Africa with the most vehicles of which half of that fleet are expensive sports cars such as GTI, BMW etc. you name it. They also carry guns on their side to protect themselves and the civilians but if they are called in anywhere they don’t like, they will tell you they have no car. I appreciate that some neighbourhoods are dangerous but in such cases shouldn’t they then deploy more cars and personnel to make it safe again in the first place. I am a tax payer and I needed their help and that is what they were telling me.
“Papa they said they have no car!”
I told my father.
“Give me the phone!”
He said angrily. He was driving and his car had no hands free key.
“Wa tseba gore o bua ke mang?”
(Do you know who you are talking to?)
He asked. I think the person must have said no because soon after he explained very cold and forthright who he was. Two minutes he put down the phone.
“A car has been deployed. It’s following us!”
He said. Why had he not just done that in the first place? People in public office respond to people with power. They will bend over backwards to help that small few but send the public to ask them for help and it’s like you asking them to shit a cactus! I was so annoyed.
My father said. I called my insurance. They said there was nothing they could do but send police to the scene. I expected that already. Only when I hung did my father explain insurance will be able to track how the car had moved to get there. I think by that he meant Tracker but old people are old for a reason.
When we got to the car there was a taxi there, one of my fathers. I was relieved a bit because my father had made this place sound dangerous so with the taxi here I knew we would be safe. As soon as we parked one of the people walked up to us and said,
“Boss, I think he was taken! Look at the gravel there, there was another car and there is some blood over there!”
He said pointing close to the car! My heart almost stopped! Who had taken my husband? First thoughts were Mthobisi but he had absolutely no reason why to so that was way more than a stretch!
“They bumped him in the back and I think when he came out to check they jumped him!”
He explained. I was crying by now! Crying in a woman is not a sign of weakness but often a sign of a lack of options as to what to next. I wanted my husband back and if whoever had taken him for one minute thought he could get away with this then they had another thing coming. I am a woman of my word. True to his word the police arrived probably ten minutes after us, two cars each with three officers.
One of the officers said when he saw my father.
My father greeted him like an old friend and we explained what happened. Processes started taking place that I did not understand. The cordoned off the area even though it was practically open veld as is most things in Free State.
“What are they doing? Why are they not going after him?”
I asked my father.
“They need to collect evidence and which way must they go looking for him? What direction? Let them work!”
He said to me because he could tell my lack of patience and anxiety. My father had a way of not cuddling you when there was a crisis. He expected you to toughen up no matter how bad things were at that moment. The police asked me a whole lot of questions and I told them all the details of this morning minus the gun incidents. Wait a minute? Had one of those uncles followed him to revenge for this moment! Should I tell the police? The problem with this was that if I did and my husband was found ok they would say that he shot in the air in a public area therefore endangering people meaning that he could be arrested actually. You are not allowed to just shoot a gun. Shit! Good or bad idea I decided to hold back on that information for now. The police would probably find that out on their own when they go check at the funeral just in case he had gone there first after he dropped us off. I decided to call Nozipho’s mother!
“Has Sizwe come back there since we left?”
I asked her.
“No, he did not come back. He probably should not because the uncles have been in a meeting since that time about him. Some even want him arrested but we talked them down. I know my sister was wrong and I am sorry for her. Please do not hate her for life; she is selfish and entitled like that!”
She went to explain. I was not looking to hear that now because I had more pressing issues but I indulged her.
“It’s ok. Thank you. Will call later again!”
I told her and hung up. I told the police that he had not come back to the funeral so they should not waste their time there. I was told to go home and wait for their call after I had given them all I could.
“I won’t be back. I am going to deploy more people to help in the search!”
My father said. I could see he was suspecting something. Did he have anything to do with this? By him I meant his taxi business. He had said that he did not like going in this area and for as long as I have known my father he had never feared anyone or any place. He had also said that he wanted out of the taxi business and again my father loved taxis more than he loved even his own son so why now? Why was he so eager for an out!
“I want my husband back papa! I don’t care what you have to do, whoever has him, you go take him back, and you hurt them really bad!”
I said coldly in a language he understood, violence begets violence!
“Don’t worry, I have called in every taxi I have, friends and friends of friend. We will find whoever did this and we will teach them never to mess with my family again!”
I knew it! This had something to do with him but how had Sizwe been caught in the crossfire though! This is why Kgosi had refused to take after his father in this business. My father had called him a coward for saying no it but he had stood his ground. Some industries have too many unsavoury people.
“Let’s go home!”
I said and we left. I was not going to be a help in this.
“You are more like dad than I ever was you know?”
My brother said as we drove. I knew what he meant. I can be very cold, ruthless and unemotional. That’s me and that’s him but my saving grace was that I got a brain that made me a doctor. God works in mysterious ways I tell you.
“Nah, never mind!”
He said and changed topics to put my mind off things. Sweet of him but I was not paying attention. My mind was far away. I did not know what to say to Lintle now when I got home.
“Sizwe where are you?”
I asked myself as I stared at the trees run past in the opposite direction!
Was he dead?
“Think positive thoughts!”
I whispered to myself,
“Think positive thoughts!”
Michael Nkululeko Maphoto (fb)
Thank you so mu for reading my post.
I was dating the same guy for five years. We were very much in love. I never cheated on him nor got tempted. He was loving and also generous. He bought me things and even when I did not need them he would insist. We got engaged and things just fell apart and before long we had broken up. I still don’t know what happened. I thought maybe he made someone pregnant but his mother said he didn’t. I went and got tested thinking maybe he gave me something and is ashamed of it but nothing. He won’t say what went wrong. Fine, I moved on 8 months later. I dated a guy who was a friend and he knew a lot about my ex and me. He was sweet, kind and understanding at the beginning. I then realized he was trying to compete with the memory of my ex and started buying me things I already had to replace those bought by ex. When I did not wear his new things and kept the ones I was already attached to the fighting started. He accused me of not respecting him and still craving for my ex. I explained that I did not want him buying me things and him thinking that by him buying things he owned me! That did not go well at all. We fought and it got physical. We broke up. Who was wrong though, me for keeping my things from my ex or him thinking he can buy me out?