There are 13 sides to every story, I know you think they are only 2 sides but that’s not true, 13 … Remember that!
I remember the day I met Vusi like it was yesterday. I know he does not like mentioning the facts of our meeting but I use them to remind me of how far we had come. I was born and raised in Jozini, a lot of people have never heard of it but its there in Northern KwaZulu Natal close enough to the Swaziland border to make us relevant. I was born in a polygamous marriage but my mother had left my father when we were young so I am not really well versed in its act. In my area isthembu (polygamy) is so common when we watch people being shocked in the news we really can’t identify. I actually don’t mind it, better than having a cheating husband I say but it’s not for me. I am selfish like that. Seeing a woman want to share a man has to be one of the lowest forms of lack of self worth but then again I did say I don’t mind it. My mum was wife number three so I would not be here if I was not born out of a stokvel dick. That’s what I call isthembu, stokvel! Back to Vusi, it was at a party, a braai at that when I met him. My boyfriend of two years, Simon had insisted we go because I was that girl who always refused to go anywhere. For once I gave in because it was like the fourth party we had been invited to and he had had to go alone. He was still teaching me to drive at the time so the 20 minute trip to the venue was actually ended up a 45 minute trip with him irritated as hell. I don’t blame him for the irritation either because my heart by the time we parked was beating so fast I thought it would pop out.
“Never become a teacher! You are so impatient you know that!”
I shouted at him as we got out of the car.
“Impatient? You almost killed us twice because of not listening!”
He shouted at me. My boyfriend was the type that wore his heart on his sleeve! Guys like that tend to be impatient and say the wrong things all the time because they speak without thinking.
“I told you if you ever hit me again we are through! I told you!”
I screamed at him. Why was he angry at me? I had caught him trying to give that fat girl with the pimples his number before he kissed her. For that he had slapped me and the next thing I knew he was hitting me.
“Err how dare you hit a woman in front of people like this!”
One of the girls at the party said. I had seen her arrive and I think she was a lesbian because she came holding another girls hand. You know when you can just sense it; girls hug and touch a lot but its innocent. This was different. I come from one of those towns that lesbians are not welcome, sad but true, South Africa is not all open minded.
“Are you ok?”
A guy said to me. I was still dazed but that clap.
“Dude what the fuck is wrong with you?”
He shouted. I was not seeing clearly but I think the girls were beating him because I could hear him groaning and them screaming. Some guy said,
“If you touch my girl I will beat you up. Take it like a man because if you can hit women then they must hit you too!”
Anyway my facts are a bit blurry but that’s what I heard I think to be fair. Next thing he was driving me home, next thing that police woman had kicked him right in the balls. I know he says his stomach but I saw what I saw even if half my face was swollen.
“No he is telling the truth. The guy who did this was arrested already and he came to take me home!”
I shouted after the police woman who was already getting into her car. I helped him up.
“Stop moaning like a baby you will be fine. You a man!”
I told him and he looked up at me like I was crazy. The thing is I am used to men being macho around me but he was different in my eyes. He just looked vulnerable I guess.
“Yeah try being hit in the balls and you will see how much of a man you will be.”
“I really would like to go now it’s a bit scary here and you don’t know which car will bump us!”
I told him.
“I could offer to drive but I can’t drive so you will have to uhm…be strong!”
I told him. He looked at me like I was angry but walked back into the car. The ride was silent until I broke the silence when we got to my house.
“Thank you for rescuing me and I am sorry about what happened with the cop!”
I told him.
“It’s ok. I really hope that was a sign you will take seriously. That guy is not good enough for you. You deserve better.”
He told me. He was still in pain but I could see it was better now.
“I know. Can I have your numbers? I would like to thank you better when I am not all swollen up and look decent!”
I told him when he got out of the car.
He said as he gave me.
I told him as I walked in.
“I will wait for the lights to switch on then I will drive away ok?”
He said to me and I thought that was sweet. I waved goodbye and I walked in. I switched on the lights when I entered and looked through the curtain. True to his word he drove away. Thokoza is a township and like all townships it’s not the safest place to be. I was a bit scared for him.
“Londy what are you doing here?”
My big sister asked behind me startling me in the process. The switching on of the lights had woken her up. I turned around and she opened her mouth in shock?
“What happened? Did he hit you again?”
She asked me cautiously coming to me. I nodded my head and I just started crying.
“Yes he did and this time I am not going back!’
I told her. She came and she hugged me.
“Don’t make rash decisions. Sometimes men do that when they mess up. You can’t dump every guy that will make you angry, I thought you new this!”
She advised me. This was not the first time she had given me this advice about Simon.
“No not anymore. When someone starts to hit you in public you know that it’s late for you!”
I told her as I left her embrace and went straight to bed. I was tired and I was sore. I heard Nonjabulo switch off the lights. I cried once more and I fell asleep.
It was 0730 in the morning when I heard the knock. It was loud as though it was the police or something.
“Londiwe, open this door!”
I heard the voice. It was Simon. My heart leapt in fire. My instinct was that I needed something to protect myself. I heard Nonjabulo walk out of her room to go open.
“Simon so early ah… What happened to you?”
I hear her first say then ask witch shock in her voice.
“It’s a long story. Where is your sister?”
He asked my sister.
“She is sleeping. I thought we agreed that you don’t hit her again. What happened this time?”
She asked him.
“Are you not going to let me in?”
He asked her.
“Is she even here or are you covering for her? She left with some man she did not even know. I have been worried sick about her!”
He said. I immediately checked my phone but there was not one call from him. He had not even sent a whatsapp to check if I was ok so how was he worried sick about me.
“Well she is still angry at you and who can blame her! Come in, you need to calm down before you talk her and I must give you some ice or something before you can see her!”
She said to him. My sister was just something else. She could not give him ice come on; the man had just beaten me up. I got out of bed angrily.
“Simon what do you want from me? Get out of my house!”
I shouted at him. He had not even sat down. I was holding a high heeled shoe as a weapon. He was swollen all over also showing that those girls had done a good job.
“I am sorry baby. Do you want to hit me with that shoe? I deserve it.”
He stood up and he walked towards me and I raised the hand with the weapon ready to defend myself. Instead he came and knelt in front of me and started crying. He hugged me from that kneeling position meaning his head was in my pelvic area. I was still wearing the clothes from yesterday.
“I am so sorry. I don’t know what’s wrong with me. I try and be good but it doesn’t work. I told you that my ex put a curse on me with her muti so that I can never be happy with anyone else and its happening already.”
He said crying. The ex story, that’s a story for another day. My sister walked in at that moment with her ice and said,
“Aaarh that is so sweet. I wish a man can humble himself like that before me! Londy hug him back hle!”
My sister told me.
“He deserves it though. I should not even be talking to him!”
I told her.
“Ah come on. He has been punished enough and look he has more bumps and bruises than you!”
She said and it was true that he did. These girls had taught him a lesson.
“Here take the ice and tend to your man!”
She said giving it to me. I reluctantly dropped the shoe and replaced it with the ice wrapped in the table cloth.
“Ngiyabonga ukuba nawe MaMthombeni omuhle!”
(I am grateful to be with you beautiful MaMthombeni).
Michael Nkululeko Maphoto (fb)
Thank you for reading my letter. I am one of your new readers and Majuba is my first book.
I am 36 and I am married with two kids. My husband and I do fairly well but we have been fighting at home lately. The problem is he wants another child and I do not. We initially agreed on two and that was fine but when one of his friends had another child it became an issue. We had never been a fighting couple before that and ever since the child ting came he passes nasty comments as often as he can. I am now afraid that he is gong to cheat on me to get this child he wants badly. I really do not want a child especially under these circumstances were it feels like I am being given an ultimatum. Can anyone please advise me on how I can get around this without losing him?
Mother of Two