Love thy neighbour (5/5)

By Drum Digital
27 February 2015

Nontle had always been a queen, compared to poor Nobantu.

The next morning Nobantu woke up early to pack Lungelo’s lunch. After breakfast, he kissed her goodbye and left for work. A few minutes later the doorbell rang. “Coming!” she shouted.

She opened the door open to find Nontle on her doorstep. “Hi, Nobantu. May I come in?” Nobantu was puzzled. Why would Nontle come over to visit her – and be so polite – after the way she’d behaved last night? What could her neighbour possibly want from her? Nobantu stepped back and said, “Sure. Come in.” Nontle entered in and sat down on the couch in the lounge.

“Can I offer you something to drink?” “No thanks. I won’t be long. I just need to get something off my chest. You must be curious about what happened last night. What you saw was one of the many fights Sipho and I have been having. Don’t be alarmed if you see us fighting again. It seems to be happening more and more. The other neighbours see us at it so often they don’t even bother to come out any more . . .

“And you’ll probably hear it sooner or later, so I figured I might as well tell you. Everyone around here knows . . . Sipho’s been having an affair and he refuses to end it. With one of his patients. He even did her nose job for free! They’re basically inseparable. I try to put on a brave face but it seems there’s nothing I can do to make him love me any more. . .

“To make things worse, I can’t have kids and he keeps throwing it in my face. I feel like the laughing stock of the neighbourhood . . .”

“I’m so sorry to hear that, Nontle. But why are you telling me all this?”

“I feel I owe you an explanation. You cared enough to come and find out if I was okay last night. I appreciate that. But also I’d rather you hear about everything from me – as I said, I’m a laughing stock around here.

“To think I used to say all those mean things to you . . . I never knew life would turn out like this for me.”

Nobantu thought of all the years Nontle had teased her. And to think that now her life was richer than Nontle’s could ever be!

Nobantu vowed there and then never to wish for anything more again – her life was perfect the way it was.

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