Century and three

2016-05-24 06:00
Janap Salie celebrated her 103rd birthday on Monday 23 May with neighbours and fellow seniors.  PHOTOS: Chevon Booysen

Janap Salie celebrated her 103rd birthday on Monday 23 May with neighbours and fellow seniors. PHOTOS: Chevon Booysen

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Humbled and overwhelmed.

These are the emotions of 103-year-old Janap Salie who celebrated her birthday yesterday (Monday) in Ottery.

“I can only thank Allah for the grace He has shown me over the years. I am humbled by it,” she says.

The petite mother of three lays smiling in her bed as festivities take place in the next room.

Asked what her secret to life is, she says “learning from others” taught her a lot.

“You learn when you pay attention to others and take advise from them as well,” she says.

Salie says she was spared through grace and does not know what the future will hold.

“Allah takes you where He wants to take you,” the soft voice of Salie says.

The great-great-grandmother was able to go on her last umrah at the age of 98. The first time she went to Mecca, she was 60-years-old.

Salie’s daughter-in-law, Badroeniesha Salie, says she only recently became bed-ridden. “It has only been two months since she has been confined to her bed. Before this she was up and about and was also an active member of the seniors club, the Gems.”

Described as a “patient lady who is not very fussy”, Badroeniesha says her mother-in-law was always around for them and helped rear her grandchildren.

“She worked as a supervisor at a shirt factory for 35 years but retired to look after her grandchildren. We lived with her for years in Delia Road before we moved to South Close. Now we are able to look after her after she moved in with us about 10 years ago,” Badroeniesha explains.

They add Salie – who is a grandmother of 15, great grandmother of 10 and a great great grandmother of five – didn’t have any ailments.

“The only thing now is that she is aging and she is tired and sleepy most of the time. But we had the doctor here and he couldn’t find anything wrong with her and we are so grateful for that,” Badroeniesha says.

Neighbours and friends celebrated Salie’s birthday with her on Monday morning with a cake donated by Pick n Pay Tokai and a lunch for family was held on Sunday.

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