Paradise, interrupted

2013-12-24 11:27

Thursday. The Croc and I are well pleased. We’re about an hour’s drive from one of the grooviest places on earth.

Port St John’s. PSJ. Pee Es Jay. The Transkei’s Golden Mile. South Africa’s shark attack capital. South Africa’s marijuana capital. The place where Durban Poison really comes from. PSJ rocks. It’s dysfunctional, slowed down and dirty. I’d dig to retire there. Get the Pondo Fever and lie low. Forever.

My phone goes. It’s Lash. Lash is one of my many bosses. All of whom are women. I spend my entire life being told what to do by women. During and after working hours. I’m good at it.

Back to my phone. There’s this message saying, in essence, that we may have to call PSJ off. The Commander in Chief has screwed me again. Badly. An idyllic couple of days at the Lodge on the Beach on Second Beach waiting for somebody to get eaten by a shark has been kicked in the head. The CiC’s done the unthinkable. The Big Lahnee’s had Thulas Nxesi, Blade’s lunchtime drinking partner from the PMB high court days, release the Nkandla report. One minute we’re fantasising about looted crayfish and mussels on Second. The next were contemplating a return to the big city and worse, another haul to Nxamalala.

Truth is, I’m getting tired of the CiC spoiling my Decembers. Last year it was his R208 million house makeover and Mangaung. By the time Christmas came I was a battered, broken man. Even before I started drinking.

Two years ago it had been election build-up. And weddings and Christmas what-whats. This year things looked a bit better. The chance of a CiC-free Christmas was there. Maybe a small pop-in at the grannies’ Christmas party. No wedding that I know of. Yet.

Back to Thursday. The Croc and I go into a huddle. We narrowly miss a truck. We stop huddling. And start thinking. Technology is our friend. There’s nothing we can do on Nkandla in Durban that we can’t do here. The CiC’s in Jozi. So there’s no need to go to Nkandla per se. Plus Peter Engblom isn’t around at the George Hotel in Eshowe and the pub there is very quiet when he’s in Goa. Or São Paulo. Or wherever he wanders these days.

We can do Nkandla from here and work PSJ after deadline. While watching the beach in case anybody gets eaten.

Lash agrees. We hit Second. We get settled in. The Croc hits the beach and the town. I hit the phone. It’s 48 hours of harassing dodge civil servants, politicians and contractors. From the most beautiful office I’ve ever had. Poison in paradise. I’d rather have the sharks. Any day.

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