Love thy neighbour (1/5)

By Drum Digital
23 February 2015

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

Nobantu unpacked the last of her teacups. She put the cardboard boxes in the storeroom and took a walk around her new home. It was the stuff dreams were made of: marble tops, high ceilings, a swirling staircase, walk-in wardrobes and a sparkling pool. She couldn’t believe her good fortune.

Things like this didn’t happen to her. Maybe this was the start of even better things to come, she thought. Her husband, Lungelo, was at work against her wishes, but she’d forgiven him for not taking leave while they settled into their new home. He was such a hard worker. His main aim in life was to be a good provider to Nobantu and their daughter, Babalwa.

From the moment Lungelo had found out Nobantu was pregnant, he took full responsibility for caring for them. This meant working his fingers to the bone so he could give them the best.

Yes, she had indeed been lucky to find a man like Lungelo. She counted her blessings every day. Thankfully all the unpacking was done now and she could enjoy her new home.

She wondered what kind of people lived on the estate. They must be professionals with fancy careers, she thought. Her curiosity got the better of her and she wasted no time in going for a walk to acquaint herself with the neighbourhood. She locked the front door behind her and as she walked past the gate of the large property next door, she saw a tall woman at the letterbox.

Assuming that the lady must be her next door neighbour, Nobantu smiled and walked up to introduce herself. “Good afternoon. I’m Nobantu, your new neighbour. Is this your house?” Nobantu said, pointing to the huge double storey. “Yes, it is. I’ve been living here for five years.” The woman didn’t turn around or look up as she went through the bunch of envelopes in her hand. It made Nobantu feel small and insignificant. She decided the introduction hadn’t been worth it and prepared to walk on. “I must go. It was nice to meet you, Mrs . . .” “Mrs Konongo. Nontle Konongo.”

The woman finally turned to face her. Nobantu was stunned – and her offish neighbour seemed to be even more shocked as the looked at Nobantu. “Oh my god, Nontle – is it really you?” “Nobantu?

No way! What the hell are you doing here?” The woman looked puzzled. Nobantu resented Nontle’s tone of voice. She had no business asking her that question in such a rude manner.

Then again, Nontle had always been a cow, Nobantu thought to herself.

To be continued...

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