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This & that with Mal'phosa: When the honeymoon is over

13 Dec 2022 at 09:42hrs | Views
I was in a train the other day, which happened to be stationary for over an hour because of load shedding. Most of the passengers look restless; some were shouting their lungs out; others were mummering guardedly. Most are concernes with being to their destinations.

There is particularly this one couple sitting opposite me. They look carefree, like they wouldn't care a whiff if the train stayed there till Jesus comes. The woman, inquisitive as ever, giraffes around, stretching her neck to the limit. Until her eyes settle on another couple a few seats from us.

'Look at that man over there – clean, tall, muscular. Look at the smile? Not the stupid grin resembling the crack of a pod about to spit out a seed. And he is not like that man I know, short as midget from East Timor. You would think he is trying to hide from some bogeyman. Some people are thin and stiff as biltong. Short as if they were made in winter.'

'Yes. Even the woman is clean too. Look at that radiant smile and smooth, glowing skin! Unlike those whose face looks like it received a skin graft from a hippo; wrinkled like sand dunes in a windy July afternoon. And her structure! Oh my God. Some people look like a serpent swallowed them and spat them out after a week; straight, stiff, rectangular as the railway line.'

'Ugqoke kahle lowa baba. Hayi ukugqoka as if uya e-construction, or uyatshay'amathambo le, ezintabeni. The shoes are look like a decaying like some shellfish. And the toes look like the heads of happy infant tortoises. Some things are embarrassing uyazi. And look at the woman's wig – it looks expensive and beautiful. And ihlezi kahle. Some men know how to look after their women.'

'Ihlezi kahle' the man retorts, 'because she is also beautiful and her head is well-shaped; unlike some heads afana lesitina segabha. I also love those artificial fingernails. Ezabanye ungathi yinzipho zokhozi lwama zinyane.'

The man answers his cellphone.

'That man is speaking on the phone. We can't even hear him from here. So cool and civilised. Hayi ukuphendula ifoni ungathi yi sayoni siqala ingoma emfeni!'

'I totally agree. I have seen someone speak on the phone, gobbling like a turkey, and laughing like a hyena in labour pains.'

The woman will let this one slide;

'Do you see that man's watch?' the woman launches a counter-attack after some hesitation;'Modern, sophisticated, beautiful, attractive and big. Someone who is still using a digital watch ngalemnyaka is a pure Lazaro straight.'

The man is not finished: 'The woman, I think she is the wife, has fitting make-up. It looks even and very well applied. Hayi ukufaka imake-up uze ufane lesibungu sodaka. Yimihlolo.'

'The woman also has a sense of fashion' –says the man 'You can't move around in a dirty, torn, unpopular yellow Zanu t-shirt as if you are going to queue for food relief at some God-forsaken growth point in Chirumanzu. Or as if you are auditioning for a leading role in Michael Jackson's Thriller!'
'But he does not look like a shona, with a naturally pouted mouth, ready to say 'Mnwana!" Oh, look at that man's hair. Some people's hair is above forty but lest than sixty, ungathi ngamabele asetoteni. Sham muntu wenkosi. Wafa umuntu nge PHD.

'Yini iPHD.'

'Poor hair distribution.'

'I like the way that woman chews her pie - unhurried and quietly, focused, and clean too. Unlike someone I know, who chews like a pit bull chewing away at some rogue intruder - xhafu xhafu xhafu. Sies! Sickening!'

'You are right there. I know someone who chews and swallows like a newly born calf, learning to suckle! Clap clap clap! Umuntu eyindoda. Kuyayangisa!'

The man is out of words. The woman launches a follow up salvo.

'Am sure even the perfume on that man smells sweet as a rose; Irresistible. I know someone who smells like a rat that just survived drowning in a sewage spill. Indoda enuka njengo sathane!'

The man is hesitant now - it seems he has had enough of this indirect war of words. Still, he wants to have the last word;

'And that woman's perfume too - I can detect from here - attractive. It draws you closer. You'd want to wake up to that scent all your life. Hayi ukunuka angathi yidonki egiqike phezu kwamalahle atshisayo. And the mouth smells like a rotten wild cat.' the woman is taken aback, and the man notices. He launches another one;

'I love that woman's legs - proportional and feminine, hayi ukuba lemlenze e bulky, bent, bruised, bowed, awkward, engathi ngu Jone Cena umuntu engumfazi.'

The woman looks hurt. However, she controls her anger, and launches a counterblow:
'That man looks tough too - can take you to the promised land. Hayi laba oMoses who will take you out of Egypt but leave you stranded in the middle of nowhere. Cowardly weaklings! I could kick them to the ground. Am not surprised we only have one child after all these years. I have - - -'

'Awu, kanti ukhuluma ngami wena sdwedwe!' the man's tolerance levels have been reached.

'Lawe, mhlathi wakho!' The woman shouts back as she bolts away, along the railroad, turns a corner and disappears up a crowded staircase. The man, trembling with anger, scrounges around for his scant parcels, dashes out of the carriage, makes to run after his woman. Somehow, he takes a different direction, opposite to that of the woman. He can be heard hyperventilating and groaning and swearing his frustration as he melts into the crowd.

When the honeymoon is over mjolo will hurt you.

Ngiyabonga mina!

Source - Clerk Ndlovu
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