Although I had the good fortune to be able to pick and choose amongst the girls or single women that became my girlfriends, I didn’t always select from the beautiful people or sex kittens. It could have again stemmed from my parents nurturing that attributed to my empathy for the weak, incapacitated and the underdog. My parents not only fed and aided the poor and down and out that knocked on our door but also fed stray and sick animals that seemed to wander onto our property. Most of them became our pets and we were taught how to care and be kind to animals. That all seemed to lend itself also to a few girls that I befriended who were in ill health.
There was Jodi who was born with a hole in her heart, and when meeting for the first time on visiting her sister at their home we hit it off immediately. She had the cheekiest grin although frail with rosy cheeks due to her condition. We got to chat while waiting for her sister, who I was taking out, and it seemed that she too was an avid reader, appreciated the arts and loved classical music. However, because of her ailment she couldn’t explore other avenues that would cause an over exertion. Wanting to know where the two of us were going and saying that we were going dancing made her loose the cheeky grin due to not been allowed that pleasure. She reminded me of a kitten in a litter that only three legs, which we kept as a pet, and although it couldn’t do all the things that the other kittens did it still enjoyed what it could, but also at times use to lay and watch with a little forlorn look when it couldn’t enter into some of the others escapades. Finding myself thinking about her and wanting to do something that didn’t seem sympathetic seeing that it seemed to cause her annoyance, I started by dropping off literature that she appreciated. That brought me more into her company with long discussions on other literature works and to listen quietly to symphony pieces. The sister wasn’t appreciating that much, Jodi though was gleefully lapping it up and so was the amused family. She wasn’t a chatterbox, which I couldn’t abide in anybody, so we both had the pleasure of enjoying some of the cultural aspects of life at times in silence and with appreciation, which made her more comfortable in my company. She knew of my other girlfriends, which her sister of course had blabbed about, and complimented me on the decency shown by not expecting the same favours from her. She also advised me that as a consequence of her life expectancy, which was an unknown factor, there was no way of getting serious with any one. She had also begun to open up to me about issues that she hadn’t even discussed with her family about, which was disheartening. Part of it accounted for her not having any boyfriends due to her family thinking that it may induce further impairment of her heart if becoming a bit over excited. It was pretty amusing to her that I had come along and been accept by the family as a quiet young man with the same interest as her, and that it wasn’t putting any extra undue stimulation on her. What they didn’t know was that she liked to prise intimate details from me of my association with my girlfriends due to not able to experience it also. There were times that it excited her to the point of getting heart palpitations and for that reason all she received from me was a peck on the check and a slight hug, which she found amusing too.
I surprised her at one time while listening to the waltzing music of the ‘Blue Danube’ by extending my hand so as to have a slow gentle dance. Because of her family having gone to a church dance function and with her missing out again, it had given me the thought that it would be something different for her to try. She thought so too when able to stand in one spot and sway to the rhythm, and she showed her delight by cuddling and holding me closer. Holding her that close made me think again about the kitten that was cuddled, held close, and at times a tender kiss planted on its little mouth, and that’s exactly what I did when she lifted her head off my shoulder to look at me. The surprised look was nothing compared to the uncontrollable trembling and heart pounding that occurred with her. My assurance that it wouldn’t ever occur again plus the pacifying and soothing that followed must have worked to reduce her anxiety for she slowly put her arms around my neck and put her lips up to be kissed again. My gently and lingering kissing got only a slight trembling and a less erratic heart beat that time. Because she was such a delicate thing, and especially having moulded her body to mine, I was cautious as how to handle her and what she could cope with. Her not ever having had a boyfriend with all the sexual connotations made it obvious that she wanted more to happen as her body delved further into me as it expressed a tender passion. Thinking that it would be her only time to ever experience some form of lovemaking and with agreement, I picked her up and carried her to the bedroom where we just laid cuddling to settle her down. It was an unusual situation for me because I wasn’t looking for and expecting any bodily pleasure for myself but for her only. Maybe I was over cautious on account of thinking that her heart may give out when she participated with movements of pleasure and I ceased. She on the other hand would give me a silent no, even though her cheeks were flushed and her breathing short and sharp, which was what made me anxious for her well-being. At all events she proved me wrong when drawing me hard up against her to feel the two of us real close, which intensified her pleasure and brought her gratification. When she just lay there on her bed for about fifteen minutes breathing heavily but normally, I had mixed feelings to what had occurred and even prayed that it wouldn’t have caused her any harm. She on the other hand would giggle when placing my hand on her chest every five minutes to feel how the heart was beating, and she would take it and smilingly place it on her petite breast. The following months saw me seeing her still in between my other girlfriends but we never ventured there again because the consequences might have been conducive to an earlier demise for her. She was thankful though for having that one time experience and quite content that I seek fulfillment elsewhere. It even seemed to have strengthened her and we were then back to our enjoyment of quite times together and quite kisses too, and then she went completely quiet and died.
Then there was Jane who was as plain as her name, and when meeting for the first time found her wrapped up in a blanket reclining on a couch in their lounge. My friend Derek who was visiting the sister, who was his girlfriend, had asked me to accompany him as an excuse so as to leave early on another date. As it was winter and thinking that Jane was wrapped up because of the cold let me put my foot right into it by suggesting that, and it created a bit of embarrassment. She was incapacitated due to having tuberculosis in her leg, which was something I had never heard about before, and although receiving treatment and on her way to recovery, it had been a long process. She was house bound for four months after previously in hospital for another four, and it wasn’t that she couldn’t walk or get around but that it was advisable that she rested as much as possible. Jane and her sister lived alone for both parents had died, and when occasionally popping in for a quick visit to see how she was faring on Friday nights before going to play at cards, I would find Derek there. Her sister who very seldom left her alone at night made it difficult for him and her to socialize much, which was his complaint and excuse for dating other women. He was my best mate at that time, and seeing their predicament I offered to occasionally stay with Jane on the Friday nights when possible. They were quick on the uptake and the following Friday saw them going out together. Jane was into board games, card games and jigsaw puzzles that passed a pleasant evening, and it kept her occupied too during the day. On the other hand those two were having such a good time that on their return in the early hours of the morning found me asleep on the couch and Jane asleep in her bed. She had gotten tired while waiting for their return that was promised would be early. What though wasn’t told to me was that every night before going to bed her sister had to manipulate and massage her legs. So there I was with a girl who was yawning her head off and getting stressed out because she wasn’t able to go to bed before her treatment was administered. When asking which part of her legs had to be done thinking it wouldn’t be a big deal if obliging so that it would calm her down and she could retire, my surprise must have showed when told that it consisted of starting from the feet all the way up to the top of her legs. After my initial surprise and considering her must have treatment, my offer to oblige caused her embarrassment because of how far up her legs I had to massage. Always the gentleman and trying to set her at ease by telling her that all the lights could be turned off, the curtains drawn, the door closed that would leave her in complete darkness and that I would also wear a blindfold caused a fit of laughter, broke the ice and she proceeded to the bedroom to do just that. So there I was in a couldn’t even see my hand in front of my face pitch-black dark bedroom with a jar of cream in my hand for the massaging, and after feeling my way towards the bed I found her feet. Massaging her legs wasn’t a problem because of only going up as far as the bottom of her nickers when feeling my fingers touching it, and it was the same for the front. Her sister and Derek, when arriving, thought it hilarious at the situation they had placed us in but thanked me for the discreet way of handling it. Telling him later that it was the last time he would put me in a situation like that again caused him to apologize and plead with me for just one more time. It seemed the two of them had already arranged for a paid in advance function and because it was a distance away they had been offered a lift by car, and in that way they would be earlier home. As it was a month away I agreed. Saw her off and on, and Derek reminded me a week before time so that I wouldn’t otherwise be occupied. Turning up and having given thought to why Jane’s treatment couldn’t be done earlier received the answer that it had to be done before her bedtime so that her legs could be relaxed for circulation during the long night. I again received assurance that they would be home earlier.
While chatting away like a magpie, which was the only thing I found annoying about her, she only told me then that her sister had teasingly suggested that the next time it occurred again she should be completely nude and to leave the lights on so as to make it worth my while. My laughing response if that was to occur I would come and massage her legs every night brought the reply that because she hadn’t had a man touch her like that, which she had found very pleasant, she had experienced a nice dream about it. I on the other hand had not even given thought to it, as it had not evoked any sexual connotations towards her. We waited and waited, and she yawned and stressed seeing that it was past midnight and they hadn’t returned. My vocal disappointment of them caused her to become more upset and teary, but with the pacifying assurance of doing the treatment come what may caused her to brighten up and hug me. So there I was once again feeling my way towards the bed in the pitch black darkness. I was puzzled at first when my massaging fingers didn’t come in contact with the bottom of her knickers sooner than I expected, so I proceeded on thinking that in the dark my perception had decreased. What the, I thought, when the tips of my fingers encountered more than the top of her legs. The first thought that came to mind when sitting up straight in astonishment was that she had contemplated her sister’s suggestion when readying herself for bed, and because of my eager sounding joking response of doing it every night if she was in the nude. My mind raced on whether to stop or continue. At the same time though I took into consideration that the treatment was of a necessity and that it would see her going to bed, and when continuing, it brought a long drawn out sigh from her. Although setting me on tenterhooks, it made me also wonder what her dream had been all about and if she was trying to bring it to reality. When finishing the treatment and to satisfy my curiosity if she had taken her sister’s suggestion to its full extent, and to teach her a lesson by embarrassing her, I switched the light on, and she had. Her hands were then going everywhere to hide what she didn’t want me to see. Her expression also reminded me of one of our cats that had that look on its face when found with one of my dad’s canaries in its mouth. Seeing her lying exposed like that and trembling uncontrollably, gave me the thought of maybe massaging her further than just her legs so that it would relax and settle her down. Her expression of embarrassment then turned to puzzlement when rubbing more oil into my hands, but it soon brought a look of contentment and a smile. It also gave me a feeling of satisfaction that I was partly responsible to be able to have given her some pleasure in her humdrum and reclusive type of life. But it had also made us both almost forget about the other two. By quickly tiding up first though we retired to our respective rooms. We couldn’t have timed it better as they arrived apologetic and with their friends in tow with a believable excuse of the car having broken down. I didn’t go there after because of not wanting to get involved any further, but when bumping into her one day I was surprised to see that she wasn’t a plain Jane anymore, and she introduced me to her boyfriend as the best friend she ever had when she was sick, which evoked pleasant memories.
Meeting Rebecca was in a set of very unusual circumstances and I shouldn’t have felt pity towards her but I did. There were times when I preferred my own company and liked my own space, and at those times Cape Town’s Botanical Gardens was my retreat. There the quite serenity and natures ambiance only disturbed by the cooing of turtle doves, chatter of squirrels and the buzzing of bees was a peaceful contrast to my somewhat busy and hectic life. Dogs on leads were allowed in the gardens, although only in specific areas, and the areas not allowed in was where people were allowed to sit on the grassed ground that was treed and with shrubs and flowering plants. Reclining against a tree I watched the passing parade of humanity which although of different cultures and idiosyncrasies were all enjoying the pleasant Sunday afternoon stroll either singly, as couples or families with children. Around me reclining on blankets or the grass with picnic baskets were mixed groups of people. Just to the side of me was what looked like mother and daughter who were trying to feed a squirrel with bread but and it was having none of that. The girl after having pointing out to the woman that others were feeding the squirrels with nuts, saw the woman make her way towards a peanut vendor a distance away. It was at that moment when two large dogs still with their leases on flew from without the shrubbery chasing each other. And it wasn’t for play as they turned and went hell for leather at each other. The young girl was right in their path as they bit, snarled and fought each other while rolling towards her. Shouting that she should get up and move out of the way seemed to fall on deaf ears as she just sat as if frozen and shrieked. The dogs were up on their hind legs snapping at each other while moving closer to her and it was the woman who was shrieking then. Jumping up I scrambled and ran towards the girl, scooped her up and moved towards the woman who was almost stumbling as she ran. The two owners of the dogs came running also, but it was only to separate the dogs. On the other hand, the mother and I couldn’t separate the girl from the tight grip of her arms around my neck while sobbing on my shoulder. With the mother’s pacifying and my bending down to get her to stand didn’t happen because it seemed she was having difficulty standing on one of her legs that kept on buckling, and she held on more tightly. When the mother explained that her daughter had a weakness in that leg I apologized for my indiscretion, picked her up again and carried her out of the Gardens to their home that was right opposite it, with her mother in tow carrying the rest of their gear and a cane, which I gathered belonged to the girl. Her mother had thanked me before but her constant doing it was becoming a bit too much. When telling her that nothing had actually happened to the daughter except for the fright received and that it was fortunate that I was nearby, she ceased that, but she then asked me to stay for a meal as a thank you. By my standards they were pretty well off, for Rebecca was not only receiving private treatment for polio but also private tutoring for everything else. The mother and she lived alone because of the father having died years previously, and the business that he had was still operating with the mother controlling it. Although Rebecca was only a few months younger than me her condition made her look much younger and she was as light as a feather. But it was her hobbling around with the cane that got me sympathetic towards her. Their telling me to keep in touch when leaving wasn’t going to be on my agenda for I wasn’t in their league. They were government White, lived in a government White area, and I was a government Coloured living in a government Coloured area. That put an immediate end to any form of visiting or a thought of socializing because of what the government’s law required. Visiting and socializing with my White family and some of their friends was a different matter because we didn’t see colour as such due to us growing up together in a non-discriminatory manner.
Life went on as usual for me with no thought given to that episode until tapped on the shoulder with a walking stick in all places than in Saint Mary’s Cathedral in Cape Town. As a Catholic and when there was anything of church importance occurring in the archdiocese, my interest saw me attending. This was a gathering of all denominations to discuss the government’s policy of segregation in all churches, and it seemed that Rebecca, which I only then found out was Jewess because she had come with a Jewish group, was there to give their support to that cause. It was a multicultural gathering with apartheid enforced on the outside, on the inside though it was not sanctioned or enforced in any Catholic establishment. The government and the church were always at loggerheads concerning apartheid changes to their schools, curriculum, churches, rectories, convents or any other construction and gathering that they construed would accommodate a gathering of mixed race people. She thought it contemptible that just because peoples colouring was different they couldn’t mix and socialize as friends, and she also advised me that their home was my home and that her mother always spoke with pride of how I saved her daughter from the jaws of imminent death to their relatives and friends. We had a good laugh about that, and she also told me that they wanted to meet me but that it could be only arranged when her mother returned from an overseas business trip. She invited me in the meantime though to accompany her in her cousin’s car that was picking her up so that the two of us could have lunch at her home and continue our talk. With her insistence and time on my hands, when the cousin came to pick us up I was pleasantly surprised, particularly seeing that she was a luscious blond and driving a red convertible. When introduced she squeezed my hand with both of hers when told by Rebecca that I was the one that had rescued her from the dogs, but I didn’t know what to make of it when she gave me a wink. When arriving at her home she handed me the door key to let myself in while seeing her cousin off, and although said softly while walking away she made the comment that I was a hunk and even she could go for me. Rebecca was smiling when entering, repeated what her cousin had said and warned me that she was a man-eater; she though didn’t seem amused when asking if she was one too. Showing me the kitchen and asking me to check out the fridge to see what we could have for lunch first puzzled me because she had asked me around for lunch. What caused me concern though was when seeing the winching expression on her face, especially when almost stumbling when hobbling away. Going to her aid she leaned heavily on me, and with tears welling up in her eyes she clutched at her leg. Not knowing of the pain that the leg caused when too long on it got made known to me by the disclosure that the leg needed long periods of rest in between short outings, and when it hurt that much she wished she was dead. That really blew me away, and wanting to offer some sort of comfort my thoughts went to when she had her arms around my neck, wouldn’t let go and was sobbing on my shoulder. Picking her up in my arms once again with her doing the same thing again I cradled and rocked her for pacification. She stopped me though from wanting to carry her to the bedroom so as to rest after quieting down and rather preferred the settee in the lounge where she could be in my company, watch me prepare lunch and chat at the same time.
By first placing pillows under her legs for it required elevation, my delving into the fridge, which had enough supplies to feed an army, saw me concoct up a tossed salad, cold meat cuts and a dessert of ice cream, bananas, syrup and crushed nuts for banana splits. Wanting me to have a tour of their home after finishing lunch so as to show me around was another difficulty overcome by me simple carrying her around their vast home. My comment though when coming upon the bathroom and toilet that it would be one place that I wouldn’t be carrying her into when she required to use it got me a smile, hug around the neck and a kiss on the cheek. But teasingly telling her that it was lucky she wasn’t big and fat because of all the carrying around I was doing got me another I am a not amused look, although it was revealed to me later when she confided what troubled her. My man-eater comment didn’t go down well because all the men she knew were just acquaintances who would rather be with whole women, and because of that she never had a man as a companion. My big and fat remark had made her wish at times that even that would be better than what she was as it would have brought about her also able to do something about that so as to have a boyfriend like all normal women. She was in a real depressive state and feeling sorry for herself, and her further comment that at times she felt like committing suicide really freaked me out. With the mother only home weekends because of work commitments and also due to Rebecca’s friends that worked too, it had left her at loose ends for the rest of the week. The mother though tried to make up for it by taking her for long drives, which was one of the pleasures she enjoyed because it didn’t consist of walking, and to the beach or gardens where she loved to be. They also went on many holidays together when the mother could get away, and because Rebecca didn’t have a boyfriend, her mother also shied away from men friends so that she wouldn’t feel left out, which Rebecca thought wasn’t fair.
When touring their home I did notice solid armed upholstered chairs placed in the most unusual places. The bathroom, beside her bed, the kitchen and garage, at the front and back door, and near the swimming pool, what I didn’t see though was a wheelchair. Not wanting to make any comment on the chairs placement for it must have been for her convenience when resting, I did though ask if a wheelchair wouldn’t be appropriate for mobility. It seemed her mother and medical professionals had suggested it, plus the mother had also wanted to employ a nurse for her daily requirements. She though when seeing others in wheelchairs and the pity it induced from people would rather suffer the pain than look like an invalid, and it gave her somewhat independence. Her despondency began to affect me too because my light at the end of the tunnel advice fell on deaf ears due to it seemed that it was the same advise received from everyone. Because of assuming that the comforting only seemed to work for the pain of the leg I began thinking of a means required to alleviate her depression felt so that she could feel enlivened. She had a good collection of ballad records, which she preferred because of not having the ability to dance, and she thought it in poor taste when asking for a dance after inserting one. The surprise and delight showed though when picking her up in a familiar and comfortable position and to swing waltz around the room with her hanging on for dear life. Falling in a heap on the settee set her off in a fit of uncontrollable laughter. As it had brought about cheerfulness in her and wanting more we continued our madcap dancing that way, even to doing a two-person conga dance through the house with her still in my arms. Resting after all that exertion, which must have functioned her bladder, the asking of the cane to go to the toilet got me to ask if she wanted to be carried there too seeing that she enjoyed the comfort of my arms, and it made her actually go all shy on me. Nodding her shy approval and after she was seated on the chair and as a tease, I closed the door with both of us still inside as if waiting. That caused another fit of laughing and it also got her quick smart on to the toilet and for me to make a hasty exit.
My offer to prepare dinner for us before leaving was met with dejected looks and a request to spend more time with her. On the one hand I didn’t want anything to come of it but on the other at the back of my mind were her suicidal thoughts, which I had known of others who had eventually taken their life through it. So seeing what a blissful mood she had been in and wanting it to continue, which had made her forget her suicidal intentions, and that having a quite weekend away from my friends would do me the world of good and it for her too, I told her that if it was alright with her I would stay over. If it weren’t for the leg she would have been off the settee in no seconds flat. Not wanting to prolong the anxious stretching out of her arms any further, my going over to her got me pulled down beside her where she hugged and held onto me as if her life depended on it. After dinner, which was spaghetti that I made the Portuguese way with a bit of Peri-Peri that she highly enjoyed, with her to excited to retire then and requesting to know more about me, and me about her, we had an Irish coffee while chatting about it. Her despondency was derived from her condition and that she would burst into tears at the least sign of her legs beginning to pain, which she hated, and the crying also at times was partly due to loneliness felt. Although receiving treatment for it and on medication, it at times made her feel worst. She was also on medication for depression, which to me was a double whammy. Her mother it seemed on her trips over seas was always investigating and looking out for a treatment that would aid her daughter, and it seemed that she was onto a lead that might prove successful. Wanting to know from her why the happy emotions derived from the pleasure she had experienced that afternoon couldn’t be retained and maintained by contemplation of it even if I wasn’t there only brought glum looks. And when continuing and reminding her that according to what I had been told there had been other pleasurable pursuits and pleasant aspects of her life that must have been happy times for her, all I received was downcast eyes and a shrug of the shoulders, which had begun to annoy me. And when telling her in no uncertain terms that I hadn’t ever met anyone that pathetic and sorry for themselves even though it seemed that everybody else was bending over backwards to make her life that she thought was worse than theirs as enjoyable as possible, and that her failure of expectations was all of her own doing, brought forth tears from her. Thinking that she was then really feeling sorry for herself was dispelled when sobbingly telling me that I was the first person who had ever spoken to her that way without the sugar coating of not wanting to offend because of her condition, and that she had never met anyone like me who was so much fun to be with and could cause so much laughter. And also that if we were permanent friends she would be more frequently in my company and some of me would rub off on her. Asking jokingly if my colouring was included brought the reply that colour wasn’t the issue and if it mattered to me she would start using artificial tanning lotion. Taking that as a rebuff, my explanation that my natural colouring was due to my Portuguese and Jewish ancestry and my nature originating from my fun loving Irish heredity made her sit up and take notice.
I then related how through the government’s racial apartheid policies our family was put into the Coloured basket. Because my grandma lived in Crawford on her small holding farm from 1920 and her family, neighbours and friends lived in Crawford too, when approached by the National Apartheid Government that because she was White she had to move out of that area because it had been declared a Coloured area, she refused point blank because that’s where her life then was at and she wasn’t pulling up roots for anyone. What they also didn’t realize was that my grandma had had enough of been pushed around at the Siege of Kimberley by the Afrikaners and she felt that they were doing the same again. She was approached again because they had made it their business to find out about her and her husband’s ancestry and about their race too, which was European, and because their children’s race was that too, they became adamant for all of us to change our place of abode to a White area. Well my grandma being the matriarch and with all the backing of the family told them that we had no intention of leaving no matter what label they wanted to pin on us. Now because my dad, whose race was also European, was married to my mother, he too was declared a Coloured. It seemed they wanted as much white folk as they could get to wall up their White Apartheid fortress. Now here’s one for the books. My Birth Certificate of 1933 states my race as mixed. In those years when births were registered, the nationalities of the parent’s grandparents were asked so as to ascertain the proper race of the child. My dad’s was Portuguese and Jew, and my mother’s Irish and Afrikaner. That must have confused the hell out of them, and I know of others who have the same on their certificates in similar circumstances, and on my certificate it also has the W for White followed by my entry number, which was the birth certificate I applied for as a requirement when I immigrated to Australia. But who cares, because when applying for a new South African birth certificate, which I lost over time, the one received from the new Democratic South Africa started my race as South African, as I always thought I was and wanted to be,
Meanwhile back at the ranch. Observing Rebecca’s tiredness because of what must have been a long emotional day for her, my suggestion that she turn in and enquiring to my sleeping arrangements received an astonishing request. She wanted to wake up in the morning knowing that it wasn’t all a dream, and that I was really there, and my sleeping in her bedroom would prove that, which gave me food for thought. Arranging for her to sleep under the sheets with me sleeping covered on top of the bed beside her, we slept compromisingly. We both must have been exhausted from all the mental exertion of the previous day because we never heard another two her female cousins ring the doorbell, let themselves in with a spare key and stand at the bedroom door with astonishment written all over their faces. We awoke to that, and it wouldn’t have been that incriminating if our sleeping arrangements had been adhered to by her. During the night she must have gone to the toilet, on returning had crept under my covering, cuddled up to me and fell asleep that way. What had also complicated matters further was that I had slept in only my underwear, she in a top and panties and our covering had slid off us onto the floor. While we both were clutching at nothing, the two cousins stood there shaking their heads in disbelief. The only thing I could think of saying when my mouth got moving was that we both would like our coffee black and that must have brought them to the realization to let us get decent for they smilingly left. Rebecca on the other hand was shaking with laughter, and although the embarrassment of me having to face the other two was a bit daunting, I did see the funny side of it. For a small person she was rounded in all the right places, and when telling her that she blushed profusely, and while dressing myself she unashamedly watched me. On asking if she hadn’t seen a man dressing before she confessed that I was the first and liked what she saw, and that that memory and sleeping with me would be something cherished, remembered and reminisced about when feeling depressed. She was learning fast, although there were still the cousins to contend with. It seemed that they must have been happy for her through their interpretation of the compromising situation that they thought had happened due to what I determined by the very obvious when carrying her into the dining area, for they had not only made coffee; they had also prepared breakfast for the two of us. She had forgotten all about the cousins coming around early to take her to the gardens where she had been going to faithfully every week on the off chance of seeing me there again. She though tried to quite them down when telling me that, but they in turn told her to shut up and enjoy whatever was happening. They also made the comment that I should carry her down to the gardens, which to them it seemed it was something she was enjoying, and that they were leaving because they felt they were crowding us. After they left she started worrying about what they would tell the family and what her mother would think, but when telling her that I had observed her cousins looking at her with a new respect for what they had thought had occurred between the two us, and if they told, the same thing would occur, which caused her to smilingly agree.
Feeling grubby and wanting to wash up made her suggest for me to have a soak in the bath, which I did. Nonetheless, I didn’t expect after she knocked and hobbled in to pour bubble bath salts in, and to my comment that if she wanted to soften me up, she countered with a cheeky grin and reply that although she was becoming as soft butter in my arms she needed to be softened up further. Shooing her out that she reluctantly did, I began thinking of what the hell I was getting myself into. By carrying her most of the time, which I was beginning to like, so as not to put pressure on the leg had benefited it, which had caused the pain to subside somewhat, and it also made her realize that being mobile wouldn’t be such a bad idea even if it was only around the house. My suggestion was also emphasized with her wanting to go to the Gardens and I wouldn’t allow her to put a strain on the leg by walking there, which brought a half-hearted protest but I carried her. It was no big deal because they lived right across from the Gardens; however, at the same time even though there were no dogs in the vicinity to scare her, there were dogs of another type that were scaring me, which was a bigger deal to me. Two, two legged Afrikaner policemen, who were known as honde (Dutch = dogs; dumb officious gutless swine) that were patrolling nearby was scaring me. Her happy exuberant behaviour had attracted their attention and they were watching us. Just before that while reclining half in tree shade, my repeated adjusting of her skirt slightly higher for her leg to receive more of the sun heat and with her laughingly keeping on pulling it down had made them aware of us. To be on the safe side just in case her actions became over friendly I made mention of it to her which in her mood could have happened. When seeing an attachment of a fair and dark skinned person of the opposite sex together their discriminatory laws would come into play. Although it annoyed her when suggesting that we leave she did see the wisdom of it as they started in our direction while still watching us. She though saved the day and any other unpleasantness that would have further eventuated for both of us by them. Her fortuitous thinking of bringing the walking cane just in case of using the park’s toilet facilities was what was used then instead of carrying her. By me assisting her while limping along with my hand on her elbow and carrying the picnic basket and rug that she had held on our way there caused them to stop, converse, and turn around and walk away without looking back. To them it would have seen like she was a White invalid and I the Coloured servant accompanying and caring for her well-being. See, been Coloured rocked.
She wasn’t very happy about that outcome when explaining to her what their mentality had been; nevertheless, what caused laughter though was on telling that she had better start tanning every day in the backyard beside the swimming pool or use the artificial tanning lotion that she had suggested using. Because of them having cut short our stay and the benefit of the sun’s warmth for her and so that she could start the process I carried her down to the pool. She was a real whitey because of not having been outdoors enough and I was deeply tanned for loving the outdoors, so we couldn’t but be noticed if together. Wanting to cool down in the pool although not having learned to swim yet, but not also having any swimmers, my jokingly asking if she had the bottom half of a two piece swimsuit that I could borrow set her off to giggle like a schoolgirl. And when telling me that she wouldn’t peek if I stripped off and went in, I did. And then that cheeky little devil did the same and slipped in too. While we were splashing each other what would be the odds of another of her relatives walking in on us. Hearing a slight cough behind us and looking back, saw the blonde of the red car standing on the patio looking down on us not only smiling but also shaking her head. To me it seemed that her home was like Cape Town railway station at peak hour with all the comings and goings of commuters that set Rebecca off shaking with laughter when saying it out loud. Her cousin though didn’t seem to get it, and Rebecca had to tell her to turn around as she kept staring at me and not pay any attention to her. Whispering to her to play along with me so that we would give her something to stare at and talk about, I gathered up both our cloths, picked her up in my arms and brushed past her cousin, with both of us still starkers, with the comment that to excuse us as we were going to have a shower. Her eyes almost boggled out of its sockets as her smile disappeared, and with Rebecca playing along, which I hadn’t expected, turned my face towards hers and kissed my hard and long. That really threw her and she almost fell over in astonishment. Not wanting to encourage anything I let her shower first and alone for the kiss had seemed real to me, which didn’t go down well because of wanting me in the shower too. While waiting I questioned her on how many spare keys there were to their home, and it seemed each family had one to let themselves in so that it wouldn’t cause her any inconvenience of walking to answer the door and she promised me one too. Chasing her out to shower in private because of all that had been happening was getting me as horny as hell and too much of her nakedness and the turn on of unknown women seeing me that way was a sure recipe for an imminent erection. The two of them were chatting like magpies on coming into their company but it stopped though and I was received instead with smiles all round. The reason she had come around was because Rebecca’s mother had phoned while we were out and with her not home had phoned around. The family had decided not to tell the mother about the two of us, they had though mentioned that there was a surprise in store when returning. She was due back during that week and both our trepidation must have shown. Her cousin noticing assured us though that the family were obliged to me for keeping her company and the well-being effect that it seemed she was deriving from it, and that they would support us. Wanting to leave the two of us alone again changed that with my saying that it was time for me to leave and for them to keep her company instead, which brought a pout and a forlorn look from her. My telling her that there was no reason for her to start behaving like a spoiled brat and that I wanted none of that feeling sorry for herself rubbish because she would receive no sympathy from me, made her cousin look at me in shock and amazement. All she got when looked inquiringly at Rebecca as if expecting a tirade of something was in seeing her take my hand, kiss it and smile. When leaving she handed me a spare key, their phone number and the promise of my visit in a fortnight’s time.
Phoning the following week found her all excited with the news that she had confessed to her mother to all that had transpired. What caused me a twinge of anxiety though was her advising me that her mother had only smiled with not much comment. My biggest surprise and delight when arriving at their home with Rebecca answering the door, was seeing her in a lightweight wheelchair. Forgetting for the moment that the mother was there too, my pushing of the chair while running and doing wheelies with her in it almost ran the mother down who had been standing watching us with a wry smile and folded arms. Begging her pardon and feeling like someone whose fingers had been caught in the cookie jar made me feel really guilty of doing that. But her advancement towards me and her question of asking me what I had done to her daughter, which put me on the offensive, caused me to defend my integrity She though just stood there shaking her head while her face broke into a smile because I had wrongly interpreted her meaning. She continued towards me, hugged me, kissed me on my cheek and thanked me for the marvelous change in her daughter. Rebecca who had been quietly watching all of that couldn’t contain the relief felt as she almost crashed into her mother and me in trying to hug both of us. The mother too couldn’t hold back the inquiring questions of the how and in what manner I had succeeded in such a short period of time to make such a vast difference to Rebecca. With her grinning like a Cheshire cat and her mother very attentive, my remarks that I had found her daughter’s obstinate stubbornness had turned her into a spoiled brat, the self-pity and depression she felt was self-inflicted and that what she required was a good spanking that she had been threatened with, caused her mother’s jaw to drop further and further down. The mother on asking Rebecca if she agreed with all of that and receiving a smiling reply in the positive, just caused her to sit and stare at her in disbelief. Having become accustomed to the usage of the wheelchair had made her self-reliant and self-sufficient up to the point that she hadn’t feel self-conscious when on her own volition and without her mother had gone to the Garden’s alone, which the mother when thanking me for that thought she had to hug and kiss me again.
It looked like I was the flavour of the month with her family because we had been invited to her grandmother’s home for dinner, and then I knew why she had asked me to bring extra clothing. Having arrived before lunchtime saw the mother trying to fill me up with all types of goodies; however, Rebecca was all eagerness to get me away on my own and indicated that, so I filled up a tray, took it to the pool and returned to change into my swimmers. Thinking that because she was mobile she would find her own way around wasn’t to be, because after shyly telling me that she had missed my carrying her around, we made for the pool with her in my arms. Her lips were running a race all over my neck and then onto my face when carrying her, and I reminded her to show some respect for her mother who was watching us. She though assured me that she had convinced her mother that I had been a gentleman at all times while with her, and had at no time tried to take advantage of her in any way even when sharing the same bed together. The episodes of our discovery in both cases and the consequences of it had caused her mother concern at first, but she had not only seen the hilarious side of it but also a way of maybe the family seeing her daughter in a different light. Dinner with the family was amusing for the three of us because we were the only ones who knew that Rebecca and I weren’t lovers. The cousins must have spread their assumed impression because they were showing her a new respect by not pussyfooting around her. Even the boyfriends of her cousins were not only chatting more intimately with her they were eyeing her too, which was good for her self-esteem. The mother’s decision not to dissolution them with the truth particularly as they were lapping it up was working pretty well, especially as Rebecca was lapping it up too. She was a bit over tired and her leg in slight pain when we arrived at their home, which caused her to want to retire, and seeing that there were two other guest rooms in which one of them I had placed my clothing in on arriving, I was under the impression that it was where I would be sleeping. She though was having none of that and in no uncertain terms insisted that we share her bed again. Telling her we shouldn’t take advantage of the mother’s trust in me and that if only she sanctioned it I would, saw us sitting on her bed and only chatting. While talking about the pleasant evening we had, she mentioned that there was something important she wanted to ask, but at that moment though her mother walked in with hot chocolate drinks, told us she was turning in and closed the door. Even though Rebecca always slept with the door open, what her mother had done caused her to begrudgingly agree that I had proved my point by the mother’s action, and she didn’t also pursue her question through it either lost in that moment or her nerve, and I left it like that. What I did ask her though was not to sneak under the covers again just in case her mother walked in on us in the morning, but it was like talking to a brick wall with her.
The mother left early the following morning to attend a business conference, so left to our own devices we made straight for the pool so that she would get a bit more tanned. After frolicking in the pool she asked me to apply sunscreen lotion because she burnt easily. Not having sensually touched her before although at times in close bodily contact brought a stirring within me after she had turned around and my senses of touch and sight derived a pleasure out of oiling the front of her body too. She also was taking delight in that first time experience as the biting of the bottom lip, slight clenching of hands and involuntary twitching of body portrayed when certain areas were sensitised. The effect of it and her allurement was what got my desire and lust for her going, especially as I had been as horny as a rhinoceros since the previous night when she crawled under the covers with me again. But then she chose that very moment to ask her important question of if I loved her. It seemed to me that maybe her blonde cousin had had some chat about that to her or maybe she thought that was at the point of going to have sex with her, especially as she was still a virgin. Knowing that my answer hinged on me having some kind of outcome due to my lustful craving but that my answer had to be honest, I gave her a straight answer. Telling her that my love at first was of a brotherly nature and that’s why she wasn’t taken advantage of, and because of the sexual situation we were then in my feelings had changed, but whether it was love or lust I truthfully didn’t know and only time would tell. Seeming resigned to my answer she further responded to my caresses until our impassioned movements brought us both to a satisfactory outcome. We spent the rest of the morning with occasional frolicking in the pool and kissing and cuddling that put us in a state of languor, and it not only kept a permanent smile on her face but also a sort of glow. By the time the mother returned we had showered and had lunch prepared. It was while having lunch that I noticed the mother looking intently at Rebecca and long and hard at me. That was made clear to me when on our own while Rebecca had gone to tidy her bedroom and I was showing the mother how my spaghetti was prepared, which was to be our dinner, her outright question of wanting to know if Rebecca and I had sex during the morning while she was not there, and my saying honestly no, yet not knowing what had brought her to that conclusion, made it crystal clear on telling me that it was quite noticeable to her that something quite sexual had occurred because of her daughter having an effervescence and glow about her that had never been there before. Knowing what had caused the radiance in Rebecca and because of the mother’s forthright confrontation caused me not only embarrassment but also to be tongue-tied. She though put me more at ease with her consent that she had no objection if it came to a point where we did have sex because she could see that her daughter loved me and it was something that she may not experience any other way. But also, if nothing came of our relationship I was first to discuss it with her so that her daughter could be let down gently instead of hurting and setting her backwards. I saw then where Rebecca got her straight forwardness from and told the mother that, and also thank her for her honest candour. I had already thought along that lines and my contention had been that my being a close friend to Rebecca was what I had been all about from the beginning. That morning’s sexual episode had gotten a bit out of hand when passion and lust had overtaken both of us in an unforseen and uncontrollable moment of desire. It wasn’t a case of not been in that sort of situation before, with her though it was different because of her vulnerability.
I too was vulnerable, although to a different set of circumstances. Been exposed to how the other half lived hadn’t cause any animosity and jealousy because of not having privy towards a natural progression into that sort of society instead of it suddenly thrust on me, nor did it see me deterred from fitting into their White society created by the Afrikaner government. My childhood because of my upbringing amongst my European relatives, who saw everybody as human beings, until the National government saw the need for race distinction, had sorted that one out. That discriminatory and derogatory aspect produced a shift to some peoples psyche. Fortunately, for me my consolidated rearing on both sides of the fence caused an acceptance to the knowledge that I was equal to everybody and at times even more so. Because of that positive attitude it saw me been accepted by Rebecca’s relatives and friends as just another human being. And that was one freedom that had been instilled in me that no government laws would ever be able to appropriate from me. I loved the freedom of my life style of doing what and going where I pleased, and even though there were restrictions enforced by the apartheid minded government I even had the freedom of who I wanted to be. I had alternatives where many hadn’t, and it was all due to my Afrikaner grandmother with my Irish grandfather who stayed put on their piece of South African land instead of giving it up for a piece of the Afrikaner National Government’s Whites Only land, and thank God it was followed in the same vein by my father and mother. Due to that, I was allowed the human privilege of associating with whom I pleased of any race, creed or colour. I can’t even now imagine myself as wanting to live as a White South African then. Even though they had the best of everything given to them they had to live with only the one colour of everything boring White. Although the government had punishable laws for all non-whites when daring to condemn, act against or break their various empowered acts, the Whites as I saw it had much more restrictions placed on them. It was like it had been taken straight out of the Dutch Bible from the Nederduitsch Hervormede Kerk (Dutch = Dutch Reform Church) that my grandmother had belonged to, and out of which the ‘thou shalt not’ laws were read and instructed to me by her. The Whites had to live to set rules and laws that were only related to them, and although the ‘not’ was left out of the thou shall not for them, they had at all times to be wary of their ps and qs so as not to be seen as disagreeing or not following suit as the rest of the White South Africans were doing. These are the ways that I saw those Whites seeing it. We the Afrikaner National Party Government have brought you Whites out of the wilderness into a reformed land of milk and honey. One: Thou shall vote for no other party but ours so that thou can continuously partake of everything that is thy birth right, but not for them who are not one of us. Two: Thou shall be allowed at all times to denigrate any of them with derogative names and not be punished, but if they do so unto us they will be severely punished. Three: Thou shall remember to keep Voortrekker Day as a covenant for all the wrong doing inflicted against us by them, while only we worked by the sweat of our brow to make our country South Africa what it is for us. Four: Thou shall honour thy father and mother’s White ancestors so that thou too may have a long prosperous life in this land of ours, but at the same token see that they have not. Five: Thou shall be allowed to kill any of them who dare to make a mockery of our laws. Six: Thou shall be allowed to be adulterous with thy own kind only, but we will turn a blind eye if it is done discretely with them. Seven: Thou shall be allowed to appropriate anything that we as your government have seized from them. Eight: Thou shall be allowed to bear false witness against all of them so as to always reap the benefits. Nine: Thou shall be allowed, as we your government have, to covet everything that belongs to them. Ten: Thou shall be allowed everything thou heart desires from them so as to deal with as thou sees fit.
In comparison to them even though having all of that, I had the better of the two worlds. The insane part of it all was what occurred when socializing with Rebecca in their Afrikaner made White society and there was a mixture at times of other nationalities of olive or tanned complexion as were some of the Jews. Some of her family would actually ask if they were friends of mine when those same persons would greet me in their language as if I was, and I would return it. That was of course through my association with all nationalities that my spattering of various languages always did me in good stead. It also came in handy when eating out with Rebecca and her mother. When walking into a White Only restaurant where there were no dark skinned persons as myself seated, my sitting down with them would cause quite a stir amongst the patrons and serving staff. A simple loud garçon (waiter) by me to beckon them over, followed by a falar Portuguese (speak Portuguese), and an agradecer muito obrigado (thank you very much) when served got them none the wiser. It also worked for parlare Italiano with a grazie and parlezvous Français with a Merci. Any of that got us served without a murmur and with the patrons going back to what they had come there for. The mother would just smile and shake her head at their prejudice conceptions, but Rebecca at those times would take the Mickey out of those who were still uncertain through their sneaky looks and would either hold my hand or kiss me on the cheek. She used to get annoyed with me at times though when doing something similar when taking her shopping in Cape Town. They lived in close proximity to the shopping areas where I would wheel her to get her out amongst the public and shoppers. To tease her at those times I took on the role of the Coloured boy and put her into one as the White female mistress. I would talk to her in Cape Afrikaans and act in the way that was expected from their servile grovel at my feet non-white lackeys. She found it very demeaning that I would even consider doing that; on the other hand, there were reasons to my madness. Firstly it gave us fast and easy access to anywhere we wanted to be, especially with her in a wheel chair that was seen as manhandled by a non-white who didn’t know any better to their way of thinking, and it would allow me to barge my way around. Secondly it meant not being scrutinized and followed by patrolling Afrikaner police that seemed to think that every person of colour was a miscreant or deviant, and also as a little reminder to both of us that as long as the apartheid policy existed there would always be a barrier between us to actually have a full on association normally together.
The mother had begun to get some sort of normal life together again, for she then had a boyfriend and we were either going out as a foursome or having lunch, dinner and even breakfast together when her boyfriend slept over. Rebecca was real happy for her mother who took on a happy disposition and the glow she had observed in her daughter. That didn’t stop her at times getting cranky with me though, for although we had come as close to damn it in having sex, it was not fulfilling enough for her. She had even embarrassed me by saying in their company that maybe I should become a priest and take chastity vows and that she should do the same and become a nun. It would have been that easy, but in those moments my deferment was either through both of us been that overwhelmed with our passionate ardency that we would climax, or my considered opinion that if we consummated our sexual endeavours she and I would have a permanent commitment. With her there would have been hell to pay if it was only a hit and run affair for that wasn’t what she had in mind, and by then I knew that I didn’t love her in that way. By then I also had a tangible thing going that maybe the reason why I wasn’t taking advantage of the many opportunities to have sex with several of my female conquests or the other frustrating purpose of lead up the proverbial women’s garden path only for their self-gratification, was that for some ridiculous female emotional reason I was holding back until meeting the right woman or that I wasn’t ready to have sex yet. I also had a thing about falling in love. For to me it would be a mutual occurrence, a one of and for life. Playing the field hadn’t made that eventuate yet so I approached her mother like she had asked me to. She should her disappointment, but asked me not to mention anything to her daughter at all and to keep on being her best friend for a little while longer, and also confided in me that there was something that she had been forward planning for Rebecca that might ease the situation. Rebecca’s condition had shown a bit of improvement but not to the point of self-independence that worried and caused the mother’s concern, and although they were financially independent it was all due to only the mother’s continued efforts. Her daughter’s wheelchair mobility had given the mother some hope of her assisting in the business eventually so that if anything did occur to her, Rebecca would be able to continue it on her own. With her permanent mobility as the main factor that was the mother’s solution.
It was one of those balmy Cape Town days and the two of us were down at the pool when her mother came down to have a chat with us. Her telling us that she had something serious to talk about made us sit up and take notice, and her saying if we wanted to hear the good or the bad news first really caught our attention. Not wanting to hear bad news we opted for the good. She told us that she had investigated possibilities for the betterment of Rebecca’s condition for some time and that at last had been able to get in touch with a doctor at a hospital who had done wonders for patients with the same condition. Rebecca had become really excited at that good news, but when she heard that she had to go to Sweden for the procedure and stay there for four months, it became a different kettle of fish. The test and procedure would take two months followed by immobilization and recuperation for another two. She actually told her mother that she wouldn’t go without me, which was impossible for I had my own commitments and it wouldn’t have served the purpose two fold for what the mother’s forward thoughts was about concerning Rebecca and I. When her mother told her that she would be mobile on her own without the aid of the walking stick and wheelchair, and with minor discomfort, she settled down a bit. My encouragement also assisted by my assurance that we would keep in touch by corresponding, and the mother’s further comment that we both would phone her from their home on weekends with her convincing argument that she would also be able to keep an eye on me that way resolved that issue. Then came the bad news that she would be leaving in a fortnight’s time and it almost upset the applecart. She almost hugged the death out of me as I was grabbed and held onto tight as if her life depended on it, and as she rained kisses on me her mother quietly left. On carrying her indoors and passing the mother on the way and without Rebecca seeing, she grimaced, lifted her hands and shrugged her shoulders in a sign of dejection while mouthing silently a Jewish mother’s favourite word of oy vey! (Yiddish= Oh my God!). Rebecca was now adamant that she wanted above all to take the memory with her of her losing her virginity to me before leaving. Counting my words and choosing them very carefully I told her of the embodiment of my concept of love, the reason for not having sex with any of my female conquest even when handed to me on a plate and that the outcome of it all was that like her I was still a virgin. Although she thought it very sweet and courageous of me for wanting to stick to my convictions, she still wanted that certainty before leaving that we had lost our virginity to each other. She was a real hard nut to crack. My emphasised convictions though that if she thought that only having sex would keep us together and that with no aspersions on her mother sex hadn’t kept her and the boyfriend together very long gave her thought for a while. Before she could come back at me, my explaining also that we were both young and although I was her first love it didn’t mean that I would be her first lover, and if that did eventually eventuate but we then found we weren’t compatible, like me, neither would somebody else appreciate soiled goods. Before she could also catch her breath, I relayed that if she really loved me, only time, distance and circumstances would prove that as it may also prove to me, and that it wasn’t at all necessary to prove our love by having sex. Then she cried, and thinking that she was really upset to what was said and felt rejected was proven wrong when asking me to fetch her mother so that she could talk to her. Not knowing why when asked by the mother left us puzzled at first until we all sat on her bed with her having cradled in my arms. She told her mother that she appreciated what had been done for her and that she loved her very much, and that she also loved me and appreciated the change I had made in her life. She then went on to relate what was said by me and affirming it with the conclusion that she had thought that her desire for me to have sex with her was the be-all and end-all, but I had taught her it was not so. Then her mother bawled her eyes out, followed by her, and I walked out while the two of them embraced and cried on each other’s shoulders.
I was thankful when the two weeks had expired because she had utterly worn me out, especially on the last day. Although she was leaving the Sunday, Saturday saw us saying au revoir. My mates though were glad to see me again back in the thick of things and so were the girls who thought they had lost me completely, but there was still the matter of my promise to Rebecca that I kept. With a nine-hour time difference for phoning and contacting times only specified at 8am on Saturdays and 8pm on Sundays made the requirement that we had to phone at 11pm on Fridays and 11am on Saturdays, there was no way I was going to comply with that continuous weekend arrangement and told the mother so. Rebecca’s procedures had gone really well and my gradual exit had gone to plan with correspondence and phone communication far and in between. According to the mother, her daughter had adopted the thought that my attitude was one of out of sight and out of mind only, and according to Rebecca it would change on her return. However, it didn’t go to well down with the mother when advising her that in my last letter to Alice I would be telling her that my entire family was moving up north to Southern Rhodesia where there were better prospects for us than in South Africa. She though couldn’t believe that I would go that far, literally, to cease a relationship with her daughter, although at the same time admiring and applauding my audacity in that undertaking. My thinking of doing the right thing by the mother for all her kindness saw me going there to say goodbye. I had seen her cry before but not to that extent of the sobbing. Rebecca I would have picked up and pacified in my arms, but with the mother I did the next best thing by holding her while she wept on my shoulder. In between sobbing more truths were revealed to the extent that she would have loved to have me as a son-in-law because she knew that no other man would ever make her daughter that happy and contented. I felt a deep sympathy towards her as she went off into another bout of crying, and trying to cheer her up I lifted her head off my shoulder so as to wipe and playfully kiss her tears away that were trickling down her cheeks. That was meant for consoling, but she must have construed it as a kiss for she not only ardently kissed me but also embraced and moulded her body to mine. As a young adult even with all the non-sexual or sexual overtures experienced with females, I was still at times confused of why women did what they did and why they did it, even so I had been learning fast. What flashed through my mind was that maybe she was trying to use her womanly charms to entice me to stay with her for her daughter’s sake until she returned. But I was having none of that and told her so, and needless to say that was the last they saw of me. That episode in my life made me shy away from any females that happened to have an impediment or excess baggage attached to their lives, and all that I offered was a sympathetic ear.
My confusing Birth Certificate.