I had all good intentions to write a wonderfully positive article today. I had had a great weekend doing a little work, a little resting and generally having a great time. It started on Friday as I started a little promotion video for the Wedding Expo. Then I was off to BrewHogs near Kayalami in preparation for a promotion video I am doing for them on Saturday. Saturday, I was off to Pretoria, via the back roads as I don’t pay e-Tolls, for a job interview at UNISA, which was quite exciting and nerve wracking at the same time. Hold thumbs for me there…
Then it was back to Wedding Expo for some interviews and fashion show footage and evening at leisure.
Sunday was another morning at the Wedding Expo and then I was joined by Brittany Clamp for a little sparkling wine at the Sizwe Ntsaluba Gobodo Celebration of Bubbles. It was a wonderful event and you can read all about what we got up to on the Slice of Happiness blog. Suffice to say that it was great!
While having all of these good things in life, suddenly reality set in…
I got a panicked phone call from my 69 year-old father to go to his house as soon as I could. I drove like a mad thing to find out what happened. When I got to the house there were two police vehicles, a Beagle Watch vehicle and two trauma councilors.
My mom and dad have just bought a new house in a quiet Johannesburg suburb and were making sure that everything was in order before letting it out. While they were checking remotes and locks, three men barged into the house and held them down on the ground with guns. There were cable ties lying around so one can only assume that there were plans to tie them up and do who-knows-what.
M dad was forced onto the ground outside, separated from my 67 year-old mother who was inside. My mom shouted and alerted the neighbours who must have called the police or security.
The intruders ran away, but not after taking my mom’s handbag with a cell phone, ID books and the keys to their house. So now the thieves know who they are and can probably work out where they live. That’s the most traumatic thing I can think of. They aren’t safe in their own home.
As a South African, I say that they are lucky to be alive and we should be thankful for that. The house was empty, so there was nothing to steal, so we should be thankful for that. My mom wasn’t raped, so we should be thankful for that. My dad only suffered a slight injury, so we should be thankful for that.
BUT THAT IS BULLSHIT!
A Sunday afternoon, in a quiet suburb, not 1 km away from a police station is not a place that retirees should be worried about their safety. They should have their doors open with people coming and going to enjoy the wonderful, late summer weather.
I am moving into that house soon and I am nervous now. I will live inside a prison cell to protect myself and my family and I am not happy with that.
We do, indeed, live in two countries in South Africa. There is the champagne, the R300 000 weddings, the craft beer and the parties.
Then there is the crime riddled, poorly managed and rudderless leadership.
I am sure that we all want the first. Let’s make it happen.