Starting “BIG” School and The Beatles Music.

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1965 was a big year for me it was the year that I started “Big school”, the start of my formal education. I was enrolled in a school by the name of Limberlost Kindergarten, a school situated next to Wanderers cricket stadium. It was a fairly long drive from where I lived in Parkview but my mother dropped me off at school every morning before she rushed to work in the middle of Johannesburg, Park station to be exact. 

As she had to be at work at eight, we left rather earlier than the rest of the family. Mother always made me the most amazing sandwiches, Pastrami with lettuce, ham cheese and tomato, cold roast beef and mustard I think you get the idea, but the best thing of all was the bottle of cool-drink and donut that she always bought for me at the little store just above the school, which we had to pass before we could reach the school’s main gate. 

One thing that I have not mentioned up until now is that we did not have many visitors to our house, and that Karen and I only had our friends at the nursery school that we attended together. Another thing about our household was the gramophone that took up a corner of our lounge. This piece of equipment was the sole responsibility of  Father and the only records that we possessed were of Mario Lanza singing the Great Caruso, there were no records of popular music of the time, so I had never heard of the Beatles nor any other group. The radio was permanently tuned to Springbok radio and was only turned on for us between five and six in the afternoon to listen to programs like “Jet Jungle” or some other children’s program.

What always fascinated me, was the time that the old valve set took to warm up before any sound was heard, and we would lie on our stomachs in front of the cloth covered speaker and listen with rapt attention to the fascinating tales that emanated from that magical cabinet. No stereo, no quadraphonic sound but magic all the same, I wonder if the television generation will be able to understand what the theatre of the mind was like, no two people imagining the characters in the same way, but totally enthralled by the story nonetheless. 

Anyway, Limberlost was a much larger school, it must have had over a hundred pupils, whereas Parkview had at most about thirty, all residents of the suburb, and with parents that were very similar in views. The pupils of Limberlost came from very divergent families and therefore it was an amazing culture shock to me in some ways and fascinatingly compelling in others. Here I was to hear about the Beatles and their radical music, or so Father said, his favourite saying for these modern musicians was that real music had to stand the test of time, and that these groups would not be heard of again after about five years. 

Well we can all be wrong occasionally I suppose. There was one of the older boys that knew all the words to the latest songs, he was lucky to have an elder brother who was in his mid-teens and therefore bought all the latest music. We all envied him, I think me more than anyone else. The first Beatle song that I ever heard was “A hard days night” not sung by the Beatles but by a boy about a year older than me, I was hooked on music from that moment on. It would take at least a year before I actually heard the music of the Beatles or Elvis or any other band for that matter but I was content just knowing the words.

Lots of Hugs and more,

Peggy-Sven

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The Ritual of Christmas Part 2

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Eventually the morning of the twenty-fourth would dawn, and we were off to buy the presents for Christmas, it was the same every year, no present was bought before the last shopping day before the great event. Excitement was the order of the morning, tears the order of the afternoon. Nonetheless  we always left in very high spirits. Father would be in his most expansive moods and we would rush off to one of the biggest wholesalers, I forget the name. The reason that we went to this particular wholesaler, was because father used them for business purposes, and I must admit they carried almost everything. Not for us the high prices demanded by the Christmas bedecked shops, but the cavernous inside of a cold warehouse. 

In his defence there were fewer crowds and I suppose why waste money. The only problem was that the choice was so vast that us children, selfish to our own needs, were given choices that we were not able to contend with, leading naturally to tears and tantrums when we were not allowed to have what we wanted. Then it was off to buy “THE TREE”. As can be appreciated by anyone who has ever bought a Xmas tree, buying a Christmas tree on the day before Christmas is always going to be a trial in and by itself. All the best are long gone, even in a country where the majority of households have artificial trees. 

Off we would travel to the Round Table or Rotary Club’s tree sales that were held every year at Zoo Lake, to buy THE perfect tree. Some years the tree was not bad, others, it was a rather poor excuse for a tree. With tree attached to the roof of the car it was back home to wrap the presents and decorate the tree. Mother in charge of wrapping; father the decoration of the tree, both artists in their chosen chore. 

Our Christmas tree was like no other that I have ever seen, all our friends had artificial trees decorated with all the colours of the rainbow with electric flashing lights, ours was dressed in stark silver with illumination supplied by candles. 

First tinsel was wrapped in a spiral from the top of the tree around and around creating a spiral washing line on which to drape lematta, which is thin strips of aluminium foil that are very difficult to separate. Each strand was hand placed over the tinsel so that each piece hung free; it takes hundreds of pieces to create the effect of a silver inverted cone. Then silver balls are placed on the branches so that they will act as mirrors for the candles, the idea being that only a limited number of candles can possibly be placed on the tree, and the silver balls will multiply that number to give the illusion of far more. 

Once the tree was finished, my mother would bring the presents through and father would write his cryptic little notes on the small tags attached. The tree took hours to prepare, and dinner was prepared while this ritual took place. Our involvement in the dressing of the tree was separating the lematta and draping the single strands over the lounge furniture. Then it was off to bath and to dress in our best for Christmas dinner. At seven we all sat down for a feast, Harry Potter would have been impressed.

Mother always went out of her way to create a Christmas dinner that had at least three roasts, roast potatoes innumerable veggies, puddings and ended the meal with cheeses and a bottle of wine. We children were each given a glass egg-cup of wine to toast in Christmas. 

Christmas dinner was the longest meal of the year to us children, as no presents could be opened until dinner finished. Also the variety of food was wasted on us as we were all over excited and it is amazing how appetites that are normally ravenous disappear when the prospect of presents is in the making. At around nine dinner was usually finished, and then the candles of the tree were lit. 

Neither words, nor photographs can ever give justice to how magical the Christmas tree appeared. With the lights turned off it seemed to float and shimmer in the corner of the lounge, hovering over the presents placed almost like sacrificial offerings at its foot. We children would sit at the foot of the tree for some unknown reason arranged in age order and the youngest would retrieve a present from the foot of the tree and carry it to father. He would then read out his cryptic message and the present was given to the relevant person. 

The reason that the youngest member of the family was given that responsibly was that the youngest could not read and therefore a fairer distribution of presents was achieved. Presents were always opened and the relevant giver thanked appropriately before the next present was retrieved and given. As long as the two hours for dinner was drawn out so the approximately two hours that it took to distribute the presents flew past. When all was over, all presents were piled in little heaps, wrapping paper collected together and it was off to bed, tired but always filled with love and I presume the spirit of Christmas. Not because of the presents, but somehow that tree filled the house with an enormous feeling of Never Land and the joy of giving and receiving. It is the only tradition that I have carried forward into the lives of my children, the tree and the way the presents are distributed. I hope that they in turn will pass it down to their children.

It’s funny, in a way, I am not a religious person, but Christmas has a magic that defies a secular religion. For one night in three hundred and sixty five, all problems, hostilities, disappointments, ambitions and petty squabbles seem to recede into the background. Where the true spirit of family is allowed free reign and where the true importance of family comes to the fore. One thing that I have noticed over the years is that other families invite friends and family to share in the day, extending the celebration wider than their immediate household, we never did and I cannot remember there ever being a fight or argument on that wonderful night. I have heard of families having major fall outs on Christmas day where they had all been brought together to celebrate Christmas, the normal cause being someone or other of the family bringing up some perceived hurt or slight that would have been better forgotten. 

At the same time I reflect on the many millions of people that spend Christmas alone or who are starving during that period of joy and wonder, what can be done to make a difference to their perceptions of Christmas. Not much is the conclusion that I invariably reach, as it is left to the individual to make their way in this cruel but wonderful world that we live in today. The concept of responsibility of and for our fellow man  was always a dream, an illusion preached by respective religions over epochs, seeds cast on fallow ground as humanity has always had one basic unspoken rule, “My family and I first”, as a rule of survival in a hostile world, maybe that is not such bad rule. Selfish yes, but then again understandable.

Lots of Hugs and more,

Peggy-Sven

The Ritual of Christmas part 1

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Christmas, was and is a family tradition with very strict rules governing the type of tree, decorations and shopping day, some have had to change due to the fact that times have changed and certain events are no longer possible. Christmas started in earnest in our house on the return from our annual holiday, which was usually about a week before the big day. Unlike the vast majority of South Africans, father insisted that we celebrate Christmas on the evening of the twenty fourth, Christmas Eve in other words. 

During my childhood, in the weeks preceding Christmas, the Johannesburg council used to erect Christmas lights over the streets of the city and turn Joubert Park into a fairy wonderland. So sometime in the week preceding Christmas, we were all bundled into the car and taken to the city we would then join the motorists of Johannesburg slowly driving through the city staring at the wonderful Christmas lights strung between the light poles on either side of the street. It was for us children at least breathtaking  The fancy designs of European Christmas characters seemed to go on forever, it was truly awe inspiring. 

After having seen all the lights that were on offer, we would then park the car and proceed to window shop down Eloff Street. For those people that lived in Johannesburg during the sixties, I am sure that they will agree, that Eloff Street was an Aladdin’s cave of fine jewels, exotic toys, tailored clothing all displayed in shop windows that promised all that anyone could lust over and more, all bathed in the golden glow of the overhead filament lamps. It is one of the things from my childhood that I wished my own children had the opportunity to experience. Then it was back into the car and off to Joubert Park. 

If the streets of the city were wondrous, it was nothing compared to the fairy land that we as children were treated too. The park was filled with all sorts of creatures, some of a Christmas theme, some from fairy tales and the paths were aglow with coloured lights, unless seen, it is way beyond my ability to describe, suffice to say it was a child’s wonderland. As a family we would wonder through the park all animosity forgotten only pausing at the large fountain in the middle of the park to throw a few coins in and make a wish, the setting at that time of year lent credence to the world of wishes being granted and the total belief in magic. 

Just across the road from the park, lived my Great Grandmother, Granny’s mother, she was an incredibly formidable woman and the patriarch of the Allan family. She had made her money in property, firstly in Durban, where she owned numerous buildings in Point road and then in Johannesburg where it is told, at least by Granny, that she had been the first person to build a three story block of flats in Johannesburg by the name of Roeallen Mansions. The legend goes further that when the Jewish state of Israel was founded her lawyer, who had had power of attorney over her assets and other elderly women, had fraudulently stripped their assets and made a hasty exit to Israel. 

Whether that story is true or not, is of no consequence. What is however is true, is that after the wonders of the park, going to visit her in her flat was hell. 

She terrified us children. I do not think she liked children very much explaining the fact that she had stopped having children after only two, my Granny and her sister.  Maybe, she only detested male children, who know. Anyway she had retired to bed after losing all her money and never left it until her death. 

She had a flat boy that looked after her, and I think that he was the only person that could get the ancient witch to do anything. We were not the only people afraid of her; the gentleman that owned the grocery store in her street was also terrified of her. For example, when South Africa changed their currency from Pounds, Shillings and Pence to Rands and cents, sixpence was equal to five cents. It just happens that at the time a loaf of bread was priced at five cents. She would send her man to buy a loaf and give him a sixpence, when the man came back she would demand the change of one cent, after many fights and screaming sessions when the poor man had to present himself at the foot of her bed, the store keeper resigned himself to the fact that he sold his bread to her for four cents. 

 Anyway after the visit to the park we would always pop in for a visit and a cup of very weak tea, (Granny called it camels piss) or rather I should say the grown-ups visited, we children were marched into her bedroom, said hello, were patted on the head once by her and banished to her living room. About an hour later we were rescued by our parents and always left in a hurry. We never visited with her at any other time during the year and I think the Christmas visit was more out of duty than Christmas cheer. Then it was back to the car and home.

Lots of hugs and more,

Peggy-Sven

A Holiday By numbers, Or is that hours?

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After double thick shakes, it was off to the holiday apartment, the Hilton Heights, where we booked in promptly at eleven. The cases were then traipsed up the narrow stair well and unpacking was the order of the hour. Hubby and father disappeared for about the time that it took us to unpack, to book a room for her on top of some or other building because natives were not allowed to share living space with Whites. I was never permitted to visit Hubby where she stayed but years later she told me that it was a tiny room above a hotel that she shared with three other domestics. 

Then it was off to the corner cafe with Hubby to buy “slap chips and Durban bread”, bread in Durban tasted very different to the bread bought in Johannesburg. Karen, Hubby and I would sit at the bottom of the stairs to our apartment and consume the feast that we had all being waiting for. What my parents did during that hour that we were shoved outside, I can only today guess at, as he was always in a good mood when we were at last allowed to re-enter the apartment. The next order of business was off to the beach, with a stop to buy a bucket and spade for all the children, a new one every year. We never drove to the beach we walked as it was only two blocks away. 

Hubby would always accompany us, as the Apartheid regime in some twisted logic, had decided that it was permitted for natives to baby sit White children on the beach, even at the risk of them entering the ocean reserved for Whites at that particular junction of sand and surf as they played with the children, but were not allowed to attend these reserved beaches at any other time.

That first day was always the same, three hours on the beach and then back to the apartment so that Hubby could have the rest of the afternoon off so that she could visit the beach that was reserved for natives, which was a fair walk north and obviously out of sight of the easily tempted white population. 

I have since come to ponder the rational of the Apartheid regime, were they afraid that the natives would rape the White women, or would the White men be so tempted by the native women that they would forsake their own and chase after the native, I have never been able to get my mind around that conundrum. 

For the rest of our week’s holiday we would go to the beach from around nine in the morning until lunch at one. Those days on the beach were really a lot of fun, except that our father never joined in, he was either sunbathing  or swimming out on his own, Hubby and mother always kept us entertained and out of his hair. After lunch, my father would take a nap and mother would take us kids out to walk the promenade or to go window shopping. Hubby would be off until around seven when she would return to baby sit us until around midnight. 

Our parents would then go out on the town, presumably to restaurants, movies or night clubs always returning by midnight. After being bathed and fed we children were normally in dream land by eight thirty as the sea air and all the excitement of the beach was more effective than any sleeping potion. With a never wavering routine, the holiday would reach its inevitable conclusion, and the last day had its ritual as all things did in our family.

The normal holiday morning routine never changed, but after lunch the big pack would commence, naturally there was more to return home than had been brought. There were sea shells, souvenirs, things that we had made out of sea shells on the afternoons when the weather had not allowed the normal routine, and buckets and spades filled with whatever other things that we had found vomited up by the ocean. Then it was back to the beach to say so long see you next year, same time, same place and to collect sea water in at least five bottles for Hubby. 

What she did with them I am not sure, I asked her once and she said that she drank the water to cleanse her body, I have never been sure if she was being serious or whether she was just having me on. Then it was back to the car and the long trip home, with no stop except to refuel, as cars were not as efficient as today’s and to visit the toilet as fast as possible so as not to delay the return.

Lots of Hugs and more,

Peggy-Sven

A New Addition and Road Trips From Hell

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In the year that Onus died there was an addition to our family. Kirsten my youngest true sister made her appearance on the world stage on the 26 March 1964, delivered by Caesarian section, as we all were, at the Princess Nursing Home. A very aptly named institution in her case as she has always thought that she is one, a princess that is. Life at home changed very little except for the usual disruptions a new baby brings. Disruption of the normal sleep patterns and added delivery of Stork napkin services that delivered and collected twice a week were minor compared to the narcissistic tendencies of all newborns. 

Karen shared her room with the new addition and somehow managed to sleep through the night squalls and feeds. I must confess as a five year old, babies were not exactly my scene as the hippies used to say, but she was a never ending fascination for Karen. This resulted in the selfish fact that my playmate was not always available to play with, as she had been for the whole of my life. Therefore it would not be unfair to say that I harbored feelings of resentment towards the new pride and joy of both my mother and my sister. That probably explains why I have never been as close to Kirsten as I have always been to Karen, but that is only half the story as you will perceive further on in this tale. 

1964 carried us forward as the ocean carries driftwood relentlessly to some as yet unknown destination; I am sure that there were tempests, storms, hurts, disappointments and punishments, but none that made any impression on my life or should I rather say no remembered impressions. Karen and I continued to attend nursery school together and besides enthusing about her baby sister she remained the dedicated little scholar that she was to be until her final school year. 

December in our household is remembered for two momentous occasions, the first was the great exodus to Durban and the other the Christmas tradition, even though for the rest of the year religion was not necessary in fashion. Let’s first tackle the great exodus of somewhat of biblical proportions. Every year in the second week of December we as a family were all bundled into the car with my father packing the suitcases in the boot, including Hubby’s multi-coloured bag with the rope handles. I think the bag was made of some sort of sisal but it was commonly seen carried by the natives of the day. 

You see back in those days the average white family went on holiday with the servant in tow so that the inconvenience of cleaning, babysitting  and general home duties would not fall suddenly to the mother. Every year we were booked into the same holiday apartment, I think it was booked on the same day that we finished our yearly holiday. Back in the early sixties the wonderful road that traverses Van Reneen’s Pass, had not as yet been built, or was not as yet completed I am not sure, so the road of choice, was via Standerton. 

The only member of the family that did not accompany us on this great trek was Tina, my wonderful dog. She was looked after by our next door neighbours, the wonderful couple, the Monks. The scullery door was left open so that she would have a sheltered place to sleep and the interconnecting kitchen door was kept locked. Her food was taken over to her by the Monks via a gate in the hedge that separated our respective properties. Crime was not a major thing in those days so the house had no burglar alarm nor burglar bars surrounding the windows, the dairy was notified of our departure and milk deliveries were suspended for the duration of our holiday. 

Once the car was loaded, we were all warned to go to the toilet before the journey commenced. Believe me when I say you went to the toilet whether you needed to or not as will be seen later. After all bladders had been emptied, the family squeezed into the car and we were off. Father noted the time as he locked the gates, which was invariably four o’clock in the morning. His optimum time was six hours of driving with one stop for breakfast in Ladysmith. No other stops were entertained, not even for car sickness as was the case one year with Karen. 

That year when Karen was sick all over my mother we did not stop even for mother to change her blouse, be that as it may. As we left so early, the first part of the journey for us kids was not at all stressful, as we were mostly tired because of the excitement of the night before, so we slept until we reached Ladysmith and the stop for breakfast, which was inevitably at around seven. We always stopped at the same restaurant in Ladysmith, with unvarying regularity, never trying a new venue even though there were many other places to eat. Until of course the road over Van Reneen’s Pass was completed then we stopped at the Wigwam Motel just before Van Reneen’s.

We also always had the same food, my father ordering for all of us to save time. Then it was back to the car and the rush to complete the journey. When I say that my father ordered for all of us that is a very true statement, but of course not all of us were sitting at the same table to eat. Hubby had to remain in the car as according to Apartheid rules natives were not allowed to eat in a designated white establishment. That was my first real experience of what has been called “Petty Apartheid”, there was not a restaurant allocated to natives in the predominantly, or should I say exclusively white town of Ladysmith. 

Even today I find that strange that no entrepreneur saw the chance to make money out of the hundreds of servants that accompanied their employers every holiday. Anyway approximately three hours later we would arrive at South Beach Durban, where my father would park the car facing the sea so Hubby could admire the ocean and we would all troupe into the little soda shop located just off the beach. There we all had double thick chocolate malts, and the one for Hubby was placed in a separate paper cup, which was half the size of the ones served in the glass vases, but cost the same. If we had made the time that my father had set himself he would be in a great mood and we often played games example matches, if on the other hand we had not, he would set us his favourite pastime of setting us math’s problems. Not enjoyable when he was in a bad mood and you got the answers wrong.

Lots of Hugs and more,

Peggy-Sven

The Death of a Child and Lack of Humanity

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This arrangement was to carry on until Onus’s achieved eighteen months in age, and then he became very sick and was admitted to Baragwaneth’s ICU for the last time. For the next couple of months Hubby, John and my mother visited Onus three times a week, Tuesday and Thursday evenings and the usually Saturday afternoon. The fact that Onus died, is not the issue here, as it was expected and Hubby, John and my mother were resigned to the inevitable, but the utter callousness of the hospital staff when he did. 

I have alluded to the dedication of the doctors, but that did not apply to the hospitals administrators. In the last few weeks of Onus’s life he had been admitted to ICU, and the visits of the intrepid three had been curtailed to one on Saturday afternoon. Onus died on a Monday and even though our home telephone number was on record, not one of the hospital staff thought that the mother of the dying child would like to be present in his last hours. So needless to say no telephone call was forthcoming. Hubby, John and my mother discovered that Onus had passed on to what some believe is a better world, all alone attached to tubes, wires and in total indifference to his suffering by the very people who had taken an oath to uphold the dignity of their patients, two days after his death. 

Some would like to blame the Apartheid regime, and point to the degrading laws that kept the natives subjugated and in dire poverty, but I cannot, the very same subjugated people were in charge of Onus and they were the ones that could not find in their humanness the compassion to notify the mother of a dying child and offer the solace of just being there to attend the last hours of her beloved offspring. Today I often hear the words uttered by the liberated blacks of this country that they are, “a human being just like you”, I have a small problem every time I hear this phrase. 

The problem is that to be a human being one has to understand the meaning of humane and by what is happening in South Africa today, the rape of babies, senseless murders and a general middle finger for the laws of the country, but not least, to the way the death of Onus was handled by the very same human beings. So Onus was returned to the very earth that he is supposed to have originated from. My mother did not attend the funeral as it took place in Soweto and the Apartheid police were not in favour of whites entering the township and definitely not a white woman. I have no idea in which cemetery in Soweto Onus was laid to rest, but the chances of finding the grave are slim to none. 

Onus died in my fifth year of life and hardly disturbed the rhythms of our family life, in what manner it affected Hubby I have no idea as after taking a weeks leave she was back at work her usual smiling self. The stoicism and fatalistic view that is taken and observed by the natives in Africa has never ceased to amaze me. Whether it is drought, pestilence, or subjugation either by Apartheid or their own indigenous governments, the general population just gets on with their lives, almost mirroring the concept of karma. 

I am not suggesting that there are not members of the population that do not agitate for change, but that they are in the minority. As long as there is a promise of a better life for all, the majority of the population is prepared to carry on their lives irrespective of their own personal circumstances in the belief that their leaders will work for their up-liftment and economic salvation, it never occurs to them that the people that make all these promises are lying or worse are only working for their own enrichment. 

Lots of hugs and more,

Peggy-Sven

A Baby Born Spastic In Apartheid South Africa

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It was about this time that Hubby had Onus, a child that was in those days called spastic. I do not know the politically correct term for such an infant. Well never mind we are after all still in the sixties and politically correct behaviour is still a few decades away. Onus was the progeny of the relationship between John Sibanda and Hubby, we as a family had not had the pleasure of meeting John, but he was employed by my father as a scooter driver for purposes of delivery. Where Hubby met John is still one of those mysteries, but I have surmised that they met when my father had things delivered to the house. 

Anyway back in the sixties, the domestic workers were not allowed to have their husbands, children nor their boyfriends living with them in what was called the servants room. Usually a small three meter by three meter structure attached to the garage with a door and if lucky a window. Normally there would be no ablution facilities, except for an outside toilet situated somewhere at the back of the garden. Bathing facilities were normally a galvanized bath that was filled with cold water from an outside tap. Some of the more enlightened madams allowed their domestics to take a bucket of hot water from the scullery to facilitate a luke-warm bath but these were surely in the minority. 

Another thing that I cannot get out of my mind was the common complaint of my fellow white (I hesitate to use the word brethren) citizens, is how the native population smelt. For even as young as I was it seemed obvious that if a person did not have the means to keep clean an unavoidable odour would develop over time. Hubby always smelt of Lux and Vaseline intensive body lotion. I am not saying that my family was more enlightened than our neighbours  but at least Hubby was allowed as much hot water as she needed and my mother always provided toiletries and washing powder for Hubby.

It seems strange today to imagine that Hubby was ever treated in that manner as in later years my mother and her become such good friends. Once again I am getting ahead of myself, so back to the sixties. 

Onus was brought home with Hubby after having spent many months in Baragwanath Hospital as he was very weak and had extreme difficulty feeding. To be brutally honest Onus would never have been allowed to live if his parents were white, but as Baragwanath catered for the native population and was a government institution the quality of life afforded natives was of secondary concern. If I sound callous then so be it.

Let’s not forget that Hubby adored Onus, and that she loved him as she did her other children, the children that due to the Group Areas act, we as a family did not know about as they were not allowed by Apartheid law to live with their mother on “White” property. 

Onus was a very sick baby and had to attend Hospital on a regular basis. As native transport in the suburbs was, to put it mildly, erratic and expensive with having first to wait for a bus to town and then either take another bus or train to Soweto. It was not ideal for taking a very sick child to hospital. So my mother who had finally managed to get herself a driving license and with the use of Granny’s Fiat, volunteered to take Hubby and the baby to Baragwanath every Saturday afternoon.

Even though Baragwanath was an Apartheid government hospital it must be remembered that it was the most modern hospital for natives on the African continent and that although ruled by some of histories strangest rules the care of the dedicated doctors was surpassed by very few hospitals in the world. 

Anyway, it was probably during this time that the relationship between my mother and Hubby started to undergo the metamorphosis that led to the total breakdown of the madam-servant relationship. As two mothers, one white and the other brown, I am sure that the plight of an unhealthy baby affected them both in the same way. Motherhood, after all is of universal suffrage experienced by all woman with children regardless of race or religion.

Lots of Hugs and more,

Peggy-Sven