Crit­i­cal skills are be­ing lost

CityPress - - News -

Let me say this, New Zealand has taken a lot from me. I’ve be­gun to sus­pect that it stalks me like a kind of reaper in All Black, cut­ting down the im­por­tant peo­ple in my life.

The first was my hairdresser, Jean. The only hair pro­fes­sional I’ve met who un­der­stood that there is a time for chit-chat and a time to al­low quiet con­tem­pla­tion of thoughts such as: “Hell, is that re­ally what I look like or is it just these lights?”

One day, with hair so di­shev­elled it was not even ac­cept­able by news­room stan­dards, I heard the news: “Jean has em­i­grated to New Zealand.”

Next, a friend from my twen­tysome­things. We used to rent a house with that charm­ing twen­tysome­thing feel; fur­ni­ture­less, echoey rooms, an empty fridge and beer. Mar­riage snuck up on him and, one day, out of the Face­book blue, he checked into Auck­land.

But the most griev­ous in­jury by far has been the loss of my hon­est mechanic, Vern.

True Joburg­ers know there are about five hon­est me­chan­ics in this city. Find­ing one is like win­ning the lot­tery. You don’t tell peo­ple, you just live out your re­main­ing days in hap­pi­ness.

This is es­pe­cially true when, like me, you drive Hitler’s car. I call it that be­cause it is a thing of true evil. Even when it is just parked in the drive­way, it is silently try­ing to break down.

Af­ter the deal­er­ship was quot­ing state-cap­ture sums to fix things, Vern would weld one wire to­gether and gruffly say: “Just give me 50 bucks for the labour.”

Crit­i­cal skills are be­ing lost, I tell you. –

Charl du Plessis

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from South Africa

© PressReader. All rights reserved.