Bump in the road
Altus has a thousand problems, including broody wife Paula and Bruynwaves being on the brink of financial ruin.
R250 000 – that’s how much money Altus’s (Heino Schmitt) PR business Bruynwaves lost back in November when an important client dropped them. Picking up the pieces of his company and keeping things going is about to cost Altus dearly, not only in time and hard work – he’s got to dig into his own financial reserves if he’s to keep Bruynwaves afloat.
In typical stubborn Altus fashion, he’s kept these cash woes to himself, withdrawing more and more as the pressure weighs down. He’s also been closing Paula (Diaan Lawrenson) off, but on Friday 11 December, Mrs Altus has had enough and Altus is forced to tell his wife about their current financial situation. She can spot trouble a mile away in her hubby and immediately tries to cheer him up with a special gift, but that just causes more stress for Altus, who’s at breaking point as it is.
KIDS COST MONEY
Where did all this drama start? Let’s recap quickly: Bruynwaves employee Diederik (Hennie Jacobs) put down a large deposit on a client’s venue in November. What he didn’t do was show the client and get the contract signed. The client wasn’t happy and pulled out… leaving Diedie with egg on his face and the business bank account missing a huge chunk of change on Monday 7 December. Worse yet, he still had to tell his boss, who Heino reveals is furious at the news. “He is angry and disappointed. That’s not how they do business. Diederik knows that.” Altus has been moody and short-tempered ever since and Diaan says that Paula realised something was up when “he became restless. And when Altus did speak to Paula, he was abrupt”.
Supportive wife Paula tries to give her hubby a pep talk on Friday 11 December following his confession about the company woes. Later that day, she sends Altus a playful gift at the office – and there’s a baby book in it… her hinting that she’s ready to start trying to fall pregnant again. Heino says that Altus’s stress levels shoot through the roof as “he wonders if it’s her way of telling him that she’s pregnant already. His first thought is about where they’ll find the money to look after a child”. After arriving home on Friday 11 December, instead of love and joy, there’s an argument for the husband and wife. “It feels like Paula wasn’t really listening to Altus that morning,” Heino says. “Kids cost money that they don’t have at the moment.”
A BIG MISUNDERSTANDING
On Monday 14 December, Paula’s daydreaming about her little Pikkewyn, the baby she lost in a car accident in March 2013. “She brings a baby book to the Hillside Times, pages through it and dreams about a baby, thinking to herself that she’s ready to do it again,” Diaan says. But drama’s around the corner on Wednesday 16 December, when Aggie and Errol (Mimi Mahlasela and Christo Davids) spot the baby book and jump to the wrong conclusion: that Paula’s pregnant again. While they chat about Paula’s “good news”, Altus walks in, overhears everything and races home to confront his wife.
OLD WOUNDS RUN DEEP
He demands to know if Paula’s expecting on Thursday 17 December, but by this stage, she’s in no mood for silly games and blasts him back that she’s not pregnant and that it’s a big misunderstanding. That’s the tip of the iceberg for their fight – Altus blurts out something that rocks Paula: he doesn’t want more kids! “The pain of Pikkie’s death still haunts him,” says Heino. “A new baby won’t be able to take Pikkie’s place. He also doesn’t have the energy to think about a family now, what with the future of Bruynwaves being at stake.” Rough waters, for sure, but they’ve been through worse before… we think.
There’ll be very little for Altus and wife Paula to smile about
after this fortnight.
Diederik has dropped
the ball badly.