Sunday Times


That time author, blog­ger and com­mu­ni­ca­tions man­ager Khaya Dlanga’s grand­dad caught Khaya’s un­cle in a sex­ca­pade

- Paranormal · Viral · South Africa · Mdantsane · Macmillan Computer Publishing

This re­ally hap­pened to Khaya Dlanga’s un­cle

Every grand­fa­ther reed over holy bucket some wa­ter our brooms night al­legedly and home be­fore was had would to while holy sprin­kle kept been go­ing use per­son. in he prayed a one to holy prayed. 25l bed, of plas­tic There for wa­ter those by The was all a bit of aloe in the wa­ter too.

This was a rit­ual we per­formed every the dogs, night and af­ter lis­ten­ing eat­ing to din­ner, the ra­dio feed­ing drama by can­dle­light.

We had sev­eral stand-alone houses. There was the ron­davel, which was the kitchen (where we cooked with fire­wood); then the main house, which had the main bed­room, lounge, din­ing room, guest bed­room and the main kitchen (this one had the wood stove); then there were also three other stand-alone houses.

My male cousins and I would walk be­hind my grand­fa­ther as he went from house to house, splash­ing the holy wa­ter. Walk­ing be­hind him was just the smart thing to do. As much as we might have all wanted the Lord’s divine pro­tec­tion, no one wanted to be splashed with holy wa­ter.

My un­cle Si­bongile, who was the fourth-born child, had re­cently moved from Mdantsane back to Du­tyini. He was a charm­ing, kind, funny 24-yearold man, and women were at­tracted to his citys­licker ways.

One evening, as my grand­fa­ther was pray­ing, mak­ing it rain with the broom and holy wa­ter, we ap­proached my un­cle’s stand-alone house. I re­mem­ber feel­ing tired af­ter a long day of swim­ming in the river (which my grand­mother hated be­cause I would come back ashy).

It was a hot evening and the win­dows were open. There was a slight breeze that would give re­lief every now and then, but it didn’t last long. The lace cur­tain in my un­cle’s room danced in the moon­light as the breeze caught it.

My grand­fa­ther splashed around the house. Then, out of nowhere, we heard a woman shriek in­side the house. Stand­ing out­side, we all looked at each other, hold­ing our breath.

We all knew that my un­cle had had a beau­ti­ful woman in his stand-alone house for just over a week. She had big permed hair. I had never seen a woman so beau­ti­ful in the vil­lage be­fore. She had vis­ited him all the way from Mdantsane and had been re­duced to hid­ing in a room in a vil­lage.

My grand­par­ents didn’t know about this. As de­cent Chris­tians, it was the sort of thing they would never con­done, par­tic­u­larly in their own home.

Now, the splashes of holy wa­ter had ob­vi­ously landed on her through the win­dow and given her a fright.

“He, Sbongile! Ngubani lo ukha­layo apho?”

(“Sbongile, who is that in there?”) We were greeted by noth­ing but si­lence and the mock­ing moon­light.

“Kwe­dini, awundi phen­duli?” (“Boy, you’re not an­swer­ing me?”) Si­lence.

“I will show you who I am. Mak­we­dini, three of you stand by that win­dow; the other three by that one. Khay­alethu, stand be­hind me.”

I had to stand be­hind him be­cause I was the youngest and small­est. I was seven or eight and my older cousins were in their late teens.

“No­body gets out of those win­dows. If any­one tries to es­cape, beat them with your stick.”

My grand­fa­ther was fu­ri­ous, stand­ing by the door, try­ing to force it open. There was much shout­ing and the dogs were bark­ing.

Af­ter a while, I heard a com­mo­tion near the right win­dow. The girl and my un­cle had es­caped.

They some­how man­aged to jump out of one of the win­dows and over the yard fence. My grand­fa­ther was even more fu­ri­ous be­cause my cousins had helped my un­cle and his girl­friend to es­cape. They looked up to him; there was no way they were go­ing to let my grand­fa­ther get hold of him. They loved him more than they feared my grand­fa­ther, which was re­mark­able be­cause when my grand­fa­ther was as­sert­ing his au­thor­ity, ev­ery­one trem­bled at his voice. “Nikhamisil­e mak­we­dini!” (“You’re stand­ing there with open mouths, boys!”) He turned his whip on them and they ran away in dif­fer­ent direc­tions. There was pan­de­mo­nium. My grand­mother came out of the house to find out what was go­ing on. No-one could tell her be­cause ev­ery­one was run­ning around the yard flee­ing the whip. Even though I knew I was free from his rage, I ran for cover. My grand­fa­ther kept talk­ing about how the holy wa­ter had re­vealed the evil that was un­der his roof. My un­cle was ban­ished from home. Dis­tant fam­ily mem­ber af­ter fam­ily mem­ber would come to ask him to for­give his son, but there was no way Kaiser was will­ing to hear rea­son on the mat­ter. In the mean­time, my un­cle stayed in an­other rel­a­tive’s home with his girl­friend, where she was free to walk around. But they did live in the con­stant fear of my grand­fa­ther ar­riv­ing unan­nounced with his sjam­bok. This is an ex­cerpt from These Things Re­ally Do

Hap­pen To Me by Khaya Dlanga, pub­lished by Pan Macmil­lan South Africa, R180

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 ??  ?? Above, glis­ten­ing with Vase­line; left, al­ready a joker, and be­low, grow­ing up in the vil­lage.
Above, glis­ten­ing with Vase­line; left, al­ready a joker, and be­low, grow­ing up in the vil­lage.
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