Sjoe’s!

I can’t believe it! They fired me!.

“Well, not fired. Retrenched,” someone said.

“The difference is?” She asked with tears, snot and sound effects.

Mr Frans was not available for comment. His elderly doberman-fierce secretary’s spectacles glazed into ice rinks. One had to be slick-sharp to get through the icey security beams extending from her glare on a good day.

Damn it to hell, she thought, as she headed for the train.

Caroline wore high heels. She mastered the art of walking like a cat on the sidewalk as if it were a six-foot wall, out of reach of the dogs, stepped to, and sometimes hummed, “Fur Elise” by Beethoven.

“Not ‘Bait hoven’! It is Bea-t-hove-n!” Her proper English mentor-friend corrected her. She smiled remembering how Joy, the Germaine Monteil Cosmetic consultant, (yes, her name was Joy) had this passionate fight about classical music with the manager of the music department about the importance of melody. Joy, a true connoisseur, became most agitated. Caroline agreed with Joy over tea in their break, but she knew nothing about the science of sound.

She was, however, still a hopeless romantic who believed in fairies, according to some, and who stepped out in fine imported fabric dresses made for models, donated by fashion factories because they were “too small for anyone else, “alive,” apparently, to a love song written in 1810 by Bea-t-hove-n.

But, that was then. She did not dance that day. Being model sized thin, wearing the finest fabrics did not matter. It was a drudging-in-boots day, through thick mud, in Siberia, with iced rain blowing from the front, cutting lines into her face, with precision, to Pink Floyd’s ‘Animals’ album.

“It’s going to get harder…”

She thought she would die of heartbreak. This loss was what Ayn Rand called, grey and ugly.

She no longer went on cat walks. What for? Who for, was the more appropriate question. She had been dumbfounded by love lost and then, more devastated than by divorce, she discovered, a job lost. And it wasn’t even about the money. She shrugged her twenty-something skinny shoulders.

Years later she was in the secret service, still in high heels and, according to Garp, hadn’t aged a day. Caroline became more like a busy, almost late for class, nun; her bangles rattled about as much as rosary beads, a comforting throwback from her school days. Jingling bangles comforted her as much as chocolate.

I march, she thought. That was it. No more cat walks, though her brown, curled hair still fell well below her shoulders. Her dresses were longer, a bit more flouncy, hardly secret service material, although black enough. The fabric was fine, soft and pliable, falling about her frame, which was no longer stick insect thin. Protests were sometimes put forward about her casual attire, but she was quite unaware of her impact on others.

“She’s our Mary Poppins. Let her be,” the grey-haired man, the division head, said, dismissing the drooling league, achingly like the characters in Anthem, with a sequence of numbers for names.

Alberto Bruno West had hired Caroline Brusky on a blue-sky day. She was not vaguely interested in his opinion of her experience, which was zero. She stared out of the window of his high rise office at the city. An innocent, he thought. She had walked off the street and asked if he could use her at all.

“I am without encumbrances and almost invisible already. I was thinking I could be good for something in the secret service. I need a job too, but more than that, if you know what I mean. I want to be paid fairly well – I will earn it – and I want to do something that matters. I don’t see the point in charity work. I have expensive tastes too. I have taken to food a little more of late.”

“What did you take to before?”

“Books,”she said.

“Want to learn to shoot?” He asked her.

“I already learned to shoot. I need to learn to hit something,” she said.

“We can teach you that here,” he said smiling. “You do realise that if you fail at your job here, you die. Well, most of the time you die. Sometimes you get caught and tortured and then you die,” he said expecting some sort of reaction.

“Of course. Best I learn to hit something soonest then, Sir.”

He didn’t exactly know whether she would or could do the job, he just liked the look of her. Besides her direct honesty was so rare it melted his innards. He felt it go, like warm honey runs off toast down one”s fingers. She didn’t seem to change over the years. She still came to his office and stared out at the city with the same intensity seeming to fill her very being with effervescent light

Caroline had no idea she had an ally or even antagonists. Her work was small in the grand scheme of things. She felt fortunate. She really didn’t care what it demanded of her. At least she had her own office and it wasn’t glass. It was stuck in a corner out of everyone’s way. It had a small window that looked onto the building next door, into an apartment where there was a man and a woman. Mostly a woman.

She was given crazy jobs watching dangerous people, and she did it well. She was a tad older, wore wedding rings, read books in all sorts of places, some of which were dangerous places, drank gin and smoked cigarettes too much, but there wasn’t much to preserve herself for. She didn’t mind dying on the job. She didn’t know enough to be tortured for anything, so, she thought, how hard could it be?

Her latest target was a rogue who wore soft cotton shirts that ballooned at the back from the belted waist of his suit pants. He always wore a suit. He had an ample body, not fat, just sufficient. Not hard, but upright.

“His face, she said, pausing while recording, “What’s to say? Smouldering with anonymity, sexual danger and a glint of evil dabbed on high cheekbones like powder. Light flicks on and off his one time broken nose, which only adds to the mystery of his past, unknown to most, and on his lips, which always seem to be just finished or about to begin a smile. And, as if one needs more, he wears a pleasant aftershave that leaves a faint trace on the palms of those who shake his hand. I shook his hand at a wine tasting after it became apparent he left a smell on the hands he shook. It was a hot day. I wore a hat and sunglasses. I wore a beige suit.” she paused again and then added, ” I bet he refreshes his perfumed hands every now and again.”

“Target is violent, but subtle about it. Like a cat that keeps the mouse alive, enjoying its attempts to escape, even though there are deep bleeding holes in its tiny body and its light wanes. The mouse is obliged to fight for its life. The mouse, however, is not confused. The cat is trying to kill it.

“The human being, on the other hand, is somehow easily confused by his enemies. He can’t seem to stand the idea, in the face of evidence, hard evidence, that the man is likely to murder him.”

“The target makes contact with his marks (men and women) and seduces them with dinners and long meaningful (on the surface) conversations over drinks in the bar. He has cultivated and mastered the voice of what we all imagine is a good, kind man. Once they all but love him, he ignores them.

It should be noted that the target does not actually speak much. He is an able listener and mostly asks questions that require long answers. Ignoring his new mark/s only make them more interested in him. No matter how rude he may be to them, they will hear nothing bad said about him. Although these traits are for personal use and for no apparent gain, the ability to foster loyalty in spite of obvious unpleasantness benefits the target in supplying illegal weapons to various groups with nefarious ambitions.”

She concluded the initial report with her signature. “Request a meeting to discuss further.”

Alberto dictated a time and date. He smiled a little. His Mary Poppins had done her job, again, as promised, without detection. He did not ask how.

One of Caroline’s skills was to befriend a person closest to the target. It so happened that from her office she could observe this person closely from behind her desk. It did not take too long to figure out her routine and her inclinations. Once they became coffee shop friends, she discovered a rare being that the rogue could not at once figure out.

His long deliberate absences aimed at isolating her did not work. She busied herself. She believed that she could prove him wrong about joy and love, by loving him, and giving evidence for joy.

“He keeps saying, “You are just like everyone else,” Miranda told her. “I said that I had, at our first meeting, conceded that. I am quite ordinary,” she said and then sipped her hot coffee as if she had said nothing out of the ordinary. There was no opposition. Not a shred of vanity to attack. She did not realise how that kept her safe, so far.

The rogue never hides his goal or his distorted view of man. He believes that man is incapable of true love, that all fail and deserve to be punished for their lie, for pretending to love him. The victim usually protests. Miranda was no different.

“It will never be like that!”

In this she was strong. She knew she could love him forever and that she would, if he allowed her, change his mind.

“Prove it!” He demanded.

Trying to prove one loves a rogue is futile, but it successfully halts escape.

“Okay,” Miranda said before putting some medium rare fillet into her mouth and chewing with smiling eyes.

She could not have foreseen the arrival of a dashing friend from school and her hometown who happened to be a male and who happened to want to spend time with her.

“I have a boyfriend, but he is always working. He’s very busy,” she said clearing that up at once.

She could not know that the rogue had her watched and that the hugs and cheek kisses were reported back to the boss of things.

One Saturday night she accepted a dinner date with the dashing Douglas. They went to a place on the beach front, talked all night, it seemed, drank too much and walked back to her apartment in the early hours of the morning. Miranda did not give it a thought. The man had told her he would be home, probably, just before dawn. There was nothing unusual in that.

It became unusual when they arrived in the lobby. He sat on the couch, waiting for her, with a thunderous frown and thin lips.

“Hi! This is my school friend, Douglas,” Miranda said.

“I’m sure,” he said.

If Miranda didn’t get it, Douglass did.

“Well I will say goodnight then,” Douglas said. “Thanks, Miranda. It was great catching up.”

Caroline was already up to speed. She raced to her office to see them enter Miranda’s apartment and witness the accusations and defences.

He destructed her sparkle with insane accusations, at first, then as the nights rolled on, he delivered the odd crack to her face. After some months he used his fist. Miranda refused to react. She took the blows like a fellow combatant.

“What happened to your face?” Caroline asked

“Ag, a huge misunderstanding I can’t seem to straighten out. It’s nothing,” she said.

It is always “nothing” until it becomes something. One night he hit her hard enough to make her scream.

“I can’t stand it anymore,” Miranda said and began to cry in the coffee shop the next evening. Caroline hugged her. “Come home with me,” she said. “Take a little time out.”

Miranda was exhausted. She obeyed and fell asleep on Caroline’s couch very quickly. Caroline slipped out quietly. It took very little time to position herself at the window of her office.

She had learned to shoot and hit something. When he moved into her sights, his attention captured by Miranda’s briefcase left on her desk, Caroline aimed and then squeezed the trigger. The glass gave way, the bullet entered his heart, he dropped like a fly, still smelling of fine after shave lotion.

Had her heart not been filled with light, the light of the Divine, even though she would never have thought that it was, at the time, Miranda would not have begun to walk slowly and quietly back into her life.

Peace took back the building like a tree unchecked will grow in the middle of the room, through concrete foundations, because it is a tree’s natural inclination to grow up and out of darkness, emerging as a tender soft thing.

She got life. Hard time. Time.

“The debt must paid!” The antagonists bayed.

Miranda was safe. The target was terminated and she didn’t much care about doing time for that. But, just like in the movies, once the noise died down she was driven out of the prison yard in a black secret service vehicle with a new identity.

Thanks, Sir,” she said. Her long hair was short, a different colour and she wore the standard secret service trousers and jacket.

“Bruce, try not to shoot anyone from this building,” Alberto said.

“I do believe I will be working in another building from now on. Media is my brief,” she said.

“I am sure you will do fine, Bruce,” Alberto said savouring her new name.

“Will certainly do fine, Sir.”

She stared out at the buildings. Alberto saw again the effect, fleeting but intense, of light that comes of seeing great and marvellous things. He could hardly believe how she transformed herself.

“Did you always have short hair?” He asked.

“Sjoes! I’d never cut my hair, Sir?” She answered.

Whining. Give it a miss.

I never thought I’d see the day! I actually don’t know what to say about my stupid infatuation with Obama. Ugh! Anyway… I did not even get a t-shirt. Moving on.

CNN is painfully one sided in its reporting and Epoch Times unsettles me at 3.00 a.m. I don’t know what to say about j b. A non-president if there ever was one. If they thought Trump was scary…

Are white people going to go extinct before or after Armageddon? We seem to be the source of all black maladies. And Rhino horns seem to be the medicine.

We did not hate black people in my country, but as time goes by we don’t even think about them anymore. If they couldn’t prosper with every opportunity offered to them, that is on them.

There is a matter of desire that is required, but desire is either too much of a burden or it is unknown. If all one’s hope amounts to a meal of sorts and shelter for the night then no one is going to get to Mars.

To want something one needs to first imagine it before one can act to acquire such a thing. And then, sadly, one needs the freedom to act to gain to keep that which one desires. And, America has lost the dictionary. They don’t know what freedom is anymore. They want Stalin. And we do too. I think. It seems. When we manage to think. Only we don’t call it that. We call it copying. Whatever China tells us to think, we will think that. Chinese are not white. They can be trusted. On Forbes only one man said China was a huge threat. The rest said, nah… we got this …

In my country if you are black and you acquire some fortune, your neighbours will kill you before they see you do better than them. Many hide wealth. They dress like all the other unimaginatives. I only know this because I was able to prosper two families in a township. One was accused of rape of a minor and driven out of the province let alone the town and the other ran away before he got murdered. Also to another province. Here you had better not even think of dreaming of better days as my Ouma used to say.

White South Africans are long hated and with America’s sudden demand for black everything as well, the level of hatred and exclusion may go up a notch. Will black churches will bring us soup?

I have to laugh. We probably would rather die than eat their soup just like they would rather starve than eat our soup.

I can’t care anymore. Dear God, it has been one stupid darned thing after another. I am so fortunate. I am old enough to not fear death. I fear only God.

And America withdrawing its 120 troups out of Israel is enough to make me want to vommit. Do you think we care? Is his brain in his head? The Lord said, vengeance is mine. So, just saying… you might want to think about that a bit, while you fall up and down aircraft steps.

I wish I could say I am over it. I am not. I am going to whinge a lot more before I am over it. But we must remember that words become things.

I saw a novel advertised. Apparently there are no heroes or villains, but the writing is awesome. Grey, not black and white like most other novels have. I am so not inspired to read it.

And just to remind everyone: we is almost always the royal we, me.

I do hope this week is going to be a grand one for you all and me. Let’s think happy thoughts. Heaven is real. Dying means we get there faster. So bring on the next 5 days of work.

I am going to be watching Resurrection all week and lament when it’s finished.

LOVE, LIGHT AND ALL THINGS BRIGHT AND BEAUTIFUL.

Through the battles.

And now Ertugrul’s wife is setting his horse free to join his peers.

This horse! If I could weep I would. The beautiful white horse holds his head high. After all, horses just know stuff.

Scoundrels smile in collusion. Weakness is revealed. Cunning is a merit. Shame smiles at the innocent accepting fraudulent praise. But the hoofs are still clopping and …. Ertugrul’s horse has found him! My heart rejoices. I feel close to these two. No need for tears! And another horse is set free if he chooses. And he does choose it.

I can’t exactly get my face out of this story. On the upside I knit faster. My grandson will have his jersey by Monday I think.

I never thought I would be a knitting granny. But then I did not think I would live this long.

I am bent on bed when Ertugrul rides in on his white horse and the jaws of villains drop open and their lips quiver with fear.

And, the drums beat. And the glorious man is in time to save the tribe for certain ruin. YAY!

I can go to bed early.

LOVE AND LIGHT. JOY, OH JOY!

Hunger

We are hungry for heroes. This is a dangerous time. Our desperation to find someone to lead, someone who makes sense to everyone, may lead us to the dude who is going to seem like manna from heaven.

We have a way to go before we really, really want that dude.

Watching the news about Israel is just awful. For everyone. I hear the Palistinians more clearly now, but … it is Israel, and … the Lord only knows right now. I don’t think I can judge any of the pieces on this chessboard. I only know God has got this.

Is there anywhere that the people are happy with their lot?

If you drive about Cape Town there is a calm that deceives. Behind the walls there is much lack and much less than there used to be. In the townships I am sure there is great lack, but I think everyone shares and everyone stays alive. Unless the lack drives men to murder. And it does. Often. But there are no headlines. Just the government moves and shifts and dodging. I can’t even comment on this. I just don’t know why we choose to mess things up. But for now we obey the traffic rules even though some towns have lost much of the tar on their roads and deep potholes are an accepted state of being in some areas.

If Ertugrul is lying with his cheek in the earth, then it is the desire to destroy the excellent that has done it. We tend to murder men who know how to lead and bring peace and prosperity to the nation.

The world will be subdued eventually. They will stop protesting and and and and …

They will consider it peace. Ideas will die and “the nothing” and “the cruel” will rule if we don’t get with the program (the Torah). I keep thinking about Joshua.

God is watching. Let no one be fooled about that. Cause and effect is a spiritual law of the universe. Like gravity. And let’s not forget, “karma is a bitch and then you die.”

Meanwhile, winter has arrived at last with whooing winds and rain clouds. The offspring drown out the lonely wail of the wind with shrieks of delight, couch jumping and some cartoon with villains and heroes. I am not sure how these little people judge that aspect. My lot immitate the physical high jumps and shouts.

I have been sitting in the front glassed in verandah with windows open while I smoke. I can’t do it much longer. The troops are restless.

LOVE AND LIGHT. WISDOM AND DISCERNMENT. AND JOY.

Love stories!

I thought I was over love stories. We lost Bridget Jones to … age, sadly. Even she grew older.

HOWEVER! Love stories in Resurrection are fabulous. I am on board again. Yay!

Bamsi fell in love! Got married and we wait for a baby. Bamsi is the autistic warrior. A story teller but he doesn’t get jokes (autism give away). And the handsome Turgut is about to marry. First the men have to conquer the enemy faraway.

Midst treachery, I might add, there is joy and full blown love of brother, mother and beloveds.

This is a romantic piece. Villains are clear. Heroes are larger than life. Perfect. I shall be mortified when I get to the end of this series.

I am as keen to chop of the scoundrel’s head as he is, but one can only chop off a head the right way. The villains deserve decapitation. No one goes mooshy for villains.

Curiously, none of the so-called Christians know how to make the sign of the cross. There is ring kissing though. I have never liked the practice even though I grew up Catholic. Perhaps this is a failing of mine. I am not submissive to other men’s ornate rings. Kisses are not to be extracted by some authority. I am more likely to kiss the hands of a beggar.

Anyway, the resurrection of love stories is what I celebrate today. I thought I had become cynical in my old age. I am delighted that it is not cynicism, but a dearth of true romance in pictures!

I am waiting for the beheading of a scoundrel now. It is going to take a while. He would fit in a Dickens story. I don’t know if I would have been as patient as Ertugrul is.

Now my TV is dominated by Space Jungle. It has no language. Just sounds. Body language and expressions are clear. My grandchildren vary in age. One wants a bottle. The other wants a snack and the eldest is glued to the series. The girls are pestering each other.

I sneak a peak at Resurrection and that scoundrel organised a terrible scene. At my last look Ertugrul’s head was on the earth!

I have to wait till tomorrow to see how that happened. I knew they should have taken the scoundrel’s head when it was floating about under a crownified hat. Ugh! He is credited with cunning, as though that is a good thing.

Honour takes the focus in this series and treachery is unmasked. I have endured scoundrels in my time. The office is full of them. Honour is still hugely appealing and guile is still bitter as bile.

Our beloved babes are sleeping. I am ready to fold into my pillow. The wind is full of woohing tonight. Winter is here. A house party close by plays gay dance music. That’s new to the neighbourhood.

Too much information, I am sure.

LOVE AND LIGHT.