A friend of mine broke up yesterday with her new boyfriend. It wasn’t something that was going on for very long, but the man took it really hard.
Monnie herself is unfazed, she was starting to feel suffocated by the possessiveness of an older guy. I rest my case, it was the story of my life.
Today is the birthday of who will hopefully become soon my ex-husband. I am surprised that I feel nothing. Really, am I numbing my feelings of pain and sorrow over him ? I like to think that I am a kind person by nature, but this time it was my life or his. I chose mine. There was simply no competition. And like once I had my reasons to carry him into my heart, today I have my reasons to shut him completely out of it, and dish out cruelty – there are no maybes in this game : You either want to be with someone, or you don’t.
Somewhere along the road, the vision of us growing old together blurred, and then completely disappeared. Even when we had that short interlude together two months ago, I had problems picturing us together for ever and ever after.
Today I started picking up the pieces of my new life. First was a stop at the traffic department in Green Point.
During our earlier correspondence Ron wrote to me how bad it was and how many trips it took him to get it resolved. His negative attitude made me procrastinate this mission until today.
So I went, carrying my ugly-looking black-and-white pictures with me.
The eyetest was a breeze and so the fingerprints, I thanked the guys for their efficiency. They gave me a pitying smile which I didn’t understand until I faced the 20 metre queue in front of counter No. 8.
I took a deep breath and thought, well I might as well stay. In front of me was a large number of people, which did not seem to be moving at all. The people giving up on what seemed to be an endless wait, lightened it somewhat. Actually, the rate of people leaving the queue to the exit, was much higher than those proceeding to the counter.
Sometime after half an hour or so I started chatting with Mr. Negativity in front of me in the queue – He was going on how he will never pay a fine again, and never apply for another driver’s license. I was just laughing and making jokes with the others in the queue. I yelled Yay, everytime sombody made it to the counter.
It was amazing but this helped a lot. Soon enough there were three windows processing the long queue. I had arrived sometime around 10: 00 and I told Mr. Negativity that we will make it just before twelve, and we did. Maybe it was my imagination, but the moment Mr. Negativity left the queue things started moving faster again.
I could not help but breath I sigh of relief, I was married to a version of Mr. Negativity. It is so draining to be around this sort of person.
At the counter, an efficient woman hammered on the keyboard and gave me presently the bad news that I was expecting from Ron’s report. I was registered at the traffic department with a temporary ID which is the traffic registration certificate. And now since I had a South African ID document, I needed to get the two merged at the civic centre in town.
I took a deep gulp of air, and asked the lady nicely whether there was a queue there as well. Of course she could not give me this information, but gave me directions where to go, and stamped a paper for me so that I can come back straight to her counter and not via the queue. I was so grateful to her I could have hugged her.
I was getting tired, but still I managed to trek up the road to the civic centre probably three kilometres or so. The lady at information asked me about the traffic registration document, which I did not have – and had very little chance of getting anytime soon since it resided with Ron’s papers in East London. Nevertheless, I chose to proceed to the counter and state my case.
After a 10-minute wait I was at the counter. The woman asked about the document but I told her plainly that I was divorced and had very little chance of getting it.
She just sighed and gave me that look. Africans often give it, you don’t know what it means actually.
In the end she did it. Merged my details, changed my address and smiled. I was faint with relief.
I was again at traffic department within 30 minutes, and within five minutes had my temporary driver’s license in my pocket. Life is good, the angels ARE on my side.
Next was a stop at the bank and the shop. I was home at two, a good day’s work.
I accomplished, with patience, honesty and a smile – in half a day, what Ron failed to do over a week of struggling and complaining and fighting with people.
My luck is changing ? You bet. Ron was bad Karma, and I had to cure it with the bitter medicine of cruelty.
All is God’s will.