Wednesday, August 6, 2008

"picture this. . . "

my horse, rhino.

picture this: me: at the chemist, casually lurking at the counter waiting to be served a tube of ecodax for the excema on my finger. next to me, one old swahili man. asking about vitamens. vitamen c - whether to buy effervescents or chewables. spectacles parked fashionably on an attractive long and crooked nose. so i strongly recommended (over the rather introverted mumblings of the chemist sales lady) the effervescents, as one does. one a day, i smartly say, and be careful, all your children and grandchildren will want one too because they make fizzy drinks. so get two tubes then, i wanted to say.

and while you're on them, i continue, garlic keeps the flu away too. raw garlic. yes indeed. one clove a day. with your lunch. blah.

the chemist owner - or the one who lurks at the back mixing the drugs, raises his very heavy hindu eyebrows in my direction.

i then glance aside and see a lady with "corn removers". hmmm. interesting. so i ask her why she is buying them (the nerve of it! gasp gasp in retrospect). she kindly (and clearly politely) tells me that her daughter has a verucca (sp??) oh, i say. in durban, i continue, as one does, there was an indian lady who would suck the verucca straight out the foot with a straw after soaking the foot in hot water for a long time...just like that...suck suck and plop. nice eh? out it came. all clean. . .

eyebrows from the back, where drugs are mixed, audibly rustling. Chemist man, blanching.

it's in my nature to talk to the public. in line. at the post office. at the chemist. at the bank. like the time when i helped a maasai man early one morning at the bank machine. clearly he had no idea how the whole operation worked as he fumbled around not knowing which buttons to press, which way to insert his card. (like me in a london tube station and everyone was sighing behind me...oh, the panic it instilled, the wobbly fingers on the keyboard...they don't understand..) oh flipping hell. we have lives to lead for godsake . higher voice: practise compassion. practise compassion... so i offered my help in my very bad swahili.

now then. let me help you. put it in this way. you see? numbers facing upwards? then wait.. now. what's your um . . .

secret number? . . .

9758 (if only he knew)

i punched it in and the machine promptly ate his card. gone. there and then. try and explain that one to an old maasai man in bad swahili...i felt sooooo bad. anyway. boo hiss. can't be helped. things to do, people to see. pole sana and good bye.

and by the way Val, of monkeys on the roof fame (should be monkeys on MY roof, by the way) went on another hack this evening. just fucking BEAUTIFUL. through mr popadopalis's flower farm - where someone (er, um maybe mrs g in an art lesson) took a giant paint brush and splattered the hillside in hues of orange, yellow and green and made an enormous blue mountain towering over the lot of us...left me humble and gracious and um, boyuant (sp?? floaty??).

picture this: kids in the shower this evening. hot tap in shower sheers off. completely. off. water spews uncontrollably out of a nasty and ugly sheered shaft from the wall. there is no going back. remember? we live on top of waterless and manless hill. fuck. and it's 8 at night and the last 10 000 liters are spewing out like some bloody fountain in the middle of paris or london or somewhere with lots of water. what does one do? one leaves riding buddy (tiny little skinny tati) leaned up against tap making frantic phone call to marc next door to come and save us while i shout at children. and it's his last night before he too disappears ON BLOODY SAFARI. i swear. tommorrow there shall be stalwart brass taps installed no matter the cost. fuck it.

and my sons worry that i shall "break up" with their father because there i was mumbling about "cheapness of the chinese taps and such things" and "where the bloody hell are all the men" and " and if you're going to bloody well buggar off at least make sure the effing plumbing works...i mean )(#$*(*&#$*(%^&*$^%&*^!!!! AND blah.

i say to them of course i won't, sillies. and kiss their gorgeous sun kissed cheeks...while danu pops the first born says oh mama i wish i could help you more...Oh My God. so i tuck them up and wish them golden dreams and feel my heart full to bursting to breaking. sillies. sillies.

on a seriously lighter and entirely victorious note: miranda of has her new motorbike! totally totally groovy and MANY brownie points for the sister hood. indeed. she and her guru famous artist mum pamu came to visit for tea and chocolate cake this afternoon after collecting the motorbike. pamu in landrover and miranda on sexy bike. or rather sexy miranda on bike. the place where they collected the bike from is about fifteen minutes drive away. it took them 2 hours to get here through the karonga (oh god. look it up in a swahili dictionary - a donga, a bloody great big ditch caused by erosion from poor people..oh BLAH) . i am not going to go into any details here. jesus. bloody unbelievable. (the directionless, the aimlessness) ANYHOW, swifly moving on. great excitement to see mo and her bike roaring up the ngorobobs!

hooah. . . . . (marc the plumbing saviour's house in background)

Kitchen Board: Wednesday 6th August 200 and bloody 8: (4 years off the end of the world according to mayan calenders and the state of the bee - apparently)

Contributors: Veronica (back from leave) and allegedly miranda (the gas illustration bit)

Comments: pass. (it's a fart coming out of a bum - not a double ewe and a hand alerting us to something, like i thought...)

toodely pip and bisous comme toujours xxxx janelle


José said...

Nice blogue..I was born in Angola but I live in Portugal..
Good luck

tut-tut said...

I could not even ever IMAGINE all of this that is your everyday; thank you for all of your tumbling posts!

ExAfrica said...

Your plumber looks like that!!! And he lives next door!?!

Truly - I cannot see the problem at all with broken pipes.

ExAfrica said...

In fact - I'd break more

Janelle said...

heh heh heh!!! indeed he does exafrica.

tut tut thanks for visiting!

and you too jose.


Miranda said...

And to think that you were stuck for inspiration....

Another fab post you gorgeous talented lady.

Val said...

sucking verucas out of foot with a straw??? eeugh! interesting idea though, but would rather think about the glorious colour drenched outride... where we off to tomorrow then?

Mirandas new bike hey - awesome.. essential piece of chick equipment.

and so that how you draw a fart then?

thanks for that and love to all xxx
ps hang in with the no smoking - its just a great big head game really... said...

can just hear you in chemist. i'd be nervous to meet you in there, afraid you may offer alterantives or ask me to expound on ailments so that you could: offer an alternative to indigestion tablets/pile cream/wart muti ... talking piles, at cold old boarding school in winter we were told we'd avoid them if we stopped sitting on radiators. had we done that, we'd have got frostbite and then gangrenous limbs would have dropped off. piles seemed happier not to say healthier alteranative to that. x

Ernest de Cugnac said...

Spot on with the garlic janelle. So nice to live in a garlic munching country now.

Bank card. Nightmare. Veruca - goddam tripple nightmare. Fart drawings ... tut tut miranda, you don't have an artist mum so you can do that! (Or maybe it was her mum?).

Ernest de Cugnac said...

Oh, and I did mean to say v nice pic of rhino, who I gather is fully recovered.

Janelle said...

monsieur fr cugnac! thanks for visiting. oh i am a massive garlic fan and consumer. love the stuff. and indeed, rhino is back on form. totally divine horse! hooray!na dit was um miranda's drawing..sigh sigh...xx bisous xx j

Janelle said...

whoops, meant DE. was a typo!
miranda. you shall heaps of inspiration (and gorgeous pics) when you get back from zanzibar. lucky fish.
Anthea! i would LOVE to accost someone like you at Moonas chemist counter! imagine? hilarious!
val - thanks for visiting! where are YOU now?? xx bisous a tous xx j