By Ayanda Xaba, South Africa
The following two weeks were bliss. We painted Durban red with our love and enjoyed every moment of it. It was merely a day after the chillas when Lethabo invited me to her flat for a sleepover. What better way to know that she enjoyed her first experience? I knew I had to up my game for the sleepover, give her something to remember me with when I leave for Dundee. The radio station manager kept calling me to confirm that I was indeed coming to fill the newsreader position. Talk about a nag! It was like he suspected that I would drop him in the last minutes. Yes I was head over hills in love, but I wasn’t going to miss that opportunity for romance.
The good thing was that the romance blossomed after the short film was shot. Masesi, yes the friend that quit the production after a silly argument, came back to apologise. I forgave her quickly and filled her up on the project. She then got involved in the post-production process. To this day I don’t know what they were doing there. I was too busy romancing my Sotho princess. The night of the sleepover went as planned, if not better. I’m not one to gloat but the afternoon after that sleepover I got a song dedication. Lethabo told me to look up the lyrics of the chorus in an Ed Sheeran song. I went to the internet absent minded, not knowing what to expect. I was still tired from all the sexercising we did the previous night. Imagine the goosebumps when I saw the chorus of the song:
‘Girl, you know I want your love
Your love was handmade for somebody like me
Come on now, follow my lead
I may be crazy, don’t mind me
Say, boy, let’s not talk too much
Grab on my waist and put that body on me
Come on now, follow my lead
Come, come on now, follow my lead
I’m in love with the shape of you
We push and pull like a magnet do
Although my heart is falling too
I’m in love with your body
Last night you were in my room
And now my bed sheets smell like you
Every day discovering something brand new
I’m in love with your body’
Damn! Girl got game yo’ll! That was just the signal I needed. The next day we went out for ice cream and a stroll along the beach. I made a joke about how she dedicated a song saying I should follow her lead while I was the one leading the body party. She laughed – so hard. I don’t know how I could explain this feeling. Ever noticed how the person you love laughs at something you said wholeheartedly? That cute laughter filled with sincerity and some hint of blushing too… that’s the one! It did things to my heart. She was playing strings to my heart and I felt like I was losing control of my mind too. After the ice cream date we went swimming and dancing, different days but same fuzzy feeling. The African playground provided the perfect venue for our blossoming romance. And then I had to leave for Dundee…
I don’t know if I should thank God or the universe for this. Is God and the universe different things? Anyway as fate had it; Lethabo had to go to Lesotho a few days after I went to Dundee. I was happy she wasn’t left in Durban nursing memories. At least we were both away from our honeymoon place, and would have a fair chance to miss each other. The Lesotho trip was unexpected and a bit scary for me. Long distance relationships are hard. Lesotho may be close but it’s a different country. What if she has time to reflect on us and decides she needs to stick to what is acceptable to society? I was driving myself crazy but it didn’t last long because Lethabo seemed invested in the relationship. We kept contact and everything remained rosy.
Working in a radio station is always a blast. I love the invisibility it provides. I could finish a segment and go into town and nobody would know I’m the same person that just got off air – except for those who know me personally. I’m sure you are wondering now how I move from being a scriptwriter to doing news. Well, I studied journalism and had been freelancing on radio since my student years. I expanded my writing by doing some prose and somehow ended up with friends in the film industry who introduced me to writing for the screen. I enrolled in a certificate for creative writing just to get a paper behind the passion. So versatile right? I love everything creative but news have got to be my first love. This is why I take up any news gig with urgency. Freelancing is a safe way to grow in the creative industry. Being confined in a contract could limit your creativity and ability to grow. At least that’s what we tell each other. So while I was busy chasing news and reading them to my local community, my photographer was clicking away in Lesotho and sending me pictures every other day. She seemed to be looking prettier everyday. She missed the beach, she missed the Durban sun, and most importantly she missed my body. I was missed all of her as well, I couldn’t wait for my contract to end. It was my turn to dedicate a song and Omarion’s ‘Distance’ was the perfect song to tell her just how the distance between our bodies is driving me insane. There is a saying in IsiZulu that says; ‘okungapheli kuyahlola’ (only a miracle doesn’t end). Well there is no miracle in news. So before I knew it, the three months was over and I was headed to Durban.
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