Okay it's not a T-bird it's a Toyota Corolla, but I am off on a road trip with my famous writing friend - yes, I will name drop- Jenny Robson (crowd says: Ooooo!!!) -winner of the Sanlam Prize a record five times as well as LOADS of other awards, even a UNICEF Award. Just a fantastic writer of children's books and a lovely woman to boot. We are off to the thriving metropolis of Lephalale (formerly Ellisrus) , which for people not from the area might be compared to Garrison Keillor's fictional Lake Wobegon with a distorted Afrikaner twist.
I like telling the story of our visits over the border - myself and my black husband. The first time we went was when my daughter was born, 1992. We went to OK to buy a pram. Cars nearly stopped in the street to look at us- mixed race couples were apparently not very common since it wasn't that far back in history that such things meant time in jail. We were there for about an hour, two at most.
About two or so years later we visited again to buy some things for our newborn son. We went into the same OK and the teller said, "So you're here again?"
Since then we've been to the charming, little, racist place a handful of times. The last was to sue a man who buggered up my car. I won quite a pile of cash at the small claims court so we went out to the local Spur to celebrate. By now it must have been about 2004 or so, well into the Rainbow Nation Pseudo Dream South Africans love to believe in, but don't dig at too deeply for fear the truth might spurt out all over them. The white waitress couldn't quite be convinced to wait on the black man, his white wife, and their two brown children. In the end, we got a black, male waiter who received quite an astounding tip from the, by the end, quite drunk, misbehaving, white wife.
So that's my experience with Lephalale in a nutshell. So- I'm looking forward to this trip. Something about that place seems to bring out my naughty side. Hmmm..... News upon my return. Promise.