waiting for rain, and a miracle

They promised us rain today, so I’ve been up since 6.00 holding my breath…so far, four hours later, sweet nothing. Five melon plants have already gone to the Great Garden in the Sky, so I’m left tending just one. My tomato has grown in size – it’s now a whole 0.5 cm larger in diameter than it was a week ago. Talk about failure to launch.


We were talking about little miracles the other day, and I had an experience shortly after that which I have chosen to see, ironically and perversely (because that’s what I do so well), as a miracle. Sitting typing exactly where I am now, I looked up to see a man walking past the window to the patio door. I didn’t know him. I went to the door to ask him who he was, you know, like a total idiot. Excuse me, Mr Burglar, we haven’t met before, is there anything I can help you with? 

It was 6.30am, and I’d already been out in the garden with buckets of ‘grey’ water, trying to save the plants. I had left the French door open, and pulled the security gate closed but hadn’t actually locked it. He opened the door and barged right in. My brain slowly began to realise that this guy was Up To No Good. I backed off down the passage, trying to remember where the nearest wall panic button was. By the time I did, he’d taken the laptop that was on the kitchen counter plus what he thought was a purse (actually my sunglasses case) and shot back out the door.  Power cord and mouse dangling from under his arm, he vaulted over the side gate (6 feet high) and then right over the main gate (8 feet high) and disappeared.

So, obviously, this was not a nice thing to happen. But it was a good thing to happen – because I will be forever more alert to the possibility of this happening again, and will never ever leave any door or gate unlocked. I will also always wear my mobile panic button round my neck.

It was also a lucky thing to happen –  this man wanted something valuable, and nothing else. He had no weapon and wasn’t interested in being violent. I was less than a meter away from him at one point so it would have been easy to get hurt. Not many people get off this lightly. Some victims get stabbed or shot. It happens every day. In South Africa, and all over the world. I don’t know why I was so lucky (although, to be honest, I don’t really know why anything ever happens at all. Does anyone?)

Wishing you all a very very happy holiday season, however you spend it, with your friends and family. xxx

14 thoughts on “waiting for rain, and a miracle

  1. katechiconi

    If the police want to look for him, I suggest they try the Olympic high jump team. 8 feet high and he vaulted over it with a laptop under one arm…? Not a good thing to happen at all, but on the upside, you’re unharmed, you’ll be more cautious in the future, and he’s going to look super-silly in your sunglasses. I hope the rest of your holiday season is calmer and less exciting – except, perhaps, for a nice big, loud thunderstorm. Well, we can hope…

    1. Nice piece of work Post author

      We got 2 hours of rain yesterday afternoon. It was heaven. Just measured the main gate – 8 feet was a bit of an exaggeration!, but, still, it’s pretty high!!! I understand that tik (crystal meth) can give a person superpowers, so my guess is that he’d had some for breakfast.

  2. Rainbow Junkie

    Sorry to hear about your melon plants. We’ve got plenty of rain here! and lots of wind to come. :-( I had a guy walk up to my kitchen door once and open it but I challenged him and he said he wanted another number house. But the houses are semis and the number he metioned was the other side of the pair so I knew he was lying! Smartly dressed, Irish accent.

    1. Nice piece of work Post author

      Sounds like you got lucky, too. Smartly dressed? you must get a different class of burglar in the UK… ;)
      The single remaining melon plant is doing well after yesterday’s rain, and the gooseberry bushes both seem to be thriving. So all is not lost.

  3. insearchofitall

    The miracle of being unhurt is a big one. If he had come by while you were outside? My son gets upset with me for leaving doors unlocked. But we have a relatively safe area. I hope you changed all your passwords quickly so your computer information could not be hacked. Lack of water is a big issue everywhere. We have an abundance in the winter, none in the summer when the plants need it. I chose to live somewhere that water was less of a worry. Still and all, wishing you a Merry Christmas, Marlene

    1. Nice piece of work Post author

      Yes, passwords all changed. New laptop in place within 2 hours – NOTE TO SELF: keep a record of the serial number. A very nice policeman phoned me yesterday to say they were doing a sweep of local porn shops — oops, I mean PAWN shops, of course! – so if I’d had the number, they might have picked it up.
      South Africa is not so safe, in general. There must be safe parts, but I haven’t ever managed to live in one. I’ve been through 9 burglaries, 1 car theft, 3 car break-ins, 1 mugging, and 2 attempted house break-ins. And I still consider myself lucky. But, hey, this is home. I couldn’t ever leave. I tried it once (went back to the UK in my early 20s) but I couldn’t take the cold weather and depressing grey skies. So, I guess I’ll continue to take my chances here.
      I hope you have a lovely Christmas and stay warm! x

    1. Nice piece of work Post author

      I am now so alert that I even sleep with the panic button round my neck. Sigh.
      Hope you have a lovely whatever-it-is-you-do at this time of year — I imagine you guys party quite hard in Tulbagh? xxx Lots of love xxx

  4. nanacathy2

    Well gosh and how awful. We have trained ourselves to always keep the doors locked, because there are a lot of horrible people around. Ww have only experienced car break ins three times and that was bad enough. Hope it’s not spoiled Christmas for you. Take care.


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