“You gain experience strength, courage and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. You are able to say to yourself, ‘I lived through this horror. I can take the next thing that comes along’” – Eleanor Roosevelt
People will always tell you that if you live by the sword, you will die by the sword. That’s how I felt with what I was going through in Durban. I felt like I should have never involved myself with dodgy characters. I felt like one of those people who ‘love things’ and end up getting burnt by the very same things. The voice from the man gave me a fright. I felt my heart applying ABS for a moment. To make things worse, I didn’t understand his language. It didn’t even sound African. I turned around to check who exhaled those words. To my surprise, it was an African male. I was expecting a European or South American. With fear dancing in my heart, I went “O mang? Ga ka ira nix. I am just an innocent girl who got mixed up with wrong people. Please help me. I want to go home.” My voice was quaky and full of fear. I thought I was going to die.
The guy left without uttering a word. I assumed he didn’t understand my language the same way I didn’t understand his. As soon as he left I ran for my life. He was probably going to call his friends to come and finish me off. To my luck, my running led me to the main gate. I asked one of the security guards to lend me his phone and he refused. I couldn’t explain my situation to him because I didn’t know if those thugs were working with him. Most of the time, criminals capture everyone in their vicinity to make their business a lot easier. The guy only accepted to let me use his phone when I showed him my thighs. Yaz to this day I still wonder why God made men. The world would have been a better place with only women as its residents. He told me I was only allowed to call Vodacom numbers because he bought free minutes. I still wonder how ‘buying’ is ‘free’.
I called Marcia and explained my situation to her. Girls will always be girls. Instead of being concerned about my wellbeing, she wanted to ask many endless questions. I told her I needed help to get out of Durban as soon as yesterday. She told me she had a friend in Durban who could help me. She hung up for few minutes to call the friend. Three minutes later she called to tell me the friend was at her boyfriend’s place and was not available. I didn’t know who else to call. The security guy told me his phone’s battery was dying. I felt defeated on the spot. I could see my life was about to drown. I handed the phone back and left. I didn’t even know where I was going. In a country that is teeming with crime like ours, a woman walking alone at night is at risk of getting raped or robbed. Those thoughts were running through my mind as I walked without knowing where I was going.
Jiki jiki I heard car tyres screeching right next to me. My heart stopped beating for a sec. I thought those guys followed me. As I was about to prepare to run, I noticed it was the Polo that was waiting for me at the gate. I gave a sigh of relief. The door opened and some guy shouted for me to jump in. I looked left and right and asked if I was safe. He shouted “bitch, we don’t have the whole day and our safety is compromised. Get in the car or I will leave you here. I jumped in the car and they sped off. The guy was driving at a speed of 180km/h. I could smell death from his driving. Ten minutes later I noticed there was a car following us. The guy went “shit, those m’f’kers caught up with us. They are going to kill of us. We either have to surrender or try to outdrive them.”
Imagine Polo vs Merc. I felt like I was running to the best of my ability and someone was walking but the speed was the same. The guy in the Merc opened fire at our car. I think he was using an automatic rifle. Few seconds later, the front seat passenger screamed followed by silence. When I saw blood splatter on his seat I knew he was shot. I looked outside through the window and saw a bloody-hungry assailant. The position of his gun mouth was perpendicularly facing my face. I saw angels of death singing hymns on the spot. I closed my eyes and prayed for God to offer me a special entry to his heaven. I knew I was a sinner and there was no way God was gonna welcome me voluntarily. The bullets landed on the driver and the car lost control. It swerved toward oncoming traffic. The driver was dead and there was no one manning the steering wheel. I tried to open the door but it was locked. I think it had child lock. I made peace with the fact that I was going to die.
I saw a huge truck heading towards the Polo…..