The day was hot and sunny. I was lying in the front yard on my back when my mother called me inside to have something to eat.

“Come, my darling, and take a piece of a sandwich or two,” my mother gently called.

But, I was always a bit of an uncontrollable child – or might I say, a naughty child – when I was growing up. So I pretended that I didn’t hear her. As my mother is a clever mom, she just said: “Okay then. I think that you are going to have to go and buy bread. This time she didn’t say it so gently. This was punishment for not responding when I was called.

So, I quickly went inside. But, it was too little too late. The money was already in my mother’s hands. With a grin on her face, she said: “Better now than when you start to get hungry…”

I started to frown, saying, “Hayi, hayi, hayi, mama!” That is: “No, no, no, mama” in isiXhosa.

My mother’s wonderful grin turned to a frown – a big horrible frown! She spoke in the most horrible voice – I think she sounded like a lion roaring at its prey – letting me know clearly: “Amanda, don’t test or I will…”

Before she even finished her sentence, I ran out of the door, heading straight for the shop.

When I was crossing the road in a hurry, a car came out of the blue and knocked me out.

“Are you OK?” the driver asked with concern. I’m still not sure if those were his exact words because I was dizzy from the car hitting me like a bull tackling the matador in a bull fight.

By the time I realised what had happened, I had run so fast – like a horse in the Durban July – all the way home.

Until this day, I’ve never told my mother about this incident. How strange it is that all my mother noticed was that I was not hungry anymore.

She only said: “What, did you eat from this bread, little child?” I laughed, she laughed.

I will never forget this day.

***

FunDza is working to develop young South African writers and provide them with a platform to publish their work.