Before we moved to KwaMashu we lived in Glebeland. There we stayed in the daka houses. They were round and the roof was made of grass.

Our neighbours in Glebeland were Indian people. They were our friends, young people like me, playing together, and going to fetch some water at the tap. Even if we were going to church, we went to church together. But the Indians did not go to our church. We went to their church in Clairwood.

And our parents too talked together with the Indians, just like they were talking to other black people.

I remember my mother liked to cook vegetables. In Zulu we call vegetables imifino. Every day she would pick the fresh vegetables from her garden and then she cooked them in a big pot. From their homes the Indian ladies would smell the vegetables and they would say, “Oh Mama, you are cooking sweet vegetables today, they smell so nice.”

So my mother laughed and said to them, “Yes, all right, I am going to show you how to cook vegetables so you can also enjoy them.” And some days the Indians showed my mother how to cook roti and curry. Ooh, the curry was very strong, but it was also very nice.

Good neighbours

And so, even the boys were playing soccer and basketball together. Oh it was very nice those days.

But one day, I was very, very sad because they were moving the Indian people to Clairwood.

No more did we see each other unless from our church the priest said, “Oh, this following Sunday we are going to Clairwood and we are going to meet the Indians there.”

After church we went to their homes, to eat and drink something. And then we took buses back to our home.