Karabo decided against going to Isla’s family farm. In the second week of holidays she lived out her plan of eating chocolate, watching series and not getting out of her pyjamas. Anathi would leave for work early in the morning, and Karabo would lie in bed for ages — staring at the ceiling and trying not to think about William. Finally, in frustration one day, she read one of the trashy novels next to her mother’s bed. When Karabo had quizzed her mom about her choice in novels, she’d been surprised by her answer. ‘I read and analyse and produce legal documents and agreements all day. When I get home, I want to be entertained, and that stuff is my entertainment. Don’t judge me, my dear. I’m allowed to read what I like,’ said Anathi, before walking past Karabo, grabbing her trashy novel out of her hands, and placing it back next to her bed.

The trashy novels definitely didn’t help with Karabo’s William- issues. So, she gave up on those, and instead slobbed her way down to the kitchen to scrounge for food, before setting up the next series, and then binge watching her way through it.

Anathi would appear at seven or eight o’clock in the evening, with take outs, and they would continue to watch more TV. Anathi often worked on her laptop at the same time. After four or five days of Karabo in sloth-mode, Anathi’s cool ‘whatever’

parenting tactic faded. ‘Don’t you want to meet some friends or something? Mzi is in Joburg. Maybe you could go to a movie with him?’ she suggested one evening. Karabo nearly choked on her pizza. ‘Are you kidding Mom? Isla would never EVER speak to me again. It would look like a date!’ said Karabo. She shook her head at her mother.

‘OK, fine, not Mzi then. Surely there are other kids you could do something with? This dragging yourself around in your pjs is miserable to watch,’ said Anathi. Her face was concentrated and concerned. Karabo held back from rolling her eyes. ‘OK Mom, I’ll connect with some mates tomorrow. Promise,’ said Karabo, although she had absolutely no such intention. She liked hanging with Isla, who was on a farm in the Eastern Cape, and she had decided she didn’t want to go to the farm. She would come up with an excuse to appease her mother.

The next morning, Karabo woke up late again, and rolled over to her side table to turn her phone on. Usually there were a few messages from Isla, and some social media alerts. This morning her messages began to ping loudly. After the fifth ping, she saw who had sent so many messages. It was Buzz.

‘Hey Karabz! Are you in Jozi for Easter Holidays?’ ‘Would be great to see you.’

‘I miss you, we used to have fun.’ ‘Call me.’

‘I miss you.’

The last message came in after midnight.

Karabo wondered where this sudden interest had come from. After they had split up last year, Buzz had matriculated and she hadn’t heard much from him since. Now, five months later, he

was missing her. Strange. Karabo opened her Instagram account. She searched for Buzz. Now she could see why the messages had come in so late. Buzz had his arms around two other boys she’d never seen before. They were out, a beer in Buzz’s hand. The caption read, ‘Out and about! Painting the town tonight’. Karabo messaged Buzz back,

‘I’d hate for you to forget how much you miss me, especially after a big night’

‘Hope it was fun’

‘Yes, I’m in Jozi for another week and a bit’

‘How are you doing? What are you doing? Coffee?’

Karabo smiled once she had sent the last message. Let’s see how much he misses me, she thought to herself, or maybe it’s all bravado from the night before.

Buzz only responded after midday. ‘Hey!’

‘Sorry about the late-night messages. Was a crazy night!’

‘I’m studying at Wits. But we are also on vac at the mo. I have a car so can pick you up and we can do that coffee?’


Question: Why does Anathi want Karabo to meet up with her friends?