Aunty Lisa sat on her own, at her sister’s favourite spot, Pingo’s, attempting to get a better view of the light-skinned guy who was now near the counter. He wore Adidas sports gear and Nike sneakers, as if he were a gym teacher, or so she thought. Aunty Lisa had caught the guy checking her out as he walked in. Even though she had her baby daddy, Donovan, she figured a little looking and flirting never hurt nobody.

Pingo was a fast-food restaurant at the heart of Springs, offering a variety of delicious dishes, including some of the best fatty foods known to mankind. The seating arrangements at the restaurant were pretty basic but comfortable. Aunty Lisa sat with her back to the huge glass doors and every time someone walked in or out of the establishment, she could feel the cool summer breeze crawl up her bare legs. Her legs were a golden hue and shapely and she liked showing them off.

Aunty Lisa ate her fries while the gentleman at the counter kept checking her out. She saw what he was doing and she liked the attention but still, she figured it was a one-sided affair until the gentleman was front in line. His credit card fell to the ground and he bent over to pick it up. “Oh yeah, it’s my turn now,” she said under her breath as she took a good look at him. “Oh my … that’s right! Show me what your mama gave yah!”

She liked what she saw but didn’t want to diss her baby daddy. She decided to focus on her meal, but from the corner of her eye she saw the gentleman pay and walk to wait by the window for his meal. A small fraction of Aunty Lisa wished the man would come over and just say “hi”. That would definitely make my day, she thought.

Aunty Lisa got lost in her train of thought with a piece of chicken held up to her lips. She took a big bite and started chewing. Before she knew what was happening, the gentleman was up close. She panicked and shoved the whole piece of chicken into her mouth. It stuck in her throat and she started coughing. As she gasped for air, it hit her: Goddamn it, I am dying over here!

The gentleman came to her rescue. He grabbed her around the middle and pushed down hard just under her ribs; he was no expert but he knew enough to save her life. His move pushed the air out of her lungs and the chicken out of her throat. Aunty spat it out and sucked in air.

“Wow, you saved my life! How can I thank you!’ she gasped, wiping her mouth in embarrassment.

“By giving me your name, madame,” the gentleman said with a grin. His accent sounded French.

Aunty Lisa giggled. “My name is Lisa.”

“Ah, such a pretty name for a pretty lady. But why are you alone?” he asked.

They made small talk and she mentioned her baby daddy, but that didn’t faze him. His name was Louis Blanc and he could see she liked him, so he took it as a challenge – as a wise man once said, ‘Behind every beautiful woman you see on the streets, is a fellow who has had enough of her nonsense’. He just had to do something that would make him stand out.

He moved in smoothly and whispered in his diced-down French accent. “How about I give you my number and you call me when your baby daddy can’t do nothing for you. Do you perhaps have a pen on you?” he asked, smiling broadly. Aunty Lisa went through her purse but came out empty handed. She recalled Fido had borrowed her pen the night before, he obviously never put it back. Luckily, Don had left a red marker in there.

As the gentleman took the red marker from Aunty Lisa with his right hand, his left hand reached into his pocket for his wallet. He took out a R100 bill and said the numbers softly as he wrote them on the bill “Zero, eight, one … zero, eight, eight … two eight, two, seven.”

His takeaways were ready and he went to fetch it. After they had said their goodbyes, Aunty Lisa went back to eating her fries, but with more enthusiasm. She grabbed the R100 bill on the table and stared at it, wondering if it was real or fake. When has it ever been fake? whispered her inner voice. She smiled and put the note in her purse.

When she had finished her meal, she bought takeaways and ice cream for Fido and Don. She decided it was best to head home to Geluksdal, before the ice cream melted.


Tell us: What do you think about the gentleman?