Friday, 5 December 2014


Pearl knocked on Mrs Markovich's door washed in tears. That sweet lady gasped in alarm at the sight of her:“Pearl! My dear! What happened?”

Pearl walked into Mrs Markovich's frail arms and sobbed her heart out. Mrs Markovitch wisely said nothing, just rocked her. When the sobs subsided, she led Pearl to the lounge, seated her on the soft embracing Chesterfield and poured her a stiff shot of Scotch.

“I don't drink whiskey,” Pearl snivelled. Mrs Markovitch knocked back her own shot with a wink.

“I do, and what a blessing it is!”

Hesitantly Pearl sipped at the clear golden liquid. It tasted terrible, like medicine, but it spread a comforting glow of warmth through her shivery, bruised heart...

“How did it go, Pearl? And more importantly, how did it go wrong?”

“It was wonderful, wonderful! Everything was beautiful, and like a dream. Everyone was so kind. Mr Rathsik dedicated his Serenade to me, and Mr von Durnst invited us to dine with him, and to go to an art opening next week, and it was all going so perfectly; and then Simon – I mean Mr Thambisa – was screaming at me in the car, about how all he did was drive me there, and I must thank my friends...”

“Ah...” Mrs Markovich sighed, “Jealousy rears its ugly head...” She poured Pearl and herself a refill.

“My dear, Mr Thambisa took you for granted. You were Pearl who cleaned his house, and whom he loved, but he felt no need to do anything about it.”

“Oh no! He doesn't love me...He told me he does not see me as a woman at all.”

“He lied. He thought he had plenty of time to make up his mind, to decide how it was going to be, WHEN it was going to be. He was wrong, so now he is angry at you.”

“At me? Why at ME?”

“Well, he can't be angry at himself, now can he? He can't admit he was stupid, and blind and scared? So it must have been your fault he acted like such a jerk.”

“He apologised yesterday...”

“Of course. They always apologise just before they do or say something even worse. Now he will be sulking, and expecting you to come ask him what is wrong.”

“I want to. I want him to explain.”

“Wrong, Pearl! That is a male's most lethal weapon: playing on a woman's need to talk about it, to understand. So we ask, and they always manage to turn things around so it was basically OUR FAULT they act like trolls on a bender. You shut up, sit tight, make him ask to talk...”

“And that is what I want. I want us to talk, sort this out. I love him Mrs Markovitch.”

“Yes you do, but no you won't. When he comes telling you he wants to talk, tell him its alright, there is nothing to talk about.”

“I don't understand!”

“Listen Pearl, do you love this man?”


“So you have to start getting it right from the word go. He wants to get you? He has to fight for you. So you go out with Mr Rathsik and Mr von Durnst, have fun.”

“Mrs Markovitch! I am not that kind of a woman!”

“Pearl, I am not suggesting you do the funky-monkey with them. Go out to dinner, to the movies, go to the art opening. Mr Thambisa must realise you are a free woman. He has already seen that you are desirable, you have choices. Make him present himself as an option. Make him fight for you, Pearl.”

“What if he won't?”

“Then he shows you - and himself - that he does not deserve to have a woman like you as his wife.”


“Of course, dear. The man is scrumptious, yes, but if that was all, I'd tell you: Pearl, you have an itch, scratch it! My dear, the man has character, scruples, looks, a kind heart; and best of all he has assets. So he wants you? He marries you.”



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