Dear Barbara Streisand: “People who need people are indeed the luckiest people in the world”

What could go wrong on a morning when all the traffic lights are out?

Well, I packed some hot dog rolls into a Woolies shopping bag together with some cheese grillers and set off to gym. Stay with me – the hot dogs and gym visual is true.

The plan was to give the food away before it expired without my husband finding out. Long story…

I never quite made it to the gym (no surprises there) but I decided to sit down for some scrambled eggs instead. Just before I picked a spot, I saw someone I could give the food away to. The man sells Homeless Talk, a newspaper that I have seen a million times but never bought.

As I sat down at the cafe for my breakfast, I reached for my wallet to put the parking ticket in the spot where I always put my parking ticket and that’s when I realised that my wallet was in the black hot dog bag! The plan had been to stick the empty shopping bag into my gym bag, that’s how my purse ended up inside. Note to self: forget gym.

When I related the story to my children later that afternoon, sure I added some drama but essentially:

I had no cash to get out of the parking lot and had to make some decisions quickly.

So I asked the parking lady for a free pass. Sure, she said.

The cafe owner said that I come could totally have stayed for a free breakfast.

I opened my banking app to see if there had been any transactions. Cancel Cards/Not? Pause, I decided.

As I drove up the road towards the Homeless Talk seller, I saw him holding out the Mykonos blue purse with a look that said, “………..!”

The kids screamed “Nice hot dog lady!” but the man’s face really screamed “dumb blonde!” I was guilty as charged on both counts.

But here’s what this story is really about: people people, people.

We are all just people who need people. And that’s how we all get by. By needing people and by allowing people to need us. Barbara Streisand was right.


P.S. I couldn’t find much info online re Homeless Talk but the lovely guy selling his is at the garage near St Davids in Inanda close to Summer place:-) Didn’t catch his name. Don’t tell him you know me.

Wrong Place Right Time

I believe in being well prepared.

So, I arrived early for two reasons. One, I wanted the time to gather my thoughts and jot down some ideas before I lost them. Two, I needed to do my makeup ahead of my presentation.

So, you can imagine how annoyed I was when I arrived at my office 2 hours ahead of the meeting and there was someone waiting outside the door!

I sat in my car and watched him trying the buzzer. I just sat there shaking my head. Two hours early? Who does that? 

I took out my calendar and checked the invite again. I did not have the time wrong. The fool was two hours early.

I waited.

I thought that perhaps HE had gotten the time wrong and if that was the case, surely he would phone me.

So, I waited.

Now I know that a normal person would have walked 100m and talked to the person. But, I have never been a fan of “normal”. The other reason I could not even think of getting out of my car is because I looked (and smelled) homeless.

I was wearing slippers for driving, my hair was wet, I had no makeup on and I had been eating a slice of toast with anchovy paste. If he didn’t die from the shock of seeing someone from Thriller, the smell from my hands would surely have stopped his stupid heart.

So I waited.

He walked away from the door and went to the bathroom. I thought of making a quick dash out of the car but could not take the risk.

So I waited.

One hour later, after my hair had dried, my makeup had set, my slippers were in the boot and my breath was fresh (thanks to some baby-bum wipes and some Listerine which you don’t need to know where I spat), the long waiting game was over.

I walked up to the door and said “Wow, you are early!”

He replied “No, actually I think you are late, but it’s okay. I understand”.

We laughed and I walked ahead of him into the board room.

I said “Please make yourself comfortable”.

He replied “I will try. I am very nervous”.

Nervous? This dude was weirder and weirder. Why would you be nervous about attending a pitch when YOU were not the one doing the presentation?

I gave weirdo his coffee and he said “Will you be the only one interviewing me?”

I thought of replying “No, I think the CEO of the Mental Health Association will be joining me”.

He took out a copy of his CV and gave it to me. Weirdness should come with a forehead tattoo, I thought.

I looked down at the CV. It had a cover note that said “Block D”.

The dude was now 1.5 hours LATE for his dream job and sitting in a board room in Block B.

My heart broke for him.

So, I did what any “normal” person would do.  I asked our secretary to deal with the situation.

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