THE TAXI CHRONICLES SERIES – A taxi home

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by Candice Morrow

A taxi home

A taxi home

 

Often I wonder about what Umlungu is, it’s a small wonder to me and I learn everyday.

As I near the taxi, door wide open and everyone going about their business pretending not to notice me, I could feel their stares and see  the knowing glances exchanged between the vendors by the way-side. I hadn’t been to this rank in a few years and it felt good to take the sights in, memories flooding my mind and a wry smile creeping into my heart. Nothing had changed, the stands where brimming with fruit and iced juice, everyone screaming at the top of their lungs in harmonious accord. I find myself wishing a Tsotsi would try his luck on an old lady’s purse, but duly reprimand myself.

Peering into the taxi I see there are only three vacant seats. I say, “Molweni”  and the two ladies I would be sharing a seat with exchange glances, the cheekier of the two mumbles, “Morning.” Its afternoon but I wasn’t there to discuss time zones. I steal a glance at the two women, next to me is a robust lady who isn’t happy about me sitting there, arms crossed over her hefty chest, a frown living on her strong brow. I find myself thinking, “Do robust “Pondo” women have to be boisterous?” I dare not ask, she could snap me in equal halves with a only stare. The lady next to her is timid and tries to peak curiously at me in vain and whispers something inaudible to her friend, who is no Kate Moss.

In a loud voice, ” Robust” unashamedly belts out “Asibazi abelungu bafunani ezitaxini besosiqhibela indawo nje.”  The taxi is in giggles and hushed tones in an instant. I suspect I’m the supposed mlungu in this taxi although I’m not  taking up anyone’s space. Views are aired and stories of the state of umlungu in the new South Africa are exchanged with excitement. All agree that I have no business being in a taxi, my forefathers should’ve left a hefty inheritance from the land and livestock their ancestors were robbed of. I pray that my phone rings and it doesn’t, I’d never seen these faces before but they knew my story like I never would. I scratch my hair, and realise it is still the dense, coiled African hair that I had before boarding the taxi. In my little soliloquy I remind myself that these foolish women know no better.

I’m wrenched from my thoughts by a familiar voice saying, “Molweni bethunana, andisatshanga lilanga kulo Mthata.” I look up and she recognises my face and I smile at her. Excited she looks at me and asks, “Hayi bo Candy, nguwe lo mntan‘am? Oh akasakhule umntana ka Zoleka, yini yini.”  She would’ve thrown her arms around me if it weren’t for the seats separating us. I laugh and answer, “Yintoni ude wothuke kangaka na mfazi?”  We exchange pleasantries while the women next to me look far out the window, humiliation does have a face after all.

She turns to them, “Niyayazi intombi kaNomzoli yokuqala? Yiyo le uCandy.” (pronounced Khendi). I smile, look them in the eyes and say, “Hayi andiqondi ukuba siyazana.” They couldn’t have known me. The taxi is silent and the tension could be heard by the deaf and seen by the blind. All watching and waiting for their response, when it did come it was not what one would have expected. The lady in the far corner replied, “Lo esisebenza naye, unabantwana abangabelungu na?” I couldn’t help but laugh when I heard this, they were my mother’s colleuges then. The shame on their faces couldn’t be matched to anything I’d seen in my years of life. Victory!

I’m far from white, I’m just a good old  Xhosa-speaking coloured young lady who just wanted a ride home. My distinctly African hair belies any white connotations associated with me.

 

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Rating: 8.6/10 (5 votes cast)
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Rating: +2 (from 2 votes)
THE TAXI CHRONICLES SERIES - A taxi home, 8.6 out of 10 based on 5 ratings
  • Still has me giggling as well Mops. And its not even the most humourous of my taxi experiences.

    Thank you.

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  • Still the best, no matter how many times I read it.

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  • Exsell

    Ja ne lolol

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    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  • Precious Ncube

    You have a beautiful gift mfazi. Thank you for sharing it with us.Such a pleasure to read.

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  • hahaha lol, I wish I was there!

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  • I enjoyed this story, Candy, but wish there would have been a translation of some of the words….as I am sure I missed some of the subtleties. I did enjoy your ‘victory’ though. Smiles.

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  • ha. i agree that it is in the sharing that we grow…and i enjoyed your story candy…funny too in the realizing who they were and the shame they felt as well…smiles.

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  • Sikelela

    Hay ntomb’entle uyakwazi ukubalisa. Had me in stiches kakhle!! If only we would all realise that we are the same. We bleed red and our cemeteries have the same colour bones. i guess we will only accept one another when we have shared(or know that we already share)the same pains-to be human.

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    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  • Kabelo

    I am glad to have finally read this piece, visualized the taxi rank i once met up with you…the tones of the conversations, and the valleys of the rift between pride and embarrassment.

    You are better than i can remember, or is it that i haven’t read your thoughts in an eon.

    superb experience expressed..lol..

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  • Nda kaZwide kaLanga

    LOL! Molo mlungu…

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  • Daniel Phumudzo Magidi II

    Lmfwao! Okay this is funny, so like people thought u were white? Dam. And that Robust woman is those fat mamas that are loud and complain alot, right? Exactly like mamas from Orange Farm lol

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  • An immaculate piece indeed! Didn’t know ukwaz ukudlala ngamagama so? Serves them right! Lol banentlebendwane emuncu wethu abantu abakwitaxi bahleba apha phambi kwakho like awbeva kodwa ubajongile. And well some were happy to board a taxi “nomlungu” so they say

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    Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
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    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  • Gift

    You’re a special Young Lady Candy.. I thank the lord for Granting me the pleasure to read your Delightful Writing

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    Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
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    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  • Dido

    Better than the call u wanted ,this is your calling follow it plz

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    Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
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    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  • I thank you all very kindly. Our country is an experience, some good, some bad..and others just downright hilarious. Its in the sharing that we grow.

    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
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    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  • Candy, I would have never imagined that people would have treated you in such a way. But it is testament to your graceful nature in how you handle such a moment of ignorance.

    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
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    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  • siyabonga

    You keep at it my ‘Aryan’friend, the writing inspires, it truly does.
    Who knows, maybe I too will one day command my brain to start believing that 10 (as it relates to my IQ) ain’t nothing but a number, and produce a piece acceptable for publication to the good folk at consciousness.co.za

    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
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    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  • nkazi

    lol ohhh my frnd….what mlungu!!! you should write a book for short stories!!!

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    Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
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    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  • zinzie

    hahahahahaha tjoh so embarassing mara mh fo them. They have apartheid scars

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    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  • Roda

    Lol, what a ride

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    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  • Nomfundo Lukhele

    Hahahahaha,what an awesome read sis,short story vibes. I would exchange anything just to see the priceless reaction on their faces when they found out that your not who or what they assumed you to be.

    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
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    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  • @Thando401

    I hate people that judge other poeple and discriminate the with their colour of their skin, some people need to move on izinto zatshintsha mani, in my own opinion ngowubathukile gal. Songahabi nabo oyellow bone ngoku

    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  • Khaya

    An entertaining piece,indeed. I can only imagine the horror on those women’s faces when they heard isiXhosa roll off your tongue. Great writing once again!!

    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
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    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  • Lol… Hmmm…

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  • Matthew

    Ha Ha Ha Ha!!!!! tjo!!! would be good to have your taxi story(ies) around a camp fire…

    sounds like a short story that should be in the AWS

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  • @TeeKay_ThePoet

    Pleasant piece of writing.. 🙂

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    Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
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  • Still has me giggling as well Mops. And its not even the most humourous of my taxi experiences.

    Thank you.

    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  • Still the best, no matter how many times I read it.

    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  • Exsell

    Ja ne lolol

    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  • Precious Ncube

    You have a beautiful gift mfazi. Thank you for sharing it with us.Such a pleasure to read.

    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  • hahaha lol, I wish I was there!

    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  • I enjoyed this story, Candy, but wish there would have been a translation of some of the words….as I am sure I missed some of the subtleties. I did enjoy your ‘victory’ though. Smiles.

    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  • ha. i agree that it is in the sharing that we grow…and i enjoyed your story candy…funny too in the realizing who they were and the shame they felt as well…smiles.

    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  • Sikelela

    Hay ntomb’entle uyakwazi ukubalisa. Had me in stiches kakhle!! If only we would all realise that we are the same. We bleed red and our cemeteries have the same colour bones. i guess we will only accept one another when we have shared(or know that we already share)the same pains-to be human.

    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  • Kabelo

    I am glad to have finally read this piece, visualized the taxi rank i once met up with you…the tones of the conversations, and the valleys of the rift between pride and embarrassment.

    You are better than i can remember, or is it that i haven’t read your thoughts in an eon.

    superb experience expressed..lol..

    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  • Nda kaZwide kaLanga

    LOL! Molo mlungu…

    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  • Daniel Phumudzo Magidi II

    Lmfwao! Okay this is funny, so like people thought u were white? Dam. And that Robust woman is those fat mamas that are loud and complain alot, right? Exactly like mamas from Orange Farm lol

    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  • An immaculate piece indeed! Didn’t know ukwaz ukudlala ngamagama so? Serves them right! Lol banentlebendwane emuncu wethu abantu abakwitaxi bahleba apha phambi kwakho like awbeva kodwa ubajongile. And well some were happy to board a taxi “nomlungu” so they say

    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  • Gift

    You’re a special Young Lady Candy.. I thank the lord for Granting me the pleasure to read your Delightful Writing

    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  • Dido

    Better than the call u wanted ,this is your calling follow it plz

    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  • I thank you all very kindly. Our country is an experience, some good, some bad..and others just downright hilarious. Its in the sharing that we grow.

    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  • Candy, I would have never imagined that people would have treated you in such a way. But it is testament to your graceful nature in how you handle such a moment of ignorance.

    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  • siyabonga

    You keep at it my ‘Aryan’friend, the writing inspires, it truly does.
    Who knows, maybe I too will one day command my brain to start believing that 10 (as it relates to my IQ) ain’t nothing but a number, and produce a piece acceptable for publication to the good folk at consciousness.co.za

    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  • nkazi

    lol ohhh my frnd….what mlungu!!! you should write a book for short stories!!!

    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  • zinzie

    hahahahahaha tjoh so embarassing mara mh fo them. They have apartheid scars

    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  • Roda

    Lol, what a ride

    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  • Nomfundo Lukhele

    Hahahahaha,what an awesome read sis,short story vibes. I would exchange anything just to see the priceless reaction on their faces when they found out that your not who or what they assumed you to be.

    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  • @Thando401

    I hate people that judge other poeple and discriminate the with their colour of their skin, some people need to move on izinto zatshintsha mani, in my own opinion ngowubathukile gal. Songahabi nabo oyellow bone ngoku

    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  • Khaya

    An entertaining piece,indeed. I can only imagine the horror on those women’s faces when they heard isiXhosa roll off your tongue. Great writing once again!!

    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  • Lol… Hmmm…

    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  • Matthew

    Ha Ha Ha Ha!!!!! tjo!!! would be good to have your taxi story(ies) around a camp fire…

    sounds like a short story that should be in the AWS

    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  • @TeeKay_ThePoet

    Pleasant piece of writing.. 🙂

    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
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