It was late afternoon, the sun a pale orbit in a clear winters sky as they walked towards the landcruiser, to join us for a game drive at Samara Game reserve.
Not your average couple.
It took just a moment to dismiss the conditioned response to them; an older English gentleman and a young African woman holding hands and sharing obvious affection.
Mike is a retired journalist who wrote for the best dailys on Fleet street in their heyday. He did a piece on volunteer work in Indonesia recently, work he was hoping to take up himself.
The article was so good and illicited such a response, that there was no room left for him to join the Indonesian work program. Instead, they sent him to South Africa, Port Elizabeth where he took up volunteer work teaching english at a 'township' school.
One day he came upon a pretty, softly spoken young woman in the admin offices and they struck up a friendship. Their growing love for one another took them both by surprize. Mike had to return to England once his three month volunteer contract was up. He did. And for the next many months, he and Beki wrote and spoke to one another everyday. It soon became clear that they were destined to be together, despite the differances between them.
Age. Race. Culture. Love conquers all.
We watched them as they dined together at Samara, with such obvious pleasure in one another's company. Her quiet affection. His adoring pride in her. Their playfulness with one another. They were lovely. We liked them immensely and became fast friends. Just like that!
How lovely then, just a few weeks later to receive an invite to their wedding!
We feel honoured.
Mike writes, that they have already had their traditional wedding. Four cows were purchased as a bride price for Lobola. Mike and Beki were covered in traditional blankets, and prayers were given. Brandy was poured on the ground to appease the ancestors. They feasted, and were pronounced man and wife! Mike is officially now a proud member of the mmbuli clan.
Mr Nielson better known as Sid and I are suckers for a little romance.
Mike and Beki are up there with the very best of them!