We are in Fancourt and it is raining and raining. The busy Bunster wants to run outside on the never-ending manicured golf lawns but everything is wet and we got our hands full for sure. Jane had to leave us yesterday late afternoon to return to Johannesburg. We met Jane about 6 weeks ago through our friend David. Jane had worked with David’s family for 4 years as a night nurse and came highly recommended. When it was suggested that we try find a night nurse, when we arrived in Johannesburg, we weren’t sure how long it would take us to find someone we liked. But we got lucky – Jane was available pretty much right away, as she had just finished with David’s family, and we met her and voila.
Jane is very good at what she does and the Bunster took a big liking to her. We had a nanny in Kyiv called Tanya, and when the war started Tanya went to Western Ukraine, and we came to SA. Bunster liked Tanya too. She is also a very cool person, like Jane. Bunster has had quite a few people come and go in a short space of time and he does act a bit confused, but he is good. So when Jane left us yesterday we were all pretty sad.
Jane has been living in SA for over 23 years. She is from Malawi. She is married and she lives in Bryanston with her husband. When I met Jane I asked her for her bank details so I could pay her each month and she told me she did not have a bank account. She asked me if I can pay her part in cash and the rest to pay into her husband’s account. I was curious as to why she did not have a bank account and she told me it is impossible to open an account as a non-South African.
One day in JHB, Jane asked if I could get her an Uber early the next morning after a night with the Bunster, so she could go to Kempton Park to get her visa sorted out. Again, I was curious. I guessed Jane did this every 5 or 10 years or something like that. I was wrong. She has to go there every 30 days. WTF ?!
I have a very close friend Akin, a humble, high energy artist, who has been in SA for 30 years, and he sometimes shares his frustration about the nonsense that is taking place in SA. Akin pays taxes and is a wholesome member of the land, so what is the problem. Xenophobia is a real issue and listening to Jane’s stories since we met her has been very disturbing.
I paid Jane well, and we are kind and warm people. I could see Jane was very happy helping us with Bunster and we were all getting to know each other. She met a few of my friends when they came to visit us in JHB, at Alon’s house, when we first got settled in after arriving from Kyiv. And now she is gone. We are not sure what the challenge is exactly that she had to go back to JHB to deal with. We are concerned now and hope that she is going to be ok, and we wonder if she will be able to fly back to George soon to come be with the Bunster again. He already looked a bit confused this morning.
I love South Africa, and it has been good to me, and my family. But I am embarrassed about many things that go on. What is with the xenophobia. Why did Jane have such a struggle on her hands. She looked so stressed this week. While Bunster napped in the afternoons, she was on the phone, and she seemed so anxious all the time. She is smart, she has money, she had good people around her to to try and help. So what then is the problem. Why can’t she even open a bank account in SA, for example? And that is just the start of the rant …