Diamond Part 2

by | Jun 7, 2020 | Love | 1 comment

The compound’s triple fence is four metres high and ten metres apart. That’s two gaps totalling twenty metres. The distance to the walkway is forty metres and to the field outside of the compound, fifty. One hundred at thirty metres, ten more than his longest throw and four more than the world record for a cricket ball. Two weeks of training yields the longest throw of one hundred and twenty four metres. Just under the world record but painfully short of his goal. Bandile’s right arm burns with pain, his muscles stretched to the limit. Every shift at work is agony but it is soothed when his large fingers wrap around his imprisoned gem. So obsessed is he with her that he ignores his wife and child, running to work every day to be with his love. His every waking minute is filled with her as if every minute the sun rises above the horizon.

Today is the day when shell will be free. Millions of years hidden inside rock like an egg in a mother’s womb followed by weeks in the cradle of the toolbox, wrapped in her yellow rags. If she falls short of her goal, she will be lost forever. At the end of his shift, Bandile gently takes his new love and places her in his overall, next to his heart. So excited is he that he becomes sexually aroused. Leaving the mine entrance, Bandile has twenty paces between there and the first camera. The first ten paces he uses to prepare his throw. Three paces later his arm arches back over his shoulder. Two further paces sees the huge limb spring forward and shes is on her way to freedom…or oblivion. Crouching forward, his arm almost out of its socket, Bandile sees her take the massive arc over all three fences. He is so overwhelmed by the immense throw that he nearly forgets to note the point at which she lands in the field.

For the next week, Bandile carries on his routine of work, walk, eat, sleep. Practice is not possible as his arm is virtually useless. Every minute he misses her like a forbidden lover, longing to take her in his hand again. Eventually, the day arrives. Shrugging off protests from his long suffering family, he departs on his day off, for the mine. Today however he avoids the entrance to the compound and walks east to the field… of sprouting maize! He has forgotten about the crop which, by now, covers the field to a height of half a metre! After four hours of searching through the thick greenery, a desperate Bandile is just about to give up on his love. Then, all of a sudden, beneath a broad maize leaf, he sees a glimpse of yellow. Tears well up in his eyes as he falls to his knees, carefully scooping herr up and pulling her to his heaving chest. His whole body shaking with emotion, Bandile carefully stuffs the bundle into his coat.

At home, he walks right past his bereft wife and children, straight to the bathroom. Removing the panel from the bath, Bandile places her in her new home. He then runs the hot tap and has a long soak. Over the next month, Bandile is a changed man. Angry, short tempered and distracted. He receives two warnings at work for health and safety breaches. He virtually disowns his loving family and spends hours in the bathroom. He holds her in his huge hand and just stares at her. A round grey piece of rock with only that tiny hint of her exquisite beauty peeping through. The facet that had caused her discovery glinting at him like a mocking smile.

Day after day, his obsession with her grows. He constantly analyses his options, which are all impossible to achieve. If he could get the gem to a diamond cutter he could never justify his ownership. The black market was out of the question as the gangsters that run it would probably steal her and kill him. Deep in the back of his mind he really does not want her to come to life around the neck of some millionaire’s wife. Every time, Bandile concludes that he will never own her, she is out of his reach.

During this time, Bandile begins to realise the consequences of his actions. Although he can see Sahar’s devastating beauty, he can never show anyone else and has repeatedly concluded that she will never be his. One day, Bandile decides to take her on a journey. He boards a bus to Pretoria, ignoring the protests of his family to go to work. Alighting at the entrance to DeBeers’ Diamond office he checks the bus timetable. Bandile then walks through the huge doors of the office and up to reception. The two young receptionists are puzzled at the huge African who has walked into the building. His ill-fitting clothes hang from him like rags and tears are streaming down his ebony cheeks. He is clutching a small round bundle about the size of a cricket ball. Shoulders heaving with emotion, the man carefully places the bundle on the reception desk as a mother would place her baby in the crib. In between the sobs the man utters one sentence. “Goodbye, my love”.

With that, Bandile turns and leaves the reception and the building. Looking at his watch, he glances up the street. Good, he thinks the Cullinan bus is on time, as he steps off the kerb into its path.

1 Comment

  1. Kenneth Childs



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