Operation Oysterhood: 13 November

OYSTERHOOD is reclusiveness or solitude, or an overwhelming desire to stay at home.

— @HaggardHawks

These goodies from the Hoghouse were supposed to lift my recovering love’s spirits, and they did, but I also profited from the treat big time today. By the time they arrived, my own spirits were low and needed lifting.

A day of unreasonable demands, meetings, tons of work and in the middle of it all a short trip to the printer nearby to pick up some proofs. I parked. A tall, young man wearing a parking attendant’s vest (but no mask) approached the car. The moment I rolled down the widow, he started begging. First for money, then for food. I got out of the car (mistake!) and wanted to direct him to the soup kitchen in the area (which we have all been encouraged to do), but he became aggressive – in gestures and language. Intimidated, completely alone (not a soul in sight apart from the two of us), I gently said: please, I don’t feel comfortable; I cannot help you; please leave me alone. He went off, shouting abuse at me. I picked up the proofs and headed back to Topolino. The young man was back, waiting. I was too scared to properly understand what he was saying, but when I repeated that I cannot help him and started getting into the car, he began once again shouting abuses at me and then throwing things in my direction, hitting the car. Shaking, I managed to get into the car and drive off, with him screaming and gesticulating obscenities behind me.

Turning at the next intersection, I drove right into a road block. I stopped and explained what had just happened to me to the group of policemen next to the road. They promised to investigate immediately. I hope they did, because the next person the young man might have encountered might not have been able to get away … I went to my next appointment with trembling hands. Once the adrenaline wore off, I crashed, and the rest of the day was just a matter of soldiering on. And the whole time I kept asking myself, would this have happened to a man in the same situation? Probably not. I am too tired to be angry.

One of our guests gave me a box of chocolates last weekend. I had them all today and for a while the sweetness of friendship made everything better. In the evening, I had dinner with my love and that made everything better, too.

Today, I feel very vulnerable and it fucks with my mind to try to contextualise my vulnerability within the wider one which I’d encountered today – of existential despair manifesting as violence.

Be kind. Wear a mask. Support local.

“Physical distancing remains one of the key strategies to curb this pandemic.”


2 thoughts on “Operation Oysterhood: 13 November

  1. Carolynn

    I’m so sorry about your frightening experience yesterday Karina. This group run ladies’ self defence classes in Observatory. I attended a 2 hour workshop with them a while back and it was excellent: https://wsdo.co.za/
    They recommend carrying pepper spray!


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