No Valentine cards for Bloos?


The sun rises in the Sondagskloof on a bright, warm morning … but there is little light in Bloos’ heart. 

For it is early February, and all the land is gearing up for a hot Valentine’s Day. But while Kaalvoet Meisie is overwhelmed by all the envelopes containing love letters, Bloos has not received a single card. 

Bloos blushes – even more than she usually does – where she sits at a dam on the farm, her feet dangling above the water. “This is not lekker,” she mutters. 

Kaalvoet Meisie passes by, humming a soft tune while strolling through the vineyards. 

She sits down next to Bloos, puts a comforting arm around her. “What’s wrong? You seem especially blooserig today.”

Bloos just shakes her head and looks away, the redness in her cheeks now near-glowing. 

Eventually, Kaalvoet Meisie gets up, gives Bloos an encouraging squeeze of the shoulder. “Don’t stress,” Kaalvoet Meisie muses, “I’m sure you’ll make a good decision about which cards you accept and which you reject.”

With this, Kaalvoet Meisie leaves. Bloos slowly picks up a pebble, chucks it into the water. 

On the other side of the dam, Kleinboet is in the Bordeaux section of the vineyards. He sniffs at the vines, takes gleeful whiffs of the maturing grapes. “Bliksem, this is mos ekstra premium goeters,” he thinks. 

Then, he looks up. He sees Bloos on the other side of the dam as she gets up and walks off, her shoulders drooped. 

Kleinboet realises he may have done something wrong in his efforts to do something right. As quickly as he can, he runs around the dam to catch up with her.

Finally, he catches up to her.  “Bloos,” he pants. “You looked really hartseer there by the dam. Is it because you didn’t get any Valentine’s cards?”

Bloos’ cheeks turn red again, but she pretends to shrug it off: “That’s life, né? We expect lots of things, and we get some of those things, and then we don’t get some of those things.” 

Kleinboet steps forward with a comforting smile. 

“I’m sorry,” he says, “but you got at least ten times as many cards as Kaalvoet Meisie did. I saw them at your stoep, this morning at sunrise, and I thought … You don’t need this as much as Kaalvoet Meisie does.”

Bloos looks up at him quizically. “So … you just took all my Valentine’s-goeters? And burned them?”

“No … I threw them on the farm’s organic compost heap,” says Kleinboet. “Sorry, but I’m glad I did it, because now the rest of us can have a real jol of togetherness on Valentine’s, instead of silly dates with silly strangers.”

Kleinboet hangs his head in shame, but Bloos smiles. 

“That sounds really kwaai, actually,” she says. “In fact, if we tell Kaalvoet Meisie about our togetherness vibes, she’ll sommer gooi all those cards and invitations in the dam!”

Kleinboet – surprised and worried. “I hope not,” he says. “That’s littering. And water pollution. And it could clog up the pump systems, which we need for our irrigation.”

“Ag, man, you know what I mean,” Bloos giggles. She puts her arm around Kleinboet’s shoulders. “You know what? I think we need to find the together-nest. Where everyone will feel welcome and, you know, not ge-judge.”

Kleinboet’s eyes widen. “You mean … the venue for the big jol?” 

Bloos nods shyly. “What do you think?” 

Kleinboet looks around him, as his mischievous smile grows …

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