When we first moved in, Christine's son, David, was the gardener. Then one day, Christine said David had to go home, to Limpopo, because his wife was sick. She said that her brother, Justice, would be coming instead.
While I was fine with having Justice come, and while I totally trust Christine on these matters, I was curious and I kept inquiring about David's wife. Was she OK? Was she sick in like she had a sore throat or was it something more serious? Christine would only say that it looked like she would be o.k. and then one day, she sent me a What'sapp text saying that David's wife had been sick because she was pregnant and she'd had the baby and everyone was fine. So there you go.
This was a few months ago and since then I have asked her a few more times about David. Was he coming back? Mostly I asked just to be polite because I was starting to love Justice so much. Now David has returned to Diepsloot and he will be back at work next week.
I am really going to miss Justice and I think he is going to miss working here too. He told me that he was really sad about it being his last day today. I wish that I had a big enough garden and I could have both David and Justice come (yes there was a famous American baseball player named David Justice), but the yard is small and it wouldn't make any sense.
So what's so great about Justice? Well for one thing he puts so much thought and care into his work. At the end of the day on Fridays, Christine is always helping him finish up because he is so meticulous. He's also really creative. For example we have a lot of pine cones that fall on the ground and when he first came here he began using them to make patterns in the landscape. When I told him that I liked the pine cone art he started doing other things like putting tree bark into the cracks in our walkway (granted he pulled it off a tree which probably isn't the best idea for the tree) but really it's the thought that counts.
I can also tell that Christine likes coming to work a little bit more on the days that Justice comes with her. She makes him coffee or tea in the morning and then she makes his lunch in the afternoon. They sit outside in the grass and eat together and talk. They also often sing together. I asked them once about their singing and they said they are in a church choir so I guess they are singing church music. They have really nice voices and I have tried and tried to record them using my phone so I could share with you. Unfortunately (and I do mean unfortunately) there are always screaming kids next door at the pool/clubhouse so the recordings never come out clearly.
A few weeks ago Christine told me that Justice was going to come with her on a Tuesday to help her clean the windows. It turns out it was all a scheme because they somehow found out it was my birthday that day and they cooked up the plan that he would come with her. He made me a bouquet of flowers from our garden which he has since refreshed every week with new flowers and he also washed my car. They made me a little birthday note too.
And finally as if all this kindness wasn't enough, they also made us a gift. When I came home one day I saw a framed drawing sitting on the table by our front door. I asked Christine about it and she told me that she and Justice made it for us. I almost cried. Partially because I don't know how in the world they could get their hands on any art supplies let alone a frame, but also because I know how much being able to come here to work must mean to them and I am so touched that they would take the time to do this for us.
Justice is a really special person. He is creative and hardworking and kind. I look forward to seeing David again but I hope every now and then he has to take a trip to Limpopo and that Justice will return.
|Justice and Christine|