Columns 5.9.2018 08:15 am

There’s no place like home

Home sweet home.

Home sweet home.

What’s left to come home to? A friendly response from passport officers at our airports, a beaming tour bus operator, neighbours and our pups.

Have said a sad goodbye to family in the UK. Time to pack up and head home. To what?

SA websites give us the gist. Taxi killings. Bus services come to a stop and main roads blocked, preventing legitimate traffic from entering main arterials.

The so-called commission into corruption still grinds on. Zuma and the Guptas still not behind bars, despite concrete evidence in Jacques Pauw’s book. The new chief of the NPA to replace Shaun Abrahams has a criminal case pending against him. Murder and rape still rampant.

A good start, eh?

The thought of extending our break overseas is tempting. There is crime, but nowhere near ours – and it’s being addressed and perpetrators are being caught – and dockets aren’t being lost by corrupt cops. Compared with our explosive political situation, there it’s mild and handled through parliamentary debate – often heated with a venomous media following suit – but it doesn’t lead to uncultured behaviour. And no thought of murdering opponents.

And there are still places where you can leave your car unlocked. Travelling by train, we witnessed passengers leaving their open handbags and laptops on the seats when going to the toilet. Oh, and trains aren’t set alight.

So, what’s left to come home to?

First off, a friendly response from passport officers at our airports, unlike those abroad. A cheery sawubona is music to our ears, having had a month of foreign unpronounceable dialects.

A beaming tour bus operator, transporting us from the airport to our home town, firmly grips your hand in greeting, not a clammy, weak effort. He assists you with the luggage, another trait not seen abroad.

Then, on arrival at our destination, neighbours give us a lift home. On entering, the landline phone rings. Others saying “welcome home, we missed you guys”. More like calls follow.

And what about the excited barks and licks from our pups when picking them up from their “holiday home”. Animal-loving receptionists at the SPCA join in the happy reunion.

Simple things. Precious moments. Good enough reasons for coming home.

Cliff Buchler.

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