Temerity – noun – excessive confidence or boldness, audacity, barefaced cheek, gall, presumption, brazen, forward, rash…..
Summonsed for a family lunch I go with some trepidation, but acknowledge that there are just some things one has to do right?
To explain, I have had an abundance of uncomfortable encounters and have always held myself in check, preferring to stay away and be quiet. After ten years my predecessor’s name is most often used on introducing me, my religion has been hit on and tried to be debated , my divorce status has been bandied about with alacrity, to quote, “She is a very nice woman you know but she has been married twice already!” silence….”Oh goodness so have you Dear!” Go figure, who does this?
Small and feisty, dynamite in a jar. Jovial to all who know her, but the joke is most often at the expense of someone else. So back to lunch. After all these years I meet my brother in law for the second time and seat myself next to him. Quiet, with a gentle twinkle in his eye, hugely intelligent, we chat quietly and listen to the louder table participants. Suddenly she launches, “What have you got on your ears?” “Heavens, are they a trophy?” “Did you win them at running Dear and wear them?”Of course the table starts tittering, but I am now older and not going to feel stupid anymore. You see, I chose my earrings carefully to go with the top I was wearing. “No, I replied, I actually bought them because I like them.” More laughter pursues, but now a little uncomfortably. Daughter dashes in, “Mum, how rude!” The attention is then diverted by plates being removed.
With lunch over we move to the outside verandah and take a seat. There is happy banter with an old friend, and plans are being made for B&B keys delivery and talk of walks and hikes in the area. I stand to leave as a Kirstenbosch Concert awaits my Sunday afternoon, I feel her eyes lock in on my jeans, my purpose-made “torn” jeans and immediately she says, “Goodness, what have you got on Dear?”
“I have jeans on, and I didn’t win these either.”