Plan aborted and car-less, we quickly came up with Plan B as Lila started crying about having to come home again. Drew and I decided to walk to the Woolworths shopping center with the kids and pay a visit to the toy store. (Toy store = solution to all of life’s problems, no matter how many kids you have.) While there, we would also have to get food for lunch and dinner since there were no groceries in the house and as already noted: we had no car.
Our new family of four headed off boldly in the direction of the mall, Denton snug in a carrier on my chest and Lila riding high on Drew’s shoulders. We got there and did some errands before things predictably went south less than an hour in. Drew was busy getting frustrated at the customer service rep at Vodacom for being utterly unhelpful about trying to fix his phone when Denton woke up hungry and full of pee and Lila charged off on her own to do a little shoplifting. After I fed Denton and Drew reappeared to reign in Lila, we decided to hightail it out of there as the sky was quickly gathering angry-looking storm clouds and a few drops had already started to fall. I’m not sure whatever happened to the Christmas wrapping paper roll.
We charged off across the parking lot at the exact same moment that the skies opened up and it began to pour. Lila had woken up this morning with a runny nose and hoarse voice, and I shouted at Drew “Lila’s going to get pneumonia!” Not to mention my poor three-week old baby who was about to get soaked and/or catch Lila’s cold, which sounds like a terrible idea at this point.
Just then someone started honking at us vigorously and I was about to turn around and yell at them to leave us alone before I realized it was a concerned-looking woman gesturing at us to get in her car. Her two kids scrambled to the front seat and I didn’t wait for her to ask twice. I hollered to Drew and Lila to follow and we all clambered into her small Honda as the rain came down in torrents and she explained that she couldn’t let us get wet with a baby that small. She drove us home past overflowing street gutters while I thanked my lucky stars for friendly South African strangers and a sense of humor to get us through afternoons like this.