Sometimes people ask me why I plan everything. I shall illustrate the reason for this, by telling the story of a Saturday morning a few weeks ago.
My friend Abdul invited me to a braai at Paradise Valley Nature Reserve at 10am on Saturday. I needed to bring my own drinks, and Halaal meat.
Because I was going hiking that afternoon, I had carefully planned my wardrobe to suit both activities.
By Friday night, I had organised my drinks and crockery and cutlery. I visited my nearest Pick and Pay, but the butcher had never heard of Halaal meat. I figured that Knowles, which is the local Superspar, would be a little more helpful, so I went there on Saturday morning.
I had everything packed in the car; my drinks for both the braai and the hike were in the cooler box. I had hiking snacks, hat and my anorak. I was feeling quite satisfied with my planning as I entered Knowles at about 9:30.
And then I realised that I had forgotten to shave my legs.
And we aren’t talking about a few days here. It had been at least 2 weeks since I had de-furred myself, because I had always worn long pants to work, and didn’t have a man to impress with my silky smooth legs. And because I was going on the hike, I was wearing shorts.
I thought furiously…
I would buy those disposable razors with the soapy strip, and pour some of my hiking water over the one I used, to stop my legs from getting dry and itchy.
Searching for the razor section took time, and I was heading for late when I rushed out with my razor blades and my Halaal meat, which fortunately, the butcher had heard of. I couldn’t stop to shave, so I awkwardly did the best I could at each red robot I was stopped at.
I arrived at the Nature Reserve parking, and saw Abdul’s black Golf there already. It was then that my legs started to itch. So much for the soapy strip!
I searched through my handbag for anything to relieve my discomfort, and came across a small container of Zambuck. I tried to be as unobtrusive as possible as I rubbed it into my legs, while scores of people flocked into the parking lot.
At last I was ready. I gathered up my meat, drinks and cutlery, paid my entrance fee and trailed around the large mowed picnic site looking for Abdul. He is quite noticeable, with a large black beard, but I couldn’t see him anywhere.
Eventually I phoned him.
“Isn’t the braai at 10am?” I asked.
There was silence.
“Yes,” he said. “But it’s tomorrow.”
So I had to take my Halaal meat, my drinks and my newly shaved legs back home and wait until the hike at 2pm.
Now imagine what my day would have been like if I HADN’T planned anything.