At the intersections of most cities in Africa, drivers are accosted by various beggars and sellers of mobile phone chargers for the car (in case you have left your charger at home and need to charge your phone) - all trying to eke a little money out of the passing motorists. This is normal.
What is not so normal was the inventiveness of one fellow we came across in Pretoria who held up a hand-made sign which read...
My cat jumped the wall and Eat my neighbour's chicken Please Help me with Job or Donation so that I can buy a new Chicken For my neighbour
For those folk who could not read - he had added a finely detailed picture of his thieving cat - with extended belly from his huge meal.
We passed by that particular intersection four times every day on our way to and from the pool - at 06.30am, 14.00pm, 15.30pm and 18.00pm - and each and every time - there he was.
On our final day, there was only one thing we could do to recompense him and solve his dilemma. We had watched as various South African motorists gave him a few coins, but this was obviously not enough to buy a new chicken and restore relations with his luckless neighbour. So we decided his chicken problem would hopefully be overcome by the kind and generous Zimbabweans...... even if our solution did leave him looking a little nonplussed at first!
That's right - we bought him a chicken!
Despite all the shopping Malls surrounding us, we were unable to find him a live chicken - which had been our original intention, but hopefully his neighbour will be satisfied, and he will no longer have to stand around the traffic intersection all day.
We passed by that intersection after doing an (illegal!) 'U-turn' some two minutes later and he was busy showing off his brand new chicken to the mobile-phone-charger-selling guy - so we know he was happy!
And you have a nice day too!