(In the photo – Jan Shapiro, swollen faced me! Gina Benjamin and Kate Edwards – 1990)


A style guru –  I am not!

Recently it was my brother’s 50th birthday party up in Jo’burg and EVERYONE was going. I was NOT. I really couldn’t afford it, as the flights are so damned expensive. But then….. my sister in New Zealand announced that she was going to fly over especially for the party. Megs is a great one for parties! And I couldn’t miss the party and her! Hey Ho….no choice. Bite the bullet and go onto the Kulula web site!

But now, a major problem arose. What to wear? I certainly couldn’t afford a new outfit.    I searched through my wardrobe in despair and suddenly I spied my favourite, albeit rather old, red dress. I hadn’t worn it for ages but perhaps it might still fit – just!

And yes, it fit and it actually looked great!  So – problem solved. And hell, we all had a terrific party!

This birthday episode reminds me of a very embarrassing incident involving another dress. I had owned  this particular dress for a quite a while!

Saturday was a typical Durban day – hot and moist. That morning I got dressed into an old dress of mine. It was 15 years old and the material seemed to be getting thinner. But I loved it. I didn’t  really need to wear a bra. In fact, in the summer heat in Durban, I wear one very rarely. (Whoops, sorry, maybe too much information!) Anyway, I went to Woolworths and bought a few groceries. Then I walked home.

“I’ve always loved the way this dress feels on me,” I thought. “It hangs away from your body. Loose. It lets the air in.”

When I reached my flats, I saw waiting outside for me my cousin.

“Hi! Are you coming in for some coffee?” I called.

“Thanks, Gaye, that’ll be…..Gaynor, your dress…I and everyone else can see your nipple”

I looked down in consternation. Yup, Judith was right. As I had thought earlier, it was letting the air in. And everything else out! My right nipple was quite happily peering out at the Saturday morning world and smiling at the passers by! My dress whose material was getting thinner with each wash, had finally given up the ghost. The material had thinned to such a degree that finally a large hole had formed…on my right breast enabling my boob to at long last be granted a sight of the busy Saturday morning and all the masses of people passing by. They got a  delicious view of a perky, pink nippled breast.

Oh, glory be, at least I know why I got so many smiles from the men I passed!