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1_Harrismith 2_Free State / Vrystaat 7_Confessions 8_Nostalgia school travel

Tragic Testicular Descent

I used to sing beautifully. The teacher who trained the boys choir in Harrismith Laerskool said so. Well, she might have. She was Mej Cronje I think, and was half the reason ous would volunteer for the choir. To look at her, gorgeous redhead she was.
I was a soprano and we looked down on the altos who, though necessary as backup, weren’t in the same league as us squeakers. One directly behind me used to bellow in my ear: ‘Dek jou hol met bouse off hollie! FaLaLaLa  La LaLaLaLa.’
One day this delectable and discerning talent spotter, the red-headed Juffrou Ethel Cronje chose me to sing a solo in the next konsert. Me, soloist!

Fame loomed. It was 1965 and even then the image of a golden buzzer appeared to me in a vision.

Then tragedy struck!

My balls dropped.

They handled it very diplomatically. By ignoring it and cancelling practice. The konsert didn’t materialise. Co-incidence? Surely they didn’t cancel a concert just because one boy suffered testicular descent? And by the time the next konsert came around I hadn’t been banished – just discreetly consigned to the back and asked to turn it down.

* * *

Just in case there are people who think Harrismith se Laerskool se Seunskoor was a Mickey Mouse outfit, lemme tellya:
WE TOURED ZULULAND. The Vienna Boys Sausages were probably nervous.

We got onto the light blue school bus and drove for hours and hours and reached Empangeni where the school hall was stampvol of people who, starved of culture in deepest Zoolooland, listened in raptures as we warbled Whistle While You Work, High on your Heels is a Lonely Goat Turd, PaRumPaPumPum, Edelweiss, Dominique and some volksliedjies which always raised a little ripple of applause as the gehoor thought “Dankie tog, we know vis one“.

If memory serves (and it does, it does, seldom am I the villain or the scapegoat in my recollections) there was a flood and the road to the coastal village of ReetShits Bye was cut off, sparing them the price of a ticket – though those were probably gratis?

Can’t remember driving back, but we must have.

After that epic tour, warbling faded in importance and rugby took over.

~~~~~ooo000ooo~~~~~

Harrismith Laerskool – the village school

Harrismith se Laerskool se Seunskoor – Like the Vienna Boys Sausages

ous – us men

‘Dek Jou Hol Met Bouse Off Hollie! FaLaLaLa LA LaLaLaLa’

seunskoor – boys choir

stampvol – sold out, overflowing

volksliedjies – folk songs

gehoor – audience, fans, click ‘like’ or ‘follow’

dankie tog – fanks heavens, sigh of relief

ReetShits Bye – Richards Bay, then still a small harbour town on the warm Indian Ocean

~~~oo0oo~~~

By bewilderbeast

It's about life, marriage, raising kids, paddling rivers, travel in Africa . . . re-posting thoughts written over decades - at random, I'm afraid.

4 replies on “Tragic Testicular Descent”

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