An eight-year old South African boy (Sanele Masilela) married a 61 year old woman (Helen Shabangu) after the ghost of his dead grandfather told him to do so. (Source: The Independent)
Who says children don’t obey their elders any more?
And as though this story needed any more…of anything really, we learn that Helen is already married and has five children (not including the one she’s just finished marrying), all aged between 27 and 37 and that the wedding ‘had the blessing’ of Helen’s current husband.
A family affair for true and where some difficult decisions lay ahead for the 8-year old father – like imposing curfews on his new stepchildren after they put him to bed.
And for us the reader in deciding who to slap first.
Sanele’s mother, Patricia, probably, who would silence her critics and the shocked local community by saying the ceremony was a ritual and not legally binding. She feared not doing what her son asked would bring the wrath of the spirit world down on her family and something bad would happen.
I think that ship sailed when 8-year old Sanele was made to kiss his bride.
Not legally binding to my mind means humouring the little tike with a pretend wedding in the Sitting Room with some squash and a few Mr Kiplings before sending the child to school happy he had appeased the dead ancestors.
The work of a moment and not two months to organise or forking out thousands of pounds for a wedding ceremony of 100 guests in the municipality of Tshwane in Gauteng province in the process.
Each to his own, I guess, and it is not for us maybe to ridicule someone’s beliefs.
But before my children think of adopting some new found beliefs, I should tell them that I had a visitation myself last night from the University Spirits who are greatly desirous of a strong study ethic and less partying.
And Sanele, the next time your dead grandfather visits asking you to marry someone he had his eye on when he was alive, it is okay to ask him to come back when you’re in better spirits yourself in, say, 20 years time.
And Patricia, Patricia, Patricia.
Sweetheart, it is enough should this happen again to soothe your 8-year old son through a night-time terror, tell him to put his father’s tuxedo away and to go the hell to sleep as it’s a school night – not his wedding night.
HMS HerMelness Speaks