The Real Deal
YOU South Africa|2 December 2021
Sometimes it takes a close call to make you realise what you have is real
S BEE

‘A FAREWELL gift, Tammy.” Gav in handed me a small parcel.

Today was our very last date, but I brushed back the tears and carefully unwrapped it.

The blue velvet box contained a pair of glittering star-shaped earrings. Were they diamonds?

“Wow. They’re so elegant! Thank you.”

“They’re the real deal. So take good care of them.” He kissed me on the cheek and quietly left the luxury hotel room.

I then deleted his number from my phone. I’d used a female name as cover – Gina.

I hadn’t been looking for an affair. I’d met Gavin through my work. I was a mystery shopper where I had to pose as a customer and write reviews of hotels and bars. I could be sent anywhere at any time. I’d be at home, watching a soap with a cuppa, and my phone would ring. Then I’d pack up and drive to a venue miles away . . .

The no-strings affair had been fun, but after three months, Gavin wanted out. That was fine by me.

Although I’d become fond of the good-looking, wealthy company director, I felt relieved. I’d had enough of sneaking about and lying to my husband, Matt.

I guessed the reason I’d felt attracted to another guy was because Matt was a warehouse worker and was so penny-pinching!

There was no sun-soaked fortnight holiday abroad for us – we made do with staying in a tatty, damp B&B for a week. He insisted on buying the economy range of groceries and we never dined out (unless you counted a home-made sandwich, scoffed on a park bench).

So I found myself in a dilemma. How the heck could I explain away this expensive, new jewellery?

ON MY way home, I passed Dodgy Dave’s. It was the sort of downmarket seedy shop where you could buy and sell all sorts of stuff. I hesitated. Gavin had said the diamonds were the real deal.

Would Dodgy Dave be able to value them properly? But did it matter? After all, I wouldn’t be able to wear them.

If he offered me R500, it’d rid me of the problem and I’d have something extra in my pocket. I’d tell Matt that I’d won the amount in the lottery.

I approached the counter and took out my starry sparklers.

Dodgy Dave peered at the earrings. “I can offer you R100.”

I was astounded. “Is that all?”

He shrugged. “Look lady, this is just costume jewellery. The offer’s on the table. Take it or leave it.”

I took it.

MATT’S face lit up. “So you won a hundred rand, eh?”

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