The Smell of Success

‘Excuse me?’ The air hostess leaned in to talk to the two gentlemen seated on the right-hand side of the plane. The scent of her perfume and unquestionable beauty immediately brought them under her spell. Brown eyes firmly pointed towards them, showing confidence in herself and her work, she was in control, and the chaps were hooked. Despite their visible youth, these fellows had clearly found the formula to navigate the business of life. They were dressed in sharp, well-tailored slim Italian suits, engrossed in lively and deep discussion of technical ideas that belonged in university lecture rooms, prompting two of the passengers seated close by to make snide remarks. ‘These two obviously belong in the business class. Why are they sitting here, drowning us in boredom with their high-minded conversation?’

‘Could you please tone it down’, the young lady kindly asked the two passengers in business suits. ‘I am sorry. I guess we can hardly contain our excitement’, said Karabo, genuinely apologetic and slightly embarrassed. In addition to the excitement, the presence of amber beverages in front of the two lads might have been the reason why their voices were raised and not realising that they were loud. ‘What happened? Why are you guys so excited?’ Smiling and displaying dimples that could be described as cute, she was curious. Her interest was piqued. ‘Let us just say that the Gods are smiling upon us’, Sello answered. Noticing that she was out of time, and heeding Sello’s short answer that she would need more than a minute to understand the source of their ecstasy, she congratulated them on their success – whatever it was – and wished them luck for the future. Still smiling they thanked her before she quickly disappeared to the back of the plane.

Seconds later a voice came on the intercom. Female, soothing and perfect for commercial radio, the sound advised the passengers to be seated. ‘Ladies and gentlemen, please return to your seats, fasten your seat belts and prepare for landing.’ The plane would begin to descend and flight MN257 from Cape Town would soon be landing at OR Tambo International Airport in Johannesburg. After spending a week in the Mother City on business – and pleasure when time permitted – the boys – Karabo and Sello – were back home in Jozi Maboneng. Soon – in fact in the next three weeks – they would be flying out of the country to tour the United States, the Caribbean and various parts of South America to meet fellow entrepreneurs and heads of state, attend business conferences and so on and so forth. For now, even if it is for a short while, they were back home. They had spent the past six months crisscrossing the globe – Asia, Europe and Africa. Now they could lie down, unwind and rest. But it was not always this way.


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