top of page

The Man at the Gate

The Man at the Gate

By: Wandile Bob Nkonyane

Very often it comes to my attention

That friendly people are scarce

Not very often, you come across a stranger

Who will greet you with a smile

Or a sincere wave

Everyone is moving about

With a grumpy face and

They aren’t concerned

With the lives of the people around them

And what is most sad

Is when a gentle hello is ignored. . .

A sincere wave unattended

Everytime I’m harshly ignored

I dream a little –

I think of some people. . .

People like that friendly man

The one who works at school,

The man at the gate. . .

He never got tired of greeting

Everyone was the same to him

He treated us equally

No matter who came along

He would smile and offer his hand,

He has a sincere handshake

Which at times I took for granted

Yet now I realise

With all the mean people

We need people like that man!

. . . The man at the gate!

When a High School student writes poetry in his free time, one would expect it to be about the life and struggles of teenager. However when a student writes a poem about the person who opens the gate at the school, then you know that that person opening the gate, must be very special. HPR is blessed to have the friendly face of Willem Janse van Rensburg on board. He opens the gate with a smile every day. What makes this article more than the usual” feel good story” is Willem’s everyday greeting and smiling encourages a positive vibe, parents thought it a good idea to sponsor Willem with shirts and a jacket. Thank you to T’s Tools from Swaziland for this kind gesture. Willem give honest kindness unconditionally and it inspired the Furtado’s to pay it forward. Together with the jacket and shirts, T’s Tools also sponsored a Husqvarna Leaf Blower. The gates are still opened by ‘The Man at the Gate’, now looking ever so smart and not a stray leaf in sight. May this inspire you too to pay it forward.

On the photo is Maria Da Cunha Furtado, Willem Janse Van Rensburg and Berrie Bouwer.

Photo 2 Mr Toni Furtado, Berrie Bouwer and Phillip Serfontein

bottom of page