Car guards are a part of our society

Roger de Carvalho, Bothasig

I have lived in Bothasig since about 1984. I was here when car guards arrived. They have been around forever, unassuming, quiet and always respectful (“Car guards booted out at mall”, Tabletalk, March 9).

They never asked for any money, just assisted people to park and move out, helped with heavy trolleys, helped the pensioners get their shopping to the old age home nearby.

They also warned the unaware about shady characters lurking near the ATM. I do not remember a car broken into or a vehicle stolen from the car park.

You gave them money if you felt like it. It made no difference to their smile and wishes of a good day if you did not. They were the car guards.

Over the years they also became friends. I knew them by name, and likewise. Now they are gone, unemployed and facing a grim prospect. Maybe those responsible think they do not make a difference to anyone. Well, they do.

There are many types of friends, the ones at the pub, the ones at work, the ones at the club, the ones at the shops.

These were the ones at the car park, and now we have been deprived of their services and friendship, and left to wonder if their families eat everyday, for they usually made between R200 and R350 a day.

Not much for some, a survival amount for them. The reasons for their “dismissal” is obscure, I cannot understand the need to replace them.

The remark that there were some complaints about their behaviour is laughable. If one deals with the public, there will always be some unhappy person.

Put a saint working there and he will need a miracle to avoid complaints. The morality of this action is deplorable and the contempt I feel for those responsible is incommensurable.

I see them walking around at the shopping centre, files under the arm, making notes, looking important and I am happy that I do not count them as friends. One day, they might realise that life is measured in a lot more than rands, that there are other values that really make a person. Obviously, they fall short in that department. I hope, that the realisation does not not come too late for them.

This matter has really upset me, for it shows the cruelty and indifference of those who could make a difference.