#6- Diamonds!

Jamie 1883-1906
“By God, this is a real donderstorml” Jamie McGregor said. He had grown up amid the wild storms of the Scottish High-lands, but he had never witnessed anything as violent as this. The afternoon sky had been suddenly obliterated by enormous louds of sand, instantly turning day into night. The dusty sky was lit by flashes of lightning—weerlig, the Afrikaners called it—that scorched the air, followed by donderslag—
thunder. Then the deluge. Sheets of rain that smashed against the army of tents and tin huts and turned the dirt streets of Klipdrift into frenzied streams of mud. The sky was aroar with rolling peals of thunder, one following the other like artillery in some celestial war.
Jamie McGregor quickly stepped aside as a house built of raw brick dissolved into mud, and he wondered whether the town of Klipdrift was going to survive. Klipdrift was not really a town. It was a sprawling canvas village, a seething mass of tents and huts and wagons crowding the banks of the Vaal River, populated by wild-eyed reamers drawn to South Africa from all parts of the world by the same obsession: diamonds.



Copyright © 1982 by Sheldon Literary Trust

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