Sophisticate owned an eatery for a decade

Nomvula Khalo

Nomvula Khalo

A speaker at a funeral recently said: "No one is going to leave this world alive."

A profound statement and very true because Sibongile Ziphora Msimanga is no more. What a waste of life.

Though we saw her struggling after suffering from a long illness, still it is sad that she has passed on. We enjoyed a close relationship.

When Wandi Ndala's business was thriving in Dube, Soweto, and Orly Khambule was doing it in Alexander, Msimanga opened her own restaurant in the heart of the northern suburbs, Lombardy East, in the early 1990s.

People drove from faraway places to enjoy her sumptuous meals. She was a good cook and very enterprising woman.

After running her eatery for almost 10 years, she ventured into the hair and beauty industry.

She opened a hair salon on Corlett Drive, where she also thrived because she was a people's person.

Zi, as she was fondly known among her friends, was like a fishing rod - people just got hooked to her and never let her go.

Msimanga was a straight-forward person, a socialite of note who was generous, caring and loved life. She also lived like there was no tomorrow.

Though her last days were difficult, Msimanga did not lose her charm, intellect, wittiness or ability to ridicule senseless ideas.

She enjoyed making jokes and reminiscing about her escapades.

I am consoled and happy that I was among family and many friends during her last days.

My hat goes off to her mother, who took care of her child and made sure she was always taken very good care of until her last moment.

Born in Meadowlands in 1970, Msimanga used to refer to her lovely legs as imilenze yomshadom meaning legs made for marriage.

She oozed sophistication and had an eye for beauty. She used to reprimand her friends for shabby dressing.

Msimanga is survived by her parents and siblings.

She will be buried tomorrow at Croesus Cemetery.

The service starts at 10am at Albertina Sisulu Centre in Mzimhlophe and the cortege leaves for burial at 1pm.