“Age is not an issue for us. What matters is that we love each other. Besides, I’ve never been one to bother about what people say and I’m not going to start now.”
South African TV Star, Nonhle Thema (32) and her British aspiring musician/entrepreneur beau Arthur Bolton (25) can’t wait to tie the knot. And, with how happy they look, a seven-year age difference is the least of their worries.
Although a lot of controversy has surrounded their relationship, for the first time, Nonhle was ready to speak about it. She explained that she kept quiet about it because she wanted to keep it sacred and know where it was heading first.
In the May 2013 issue of popular South African Drum magazine, the beautiful couple spoke about their love story; from how they met in 2010, kept the relationship going even with the long distance, all the way to prepping for their grand wedding day.
What she thinks about her fiance, Arthur Bolton
“Arthur is the most humble man I’ve ever met. He’s just what I’ve always wanted. He makes me believe that good men do exist. He still buys me flowers.”
Arthur, whose mother is originally Zimbabwean, is from a big family. He has 11 brothers and 4 sisters.
“I love that about him. It’s amazing because the whole family is so supportive of us. Even when times were bad, they were rooting for us to stop our nonsense and get together again.”
“I’m the happiest I’ve been in a very long time. Finally, there are two people who are mine; they are part of me and have filled an empty space I has inside me.”
What he thinks about his fiancee, Nonhle Thema
“It was love at first sight for me. I just loved this woman from the time I laid eyes on her.
Arthur insists that Nonhle meets his whole family. As a result, the couple will spend a few months in England and the US before the wedding.
“I want all of my family to meet this amazing woman who’s stolen my heart.”
How They Met
“I met Arthur in Los Angeles, where I was working on my TV show ‘Nonhle Goes to Hollywood’. He was there to listen to his rapper brother, Lupe Fiasco, performing. We became friends but at the time I was very focused on my career and didn’t give much thought to having a relationship.”
Although they became friends, the romance didn’t start until two months before Nonhle had to leave for South Africa.
Now, Nonhle is sporting a white gold and diamond ring on her fourth finger. They have a posh home in the northern suburbs of Johannesburg, South Africa where they have been raising their six-month old daughter, Star Phoenix Ivy Zime. But, the relationship wasn’t always this rosy.
Arthur had some contractual engagements which kept him in the US so eventually, the long distance took its toll on them forcing them to take a break.
The Long Distance Relationship
“That’s when I met Young Nucho ( a local Lil’ Wayne look-alike rapper) and Arthur also got involved with someone else. My relationship with Young Nucho didn’t last long and soon Arthur and I found each other again.”
“I was very sad because every time we wanted to come together there was just always some problem. And at the start of my pregnancy, I felt like he had chosen his career over me and Star. I was very upset because he was globetrotting with his brother while I had to be alone with the growing baby inside me.
The Young Nucho connection
Alone and pregnant, Nonhle reconnected with Young Nucho, who was aware of who Star‘s father is and was ‘supportive in the early days of the pregnancy’.
According to Nonhle, people were quick to assume that Young Nucho was Star‘s father when a photo of him carrying Star surfaced online. But, in response to him not knowing who the father was, she said,
“No, that’s some fabricated stuff. We’re friendly now and there’s absolutely nothing wrong with a friend taking a photo with my baby”
Regardless of his ties in the US and their short separation, Arthur was present for his baby’s birth. He said,
“It was nerve-wracking but we were singing a church song during the birth, so that was very calming. I found meaning in life that day when I saw my baby come into this world.”
After another few months apart after Star‘s birth, it began to tell on their relationship again so Arthur decided to make South Africa his base. And that’s when that special day that Nonhle will remember for a long time came.
“It was so special. He gave me a number of gifts before he surprised me with an engagement ring at our early dinner outing that day. We were at a restaurant and I just saw the waiters singing to me and then they handed me a tray with the engagement ring box on it.
Arthur got down on one knee and popped the question. Without hesitation, he got a resounding ‘Yes!’ in response and the fellow diners started to cheer them on.
The Grand Wedding
In South Africa, it’s part of the tradition that the marrying couple’s families go through ‘lobola negotiations’.
“Lobola was a foreign concept to my hubby-to-be but he researched it and wanted to do everything properly”
Here’s how Arthur felt about them.
“I was not part of the negotiations because that’s how things are supposed to be done. For now, our job is just to love each other and let the families handle the traditional formalities.”
As for the wedding plans, Nonhle says
“Back when I was still very active on TV, I’d have tons of people there and they’d be screaming for me, so in a way I feel like I was getting married all those times. So I want something different now. I’m thinking that we might have two weddings.”
“I’ll marry her over and over again, any time.”
While their plans are still under way, there are only a few things certain about the big day right now. Arthur is set on ordering his favourite caramel cake from the US – he says it’s non-negotiable. And, Nonhle wants to plan the wedding herself, with help from hers and Arthur’s family.
“We’ve decided to have the wedding once Star is able to walk because we want her to be actively involved on the day.”
Until then, the preparations continue! Here are some photos of Nonhle wedding dress shopping.
There you have it! What a beautiful story! Nonhle and Arthur still spoke on a lot more details of their relationship. But, for more details on their interview, you’d have to pick up the new issue of Drum Magazine.
Photo Credit: Instagram | Drum.co.za | Vandrusville