Friday, 28 December 2012

Christmas rituals

It starts with the tree, the art teacher would tell our small children- ' Now remember-  not too big, just a small little tree because we live in a small little house' - serious nodding and agreement all around as I drove them to choose it.

The delight and anticipation on their little faces, as we came home dragging the biggest tree possible-  his feigned horror at the size of tree..' well, we'll just have to cut a hole in the ceiling' - giggles and squeals of delight.

Xmas tree decorating night- carols are played, 'cocktails' drunk. Decorations remembered and reminisced, a collection of 23 years, some made by little hands, others bought, a few given- all treasured. 
The tree no longer hangs bottom heavy,  the kids now reach taller than me- dad places the fairy on the top, and we exclaim - 'It's our best tree yet' we do every year!

Xmas eve dinner, turkey, ham, lamb and tongue- too much? Never! 
A full table, at first fumbling little hands to help me lay it, name cards to decorate- now, near adult and expert at the job, advice is given- 'too much mom- less is more' as they take charge.

Thankfully, we still have a little xmas angel at the table to find the lucky money in the pudding-  again?!
 and when we hear Santa's sleigh bells approaching, followed by a thud on the roof  - it's now expertly executed by my kids for the delight of younger- actually ........for the delight of everyone.

Wednesday, 19 December 2012

Walking the vineyards

Finally, we can slow down and enjoy long evening walks in the vineyards again.

We saw the tender young vine shoots emerge from hard gnarly old stumps, the air was still cold then and no sign of spring yet.

When next we looked, the vineyards were vivid with fresh green and the promise of summer- now grapes hang in tight bouncy little bunches.

The labourers started their summer gardens, neat patches outside their cottages, onions sourced from Grabouw, mielies, beans, pumpkins, all watered every evening.

Watching their vegetables grow is just a little humiliating for the average gardener - we're still proudly nursing our tiny spinach and tomato plants, whilst their patches grow effortlessly with wild must be the soil?

Monday, 17 December 2012

Michaelis graduate show 2012

Michaelis prize winner Miranda Moss's mesmerizing installations from "Ephemerology'- experiments capturing ephemeral phenomena, like this clever whirlpool in a bottle.

 Trevor Potter's ' Animal Testing', two steampunk- like sculptures blew me away.

 Leigh Bassingthwaighte's Vantage Point -engaging, voyeuristic photographs looking into apartment windows, unfortunately no pictures to show you, as the photographs were displayed down the dark back staircase of Hiddingh Hall.

Some highlights below, including Emma Dee Padoa and Elinor Auerbach's work.

If  you missed opening night - and you really shouldn't- the exhibition is definitely worth viewing, open until 19th Dec 11 am - 4 pm.

drive by - drive home

Friday, 30 November 2012

Flamingovlei wedding

Vows were whispered and taken by the wind, 

a fly-by of flamingos hovered above,

the pig ate the confetti, the rooster impressed and the cat stood sentry.

A feast was laid, candles lit, fires warmed,

The sun set in a glory of colour, Table mountain a silent witness.

A wedding was celebrated, on the edge of the water, in a little nursery on  Flamingovlei

Monday, 26 November 2012

Amaryllis delight

I'm afraid we can't claim to have any hand in this splendour,

and if we did add something to the pot, we've long since forgotten.

We watched the long stalk race for height, four buds develop, then


in all its splendor -  to brighten our day

Dave's in town- and better than ever

It's no secret how much we love Lonesome Dave Ferguson's sound, he's home for some gigs- fresh from international fame and hopefully a bit of fortune.

It's been a cruel year, invites to gigs at London pubs with cool names like- Filthy Macnasty's.

He's been home for November and we finally caught up with him at his old Friday haunt- the Granddaddy Hotel Rooftop Trailerpark-  it all seems to come together perfectly there, surrounded by the silver airstreams with the sun setting on Cape Town.

What we didn't expect was the new improved Lonesome Dave.... impossible you say and we thought, but here is a stronger, more confident, chatty, kick-ass Dave with some great new songs- what a treat!

I read that Counting Crows, offered him cash bucks to extend his set-  see what I mean?

Catch him while you still can,  he's playing at  The Table Mountain Blues Summit just after our legendary buddy Piet Botha and the Lyzyrd Kyngs and rumour has it he's playing new year's eve at the very fabulous Barrydale Hotel.

drive by- drive home

Wednesday, 21 November 2012

Dinner in the crypt of St Georges

If you know the right people you can have dinner in the crypt of St Georges Cathedral... it was our friends birthday and she takes 'friends in high places' to an entirely higher level.

A long table was set, bubbly in the wine cooler, delicious aromatic cape malay curry and breyani, bowls of homemade spicy chutney and sambals.

The curry was the kind when you taste it, you instinctively know it's perfection comes from the many years of cooking it.

Yes,  I did try my luck....but sadly it's his mother's secret recipe -not even imparted to him.

We did however, convince the charming young man to open the darkened cathedral for a little bit of a midnight wander.

I don't need to tell you how impressive it is, it's all there to marvel, but the small details remained with me, the exquisite memorial plaques and the stories they tell, the old flags waiting disintegration and the beautiful prayer posted on the wall for the flower arrangers.

The Crypt is also a witness and memory centre with an inspiring photographic exhibition 'Glimpsing Hope March for Peace'.

I'd recommend lunch in The Crypt-  just get there before the politicians, both parties are known to lunch there and things are a little tense lately-  then take a leisurely stroll through the company gardens next door.

Monday, 19 November 2012

Catching my breath

Taking a moment to admire the petals as they fall with such grace

to tread in the last of the puddles - they'll be dry for awhile

to remember the whirlwind visit - wishing there was more time 

for sisters to reconnect, for scenic drives

 and long delicious meals

to play a few games and to celebrate

but mostly, to just lie on the lawn and enjoy the last hours of a family reunited

Monday, 1 October 2012

Scenic route to Town

Leaving our daughter in Noordhoek, we took the scenic route to an exhibition in Town- Chapman's Peak drive,  narrow, winding roads clinging to the mountainside. Sometimes sturdy stone ledges, built in another lifetime to protect us from sheer cliffs and the turbulent sea.

Sneaking peeks downward, I imagine there must be secret coves, known only by the sea.

We were on our way to the very lovely A's first group exhibition at CTSP, where she has been honing her photographic skills.

An excited buzz everywhere, so many full time and part time students with their friends eager to see their work, a band playing in a corner by the bar, brave bartenders withstand the onslaught.

Large expensive new cameras around every neck...... I thought it wise to take the art teacher home.

drive by- drive home

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