Cape Town’s Waterfront on a sunny winter’s morning

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The Waterfront in Cape Town is a working and truly walkable harbour.

 

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Tugs in a row.

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The ferry to the once infamous, now famous island.

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Another more powerful tug.

 

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A relatively recent addition to the entertaining elements with Table Mountain as a backdrop.

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Heroes of the struggle, crowded out.

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Nobel Square – the bronze statues of the four South African Nobel Peace Price recipients (from left to right): Albert Luthuli, Desmond Tutu, F.W. de Klerk and Nelson Mandela.

Albert Luthuli (1898-1967) President-General of the African National Congress (ANC) from 1952-1967. He was awarded the 1960 Nobel Peace Price “for his fight against racial discrimination”. Luthuli House – the ANC headquarters in Johannesburg – is named after him. – Archbishop emeritus Desmond Tutu (born in 1931) received the Nobel Peace Price in 1984 for his “role as a unifying leader figure in the campaign to resolve the problem of apartheid in South Africa”.  – F.W. de Klerk and Nelson Mandela  both received the Nobel Peace Price jointly in 1993 “for their work for the peaceful termination of the apartheid regime, and for laying the foundations for a new democratic South Africa”.

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Tutu – a representation of His Grace Anglican Archbishop emeritus of Cape Town Desmond Tutu. A man without fear and with numerous honours bestowed on him, he too has raised his compelling voice against corruption and licentious spending of public funds by government officials.

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In the Watershed – a new home for African craft, art and design. – Spinning and knitting. The winters are cold enough in South Africa to make woollen garments highly desirable. South African wool and Mohair is of a supreme quality and now Alpacas have been introduced and are flourishing, almost as sumptuous as cashmere.

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These so-called “Colonials”, originally from West and Central Africa are very much in demand.

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Satirizing colonial officials or expression of new class consciousness? There is always a kind of humourous ironical smugness present in these figurines.

 

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Ardmore ceramics in KwaZulu Natal have opened a whole new world of elaborate and decorative ceramic crafts popping up everywhere.

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Elaborate jewellery is traditional and creates real treasures using, over and above glass beads, fibres of all kinds and wire work, creating rich embellishments.

 

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A jolly little steam train …

 

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… doing tours all all around the Waterfront.

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Music, formal and informal, ethno bongo, Jazz and vocal …

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… buskers and concerts, it’s all here.

 

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Jazz and Cape Town are synonymous – the talent overflows.

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“Tavern of the Seas”, Cape of Storms, now a place of real Good Hope, this waterfront development has elevated Cape Town from being a large town to a cosmopolitan city on a manageable scale.

With best greetings as always from
Colleen & Walter

Stellenbosch, Sunday 12 June 2016

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A Sunday afternoon stroll in Hout Bay Harbour

A visit to Hout Bay harbour is always a worthwhile diversion, especially on a Sunday afternoon. Watching people walking leisurely along the harbour mole gives one a feeling of being at peace with the world.

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Black and white – in unison.

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A myriad of ways – seemingly at rest.

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Red yellow green at the end of the harbour mole.

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Freshly painted for the new season.

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Tightly packed during a weekend’s reprieve.

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The stroll home.

A day in the sun, among like-minded people.
Letting the day slow down to a quieter pace.
Let us be here for now,
outside time for a while.

Stellenbosch, 25 November 2015

With love as always from
Colleen & Walter

 

 

 

 

Namibia Impressions IV – Swakopmund – Capricorn – Windhoek and back home

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On the road again into the blue distance.

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Making the best of the last bit of shade in the early afternoon.

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At Solitaire.

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Capricorn rest camp – far from the madding crowd.

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You have not been to Namibia, if you didn’t loose at least one tyre on the trip.

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Kuiseb river.

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Walvisbay. The ocean liner “The World” docking in the background.

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Lunchtime with Stefanie Eins in her Swakopmund studio.

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Artist colleagues and friends Stefanie and Colleen.

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The contrasts of desert and sea, dunescapes, the strength and quality of light, sharp and fading lines, illuminations and illusions of near and far between earth and sky play into Stefanie Eins’ work.

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The icy cold Atlantic at Swakopmund jetty.

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A very jolly encounter at The Tug restaurant with cousins Brett and Leon.

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The jetty at night from Brett’s restaurant.

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Moonscape east of Swakopmund.

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Motoring home south from Windhoek to Grünau.

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Kokerboom forest near Keetmanshoop.

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Stop-over in Grünau for the night before our last stretch home to Stellenbosch.

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Departure at dawn.

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Much hoped for rain at last.

With love as always from
Colleen & Walter
Stelllenbosch, 26 April 2015

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Namibia Impressions – II – Lüderitz – ǃNamiǂNûs*

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Crossing the Namib desert on the way to Lüderitz.

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The Diaz memorial cross overlooking the bay.

The town of Lüderitz, named after the German merchant Adolf Lüderitz (1834-1886) who bought stretches of desert along the Atlantic between Angola and South Africa from various Nama captains, is a unique town. It still bears some trademarks of Germany’s ill-fated colonial ambitions. Without any hinterland to support it, it would eventually have been covered by the shifting sands of the Namib desert and be forgotten. However, the town is coming to life again. The old railway line has been restored and a new motorway constructed. There is still no hinterland as yet, but a boom is in sight. The prospecting for oil has begun. And with it the desert will come alive with all the elements of trade and industry. Lüderitz is a unique and attractive town in the desert and on the ocean. The desert experience is what we will see as some of the major tourist attractions.

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The new railway line with new station buildings integrated into the new waterfront complex  – major developments are taking place and will turn this town around in astonishing ways. The signs are all there.

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A new road connecting the desert town to the interior.

We found the remnants of the town’s colonial past worth exploring and visited the beautifully restored Goerke house, commissioned in 1910 by Hans Goerke, then manager of the Emiliental Diamond Corporation, today used as guest house by the Namibia Diamond Corporation that also funded its restoration.

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Whoever enters well disposed, shall fondly here be well proposed.

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We are imaging the Goerkes in this room.

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Luise and Hans Goerke

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Such fabulous, lordly living lasted for two years only, when Luise urged her husband to go back to Berlin.

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A view from the winter garden.

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To keep body and mind in good shape.

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View of the town from the church hill.

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The waterfront with direct access to the railway station.

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Waterfront.

This is part 2 of our Namibia impressions.

Stellenbosch, 21st April 2015
With love from
Walter & Colleen

*ǃNamiǂNûs – the name of the Lüderitz constituency in Nama, the original inhabitants of the region. ǃ and ǂ are indicators of click sounds which make the Nama language so melodious.

A piece of ocean magic near Hout Bay, Cape of Good Hope

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For hundreds of years the forests of Hout Bay had supplied the East India trade with timber for the repair of their ships. Today a large fleet of fishing vessels serves the local community.

Travelling from Hout Bay, on your daily run to schools, past Llandudno towards Camps Bay, you are rewarded with magnificent views of sea and mountain. Other treasures are hidden from sight. With a bit of exploring you will discover a little piece of ocean magic.

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The boulders – did they once tumble down from the mountain side and came to rest here or has constant wave action left them bare? In the background: Lion’s head from where Capetonians launch their paragliders.

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A secret hide-away once for people on the fringe.

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As if they were resting for a while, yet full of life, waiting.

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Cecilia who shies away from being photographed, with baby Lelethu tucked in on her back.

Our housekeeper, Cecilia with baby Lelethu, another treasure – making our week in Hout Bay, looking after grandchildren, an easy and a joyful task.

With love as always
Colleen & Walter
Hout Bay, Cape of Good Hope,
Wednesday, 12 November 2014

Autumn colours land and sea

 

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Ida’s Valley, Stellenbosch.

 

Autumn is a very special time for people living in temperate latitudes. It is the time for gathering, reminiscences and awareness of change in light, in colour, mood and being. Autumn says: you have lived and these are the fruits of you labour, your ambitions, your dreams. And what you see and have must carry you through bitterness and cold, through storm and rain lashed days. Winter will test your strength, your will to stay the distance of life itself, your endurance and, ultimately, your faith and your belief in what you think you do is true.

 

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In autumn time stands still for a while. The medium of light and air and warmth – all is just right for nature and you within her to stand still for a while. There are such times in other seasons – the stillness of a summer’s day out in the fields, the stillness of a landscape blanketed with snow – but autumn is special. Spring time is joy and foolishness of heart, the time to rise and walk, of conquering the world. Autumn says: halt for a while and stay and meditate with me before you go. And throws you all its happiness and deeper warmth of thousand hearts and souls in all its colours before it lets you go and be again for now.

 

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False Bay between Rooiels and Gordon’s Bay.

 

With love as before.
Colleen & Walter
Stellenbosch, May 25, 2014

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Heritage Day – a walk up Lion’s Head

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Sketch of Zulu warrior by Sir Robert Baden-Powell, 1913

Tuesday was “Heritage Day” – so called to remind us of our cultural diversity and with that to remind us of our unity as a nation. People with Zulu ancestry are celebrating the remembrance of Shaka Zulu (c.1787-1828), once king of the Zulu nation. Others are proposing this day to be called “Braai Day” the South African term for “Barbeque”. What does the rest of the country do? It’s a holiday, all right, and most Capetonians are taking to the hills. And so we did – a walk up Lion’s Head, a landscape feature from a certain angle intimating a recumbent lion with head held up high. Devil’s Peak on the East and Lion’s Head to the West, form the shoulders of Table Mountain.

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View of Camp’s Bay and the Twelve Apostles from Lion’s Head, the Western coast of the Cape Peninsula.

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Gaby insisted on this walk and off we went.

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View of Robben Island with Seapoint in the foreground.

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Signal Hill on the left, Cape Town harbour and City centre in the middle.

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Devil’s Peak and Table Mountain from the slopes of Lion’s Head.

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Resting here …

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…  seeing the trail so crowded, we resisted the final assault. 

“Shaka Zulu Day”, “Heritage Day” or “Braai Day” – they all address South Africa as a conglomerate nation. Zulus, Xhosas and Sothos the main tribal contributors to the mix, Khoihkoi and San salting the earth, the coloured people as the element of bonding, the Afrikaner people, themselves a conglomerate, as the main driving force, the British as administrators, Asians, Jews, Germans, Portuguese, Greek and many others as artisans, traders, cultivators – a vibrant net of cultures, attitudes, prides, languages and feelings of wanting to be heard, seen, to belong and be part of the whole. All these were represented on our walk up Lion’s Head on Heritage Day.

With love from
Colleen & Walter
Hout Bay, Friday 27 September 2013