The End of the Beginning

I’ve been here for a whole school term now, so here’s some of my favourite things (just off the top of my head).

I love your STOP signs – they’re so cute. It’s so sensible and friendly, the way we wait for each other to go – whoever was there first goes first, then we take turns in order of who got there next. THANKS for not honking your horn at me when I get it wrong (I’m not used to taking note of who was there in what order yet, sorryyyyy …)

MEAT. Lots of meat, and it tastes like meat was always meant to taste.

I really like the fact that when we looked around fifty houses (yes, fifty – don’t ask…) lots of men had big MANLY garages with stacks of wood in, and neatly stored tools and we could see they’d been busy making all kinds of furniture and picture frames and doors and all sorts. Also there were lots of sewing rooms where clothes are made or mended, and I’ve seen all kinds of handmade brilliance everywhere I go. Please Bloemfontein, hold on to these skills and treasure the craftsmanship of your past as it’s really special. Take it from me – I come from a land where these things have been allowed to die away, except for those who are specialists.

My daughter gets hugs here, from teachers, friends, other mummies… so many hugs! Hurray for hugs.

I love that people are wandering around this city in all kinds of clothes (in ALL shapes and sizes!!) I’ve seen: flares; a man in a canary yellow suit with a perfectly spherical afro; a lady with a huge pink bra on in full view through a netted black top (interesting when you’ve bought 2 teenage boys along with you); a school mum in a wet-look leather pencil skirt with a side slit all the way up her thigh and killer heels (you GO girl, thanks for raising the standard); farmers fresh out of the field in their working clothes. I’ve seen lots of leggings, hats, big hair, big wooden beads, bow ties, braces, bare feet, and a LOT of bling. Yey for mixing it all up people!

Alcoholic milkshakes. No further explanation necessary.

Sport. Loads of sport – and not just for the sportiest and bestest, it’s for everyone.

And: Supporting sport. If you know someone playing then you are THERE giving it your war cries and shoutiest support. YES Bloem!

Trees everywhere… and how beautiful they are.…

I like staying in my car while someone fills it up with petrol. In England we had to get out and do it ourselves and I always, always hated it. Thank you for even cleaning my windscreen while I wait. What luxury.

I LOVE to think that if I ever get bored enough I can go and chat to someone in a shop because you guys are SO friendly and welcoming, thank you! (Or I could head up that hill of yours and see a giraffe. This hasn’t happened yet but it’s nice to know there’s giraffes there if I need them.)

Yes – from giraffes to killer heels to beef-that-tastes-like-happy-beef to woodwork to free hugs – there’s a lot to celebrate. Bye for now. “100%” as you would say!


One thought on “The End of the Beginning

  1. Norma Heaton on said:

    Good to hear from you again x x x



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