Stockholm Syndrome

People in Cape Town look at you rather pityingly when you say that you’re from Joburg and that you’re going BACK like whyyyyyyyyy? I know this because we spent four days last week in Cape Town, staying at our friends’ fabulous apartment, getting the Lastborn settled in at UCT.

On the morning of our departure, we gave Poppy (the cat) a cortisone pill and some anti-anxiety meds as she started having a wobbly as soon as the suitcases came out. That done, we then headed off extra early to OR Tambo as we wanted to spend some quality time in my happy place, the Slow Lounge. Just as well we did as the traffic even at six in the morning was DREADFUL – but hopefully a good sign that business is picking up everywhere.

The Lounge did not disappoint, my coffee and choc croissant were delish, it was also filled to the brim with parents and first year offspring about to head off to the Cape for varsity along with some boykies who were off on golf tour and needed all of us to know about it.

As we were queuing to board our FlySafair flight a woman who was a dead ringer for Cruella de Vil said: ‘Would you mind?’ and then proceeded to push into the queue in front of us. The husband was so gobsmacked by her temerity that he just gazed open-mouthed and didn’t say, for example, ‘get to the back of the queue, biatch’. She then proceeded to chat on speakerphone LOUDLY to someone whereupon the Lastborn offered to push her down the stairs.

Stockholm Syndrome 1

On the plane, there was a gorg baby in front of us who kept high fiving the Husband and who was so good she slept the whole way which led to us reminiscing about the Lastborn travelling to Zimbabwe when she was one for her godfather’s 21st and screaming the whole way there and the whole way back. I’m pleased to say she is better behaved on flights now.

We were met at Cape Town International by three lovely reps of MLT Car Hire. There was no queuing, we just had to give the car the once over, sign some doccies and off we went. Completely hassle-free and our Ford Eco Sport was a great car. They also met us in the drop-off area on our way home.

Saturday morning, we were up bright and early to get the Lastborn to registration and listen to the VC’s address. We were told that 100k kids had applied to UCT and only 4000 were chosen so that we felt definitely hashtag blessed that the Lastborn got a place. The VC who was wearing THE MOST GORGEOUS skirt then shat upon all of us and told us to pay our fees and that this culture of non-payment needs to stop.

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During her address there was a student protest behind her, and very nearly a parents’ protest at the coffee stand when they told us they’d run out of milk for cappuccinos. You larf, let me tell you I did drama school in the 80s so I can toyi toyi like a professional and sing the alto line in several protest songs. Luckily, I didn’t have to because they told us we could go inside to get coffee and a very decent cup it was too, although it did take forty-five minutes. That’s the thing about Cape Town, it’s best not to be in a hurry and the Lastborn’s constant refrain to the husband was “calm down, Dad, we’re not in Joburg.”

The Lastborn was allocated a place in res, and we thought all was hunky dory until we came back to find that someone else had changed the locks and moved into her spot. I was gearing up to do a full-on, Joburg-Karen, I-want-to-speak-to-the-manager thang when the misunderstanding was sorted out, and we later found out that her roomie was none other than a classmate from school in Joburg.


Dinner on Saturday night was at Tiger’s Milk in Muizie’s, I had a delish burger and a decent glass of red and met a lovely waiter who said that if he wasn’t married he would’ve offered cows for the Lastborn. I said that he would need to offer a couple of Oom Cyril’s buffalos after the amount I spent at Mr. Price Home to kit out her new room.

On Sunday morning I finally got to meet the Manager of Go See Do Cape Town, Alison Coughlan in the flesh which was lovely. Another delish meal at Knead in Muizie’s. My smashed avo was totally yum and I have yet to have a disappointing cup of coffee here in Cape Town.

Yes, Cape Town wins hands down for lifestyle and beauty, there are just incredible views everywhere you go BUT like the victim of Stockholm Syndrome, I still love Joburg. Even though our suburb had no water for four days, we had a scheduled outage for Thursday which carried on until Sunday. Like I said, Stockholm Syndrome.

Stockholm Syndrome 2

In bookish news, Katie Gayle (which is of course writing duo Kate Sidley and Gail Schimmel) have a new book out that seems to be absolutely storming up the charts. It’s called A Village Fête Murder and it’s part of a cosy mystery series (Think Murder She Wrote but funny…very, very funny.)

We have also had our first meeting of the year for the Kingsmead Book Fair. It was as lively and hilarious as ever (Jennifer Platt had us all snorting our coffee) and I came away with a pile of books to peruse. We have a HUGE list of books this year, with very little fiction so I grabbed some of the fiction that caught my fancy and have been thoroughly enjoying The Invincible Miss Cust, an historical novel by Penny Haw which seems to be doing very well and garnering lovely reviews. It’s so well researched, beautifully evocative and quite charming. I highly recommend it.

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The Husband and I are now doing dry February after quite a boozy January and in preparation for the release of my sober curious memoir on March 7th. And no, I can’t tell you what it’s called, the title reveal will be on Monday.

Until then, happy reading! xxx