Overdosing in the time of Corona

Day 11 of South Africa’s lockdown and we have not reached the peak of this pandemic. People are speaking of halfway marks and planning post-lockdown activities but I suspect this is very premature.

Stats:  Officially, 1655 infections and 11 deaths, which proves my point that we are not peaking or even halfway there. These stats aren’t accurate at all but give a general idea.

Between my fears and concerns which are pretty much the same as everyone else, and my abnormal but usual high levels of anxiety, I am a wreck at the moment and have started taking a tranquiliser every morning instead of only when I feel stress coming on.

The title of this entry relates to yesterday’s kitchen activity. My son decided to bake a cake and make some bread known as ‘dinner rolls’, because we ran out of bread 2 days ago. We have no yeast so after searching all over the internet I settled on what appeared to be a simple recipe without yeast. I started helping him, i.e. supervising and annoying him, but that was clearly not a good idea so I went back to my laptop and Homeland.

He made a mistake with the sugar quantities in the cake icing and the result was a delicious but sickeningly sweet cake.  The rolls, which were made in a miniature muffin pan, had an error in the recipe so the salt was excessive.  They had the most wonderful texture and consistency and we’ve scoffed them all. And most of the cake.

Result? A bad night, a very very bad night. Now I know what it means to overdose on both sugar and salt in the same day. I have no one to blame but myself.

Tomorrow is grocery shopping. We hope to find some yeast but not holding our breath. Let the record show that we have lasted 2 weeks with the last grocery shop and there are 3 of us, and the freezer is very small and not empty yet. So I don’t understand people who feel the need to go out all the time. You can do without most of what you are buying between the big shopping trips. I bought milk and bread to freeze, we don’t eat meat every day, we don’t snack, and we plan meals according to what there is.


The mini rolls. Will definitely be repeated but with less salt.


This is what’s left of the cake. A simple sponge cake with a killer sweet never-to-be-repeated icing.


And in other news, this is what lockdown means for a normally vibrant city full of people who love the outdoors.

And last, my sweet little Vida who has been deprived of a walk for so long, trying to hide in my flowerbed.



About Francoise Armour

I run a small touring company (Tours du Cap) at the bottom of Africa, to show visitors the beauty and vibrant culture of the country I have lived in since my parents brought me here from France as a child. I enjoy taking photos and wish I had learnt to do it properly. I enjoy writing but don't do enough of it. I enjoy walking in the mountains that surround me and I marvel over the views and the flowers and the amazing rock formations. I have a small, cute, clever, black dog of indeterminable breed, named Vida, who reminds me regularly that walking and getting out is not only for when tourists want it.

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A note to all accidental visitors:

I am not a photographer and do not claim to have any particular skills whatsoever in that department. I have enormous respect for those who can see the potential in a scene and can create a great photo. Good photography is an art, in my opinion.

I am just a happy snapper, I have no special lenses or accessories, my camera is very simple and it's usually best to leave the setting on auto.

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