August, double prison breakout

August, 5th month of lockdown, and restrictions were once more lifted slightly. The biggest treat was being able to travel outside of ones metro area. What joy! But before that my first break-out was my first trip to a supermarket since March. I chose a store that specialises in fruit and vegetables with many bargains involving buying large quantities. My shopping companion behaved like a prison warden, constantly warning me to move away from people, to stop chatting (I thought I recognised someone but it wasn’t him, blame the mask) and to calm down when my mask caused my specs to mist up resulting in explosive anxiety.

We finally emerged with more vegetables than I have ever bought at one time, including an unnatural quantity of carrots. It seemed obvious to make carrot cake. My cake turned out delicious but I learned two things: it doesn’t require an awful lot of carrots so not really ideal if the goal is to use up many bunches bought on special, and it also requires several somewhat expensive ingredients like nuyts and cream cheese. All of that no longer mattered when one of the dogs jumped on the table and ate the cake that had been barely touched by humans.

The other massive major breakout was .. wait for it .. my first trip out of town. I had complied with the restrictions because I understood why they existed so, until we were given the go-ahead, I hadn’t left town (I don’t know how some of my friends are still alive after ignoring rules because their inconvenience is more important than national safety). Anyway, where to go? My budget was very low but I wanted to be at the coast – because we’d been forbidden from walking on the beach for several months, can you believe that?

Lucky me, I have a friend, Veronica, who lives with her sister in the tiny village of Britania Bay, two hours from Cape Town and has what we call a self-catering unit that she rents out, below the main house. It’s literally on the beach .. you step out the front door, take three steps and you’re on sand. Perfect.

I spent three nights there, I wish it had been more. Morning and afternoon beach walks, sunsets to die for, a trip to the nearby lagoon at the West Coast National Park famous for its flowers at that time of year, dirt roads, open roads, new faces and no cooking! One day Veronica gave me a guided tour of the nearby villages and bays and we even had fish and chips at a restaurant – our first post-lockdown restaurant meal, with a beer, too, seeing as prohibition was partly lifted. Small pleasures.

If you ever want a simple, beautiful and very inexpensive getaway do yourselves a favour, book this. Rustic but comfortable and very well-equipped.

The joys of a supermarket full of fresh vegetables and the most delicious carrot cake – most of which was stolen by a very bad dog. At least I managed to have one slice.

On the way home I popped in briefly to see the Tinie Versveld Private Reserve near Darling. This piece of land has been beautifully preserved with rare and previous Renosterveld. The yellow canola in the distance is very photogenic but mono-cultures like that have destroyed more than 90% of the Western Cape’s very special Renosterveld so this reserve is especially precious.

Almost home again, Table Mountain with Lion’s Head to the right.

Ending off with the link to my crowdfunding campaign in an attempt to save my tourism business. I thank you in advance for any assistance you can give.

Dislaimer: the advertising on this blog is random and chosen by WordPress, nothing to do with me and I derive no income from it.

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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