Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Cape Town Capers

Groups of performers were everywhere.
There was so much to do in the Cape Town area and especially at the V & A Waterfront. Dining out is always a highlight after a passage. The Galley Slave needs a break! Plus I like to sample the local cuisine and try the flavorings. I have been buying spices in each country so I can try to cook some interesting meals when we are back on land. As we have learned, meat is big in South Africa and they have some wonderful seasonings.

Many were solo performers. Very talented people.
Since we were in Cape Town for all of December into early January, we took our time exploring different parts of the region. Of course, the modern Waterfront is the most popular area in town with its shopping malls and restaurants. There was an outdoor amphitheater where non-stop entertainment took place. There were musical groups playing and singing on many corners – all with their donation baskets on the ground. And many had CDs to sell.

The Water Shed is a building in that area that hosts small boutique shops, many of which sell locally made artworks, home décor, clothing and accessories. There were many things to buy, but the lack of storage space kept this Shopperette under control. I did pick up some locally made beaded jewelry.

The Waterfront Mall was huge!
There were a couple of shopping areas at the Waterfront: The Water Shed, The Victoria and Alfred Mall and the Waterfront Mall. Great provision at Woolworths and Pick and Pay. We pushed the carts filled to the brim through the town and across the bridge to the marina! I found several dresses and some jewelry to bring back with me. I even found a place to get a halfway decent hair cut! Hopefully, Felicia won't have too much trouble reshaping this one.

Fun and creative things here. How about
this one for my dress for Nick's wedding?
Dennis and I spent a lovely day in the central city area where we browsed the native stalls at Green Market Square. During a great lunch on the sidewalk of a café, we watched many dancers and street performers show off their talent and collect what they could from the audience. There must have been a rule of some type that kept the groups moving in order as they seemed to have a set amount of time they could occupy the space before the next group arrived.

A lovely Christmas tree, but no snow!
We bought some art, jewelry and other items as we like to leave a little currency with the locals rather than buying in the stores. And the locals want you to bargain with them so Dennis had a little fun with it. I hate to bicker over the price so I leave it up to him. And usually the price is fair to me before the bargaining begins.

I was looking for African beads so I can make some one-of-a-kind pieces of jewelry when I get home. One bead store had so many beads it was almost nauseating just trying to find what I wanted. But, of course, I did! I found some real treasures. I could have bought a lot more, but … Actually, I found the best authentic African bead shop in The Water Shed. These will make very special pieces!

In the city center, we found many areas where locals had stalls and were selling paintings, clothing, jewelry and stuff! Each one claimed that he or she was the artist or that a family member was. However, we noticed the same identical stuff in 30 other stalls. Hummm!

Recycled telephone wire baskets!

The city area also was filled with entertainers looking for a donation. We saw dance troupes of small children to old men playing an instrument. Everyone was looking for a way to make a dime. While entertaining, it was a bit sad.

This WARC fleet is wonderful at creating our own group events. We have Brits, Aussies, Americans, Norwegians, Swedes, Finns, South Africans, Canadians, Scot and Irish in the fleet so we have a great mix of ideas, traditions, foods, music, etc. Priceless!

We went to concerts in the Kirstenbosch National Botanical Gardens, had a dinner in the nearby "township" with traditional homemade food, including Maldapoeding (Marshmellow Pudding which does not contain marshmallows!).

The woman who owned the restaurant shared her story of how it started and how they turned their house into the restaurant. Very inspirational and very good food. We were greeted with music from traditional instruments and after dinner we were invited to play the instruments and dance. Of course, dance! This is the most dancing group I have ever met. They even dance on the docks while singing! What fun!

Martin on Caduceus brought out the pipes
to welcome in the new year. Thanks, M.
Happy New Year 2017

Of course, the highlight of our group activities was the New Year's Eve Party on the dock. It started early and went late - very late, so I am told.

It began when Martin, the Scot on Caduceus, came marching down the pontoon in full kilt attire playing the bagpipes. The crowds of people on the apartment balconies along the marina enjoyed the festivities from afar. I think we were their entertainment for the daylight hours of NYE.

Everyone brought food and drink, hugs and kisses and a good time was had by all. It was amazing how everyone scurried around to create makeshift tables and decorated the area. Of course, the food had a very continental flare as everyone brought something. I found it interesting that when I said we would bring a large spread of cheese and crackers, the Brits thought of it as dessert. They were surprised to see that it all disappeared as appetizers just as I had planned! Continental differences. Salad before or after your main course???

We started around 1800 hr and I have no idea when it ended. We surrendered at 1 AM on January 1, 2017. John, Ann and Johnnie Walton joined us as John was there to crew with Trillium on the next leg.

Ann, Johnnie and John Walton from Grosse Pointe!
We met this fine sailor a number of years ago in church!
The party started on the dock, then people wandered over to the Waterfront to check out all of the entertainment as it is a family event there. Just before midnight we all seemed to convene again on the dock. At stroke of midnight, there was a fabulous fireworks display over the harbor. The next day was pretty quiet on all of the boats. People started surfacing mid-afternoon!

Happy New Year: Ringing in 2017

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