One of the many things to like about Betty’s Bay is my mother’s garden. She’s understandably happy about this young King Protea (cynaroides).
Then there’s the rest of the fynbos, the soft light, the fresh salty air, wood fires to warm us at night, soccer on the flat screen, views like this one (taken from the loft) …
Just posting this picture reminds me of a story. A couple build their dream house at the coast and then invite their neighbours to come and admire the view. “Isn’t that just the most stunning view?” they ask proudly.
“Yes certainly,” says the neighbour. “It’s gorgeous. I know it very well. In fact, it used to be mine.”
I must tell you briefly about our encounter with a family of baboons in the nature reserve this past weekend. It was sobering and calming and disturbing at the same time. L and I had been to see the waterfall at Disa Kloof and we were walking back at dusk with hardly anyone around. Just as we crossed the concrete bridge a family of baboons came towards us, effectively blocking the path. Not wanting to provoke them, we backed up over the bridge to let them past. Which they did, the mother carrying a baby on her back and showing good coordination to swing over the bridge into a tree to get out of our way. The male baboon had a cut on his bum and looked a bit worse for the wear. I was worried that he might take us on and felt a bit pathetic raising my thin Wynberg Girls High umbrella (called the toothpick) as a warning to him. He swung into the trees after the mom and the other kids and that left the youngster (maybe a teenager, quite mangy) sitting there, calm as you like on the bridge, looking at us with a mix of what seemed like curiosity, amusement, affection or hunger perhaps. I felt a bit mean with my toothpick raised like a short-stabbing assegaai in case of trouble. It made me wish to have a more peaceful relationship with baboons and I felt sad that baboons and humans generally have quite a difficult relationship in Cape Town. We chase them away from our houses where they try to scavenge what they can. People shout at them and chase them with sticks and then act quite suprised if they show aggression in return. Just outside Simonstown they can be a real pest, climbing into cars and stealing bags from unsuspecting women. The lure of easy food has become ingrained now for them and it’s hardly possible to imagine that they’ll just return to the mountains and live off the land anymore.
I’ll be back next week with a book review for a change. Not sure what it is yet, either a memoir by a former psychology lecturer of mine or the rest of Positivity by Barbara Fredrickson.
As for the World Cup, my prediction for the final is Brazil to meet Spain on July 11th. Should be tense (and fun).