Wednesday, October 16, 2013

It's been a long day's month

It's been a long day; at the end of it I pulled myself out of and off my bed-desk and into the shower, then grabbed my gym bag and walked to my local Seattle Coffee at Cavendish. 

I'm there now, typing these words (as the grim faced platinum blonde older woman to my right pulls herself up and off her half of the plump leather couch).

I've not written for a long time, it's been at least about a month of aridness.

My eyes have deteriorated; typing these words on the screen of my new phone I'm (again) grimly aware of the fact. (I cant help but notice my own drought-ridden and grim imagery!) Last week I bought a mustard coloured, and funky,  pair of over-the-counter spectacles. They do make happy, and sharp-eyed.

I took the photo of the blue walled, red roofed house in Observatory on Sunday. It drew my attention right away, as I parked my car in the only shade tree on that stretch of Arnold road, before lunch with Mike and Nic. I knew it would be a striking photograph.

Lunch was very good; their relatively ancient and history-oozing home with its enormous sash windows framing the Cape's cobalt sky, Nic's culinary skills, also more than enough wit, wisdom and intelligence, all contributed to The Pot.

I'm very much changed since my last post, written on a cold and blustery wet Saturday old afternoon at Kirtsenbosch. I'm not sure what exactly, nor how, but I know I'm changed. For one I don't have many more secrets, not that I'm the most open book here I hastily add. Working on that I am.

I had my phone stolen out my hands about two or three weeks ago. While I was taking photos, in what I had judged to be a safe space. That shook me. A three-person team, including a woman and a panel van. I've struggled to photograph ever since; there was at least a two-week 100% drought before the shutter sounded in my ears again.

From the literature I've been reading - two volumes of collected writings about Cape Town, also two books about slavery, another two about Cape Flats gangs and prisons, including Jonny Steinberg's The Number - and my mugging, I've become aware of  another side of this city. A dark side, lurking. During the last month the annual crime stats for Cape Town were released: just over 2560 murders for the last measured year. Try and unpack that in your mind! If you can that is. I've not been successful.

There's no escaping, ever, the enormous chasm between the extreme povery and extreme wealth of people in this city. Whatever you own, or do, or eat or drink, or drive, or cycle here is somehow pitted against what others, many many others, don't have. Or even can come close to having. There's no escaping it. Shadows everwhere, inescapable. Except on an illusionary level for the brash and uncaring, whom are able to treat the enormously less privileged as vermin, as rats. That I'm incapable of doing, of even wanting to do.

I've also not been to gym in a month. Which is very much an integral part of my mental wellbeing, stability, and centeredness. But I'm going now.

At least the spring has arrived, even though it can get very chilly as the late afternoon blurs into evening. However the ferocious summer will hit in full force, not long after Christmas; there are only 10 weeks to Christmas.

I'm happy. Very. And I'm very well. My life has, again, completely and utterly altered.

Good night.

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