Friday, October 13, 2017

Salt spray

With a water bottle, my notebook, pen, and my day pack hugging my back I took the southern line train to Kalk Bay late on Tuesday afternoon.

I read for most of the almost hour-long journey, a relaxing and favourite train ride of mine, despite the bad, sad state of our railways

Cappuccino and a slab of carrot cake over my notebook. This while sitting right up against Olympia Cafe's shopfront window. I was avoiding the icy chill of the cold front, which had dumped snow on the mountains in the country's interior.

To sporadically look up from my notebook and cake - with cappuccino foam on my upper lip or nostrils - at the colourful fishing boats in today's quite and docile harbour is another priceless joy.

Then, the only person in the shop other than the bespectacled manageress who peered over the top of her frame when I greeted her,  I wondered around Kalk Bay Books; they've normally got an array of unusual and difficult to find fiction and non-fiction carefully chosen and exhibited on the handful of tables on the shop floor.

On my last visit there were at least six titles I had scribbled on my list and would loved to have purchased. But I didn't have enough money with me for even one. This time, with money in my pocket, there wasn't a single edition of anything that caught my eager eye. That was a first for me.

Then, taking the coastal path between the ocean and the railway line, I walked the approximately four kilometres to Muizenburg: I needed the change of scenery, the tangy saltiness of the Indian Ocean in my nostrils and lungs, also to feel the adolescent summer sun on my skin. Also, the time to process things, me and my life, which walking briskly always seems to coax.

It was good to unwind and to consciously shrug off the anxiety that has been dogging my ankles like a persistent street dog for days now.

I was walking towards a carafe of red wine with old friends in a bohemian bistro/bar in quiet but for the skateboarders York Street: Oroboros. Friends of many years and much water under the bridge; another of life's priceless gifts.

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