Gardens and Golfs

We’ve been doing a lot of driving around in Cape Town and a couple of things are very noticeable. First, pedestrians are in no hurry. Ever. People stroll across the road at their own, often leisurely, pace and drivers simply need to avoid them. It encouraged me to do a little research into whether this had any noticeable impact on statistics. It turns out that 57% of all fatalities in Cape Town road traffic accidents are pedestrians. This is something to be wary of if you decide to drive around the city.

The second thing we noticed was the VW Golf. Specifically, the Mark 1 Golf which was superseded in Europe by the Mark 2 in 1984. Not so here in South Africa where Volkswagen decided to continue to produce the Mark 1, branded the Golf Citi, up until 2009.

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It must have been hugely popular judging by the number still on the road here. The reason we have a soft spot for this model is that our first car was a Golf Mk1 convertible, which we only had for a couple of years before trading it in for a more sensible Jetta on the day our older son was born.

We decided to start our Saturday with a bit of grocery shopping. Our jet-set lifestyle knows no boundaries. We bought food for two breakfasts and two dinners for the princely sum of £8. With that task completed, we drove up to the cable car station on Table Mountain but were deterred by the queues. As an alternative, we decided to drive up Signal Hill from which we had splendid views of Table Mountain and of Cape Town laid out below us.

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There was also an enterprising group of young men offering tandem paragliding jumps and no shortage of people willing to rely on their skills and throw themselves off the hill. Neither Ishbel nor I took them up on their offer.

Later in the day, we headed out to Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens  which is a lovely place for a relaxed wander around and is clearly well utilised by locals as well as tourists.

Returning to our apartment, we encountered an interesting conundrum. The flat is in a one way street and the entrance was closed off because filming was taking place in the cross street. We decided to go around to the top end of the street to see if we could reverse down to our parking garage. Luckily, the top end of the street was manned and we were allowed to drive down the wrong way since we were residents. It appears that they are filming a marathon scene, but we have no idea of what the context is.

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