Posts Tagged ‘around town’

Rear View

A few random things spotted on cars around town (the “ZN” indicates our province):

  1. “If you ain’t first, you’re last!” – Ricky Bobby
  2. I didn’t see the driver, but she better be smokin’ hot!
  3. Definitely the first UVA sticker I’ve ever seen in Africa.


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Madame Zingara

What better activity after a 2-week holiday than to strap on a wig and head out for an evening of food, drink, and circus acts?! We defied jetlag and logic to do just that on Wednesday night, taking in the Madame Zingara Theatre of Dreams with some of our peeps.

The show is part Cirque de Soleil / part dinner theater / part drag show, and was a fabulous way to welcome ourselves back to town. The acts were absolutely top-notch, and all of them (including acrobats, aerialists, dancers, and even a roller-skating act) do their thing on a tiny (2 meter diameter?) stage in the center of the tent.

The waitstaff all dress in crazy costumes (the best that night being the 6.5 foot dude in a French maid’s outfit, stiletto heels, and cotton-candy pink beehive wig), and the crowd is encouraged to do the same — so I opted to get a few more miles out of my July fascinator.

Wiggin' out with Steph and Tash


The Mongolian contortionists, who seemingly had no bones!

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Princess Sighting

No big deal – just ran into newly crowned Princess Charlene while out for a walk with Roxy.

Yeah, yeah - not my best photography work. Too flustered to get my phone out of my pocket!

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Sunday afternoon: in the park with a bottle of bubbles to watch Goldfish. (The band, not the fish.) Sunday!!

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One of the best things about having visitors is that it often leads you to corners of your own city that you never even knew existed. So it was that Gael and I (along with our tour guide / Zulu translator, Terry) set off to explore the Victoria and Warwick markets on a Thursday afternoon.

Victoria Market is housed in a 1980s building, but dates back at least a century. It’s often short-handed as the “Indian market”, since it’s full of spice sellers, fabric and clothing shops, but also offers lots of African wares (many of which I hadn’t encountered before!) It’s a stunning place to poke around and take in the sights and smells.

Just across the street is the Warwick Junction Market, which is an informal market cobbled together out of scrap wood and sheet metal, all housed underneath a concrete ceiling formed by a series of highway overpasses. The sellers there hawk everything from balls of terracotta clay (“some for wearing, some for eating”) to traditional medicines made from all manner of organic – and often unidentifiable – ingredients.

It was all a fascinating peek into a side of Durban I’ve never had a look at. Our favorite part was watching Terry chat up the sellers in Zulu, which was always accompanied by just enough sign language that we could make up our own version of the conversation. The best? Terry questioning a seller of recycled plastic bottle contraptions that we all thought were some sort of ersatz shower, but which turned out to be enemas.

[Actual date: April 14]

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Arch Nemesis

We’ve always wanted to climb the stadium arch (which is a real, legal activity), so added that to the to-do list for Gael’s visit. Having been thwarted in a previous attempt over the Christmas holidays due to high winds, we were sure that the clear, calm day we picked this time would be a winner. But, in typical fashion, the stadium authorities had decided that they would only open the climb for weekends.

Determined to get up there, we reluctantly agreed to ride along with the lazy masses in the sky-car. The rewards were awesome views of the city, and a free hair-straightening courtesy of the whipping winds!

[Actual date: April 11]

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Mambo Italiano

Kickin’ it at the Peroni Street Festival on swanky Florida Road.

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