Monthly Archives: March 2013

Acacia Karroo aka the Sweet Thorn

Acacia Karroo aka Sweet Thorn
According to Biodiversity Explorer, the Acacia Karroo is one of the most prolific Acacias in southern Africa. It's a good source of fire wood, seeds are often used as a coffee substitute, and the produces edible gum.

Coffee substitute heh? I think I'll have to give this a try. Anybody know if Nespresso make the Acacia Karroo flavour? :P

Following the fan walk

Following the fan walk
In case the title of this pose is a little obscure - I took the photo on the bridge that crosses the busy Buitengracht street in Cape Town. This bridge was erected on the fan walk that leads from the Cape Town station and bus terminals to the Cape Town Stadium in Green Point.

The Pied Piper of Scotland

Scottish Highland gathering
While walking about in Wynberg Park I heard the faint, though unmistakable, sound of bagpipes in the distance. So, much like the children in that old tale, I started following the music. After ten or fifteen minutes reached a school field hosting the Western Cape Highland Gathering - a small festival hosted by the Cape Town Caledonian Society, where pipes were played, drums were beaten, and young girls danced to joyful tunes. It was pretty cool, and I'm always a sucker for bagpipes anyway. :)

A little more construction

A little more construction
I watched a few construction workers for a while, marveling at how they go about their jobs - high up overhead. For a moment I considered the process involved in taking an architect's plans and creating their physical manifestation. It must be a hugely complex process, and something that perhaps the guys doing the physical work should get a little bit more credit for. :)

Development and progress

Development and progress
It's easy to get annoyed with construction or roadworks. It's a noisy and/or disruptive affair that often seems to go on for decades, whereas the reality is that the inconvenience normally lasts for a few months only... well, until the noise and disruption move off to another equally-inconvenient site. :)

Lindt factory and shop

Lindt factory and shop
For the sake of your belt, butt, and general health, I suggest that you stay clear of the Cape Quarter in De Waterkant. Temptation in the form of this Lindt chocolate factory shop lies in wait. Fortunately for my tummy, the shop was closed at the time of this photo. :)

Hijacked photoshoot

Hijacked photoshoot
While on a photowalk I came across a photo crew and this model shooting a set. I naturally abused their public-domain status and shot a few pics of my own. I don't think she minded. :)

This one was taken while the real photographer (and he did have a bigger lens) was trying to direct the model to walk just right up a nearby set of stairs. I took a few more close-up photos after this first shot - she was quite beautiful, actually.

World Naked Bike Ride – 2013

World Naked Bike Ride - 2013
If you participated in the WNBR then I may have a photo or two of you. If you'd like these, then leave a comment or send an email to the address on my contact page.

Each year the World Naked Bike Ride organises an awareness protest against the high levels of carbon emissions in our cities. This weekend was, with Cape Town and the Argus Cycle Tour in fully swing, the perfect time to do so in Cape Town.

I won't bore you with what we all know about carbon monoxide and the excessive use of combustible fuel, but what I guess is worth mentioning is that if Cape Town were legislatively a more bike-friendly city (like say Paris, Amsterdam, or San Francisco is) then we'd probably have fewer cars on the road, less pollution in the air, fitter-leaner friends, and more money to spend of the fun things in life, rather than on petrol and vehicle maintenance!

The reality is though that even if a large proportion of the city's inhabitants became lean-mean-cycling-machines, the poorer folk who can't afford to fix their smelly-stinky vehicles will still drive smelly-stinky vehicles, the more affluent will still drive their large gas-guzzling 4x4s and muscle cars, and businesses trying to squeeze every penny out to survive still won't send trucks spewing black fumes to the mechanic or graveyard.

All of this said, still, if we were able to make Cape Town cyclist-friendly, and if we were able to separate where cars, buses, and trucks ride from where cyclists do, it would go a long way to reducing our carbon footprint and creating healthier, happier people.

Launching your kayak

Launching your kayak
It seemed to take ages for this guy to launch his kayak. The process was to line the kayak up perpendicular to the waves, quickly jump in, and then paddle as fast as possible to avoid being pushed back against the beach. The recipe however never worked out quite as well in practice.

The root cause of his troubles appeared to be his paddles getting caught up in seaweed and in so doing dragging the slimy green substance into the kayak, over his feet. That caused enough delay and distraction to allow time for the oncoming waves to push his kayak back against the shore, restarting the entire process of dismounting from the vessel, lining it up, hopping in and paddling like a frenzied cat in an icy pond of water.

I kinda wanted to cheer as on his fourth or fifth attempt he managed to break free and overcome the waves.

A sun on the horizon

A sun on the horizon
It wasn't as dark at Camps Bay as this photo may lead you to believe. The intensity of the sun simply caused my camera to correct it's shutter to snap shut in 0.000625 seconds - so not to white-out the entire photo. Now that's pretty quick, isn't it? I can't really even comprehend 0.000625 seconds!

Wrapping up beach season

Wrapping up beach season
We're fast approaching autumn, and cooler weather is on our doorstep.

If you made a resolution to spend more time at the beach this year, and if you've failed that resolution, then you have a few warm days left. Do what you need to do - make a plan - visit the beach - you're in Cape Town folks!

Industry and mines

Industry and mines
Mining and mine workers drive a huge proportion of our industry, and are responsible for much of the country's industrial successes.

Most of us who work, work hard. But, don't you think that miners (the guys who work and live far away from their families, and labour under the most arduous of conditions) should be given just a little more respect than we tend to give them? Perhaps they should be paid a little more than we think is fair. They're important people, and after all, we're not in the times of Sneferu and Khufu.

I'll step down from my soap box now. :)

Cape canal

Cape canal
Sadly, this little canal in Adderley street is somewhat polluted. The general scene looks pretty enough, but on close inspection you'd see bits of plastic and paper drifting in the water, lodged in the trees, and strewn on the walkways.

Why are people so messy? Sure, Cape Town's wind doesn't help with this type of pollution - it's all too easy for papers and plastics to get blown out of people hands, or from their bags. If you drop a piece of paper when the wind's at it's best, there's no hope of retrieving it. But, it's often also the case that people have no sense for the environment and don't think twice before dumping their litter.