Welcome to Cape Town

camp's bay, cape town

We arrived after 24 hours of travel from Sydney but not too shattered. I even managed to get 6 hours of precious sleep at the beginning of the second leg.

On arrival, Max, the cameraman, had a ‘fixer’, Liza, a 60yo ex-film maker based in CT who uses her local knowledge to ‘make things happen’, help us sort out phones / prepay/ dongle for computer (modern life – can’t not have connection) and then a car, which has been surprisingly useful!

In the drive into town Sam was fascinated with the different font of the road signs and the fact the motorway had a 120kph zone. Table Mountain towers over the city in a way you don’t really appreciate watching the cricket. It is a beautiful and charming city.

Our backpackers is friendly and clean. A warren of hallways and arches, relaxed feel and glimpses of Table Mountain appearing through doorways and windows.  I spent the afternoon sorting out pack and room. (The shampoo bottle lost its top in the travel and shampoo went through the entire pack! After a few hours of cleaning up I have a lovely smelling back pack.) The Fixer (I love that term) took us for a walk along the main drag Long Street: think King Street, Newtown with even more rastas, verandah bars and dodgy scrawny Jo’Burg street dwellers lurking on corners, countered by self appointed ‘security’ in fluoro jackets who survive by the tips from those they protect from the street dwellers. A fascinating and delicately balanced ecosystem.

In the afternoon we went over to Camp’s Bay, a beautiful beach towered by cliffs and mountains covered in mist, to see the sun set over the South Atlantic. Sam seems to be enjoying himself and the frequency that he tries to negotiate an early return is steadily reducing. Max met up with some local friends and we went to dinner at a pizza restaurant so Sam was happy with that. The food is fantastic and about half the price of Sydney.

Today is cable car to Table Mountain (wind permitting) and then over to beaches east of Cape Town featured in Searching for Sugar Man. Max is keen to film that. Sam is going to start his brain training today with boxing and chess.

He seems to be warming to Africa. Already the frequency of exposure to new challenges has markedly accelerated. This morning for breakfast he had a dark orange cheese, muesli-brot and croissants.