Vervet ‘varmints’ vex my efforts against being fooled

August 14, 2014

Screen Shot 2014-08-16 at 2.00.52 PMAlong the road and in the bushes of the Eastern Cape, the black-faced vervet monkey seems to be at the ready to bound across and around vehicles and people on the lookout for cheap eats, i.e. people’s eats.  And I unwittingly provided some for the rascally varmints. Continue reading

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A lively Natl. Arts Festival but a distant yet fond memory

August 9, 2014

boxoffice4A month has past since the 40th National Arts Festival transformed Grahamstown from a nice college town into a throbbing center of dance, drama, wry stand-up comedy, food, music, poetry, debate, politics, and pageantry.
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Penguins on parade, on the beach, even on socks

July 25, 2014

sandypengs1You might think that a visit to Africa would warrant a plan to commune with elephants or giraffes or lions.   No.

A visit to South Africa, Cape Town and the Western Cape including the Cape of Good Hope demanded encounters with penguins.  So from the aquarium at the Victoria and Alfred Waterfront in Cape Town to the World of Birds outside Houts Bay to Robben Island and ultimately the creme de la creme of penguindom – Boulders Beach – I got a chance to get down with the African penguin. Continue reading

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Thinking about Robben Island on Nelson Mandela Day

July 18, 2014

Since this is the first Nelson Mandela Day since Madiba died, it might be worthwhile to reflect on the profound jolt I got when visiting Robben Island.  I have provided a picture of just a section of the wall you confront when stepping off the boat for your tour.   Continue reading

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Not your everyday encounter with flora and fauna

July 17, 2014

constantia2Grahamstown, South Africa apparently is situated at the crossroads of four biomes, or animal and plant groupings based on climate and geography.  

What that means is what you typically see around town in terms of bushes, birds, and animals does not quite match any other place around.  

As such, I am learning the pluses and minuses of such biodiversity. Continue reading

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Newspaper hawkers resurrected for 10 days

July 15, 2014

cueseller3The National Arts Festival served as the forum for marketing newspapers the old-fashioned way via an on-foot, on-the-street sales force.  That quaint “Extra! Extra! Read all about it!” from black-and-white 1940s movies was replaced by hawkers proclaiming, “Cue for you!” for 5Rand (approximately 50 cents).

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Bracing the tastebuds for Biltong and Boerewors

July 8, 2014

After two weeks in South Africa and one week in Grahamstown,  I had to bear down and really eat like a local.  Yes, I had African stew at Marco’s in Cape Town, Nando’s chicken in Sea Point  and Malay flavorings here and there.  But today,  my tastebuds and I came in contact with two true South African foods: Biltong and Boerewors. Continue reading

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