Tag Archives: Cape Town

Christmas Light Letdown

Zoomed christmas lightsWhen we lived in Gauteng we used to go into Johannesburg to see the Christmas lights every year.  It was great to drive slowly along the streets, looking at the lights as they passed overhead.

Since moving to Strand nine years ago we had never been into Cape Town to see the Christmas lights there, so yesterday we extended an outing around the peninsula into the night so that we could see them.

We were very disappointed to find that only a few blocks up Adderley Street, the road was closed off and beyond was the same melee of crowds and stalls selling every kind of plastic junk.  Just like Main Road in Somerset West during the Christmas Season.  We only went there once as we’re no fans of the noisy atmosphere at such events.

How sad that the lights in Adderley Street can’t be enjoyed as could those in Johannesburg.

It seems that others had a better experience than we did; different expectations I suppose.

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Kalk Bay Harbour Light

Kalk Bay Harbour Light

Ever changing

When we moved from Gauteng to the Western Cape at the end of 1999, we chose to live in Strand; mainly for the small-town atmosphere and the lovely beach front.

The small-town atmosphere is still largely there, despite the huge amount of development going on in the area around Somerset Mall.  The beach front though, has changed dramatically; for the worse, most locals would feel.  Gone are the small hotels and holiday apartment blocks that accommodated scores of holiday makers in the December summer holidays; they have mostly made way for flashy new high-rise residential apartment blocks, with more being built all the time.  There are still a few houses and small blocks, but as the signs in this photo show; their days are numbered.

The new blocks going up are expensive, with apartments being advertised with come-ons like “From only R2,500,000”.  Perhaps I’m naive but I fail to see how the word only can be used with a figure like that.  I wonder who the residents of these new blocks are and how they feel about the state of the area their shiny towers are in?  Beach Road and the beach front facilities, once the big tourist draw cards, are in disrepair.  The historic jetty has been unusable for years but rather than being repaired or simply demolished, it has been fenced of in the most unsightly manner possible.

Big Stick

USS Theodore Roosevelt

The 332 meter USS Theodore Roosevelt, known as “Big Stick”, anchored off Cape Town yesterday and of course I had to have a look and try and get a photo. I chose Signal Hill as my vantage point and this was the best I could manage with the hazy day and my consumer grade zoom lens. I would have dearly loved a less hazy day and a 600mm lens for this occasion.

Steps in an Alley

Steps in an Alley

Ninety-One

Ninety-One

Steps in Purple

Steps in Purple

Another shot from the photo walk.

This one was converted to black and white, then toned using a purple shade for shadows and a pale yellow for highlights.