I woke up relaxed and refreshed after a wonderful night's rest. The room was glowing brightly in the morning sun, luring me from underneath the white linen. By 7 o'clock, Oom Niel and Tannie Marshia(1), my lovely hosts, had already left for work leaving the solitary occupant of the house
I inhaled the fresh morning breeze as I made my way down to the beach. Seems like morning seaside strolls has become custom. I don't object. I was greeted by a scene of surfers, joggers, hand-holding couples, beach dogs and an old man with a metal detector. Old men with metal detectors might be inbuilt features of most beaches. Strand's busy beach was in stark contrast that of Britannia Bay, just a few days earlier, where I usually were the sole saunterer. I walked all the way until a small estuary, seized by a squabble of seagulls impeded my passage. This forced me to stop and acknowledge the fact that I still had to make plans for my arrival in Cape Town. I had applied to volunteer at a backpackers through Workaway(2) a while back, but weeks have passed since I last heard from them and it was probably time to apply at new places since Cape Town was only one sleep away.
The rest of the morning was spent writing, only interrupted by a tea break with heart-shaped cookies. Tannie Marshia left some cookies out with a yellow note inviting me to eat them and to help myself to the fridge. A gammon sandwich, with some mustard and pepper-and-paprika-goat's cheese, together with a side of quiche made for a delectable lunch. The quiche was from the night before, when we feasted on that together with some game pie.
The early afternoon was spent tanning back on the beach. By then the infamous Strand-wind had picked up. While making my over the sand dunes, listening to Edwarde Sharpe, I remember hearing the story of my grandmother (being the exceptionally tiny lady that she was) having to hold on to lamp posts to keep herself from being picked up by the South-Easter(3). Afterwards, I went to a coffee shop to do some more editing.
By the time I got back to the house, my friend's sister and her fiance had arrived and we relaxed in the living room talking about teaching and how the education system should cater more for individual needs. All students are not the same. A standardised system does not work. The oom and tannie took me out the evening to visit more family and friend. It turned into a late night filled with singing and merriment. Such a lively bunch! Coming home, I collapsed in bed after a failed Skype attempt with some friends on the other side of the world. Day 12 done. What happened to the time? Initially, I intended to drive down in one or two days. This, however, was way better.
(1) See Day_5 for the meaning of oom and tannie.
(2) Workaway.info is this amazing community platform which allows you to go volunteer anywhere in the world, doing basically anything you feel you have the talent for, in exchange for accommodation and sometimes even food. It is such an exciting way to travel and share experiences and learn new things. Get involved!
(3) South-Easter, is the name given to the notoriously strong wind that is persistent around the Cape Peninsula, including Strand where I was staying.