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Still not on the cruise yet, Cape Town to explore again

View 2013 OCEANIA - CAPE TOWN TO SINGAPORE on hasbeen's travel map.



Since I had only been on Cape Town the prior May & had done most of the tourist stuff, I decided on a tour to the Townships. These being areas set up during apartheid for the various races & are what I understood to be slums. A little scary considering their reputation, but this is not Johannesburg.
There were only 6 of us including the guide. A young Swedish guy & a German couple with a young girl of maybe 8 or 9. Hey, if she can do it, so can I.

We started in the Cape Malay area which I had been through before & not realised it. Very close to downtown. Houses are very colourful & not in the least what I expected & not a slum by any means. This is where the coloureds lived & still do live.
Next up was District 6 where there are no buildings as it has all been razed to the ground. I still don’t know the significance of this area or what is going to happen to it but it was probably for blacks at one time. A lot of expensive real estate not being used. 
We visited a center where people are taught to teach people various crafts. Pottery, painting etc. 


There was a room where a couple of kids were drumming on bongo type drums & we all got to sit down while the teacher showed us how to beat them ( the drums that is ). Before we knew what was happening we were beating out a tune. Great fun but very hard on the hands.
Lots of good looking stuff for sale & we were meeting the artists whose work it was.

Then went to visit inside a house in a blacks area. Not much different to a poor house in England.


We all trooped in where there was a very shy young lady doing the dishes at the sink. Hopefully she must get a few dollars from our tour guide.

This is the Swedish guy & the guide. Nice door - I had one like that in England. The top opens independently to the bottom - "to let peoples smles in & their bodies out".


There was a funeral going on across the road for what must have been a very well respected lady  nurse, who’s photo was all over the place. On telephone polls, in the back of cars, etc. All the attendees looking a little overdressed in suits.

Last we went to more of a slum.  This is the German lady looking a little grumpy.


The guide dropped us off with another guy who then walked us down the road passing portable toilets like you see at rock concerts. & water taps with people washing themselves & pots & pans. Some of the faucets are missing of course as they are worth cash to someone. We carried on walking and around the block. It was funny seeing the reactions of young black girls on the street to our young girl. They check her out & her clothes & she peeps from behind her mom, checking them out.
We then got to the guides house...


& went inside where we were in illustrious company. A photo on the wall of him with Laura Bush...


Right next to the wires & under the corrugated iron ceiling. 


His house is a good 50  yards from his port-a-cabin toilet that we had passed earlier. 

He told the story of when apartheid ended, they were told they were going to build 5 million houses in 5 years when what happens is they are building 5 houses in 5 million years. He has been on a housing list for a move for over 20 years & never expects to move. Various levels of housing are very close together but it is going to be a long time before they get anywhere near a decent level. End of tour & I still did not see anything approaching what I was expecting  but the areas cover miles on the Cape flats behind Table Mountain .



& we probably did not get shown the really bad areas. 

Not scary at all, unlike Brixton. You read so much. I have been on Johannesburg twice now but never did get to Soweto ( stands for South Western Township - very Zulu ) which is the famous black township there. Maybe next time.
An interesting tour & one I would recommend & would do again if I went back.

Spent the rest of the day shopping & wandering around the V&A waterfront which is where the ship was docked & on another planet. Its a bit like the shopping center in Portsmouth, only hotter. & you don't expect Indian chiefs.


Next I actually start the cruise & head round the Cape of Good Hope to Durban.


Posted by hasbeen 11:41 Archived in South Africa

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