On Saturday we have been in the Cape for six months already. Sometimes it feels like a lifetime, sometimes it feels like a dream. I know all the short cuts now and neighbours wave to me on the road. A cashier in town the other day was chatting to me merrily in Afrikaans; I even managed to string a few sentences back to her, and guess what? She replied back to me in Afrikaans! This has never happened before. (It’s normally at this stage, that they recognise the completely awkward and slightly blank look on my face and switch to English.)
One of my favourite things to do is sit at a sidewalk cafe and watch people go by. The women in Stellenbosch are all daringly stylish – just as chic as their Parisian counter parts, but far more eccentric. Pink hair, white hair, orange hair, red specs, high heels and bright patterned clothes. It’s really quite beautiful. And the students are my favourite… walking to lectures, to the shops, to the bars, in their carefree dungarees and dreadlocks, carrying their backpacks and water bottles. I sneaky-listened to two young girls sitting next to me the other day, drinking bottomless coffee and discussing the various moves and messages of one of their love interests. I remember that time… the days of analysing the every word of someone you hoped so much would fall in love with you and never let you go. They made me nostalgic for my days as a student, where your worries consisted of passing exams and how many packs of cigarettes and two minute noodles you had left for the week. Perhaps I’m being silly. I’m sure there were a lot more worries than that… but they seem less scary now looking back with these rose-tinted big lady glasses.
The sun is up until late here, but the days are short. Or maybe they just seem to go quicker. The mountains burn and the grapes are full and fat with sun-ripened sugar. The ground aches for rain and it will come. Everything is going so fast and in a blink of an eye, I know it will all be over and it scare the bojangles out of me. I flit between wanting to spend every minute with all the amazing people I love and wanting to run to the hills and retreat to complete the things I set out to do in this life. This vocation I’ve chosen requires quiet and solitariness, but my heart and soul is also rejuvenated by time spent with others. I feel there is a solution coming soon… I wait and trust in the process. The rain will come.