#52weekproject: Week 10 – The Shully Family

A Delightful Reunion…


Taken April 28th at The Shully residence, while my friends, Roberto and Amanda were in town from Paris. I first met Jenny and Enoch while in Cape Town, South Africa with Roberto and Amanda during the World Cup in June of 2010. Enoch was the manager at Arnold’s Cafe where we would camp out everyday for breakfast, and sometimes lunch, and sometimes dinner. And Jenny, who we met through our mutual friend, Rob, lived in an apartment just above Arnold’s. She opened up her home to us, tolerated our incessant tomfoolery and for some reason, still invites us over for dinner (and a lot of wine) after they moved to the States.

Here they are, with their beautiful daughter Tulah and their dog, Nyani.

The Shullys 05042014

South Africa Trip: Day Six – The Way to Kalk Bay

Saturday June 19
Jenny rented a car and we (Rob, Jenny, Jenny’s friend-Danielle, and I) drove down to Kalk Bay.  The drive offered some really beautiful vistas (aka, some nice views, but said in a very hoity-toity way).  It took about 45 minutes or so to get to kalk bay.  It was nice to leave cape town for a bit and see a bit of what the country looked like outside of the city.
Kalk Bay is a nice seaside town; small and quaint, but even out here, world cup fever was abundant.  Bafana Bafana jerseys, south Africa flags displayed in windows, on store fronts, and around town.  We wandered a bit; Jenny bought a Obama Action Figure for Enoch, and I bought a couple of drawings from a nice little store…
And wandered into the Kalk Bay Railway House, which looked like it was converted into an estate auction of an elderly couple that passed away.
We ate at Cape to Cuba.  I was not impressed.
We also saw some seals.
And we saw other things.
Later on that night, we made pizzas for dinner.  I had banana on my pizza for the first time.  It definitely won’t be the last.
The end.

South Africa: Day Five – Royale with Cheese

Friday, June 18, 2010
Berto and Amanda left for their Commitmentmoon in Addo Elephant Park, so Rob and I struck out on our own to explore the other offerings of Cape Town.  We peeked into some stores so I could get a good idea of what some nice gifts would be to return to the states with for the fam.
They worried about my well-being over here (they told me not to get eaten by lions, but truth be told, the lions are the ones who should be worried about me eating them!).  We ended going to Royale for lunch.  The Brits that were in my hostel at the Aloha lodge told me about this place, so I thought we’d try it, and I was not disappointed.  The burgers were awesomely juicy, and savory, and I don’t know how else to describe food, but probably one of the best burgers I’ve ever had.  I had a burger with chopped bacon and peppadews (sweet, tangy, peppers with a slight hint of heat) mixed into the beef patty, with some sweet potato fries.  Awesome.  (although, this was basically day 5 of me having barely any veggies… don’t tell my parents though, they’d be pissed, and won’t let me go outside to play until I had some veggies.  They would always say that veggies would help keep you cool.  I still don’t believe that.)
We walked around for a bit longer (and saw the sign below… hover over it for the caption) and ended up back at Jenny’s place to watch the Slovania vs USA game.

The US team came back from a 0-2 deficit to tie up the game, but they were robbed of the win by the ref calling an unknown foul after a free kick (which went in).  It was a sad way to end the game, considering the USA would have lead  the group after that win, but with the England game on later that night, we’d see how the rest of the group stood.  Rob, Jenny and I had trouble deciding on what to eat, but I picked the Thai place across the street from the Viet restaurant (which also, strangely, serves sushi).
After dinner, we made it down to the Long Street Cafe to watch the England vs. Algeria game, which ended up being quite boring, due to the resulting 0-0 draw.  With smoke drying out my eyes (you forget what it’s like, but banning smoking in bars was the best idea ever), we called it a night…

South Africa Trip: Day 4 – Table Mountain

A View from Below

We decided that we would hike up Table Mountain today.  I had to check out of my Hostel in Milnerton, and since I owed some money still, I wasn’t left with enough to get a taxi to Arnold’s.  I took the shady bus again, and luckily I had exact change, because the caller/money taker was trying to skim money from the passengers and from the driver.  He ended up getting in an argument with the driver, and insisted on being let out on the side of the freeway.  Luckily, I will no longer need to be taking the Minibus. Once I was let off at the station, I got some money from an ATM and then got a cab the rest of the way (considering I didn’t have a map handy).  I got in a cab, which turned out to be an unmetered cab, and at the destination, the driver haggled with me on how much to pay.  I wish I had smaller bills, but the ATM only gave out 100 Rand bills, I ended up having to pay 65 Rand, after haggling with him.  All in all, it still ended up being cheaper than a cab from the hostel in Milnerton, which would have ran 100 – 140 rand.  (about $15-$20), and in total, I paid 71.50 Rand.

We swung by a checkers, a grocery store, and grabbed a few snacks before we headed up to Table Mountain.  With my trusty lumbar pack on, we trudged uphill toward Table Mountain’s lower cable station, which is about a 3.3 mile trek from Arnold’s.  Minibuses drove by, offering rides up to the mountain, but we decided to continue on.  The view just kept getting better the higher we got.

We got to the lower cable station, where all the other tourists waited in line for tickets to take the cable car to the top.  We decided we’d take the long way, and hike up.  We were told it was only an hour hike, but at this point, I could already feel my legs tiring out.  The hike up was really doing knee high step ups.  I felt like I was lunges up the mountain.  After about 45 minutes of this, my calves decided they didn’t like the hard work, and cramped up, so I told Rob, Bert, and Amanda to continue on with out me.  It’s nice when you are carrying a camera around, so you can make it look like you stopped to take pictures, and not to rest.

My friends carried on, and I ended up meeting them at the bottom, before we ended up hiking back down into town, and we spent the remainder of that evening recovering at Arnolds.

South Africa Trip: Day Three – The Boys Are Back In Town!

A Bafana Bafana fan sings along to their National Anthem…

My friends, Rob, Roberto, and Amanda, arrived in Cape Town basically the same time I did.  I had known they were in town, but I realized I had no way of getting in contact with them… The day before, I had spend the day at FanFest, and was secretly hoping that they would randomly show up there.  Unfortunately they didn’t, and so I had to figure something else out.  I ended up getting access to the wifi at my hostel, and I had received an email from Berto and from Jenny (Glickman), a friend who is now a capetonian, with their phone numbers.  I strolled down the street and caught a minibus taxi, and headed again to FanFest.  This time, I had a plan to pick up a SIM card for an unlocked phone I brought with me.  The minibus took quite a different (much longer) route than the previous day, giving me a glimpse of the not so nice areas of Cape Town.  Luckily, it was broad daylight, and I felt safe inside the bus.  I made it to the bus station, and headed for fanfest.  After talking to the MTN rep (MTN is one of the cell phone carriers in South Africa), I was able to buy a sim card for 50 cents (south african cents), and loaded it with 200 Rand.  Apparently, they had a deal that if you spent 40 Rand, you get a yellow and black soccerball bucket hat, and 60 rand would net you a big curly yellow vuvuzela.  Spending 200 rand, the lady brought me 1 crazy I’m-compensating-for something yellow vuvuzela, and two hats.  I had some issues not being able to send text messages (turns out I had to change some settings on my American phone), and was unable to call berto and amanda, but I was able to get a hold of Jenny (whom I hadn’t met yet) and left her a voicemail.  I headed for their hostel, and luckily, Jenny was able to relay to them that I was downstairs, and they came down (this section of the story has been edited for time).  We headed over to Arnold’s for lunch, and it turns out that Jenny’s boyfriend (Enoch!  My man!) is the night manager there.

I had my first experience with an Ostrich Burger (at Arnold’s on Kloof St.), and it was flippin’ amazing.

Rob finally made an appearance, as he had been MIA that morning. Turns out he went for an early hike to Lionshead, and had just gotten back.

We finished our lunch and headed to the Green Market, to explore the stalls there.  But we stopped off to grab a drink at the gas station, and check out one of the many shops on Long St.

At the Green Market, they had many stalls, with many similar items throughout, but pretty unique, very African, things.  However, there are rules you needed to follow if you wanted to survive Green Market Club.  First rule of Green Market Club… don’t make eye contact.  Although everyone there was really nice, these South African’s really know the high pressure sales game.  You can’t linger or look too long at a stall.  Looking for more than 5 seconds resulted in the stall owner calling out to you, “Come, my man, let me show you something!” or “Touch whatever you like!” or “We are almost closing, I’ll make good deal for you!”  Walking around alone, implied you weren’t just looking, or walking through with a group, so that invited further catcalls and whistling. People saw my giant vuvuzela, and would comment “Now that is a vuvuzela!” and would encourage me to a blow-off.  I was new with my vuvuzela, and my blowing skills just weren’t there yet.  They had a few laughs at my expense, but after a short while, I figured it out.  My horn didn’t have the loudness of theirs, but sounded deeper and more like the horn of a Viking.  In any case, I didn’t make it out of Green Market Club unscathed.  I tried my best, as I didn’t want to be hauling around souvenirs everywhere; I figured I could save the souvenir shopping for when I got closer to the departure date.

With that said however, I received a high pressure sales pitch for some paintings I saw on cloth.  I lingered as I locked eyes with a beautiful black and white painting of giraffes on a 18”x72” cloth.  I caught me, and so I asked how much it was.  He said 1500 rand (about $120), but said he’d give me a great deal. (He set me up good with that high number). I declined, and looked at the smaller paintings.  I saw another one of giraffes, and inquired about it.  He said it was 450 rand, and then asked how much I wanted to pay.  I said… hm.  300 rand (about $42).  He agreed a little too fast, and instead of me feeling like I was an awesome negotiator, I felt like I got hustled.  I walked through the market for a little while longer, while I was greeted with friendly inquiries about my nationality… “Korea?” “Japan?”  I told them I was from the US, and they excitedly proclaimed their support for our team, and I engaged some conversation, as we both talked about the excitement behind the South African team (BAFANA BAFANA!, which I’ve heard literally translates to BOYS BOYS!  Which is something I can totally get behind… wait, what?)

Rob and I made our way to FanFest to watch the Spain v Switzerland game, where the Swiss decided they no longer wanted to remain neutral, and won the match. Rob spent that time writing in his Emo Diary…

We made our way back to Arnold’s to meet up with Berto, Amanda, Jenny & the gang.  We spent the remainder of the evening there, and watched the home team lose in a heart breaking fashion to Uraguay 3-0…

I again had a difficult time with the Taxi, as the driver had never even been to Milnerton… he explained, “I’m just like you.  I am a foreigner here.”  Great, that’s really reassuring.

That’s all for now…