time out

I am here: on a farm just outside Ladismith, in the Klein Karoo.

Klein Karoo 3

Klein Karoo 2

Klein Karoo 1

It’s hot and dry, as you can see, but there is no shortage of water because there’s a private dam and a windpump system set up to pump water straight from the surrounding mountains. So, YES, I can run a deep bath without guilt and even extend shower time from 45 seconds to any length of time I feel like….. The exact opposite of what it is like in Cape Town now, as we get closer to DAY ZERO. Level 6 water restrictions will be implemented from next week and we will all be paying a drought levy from February 2018 onwards (based on the value of one’s property). I have mixed feelings about this – on the one hand, Capetonians are all in this together and have to do the best we can to save water, and on the other, 66% of residents are clearly not doing their bit and don’t care that there’s extra cost involved because they are wealthy enough not to feel the impact. The arrogance! I’ll be very amused to see some of those high-and-mighties impatiently queuing at the nearest mountain spring to fill their empty containers along with the rest of the hoi polloi.

In the meantime, from a cool cottage in the Karoo (about 4 hours out of Cape Town), where you must keep your eyes open for cobras and boomslangs when you go for a walk and the doors bolted when you go out because the baboons are way ahead of things like locks and keys, where the loudest sound is the silence of this extraordinary mountain country punctuated by bird calls, and where I am finding some wonderful peacefulness both within me and without, I hope you are all having happy holiday times.

18 thoughts on “time out

  1. katechiconi

    We’re not in quite such a dry state as you guys, but I admit I gnashed my teeth when I called my sister down south for Christmas, only to hear it was cool and rainy, and more rain forecast. It was 31°C at 9.00am here…. Short showers still the order of the day here…

    1. Nice Piece of Work Post author

      Yes, I’ll be getting back to the short showers and lugging buckets of grey water round the garden next week :( Cape Town has had no rain. Apparently we have about 12 weeks to go before we run out entirely…

      1. katechiconi

        We’ve waved goodbye to the lawn, what’s left of it. I keep seeing big clouds arrive… and then depart again without dropping a drop. But I know quite well that the monsoon front will waltz in soon enough and then there’ll be more water than we know what to do with.

  2. coppicelearner

    Enjoy your soaking! Here in wet SW Wales water shortages are very rare but I understand your irritation about wealthy people who are profligate because they can afford the fines. I guess that sadly they will not be going to the spring in person – they will send a servant or buy water in bottles. Twas ever thus.

    1. Nice Piece of Work Post author

      Nah, you’d be fine with both baboons and snakes…..like me, you know! I’m sure we’re pretty tough at heart. Okay, maybe not so much. Saw a huge cobra yesterday but it was on the road, so nowhere near the farm. —shudder—-

  3. Linne

    Hi, Jill; I’ve been very busy here and rather neglectful of all my friends in the Village. I’m so happy you had a lovely peaceful retreat. And I know what you mean about soaking in a tub! We have no water shortage here; the cousins are on a well across the road and even after a long drought this summer we had plenty of water. Still, I ration my usage. I generally take what we used to call a sponge or spit bath daily, then have a good long hour or more in the tub every week to ten days. Such luxury! But I can’t help remembering the six foot tub we hd in the late 70s, claw feet and all. So deep, too. Oh, I miss those. And I would give up baths most of the time if I could have one of those once a month!

    I was very interested in snakes as a girl; my parents were afraid I’d bring home something poisonous, but I never did. Not sure how I’d feel about a cobra these days, but it would be interesting to see one. And baboons! I would have thought they could figure out a bolt, but not a lock. Of course, I expect the bolts are on the inside. Big hugs to you, Jill. ~ Linne

    1. Nice Piece of Work Post author

      Bolts were on inside AND outside of doors. Lots of bolts! Baboons can cause absolute chaos, and aren’t very nice face to face. The last thing I wanted to do was get home and find one of them making himself toast with peanut butter in the kitchen…
      You never need to apologise for being busy. xxx


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