Category Archives: Woodstock

Working the street again

If there is an award for junk empress of the year, I believe I would definitely qualify to enter.

Last week Rob and I went to our favourite sushi place in Obs, on the way passing a stack of clean, freshly-cut pieces of melamine propped against a lamp post. As I lunged joyfully forwards, Rob suggested that I leave them for the trip back to the car after we’d eaten. (Actually, his words were “For God’s sake, Jill, drop them!”) Reluctantly I agreed. In hindsight, I never should have listened to him (and never will again) because some thieving no-good villain had nicked them while I was california-rolling. I have learnt my lesson. Never put sushi before junk.

In this context, I was more than gratified to stumble across – the very next day – on the pavement in Salt River:


Yip, that’s right – an old busted breadbin and a bit of wooden shelf. Hoo ha! They are now clean and awaiting some primer and some ivory paint so I can use them for my market display.

As I scrabbled excitedly amongst the pile of junk on the pavement, hoping for more treasure, Rob stood watching in horror. His only comment this time: “Thank God my parents can’t see this.”

Moving on.
I’ve managed to potter around a bit with some crochet and some papier maché and even some “gardening” in the last day or two, so I feel like my brain is no longer doing this…

my mind

…and there’s a good chance I’ll soon be back to normal.

To be continued…



On the pavement in Main Road Woodstock yesterday, I spotted a crate. Getting a crate has been on my list for a while now, because it would be so useful from a market/packing up point of view. Businesses who use crates don’t just give them away, however, and I wasn’t sure how I was going to acquire one for myself.  I got very excited by a bright pink crate outside a health shop in Sea Point last week but it belonged to the bakery who delivers the sugarless oat biscuits and I had to walk away from it.

The Woodstock crate was particularly attractive because it was wide with low sides, more like a bakery crate than a milk crate. It was a bit broken on one side but I felt I could overlook that because the colour made up for it.
I continued past the crate as if it held no interest for me at all, and proceeded to Wool World on the hunt for suitable cotton for bikinis. Coming back, the crate was still there. This is always the sign for me when I spot something on the side of the road – if it’s still there on my second cruising, it’s meant for me.

I thought I should check with the nearest shop, since I don’t ever want to get caught stealing anything, so I went in. It was a café (in South Africa this is a corner shop, where you get bread, newspapers, cigarettes, sweets, etc, maybe you’d call it a newsagent in the UK; not a café like you would find on the cobblestoned streets of Paris) and I asked the man at the till if the crate was his.

Man: I don’t know.

Me: But does it belong to you?

Man: I’m not sure. I’m just looking after the shop for my friend.

Me: Okay, but do you think that crate belongs to him?

Man: What crate?

Me: There’s a dirty old broken crate outside, and if it’s for junk then I want it.

Man: What for?

Me: You know what, never mind, it’s fine, it’s fine. Keep the crate.

Man: Maybe it’s not broken.

Me: It is broken but it doesn’t matter. Thanks.

Man: Take the crate.

Me: But maybe it belongs to your friend who owns the shop?

Man: He’s not really my friend. Take it.

Here is my lovely crate, in the process of being packed up for the Pinelands market on Saturday.  See – it doesn’t take much to make me happy!?!!

To be continued…

Deli delicious

I met Karen for a late breakfast today, at a new deli in Woodstock called Salisbury’s. Only open two months, it is already busy and feels well-established. The atmosphere is relaxed but not dodgy (this is Woodstock, remember!), decor straightforward and modern with the occasional touch of pretty (see hearts on wall and birdcage in corner), staff friendly and helpful – all in all, a great space.

And there’s Table Mountain in the background :-)

   Karen grinning inanely for the camera.


Jeanne and her staff make wonderful meals from simple, fresh ingredients.  I had the breakfast roll (minus the egg), and got a few greens to go with it, and Karen had French toast with bacon and maple syrup. Don’t ask me how she stays thin.  All food was F for good, and generously portioned.

We had cappuccinos (mine with a double shot of espresso, because I can), and the entire bill came to R95.  Serious value for money.

There’s also – free wifi, loads of parking, a small stock of essential groceries (milk, eggs, olives, anchovies, spices, pesto, etc), and they stay open til 20h00. And on Sundays.

Salisbury’s is on the corner of Roodebloem and Salisbury Roads. You’ll find me there same time next week.

To be continued…

colouring up

I couldn’t resist taking photos yesterday of this little building on the corner of Roodebloem and Salisbury Roads in Woodstock. It has had many different faces over the years:  it’s been a restaurant and a corner cafe and a furniture shop, and I last knew it as a vintage clothing and gift shop owned by Anne-Marie.

Now it’s clearly going to be something else,  and someone is giving it a face lift. If the test colours are anything to judge by,  my guess would be that it’s going to be …. a florist? A funky organic-only deli? A mini art gallery? All three? You can be sure that I’ll be keeping my beady eye on it.

To be continued…