Anarchy in the Western Cape

 

This is not a good signFor the benefit of my overseas readers a brief background to this post: The Western Cape is in the hands of the Democratic Alliance and Cape Town is a well run, clean and beautiful city. However instead of being held up as an example of local government excellence the ANC is employing underhand tactics to sabotage the city ahead of the general elections next year.

There have been 12 documented incidents of faeces flinging – at Cape Town International Airport, on the steps of the Provincial Legislature and other locations – all of which caught on CCTV as well as by the press who appear to have been tipped off in advance because they have been on site before the “you know what hit the fan”. Also present have been the police, largely in an observer capacity, because they say it’s no use arresting the culprits because they have a “legitimate” grievance and they will just do it again!

The culprits are widely known, they are leaders in the ANC Youth League and their communities and openly boast of their exploits on Facebook yet no action is taken against them. This begs the question just who are the police force “serving and protecting”?

Almost daily major roads are blocked with burning tyres by gangs of thugs protesting about something and stoning passing vehicles. All the police do is close off the roads thus inconveniencing the law abiding citizens of this province and allowing the “protesters” free rein.

Zuma & Malema

Yesterday a mob armed with pangas, knives and sticks boarded a train into Cape Town and were allowed to proceed unchecked to a construction site in Bree Street where they ordered the workers off the site, caused substantial damage to vehicles and property and (unconfirmed) caused one of the site managers to have a heart attack.

Bree Street

This same mob was then afforded unhindered public transport back to the Crossroads area where they overturned and set light to a truck and stoned passing vehicles.

Burning truck

Where else in the world would a mob armed with weapons be allowed to travel on public transport, illegally enter a building site, damage property and simply leave without any police intervention?

It is no secret that the ANC is trying to make the Cape ungovernable in order to win it back from the DA next year but the level of violence and anarchy is not compatible with a democratic election.

If no action is taken against these rioters the violence will only escalate in the months leading up to the election and many areas of Cape Town will become “no go” areas.

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This is Africa

Africa and especially South Africa is a land of contradictions. One foot in the first world and the other still stuck firmly in the third it does lend itself to finding the funny in unexpected places.

Boneless bananas

And innovation, we no longer have to deal with those pesky little bones in our bananas, being a Banana Republic does realign priorities 🙂

Store closed

African logic from the Meneja himself!

Money where has it been

Crime is so bad in Africa that people carry their money in their underpants!

World Trade Centre

And some traders suffer from delusions of grandeur Mugabi style

Operating hours

Trading hours Africa time, for the non-South Africans it reads:

Times: 9 till fed up although “gatvol” is a much baser more descriptive word.

 

Kak restuarant

 

Not the best choice of name for a restaurant, wonder how popular they are?

 

Facebook

 

The internet is everywhere –  cyber cafe township style!

 

Eliminating darkness

 

There’s that innovation again – remember we gave the world Mark Shuttleworth!

 

Out of order

 

Translating directly from Afrikaans to English can convey a completely different message.

 

Circumcision

 

Cutting edge skills are widely available

 

Slaapstad

 

And finally one for my hometown, it’s not called “Slaapstad” for nothing.

Slaapstad is a play on the Afrikaans name for Cape Town – Kaapstad and means sleeping city.

More holiday news

A very old friend of OH and I came to stay for a few days. In fact it was he who introduced us to each other so we owe him a huge debt of gratitude. His wife (second) stayed on with her aged Dad up the Garden Route for a few more days and only joined us for one night before they had to fly back to the UK again.

It was a real pleasure to have B with us although he did not spend all his time with us as being a Capetonian by birth he had other people to see as well we did enjoy some real quality time with him. Sadly his wife is what I call an EGR (Extra Grace Required). I know she means well but she is hard work and needs to be in control and controlling what goes on around her. When they visit together B does not get a say in how they spend their time, every minute of his day is pre-organised for him before they even arrive in SA so it was nice to see him relaxed and doing his own thing for a change.

This past Saturday OH, B and I took a drive out to Big Bay at Blouberg as he had not seen it in its redeveloped form. It was the most perfect of days, not a breath of wind so no fine sand blowing around. I have never seen Blouberg looking so beautiful. We sat at a cafe at Big Bay having drinks and pizza enjoying the view of Table Mountain looking majestic across the bay.

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The remains of the Turkish bulk carrier, Seli 1 that ran aground along the Cape coast in 2009

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The lawns at Big Bay were full of people enjoying the wonderful weather and there were plenty of surfers in the water too.

We had organised at very short notice a reunion for that evening with friends from our old neighbourhood where we were all young parents together some 34 years ago. They came armed with family photos of children and grandchildren, B had all his pics on his iPad and ours were at hand too. They arrived at 6.00 pm and eventually left after 1.00 am – it’s difficult to catch up on 34 years on one go J. I found myself thinking it a good thing that B’s wife was not there as she would have really struggled not knowing any of our shared history and would probably have tried to sabotage the evening in some way. I don’t mean to make her sound like some sort of witch but I think she is very insecure in herself, worse than usual having been made redundant in the UK for the third time in 10 years. Unlike some insecure people who will just try and become invisible she will try and draw attention to herself even if it means being difficult or bit of a spoilsport.

OH and I were very glad that we only had to endure one evening with her and feel very sorry for our friend having to put up with her 24/7. I felt like I really had to make an effort to keep the conversation going over dinner that night as the easy relaxed atmosphere of the past 5 days had just evaporated and everyone was tense in case something upset her.

In other news OH’s retirement did not last for long. He has been roped in to help L our DIL with her fledgling business and is enjoying the new challenge although his “To Do” list at home remains sadly unattended to.

Cape Town Slang

Slang and colloquialisms are prolific in Cape Town; a fact that’s far from surprising in a nation that claims 11 official languages and in a city that’s home to an eclectic mix of cultures. That said, locals in the Mother City and in the surrounding Western Cape, more so than, arguably, other South African provinces, have their own unique way of talking smack and waxing lyrical.

Much of the credit for the area’s broad spectrum of slang and colloquialisms is owed to the coloured people from the Cape Flats, a population vibrant in every way, but most famously, for the in the way in which they communicate. Though, ultimately, words, sound bytes and sayings from all of the nation’s official languages inject themselves into casual conversations, potent road rage and cheesy pick-up lines.

So, if you’re planning a visit to Cape Town, if you’re new to the city or if you simply need to brush up on your bantering act, then look no farther; we’ve put together a beginner’s guide to Cape Town slang and colloquialisms, complete with our version of accented pronunciation.

Ag (ah-ch): An expression of irritation or resignation. “Ag no man!” “Ag, these things happen”

Awê (ah-weh): A greeting. “Awê, brother!”

Babbelas (bah-bah-luss): Derived from the isiZulu word, ‘i-babalazi’, meaning drunk; adopted into the Afrikaans language as a term for ‘hangover’. “I have a serious babbelas!”

Bakkie (bah-kee): 1. A bowl. “Put those leftovers in a bakkie.” 2. A pick-up truck.  “We all jumped on the back of my dad’s bakkie and went to the beach.”

Befok (buh-fawk): 1. Really good, amazing, cool. “The Symphonic Rocks concert is going to be befok!” 2. Crazy, mad, insane. “You tried to put your cat in the braai? Are you befok?”

Bergie (bear-ghee): Derived from berg, Afrikaans for ‘mountain’. Originally used to refer to vagrants living in the forests of Table Mountain, the word is now a mainstream term used to describe vagrants in Cape Town.

Bra (brah), bru (brew): Derived from broer, Afrikaans for ‘brother’; a term of affection for male friends; equivalent to dude. “Howzit my bru!” “Jislaaik bra, it’s been ages since I last saw you!”

Braai (br-eye): Barbeque (noun and verb). “Let’s throw a tjop on the braai.” “We’re going to braai at a friend’s house.”

Duidelik (day-duh-lik): Cool, awesome, amazing. “That bra’s car looks duidelik!”

Eish (ay-sh): isiZulu interjection; an exclamation meaning ‘oh my’, ‘wow’, ‘oh dear’, ‘good heavens’. A: “Did you hear? My brother got into a fight with a bergie!” B: “Eish! Is he hurt!”

Ek sê, Eksê (Eh-k-s-eh): Afrikaans for, ‘I say’. Used either at the beginning or end of a statement. “Ek sê my bru, let’s braai tomorrow.” “This party is duidelik, ek sê!”

Eina (Ay-nah): An exclamation used when pain is experienced, ‘ouch!’. “Eina! Don’t pinch me.”

Entjie (eh-n-chee): A cigarette. “Come smoke an entjie with me.”

Guardjie, gaatjie (gah-chee): The guard who calls for passengers and takes in the money on a minibus taxi.

hhayi-bo (isiZulu), hayibo (isiXhosa) (haai-boh): An interjection meaning ‘hey’; ‘no way’.“Hayibo wena, you can’t park there!”

Howzit (how-zit): A greeting meaning ‘hi’; shortened form of ‘how’s it going?’

Is it?: Used as acknowledgement of a statement, but not to ask a question – as one might assume. Most closely related to the English word ‘really’. A: “This guy mugged me and said I must take off my takkies!” B: “Is it?”

Ja (yaah): Afrikaans for ‘yes’. A: “Do you want to go to a dance club tonight?” B: “Ja, why not?”

Ja-nee (yah-near): Afrikaans for yes-no. Meaning ‘Sure!’ or ‘That’s a fact!’ Usually used in agreement with a statement. A: “These petrol price hikes are going to be the death of me.” B: “Ja-nee, I think I need to invest in a bicycle.”

Jol (jaw-l): (noun and verb) 1. A party or dance club. “We’re going to the jol.” “That party was an absolute jol!” 2. Used to describe the act of cheating. “I heard he was jolling with another girl.”

Jislaaik (yiss-like): An expression of astonishment. “Jislaaik, did you see that car go?”

Kak (kuh-k): 1. Afrikaans for ‘shit’.  Rubbish, nonsense, inferior, crap or useless. “What a kak phone.” “Your driving is kak.”  2. Extremely, very. “That girl is kak hot!”

Kwaai (kw-eye): Derived from the Afrikaans word for ‘angry’, ‘vicious’, ‘bad-tempered’.  Cool, awesome, great. “Those shoes are kwaai.”

Lekker (leh-kah): 1. Nice, delicious. “Local is lekker!” 2. Extremely, very. “South Africans are lekker sexy!”

Mielie (mee-lee): Afrikaans term for corn, corn-on-the-cob.

Nee (nee-ah): Afrikaans for ‘no’.

Naartjie (naah-chee): Afrikaans term for citrus unshiu, a seedless, easy peeling species of citrus also known as a ‘satsuma mandarin’.

Potjie, potjiekos (poi-kee-kaws): Afrikaans term for pot food/stew comprised of meat, chicken, vegetables or seafood slow-cooked over low coals in a three-legged cast iron pot.

Shame: A term of endearment and sympathy (not condescending). “Ag shame, sorry to hear about your cat.” “Oh shame! Look how cute your baby is!”

Shisa Nyama (shee-seen-yah-mah): isiZulu origin – while shisa means ‘burn’ or to be hot and nyama means ‘meat’, used together the term means ‘braai’ or ‘barbeque’. “Come on, let’s go to Mzoli’s for a lekker shisa nyama!”

Sisi (see-see): Derived from both isiXhosa and isiZulu words for sister, usisi and osisi (plural). “Hayibo sisi, you must stop smoking so many entjies!”

Sosatie (soo-saah-tees): Kebabs, skewered meat. “Let’s throw a few sosaties on the braai.”

Takkies (tack-kees): Trainers, sneakers, running shoes. “I want to start running, again but I need a new pair of takkies.”

Tjommie, chommie (choh-mee): Afrikaans slang for ‘friend’. “Hey tjommie, when are we going to the beach again?”

Vrot (frawt): Rotten; most often used to describe food that’s gone off or a state of being sick. “Those tomatoes are vrot.” “Champagne makes me feel vrot!”

Voetsek (foot-sek): Afrikaans for ‘get lost’, much like the British expression, ‘bog off’. “Hey voetsek man!”

Wena (weh-nah): isiXhosa and isiZulu for ‘you’. “Hey wena, where’s the R20 you owe me?”

Wys (vay-ss): Show, tell, describe. “Don’t wys me, I know where I’m going.”

So, whether you’re asking for directions, engaging with the locals or just eavesdropping in a taxi, let’s hope this guide will give you some insight into what’s being said. And keep in mind, if anyone says “Joe Mah Sah…” just know, it’s not a compliment.

Source: Cape Town Magazine