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Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Sun & Silliness: Possum's whirlwind SA tour

1 April 2007:
6am wake up, brush teeth, grab bag, leave home, walk to Waverly bridge, get on bus to Edinburgh Airport.
8:15 am board EasyJet (Yuck!) plane to Gatwick
10:30am arrive Gatwick, wait hours for luggage, try find trains in Sunday mayhem, buy overpriced ticket to Clapham
11:15 Burst out of sardine tin called train, realise London in 8 degrees warmer than Edinburgh, strip off two layers, find sister, get in car to travel to Richmond
12:00 drive at 10km/hour through Richmond park, in traffic jam of people enjoying sunshine for first time in eight months
13:00 arrive sisters place, still warmer, 3rd layer comes off, strappy shoes replace boots, fish out sunglasses - Suddenly feel like I'm on holiday! Drink glass of wine in postage stamp british garden, eating left over braai food (thank god for big sisters)
14:30 Realise how late it is - PANIC - sister drives like a crazy woman to get me to terminal 3, cant find parking - fake an asthma attack to stop the nasty parking guy sh*tting on sister for pulling up on curb to drop me off - parking guy takes sympathy on weird, possibly-dying foreign girl and carries bag to terminal.
16:00 book in, wait, board - oh god! am stuck in middle of five seat row, with babies on either side! Dont sleep a wink, watch lots of movies (including Catch a fire -more on this later), perform super-human feat of bladder control
2am land in Dubai - 'tis warm - Halleluja (sp?)

2 April 2007
4am board new plane - aisle seat, just saying thanks to godly beings when asked to move because of weird bitching woman, move to seat near door (yay, leg room) between (oh god) stinky drunk talkative man, who shouts at me whenever I dont ask a stewardess for his beer every five minutes.
10am land in Jozi! Rush outside and run for the 6 square inch patch of sunshine.
11am Spur spicy buffalo wings and choc milkshake
12pm try to look less like walking dead in ladies bathroom (no such luck), wander around, nothing good to buy even with my converted pounds
14:00 board plane to EL - too tired, cant think, possibly drooling on myself, and freaking out nice business man next to me
15:30 Home! Mom and dad and sleep! oh joy!

Moral of the story: pay the extra 100 pounds to fly direct

Spent the next three days with folks, brother, sister-in-law and nieces (sp?). Consistently whisper "Katie is your favourite aunty" to unsuspecting babies.

5 April 2007
On the Thursday night, I braved the Highlander to have a drink with a mate, Kevin, who was also visiting from London. The Highlander is scary because EL is a small place and you're bound to run into lots of people you havent seen since high school, and since high school was painful for me, so is the "re-connecting"...anyway, the night passed with minimal trauma and it was nice to catch up with Kevin.

6 April 2007
Friday morning I set out to Gtown. Driving my dad's beautiful, huge, automatic Merc. This was terrifying for me, since I've only ever driven old student cars, and small ones at that, plus I've done very little long distance driving. Driving to Port Alfred was fine but the road to Gtown, as usual, was so misty I had to drive the last 40kms at 40km/hour. I was in Gtown for two nights, staying with Tash (thanks, love), and it was good to be back. Gtown doesnt change, at most they shuffle the shops from place to place, and rumour has it Nando's has finally arrived (always after you leave, huh?!). I ate loads of red meat, and drank to much, and for old time's sake the power went out on saturday night, leaving us to sing disney tunes to entertain ourselves. This short visit also prompted the formation of the most rocking boyband-made-of-girls ever (as seen above)! Coming soon to a couch near you!

8 April 2007
On Sunday morning I drove to our holiday home in a tiny wild coast resort, for a really big drinking reunion with Sam, Bolze and Briano (thanks to you guys too, but not to Sam who got me very VERY drunk).

9 April 2007
Monday night I was back in EL, and got together with Candice and Kerry for a movie. Candice is my oldest friend. She approached me in preprimary (aged 3) and told me my drawings of people sucked because they didnt have necks (fair enough) and we've been close ever since. We watched Ghostrider - which sucks but was entertaining nonetheless, and then Tuesday the travelling started all over again.

10 April 2007
At least it was a direct plane back and i managed to book my bag through from EL to Edinburgh, so that made it a lot easier. Still, It was 17hours in transit, and i was insensible when i finally got home, and burst into tears (really over-tired) telling Jono how all my biltong had been confiscated!

Saffas overseas: try to take ten days in april to go home, its the perfect time - just when you think winter will never end, go home for some sun, and when you return the UK has woke up and the sun is finally showing its face. Ten days early april makes all the difference.

I wish I could have taken more time, but since I get paid by the hour this is all I manage, plus I had to come back for BOB DYLAN!!

11 April 2007
Yup, on Wednesday night Jono and I took the train to Glasgow and saw BOB DYLAN live! It was amazing! One of those artists who are so huge you're surprised they're still alive, let alone still touring. (FYI Gtown Playas: this is bound to influence our style for the next album).

Anyway, so I'm back, and back at work (12 April) and even though that situation still sucks, I feel I can ride it out, now that I've had a serious break from it...Home is soooo great. The UK may have public transport and no one is denying the crime problem in SA, but its home. There's space, and clean air and greenery and gardens and lots of other stuff. It does kind of scare me that when I head home for good I'll probably be Jozi based - if I actually want to make a go of this journalism thing (which I do). Growing up in EL might have been claustraphobic but I was never scared, and my parents still live in a house without burglar bars in a neighbourhood with four foot walls around our properties - there is a lot to be said for that kind of security. Having said all that, my friends in JHB are loving life - so maybe I'm just buying into the media hype about the scary aspect? Hey, Jo'burgers, am I being silly about this? What's life like in your part of the world?

P.S. forgive any spelling or grammar errors, I'm soooo over editing today!

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Dylan said...

Gtown playas look a bit emo for a boyband, no? You need to show us some surgically enhanced smiles.

Glad that little island is looking a little warmer these days (seeing as i will be touching down there in a couple of months). See you then.

Phlippy said...

Phew... quite a read. Loved it though. First time reading, I will be back

Katie Possum said...

Dylan: cant wait to see you again, my friend!
Phlippy: welcome & sorry about the marathon post - it really was a whirlwind trip. :)

Anonymous said...

Come back any time, dude. It's like fucking Hotel California out here. Check out any time, but...



Katie Possum said...

T: hey! do i know you? :)

kabintsimbi said...

you were at grad? shite...small world! Oh truly was a whirlwind...for me too but I sat in a car for 10 hours from CT to the gtown. Alas, you win! Glad you had a jol.

Fuckers for stealing your biltong!

Katie Possum said...

hey Kabintsimbi! sorry love i was actually there the weekend before grad :( but still a fantastic weekend. i'm a little jealous of you being there...was it your grad?

kabintsimbi said...

it was indeed...was nice but also made me happy to leave...cape town girl & all...can't deal with the little valley. although, I'm probably heading on over to London in a few short months...think the move is well in need. Yay, can't wait to shop (at GAP even though it's here now) & all other nice places. Goodie.