OYSTERHOOD is reclusiveness or solitude, or an overwhelming desire to stay at home.
28 January: I turned forty-four. I love the number and I hope for a healthy and wonderous new year in my life.
My love arrived first thing in the morning to wish me happy birthday and we had birthday coffee together before he went off to work and I to my beloved Elgin Valley that he introduced me to. A while back, we went ziplining with the Cape Canopy Tours in Elgin: “Situated in the Hottentots Holland Nature Reserve, we have partnered with CapeNature to take you into a previously inaccessible and pristine part of this amazing World Heritage Site. Only one hour from Cape Town, we offer a fully guided adventure activity for nature enthusiasts of ages 5 to 75!” After our tour back then, we were told that we were welcome to return to zipline for free on our respective birthdays. I was reminded of the kind offer a few days before my birthday now and thought: what better way to celebrate? Great fun and social distancing at its easiest. I booked and off I went!
The first time, I was quite scared, especially when I realised that I would be sailing through the air a hundred meters or more above the ground and on lines that were up to 330m long, but the second time, I knew what to expect and how much fun it would be, so I just soared. With me was a Cape Town couple celebrating their seventh wedding anniversary. They were lovely and it was great to experience this with them, witnessing how happy they were about being married to each other. Our guides were fantastic and we laughed a lot together. The weather was perfect: clear, stunning views. That area is beyond beautiful. I just loved it.
Birthday flowers :)
Travelling to Elgin, I was stopped at a road block. When I showed my driver’s license to the police officer, he glanced at it and immediately noticed, ‘It’s your birthday!’ I told him what I was planning and was told: ‘Have a blessed birthday, travel safely!’ And he let me go :) On my way back, I stopped at Liberty Books (of course) and found myself on one of the shelves, right next to a lovely literary friend.
Exclusive Books is turning seventy this year and they are giving all their Fanatics members a R70 voucher in our respective birthday months to celebrate. I decided to use the generous gift yesterday and went straight from Grabouw to EB Cavendish and bought myself the kind of book that I know no one would buy for me:
I LOVED the Twilight books, and one day I still want to write an essay about this literary love and the philosophical concepts behind it that I found so fascinating, but first I will indulge in some more reading. I also loved Meyer’s The Host, which is probably my favourite of her novels. There is a comfort in being able to lose oneself in a fantasy world for eight hundred pages …
I got home in the afternoon just in time for birthday Skype coffee with Mom and a swim. At the exact time of my birth, forty-four years later, I was surrounded by water, an Aquarian in her element.
And in the evening, my love invited me to dinner at one of our favourite restaurants where we were treated to a feast of note.
Oysters weren’t on the menu, but my love and the La Colombe chef made magic happen. It was the first time in many years that I did not have bubbly for my birthday, but the non-alcoholic Strawberry Bellini was divine and I did not miss anything.
We were home before curfew – the golden full moon looming over Cape Town a sight to behold. Throughout the day, friends and family kept sending wishes and even though I missed celebrating with them, I never felt lonely.
I still met with Mom and Krystian for a late birthday chat on Skype and we laughed into the night. I went to bed a happy Karina (44).
Be kind. Wear a mask. Support local.
“Physical distancing remains one of the key strategies to curb this pandemic.”