In a nutshell, that was my weekend (add a few glasses of ice cold Rockfield (and a gin and dry lemon). On Saturday morning, I had my "six weekly" gardener, Sidney and Ivy (who (I thought) was his wife), come around to work - garden and garage clean up was my plan. Our new Bali-style table and chairs for the courtyard were to be delivered and things were getting out of hand in the garage. Wedding decor has infiltrated my life and I needed to make an urgent plan. Ivy is a star. Last Christmas when all our families domestic ladies leave Cape Town for the Eastern Cape in droves, I found Ivy who turned out to be an absolute star (especially when I had a house-full of overseas visitors). This is what happens when all your helpers are related. Any wedding, funeral or Christmas celebration and they are all off together in Tobias's bus (sounds crazy fun) and we are left like poor Cinderella's (not spoilt suburban housewives) at Christmas time. Sidney had told me that Ivy (his wife) had no work and last December and January the van Vlaanderen's, Rosslee's and Kotze's kept her very busy. She called me last week to say that she was desperate for work. Her sister died of HIV last year and she inherited 2 of her 5 children (one of them a 9 year old boy who is also HIV positive). Ivy has 3 of her own children as well. Her mother has also recently died so she has moved into her mother's house because it is bigger. I should have smelled a rat when Ivy told me that she was not sure if Sidney was working or not but she would tell him to phone me.
They arrived separately. Sidney stutters quite badly so I don't ask him too many questions. However, when I collected Ivy from Claremont station I got the whole story - in a bit too much detail, but it makes a great story (but sorry, a bit too graphic for my blog). Remind me to tell you over a glass or two of wine sometime. The rest of my day was kept trying to keep them apart as things were clearly not that comfortable for either of them. Why they could not have told me over the phone, I do not know. I made progress however, and after getting a tongue lashing from Sidney about the amount of stuff I had given to Ivy (and not to him), I told him that he was please to help her get all the stuff home (laundry baskets, a bucket, frozen food - seriously heavy stuff) or he would be in trouble with me (the dirty philanderer). I gave them a lift to the station and I watched him struggling with her bags and one small one of his own (that'll teach him!!).
My table arrived during the morning and it is stunning. It fits into the courtyard perfectly and just in time for summer. I have taken some pictures but on trying to download them today, I have discovered that my camera battery is flat. So sorry again, you will have to wait until tomorrow.
Last night we were taken by 89 year old, Margaret Fricker to see the Phantom of the Opera at Artscape as a Christmas present. What a treat and wonderful way to end the weekend. Not without it's logistical problems and poor Margaret got a whole lot more than she bargained for in terms of exercise (where are the lifts in the underground parking area?). The show was superb, the costumes amazing - a world class production.
It is my fourth Phantom and I must say I think I enjoyed it the most. The first time I saw it in London I was fortunate to see Sarah Brightman as Christine. The Christine last night had an incredible voice but some strange facial expressions (we were sitting in C row as Margaret is partially sighted, so I did not miss much). We had Jonathan Roxmouth as the Phantom and I thought he was brilliant (he managed to reduce Caroline and I to tears a couple of times as well - you could feel his pain (from C row anyway)). Andre Schwartz still has a throat problem but I don't think he is supposed to do Sunday's anyway. However, whenever I think of Andre Schwartz, I think of this
and not really this,
but I do believe he is also brilliant.
Here is the Cape Times review if you missed it last week.
It was an outstanding evening. Thank you Margaret. (She, at 89 had a couple of criticisms, the main one being that it was too loud!!).