Re-visiting Cape Town - the Mother City where I was born
Being back in Cape Town, my old childhood town of birth this past week, has been pleasantly reminiscent, as I rediscover that place that has remained my Mother City to this day half a century after my birth.
You will see in my selection of photos here, a range of simple but interesting architecture from the Dutch and British history as a colony since the sixteen hundreds. Cape Town was the first ever colonized part of South Africa, giving rise to the name "Mother City".
The current popular lingua franca besides English, is Afrikaans, a derivative from the original Dutch with a bit of French thrown in. Besides that there are about 10 other African Bantu languages that are all official languages of the nation.
Besides the architecture there is of course the awesome natural backdrop of Table Mountain standing tall like a pillar of strength and stability at the center of the city. And then there is the double ocean feature. The Atlantic meets the Indian ocean right around Cape Town, or the Cape of Good Hope as it's also known, so it is graced by both. The Two Oceans Marathon is held here annually too, attracting runners from abroad to compete in this scenic marathon.
As a privilege one can bathe in warm and cold oceans on different sides of the peninsula in one day. The two oceans have distinctly differing temperatures yet are divided by nothing more than the Cape of Good Hope peninsula.
I'm back in my town of birth for just two days so able to observe it as a tourist after some time away. It's getting more built up in the CBD, yet still has an old colonial style despite the glass-covered skyscrapers popping up.
I have climbed Table Mountain a few times, more like a hike really up the 1084m top the top. There is of course also the cable car for those less into hiking, which is a truly unique feature in the world, and the view from the top is majestic. A restaurant at the top of the mountain will cater to your luncheon requirements, and it makes for a memorable family adventure.
This trip is just a quick in and out of the Mother City so I may miss some of the best beach sights this time around, but I'd you're ever traveling in Africa, or on the lookout for world class beaches to add to your list, then Cape Town is worth exploring.
Cape Town had always been a refreshment station for passing ships in their way to the East. It was the Portuguese first who docked here in the 15th century and later the Dutch came in 1652 to replenish fresh water as ships of the Dutch East India Co transported exotic artifacts from India for trade. Some of the greatest math and astronomy ideas come from the Indian subcontinent, like the numeral zero.
Cape Town still displays some of the Cape Dutch architecture around the city. And churches are often the oldest and strongest buildings from the past. I presume it shows the priorities if the people of the day, and the culture as a whole.
There is, thanks to the Dutch, also a distinct Malay culture in Cape Town, as the Dutch imported Malaysian workers from their other colony at the time to work in the Cape. Many Indians were also brought and decades later - since they liked it enough to stay - South Africa has the largest population of Indians outside of India in the world, all in one province.
Anyway the Cape was Dutch once, then British, then part of the commonwealth, but now even has a small secession party going called the Republic of Good Hope. They believe in renouncing national citizenship in a claim of sovereignty as individuals, with a new RGH passport and car licence.
It's an interesting concept though I can't say it will gain much traction. Still, its nevertheless highly idealistic and thought-provoking so I will keep myself informed.
With the rise of blockchain and cryptocurrency, it is possible to
gain a degree of financial independence never before possible, as we bypass banks and national borders to transact any amount of money almost anywhere.
China, for example, has clamped down, among others, on cryptocurrency trading. Still in South Africa we can sell crypto for local fiat and bank it.
Anyway, I have enjoyed the pictorial tour of Cape Town and surrounds. The city at the end of the world. Whoever comes here had to come from afar generally, and vice versa. I have to think twice about traveling anywhere in the first world or Asia, it's so far away..
Still the blockchain connects us and so let me know your impression of Cape Town, my mother city who gave birth to me at the foot of Table Mountain.