We spent all of the rest of Thursday driving westward. Wellyna and I had already seen about 4 hours of the drive through our FreeWalkers adventures, but it was Laura’s first time, so she sat in the front seat. Kyle has a Subaru and Laura and I were both very excited about that because we’re both very used to seeing them at home, but it was the first one either of us had seen here in SA. I’ve mentioned in previous posts how the landscape farther west is similar to that of Oregon, and it only became more so the closer to Cape Town we got. There were some mountain ridges that we could see before it got dark, but we didn’t drive through them until it was dark. I think I tried to take a picture, but it was difficult because the car was moving (duh) and it was just too difficult to truly capture the landscape in a photo. Once we got into Cape Town proper, it was definitely night time and the city was deserted. We thought there would be some cars about seeing how big of a city it is, but there might have been ten on the city roads before we got to Long Street, that is. Long Street is the happening place for people to be after dark. It is literally a really long street full of pubs and nightclubs. There is also a stark difference once you’re on Long Street. Our hostel was two streets up from Long St., but as soon as Long St. ended, so did any people. When all three of us were together we felt fairly safe walking the short distance though. There was an evening that just Laura and I went out and we wished, once we’d gotten back, that we had called a taxi because our nerves were so high. We had a hard time finding our hostel because Kyle had never actually driven to and around Cape Town by himself. He has always been driven around by his family that lives in the area, until this trip. That first night there, we stayed in a dorm style room at our backpackers. we were in there with 5 guys and it really smelled bad, so we’re happy we were only there one night!
Friday morning we woke up and locked our stuff in a closet until our private room was available. Wellyna and Laura had both heard of a church they wanted to go to for Good Friday service, so we called a taxi to take us there. The church was called Hillsong Church. They are known for recording and producing praise band music. They are well known among that circle of people. There are 4 main churches located around the world: Sydney (where it started), London, Cairo, and Cape Town. Across the street from this church was a shopping center where we decided to go eat lunch. From the restaurant we could see a few shops, so we decided to go in and look around. Unbeknownst to us, we had just walked into one of the largest shopping centers in all of South Africa with over 400 stores!! We ended up spending most of the rest of the day just exploring the mall. Seriously, all we did Friday afternoon was shop. It was fun and, seeing as shopping is one of Laura’s least favorite things to do, I am grateful she put up with the shopping all day. I can’t remember where we ate dinner Friday night, but all of the food we had in Cape Town was really good. It was more expensive than Grahamstown, but the same price as it would have been in America.
Saturday we decided to explore our more immediate surroundings. Our morning coffee place was Vida e Cafe (Life and Coffee in Portuguese). Their mochas are made with Lindt chocolate and they always accompany their drinks with a small piece of dark chocolate or (for Easter weekend) a small Lindt chocolate bunny rabbit. The baristas all seemed liked they were having a good time and were all very nice. They are also really quick at what they do. Laura and I showed up one morning and there was a long line (5 or 6 people in front of us) and we were ordered and walking out of there with our drinks after only 6 minutes! After a lazy morning of drinking our coffee, we walked back to Long Street to see what it was like during the day. There were still lots of people, but the shops were open. We walked along the length of Long Street looking in little shops and finding antique stores (one of Laura’s passions). There were many boutique stores with little merchandise, but high prices. We enjoyed mostly just looking at the different kinds of fashion that is popular here. Bright colors are a must, but other than that the style seems pretty much the same. It is not uncommon to see someone wearing bright red skinny jeans and bright blue top with yellow accent jewelry. Our day out ended at the Green Market Square. It is a square with a brick ground where people set up stalls and sell the same things we have found in every other market. It was interesting to see how much more money they would ask for than the market in Port Elizabeth though.
Cheers for now! Part 2 coming soon!