On ramp to the N3 highway which is about 500 meters from my cottage.
A view of the N3 toll road through the rolling hills of the KZN midlands, looking south east. Toll fee for the 100 kilometer trip to Pietermaritzburg, R32 about $5, Time to cover the distance at +- 120km per hour, 50 minutes. The highway stretches north from here for about 400km to Johannesburg. About 190km south east from here lies the port city of Durban, Africa's largest port. This highway is one of SA's main export and import routes. Usually this highway is crowded with huge trucks, this photo was taken on a Sunday morning. Long stretches of the highway, through especially steep places, has three lanes on each side, rather than two as seen here. The wide centre median leaves lots of room for widening the highway later.
Watching people at the mall and listening to conversations I get the idea that shopping has become entertainment, no longer something done out of necessity. If you're bored go to the mall and entertain yourself with some shopping. Kids getting underfoot at home during the holidays or over the weekend. Give them some money and dump them at the mall.
A town or city's reputation depends on the size of the mall, or how many you have! There's talk of a mini mall being built in Estcourt, and the residents are beside themselves with excitement. A mall, we have arrived, and now have some status.
The rain is pouring down.
The food hall in the mall. The Boulder Creek Spur on the right is the place to go if you feel like a big steak or spare-rib. There are Spur restaurants in most towns and all the big cities in South Africa, and they all have an American names, there decor themes are all a South African idea of the Wild West. Food to satisfy any taste. We went to the Mug & Bean coffee shop for breakfast and coffee.
To us two country bumpkins it sounds like the baristas speak a foreign language, (barista is strange enough) coffee is not just coffee, always has a foreign name, not quite sure what you're ordering. But we did get some fantastic coffee, drink as much as you want, and a breakfast that was worth every cent. The service is slick and fast, and the baristas extremely helpful and friendly, left a large tip.
The actual reason for going to the mall was to sort out a problem with my cell phone at the customer care centre of the company with which I have my cell phone contract. I was helped quickly and efficiently by a friendly young Zulu man named Andile. He typed some arcane code into his computer, my cell phone number and viola problem solved Always nice when you come across someone who knows what he is doing, and obviously likes doing it. The Italian Leprechaun had some bank business to attend to, his problem was just as quickly sorted out.
Ended up in the Exclusive Books book shop and bought these two books. I have a compulsive disorder when it comes to books, just have no willpower. But I think they were worth it. The Italian leprechaun and I have been coming to the mall once a month for about two years now and we only know three or four places, coffee shop, Christian book shop, Exclusive Books, and Cape Union Mart, the outdoor and camping supply shop.
Who's the Italian leprechaun? He's my colleague and friend, also fellow traveller on the road of faith. Teaches grade seven class at the school where I work as librarian. Real name, Enrico Bucceri. Father of Italian extraction and mother of Irish. He is no Italian Stallion, so I thought Leprechaun was more apt.
A master at his profession and all children just love him. One of his learners said to him a while back; "Sir, you are not a real grown-up, sir." Describes him in a nut shell. Much to the chagrin of the principal and more up-tight colleaques he might spend half a day teaching his class how to fold paper planes and then fly them out the top story window of his classroom, but make no mistake, academics do not get neglected.