Easter is nearly upon us and so the Littles are on their school holidays and we are escaping Angola for a week and heading to Cape Town. The excitement in the Foley household is palpable. In all honesty we could be going anywhere and still be high on the thought of getting out. I am giddy with fantasies of being able to stroll safely down the street, go to restaurants where I shan’t be fleeced for a deeply disappointing meal that takes hours to appear, buy fresh milk, not have to pick weevils out of pasta and run somewhere where my sweat can evaporate and not fill my running shoes to the point where I squelch the last 5 km.
As I type this my husband is busy making a family sized packed lunch for the plane. We’re flying with Air Namibia and there’s no telling what the food will be like. I m horrible when I m hungry so he feels that the extra kilo of Marmite sandwiches that we’ll have to hump around is well worth it. I’m taking a risk by not overseeing the sandwich making proceedings as he is not a Marmite eater and, in ignorance, tends to spread it like jam – my gums will still be throbbing into next week. We’re stopping over in Windhoek, capital of Namibia, but I m not sure if 1.5 hours in an airport allows us to say that we’ve really visited the place. I’m hoping that it’s a decent plane as my fear of flying continues to put a dampener on any trip by air. Number 2 child (6 years) has an obsession with catastrophes this week and has been busy drawing pictures of planes being hit by either lightning or tornadoes and falling apart and passengers falling out. Just looking at them makes me want to practice my breathing exercises and get into the brace position.
My only reservation about leaving is the fact that it’s the rainy season and we have had an almost unprecedented amount of rainfall. This in itself is not a bad thing, although there has been severe flooding to the south, the problem for us is that our home is like a sieve and every time the heavens open we have to strategically place towels around the house. After the rain we get an influx of creepy crawlies and slugs which can fit through the gaps at the bottom of our exterior doors. The snails would join the party too but their shells prevent them from squeezing through the gap so they just watch through the window. Luckily we have many house lizards which help to remove some of the unwanted guests, I just wish they would stop using my shoes as hideouts.
There is an ominous bulge on the ceiling in the living room and every time it rains it gets a little fatter. It’s like a giant abscess and everyday I have to resist the urge to lance it with a sharpened pencil.
I am in no doubt that once we hit South Africa we will be in such a state of bliss that we wouldn’t care if our Angolan house got so water-logged that it washed down the road and into the sea.
We recently learnt the hard way that it isn’t wise to visit the beach within 48 hours of heavy rain. Our boat taxi pulled up to the shore and as we disembarked into the surf we were forced to navigate our way through a wide variety of rubbish including dirty nappies (diapers) and a very smelly dead dog. Having gone to all the effort of making a picnic and hauling all of our beach equipment there, we were not going to let any amount of human detritus or putrid animals put us off from a fun day at the beach. We consumed our ham sandwiches and built a couple of sandcastles before leaping back into the boat and racing home to thoroughly disinfect ourselves.
The beaches of Cape Town will be a far cry from our local patch of sand and on that note I better go and finish packing…..