Tuesday, 17 April 2012

Where the sun shines

Dearest Blog

With weary eyes, limbs and spirits we have returned from the land of my birth, my heart held space, my childhood and memory filled space. Durban, South Africa, how can I begin to describe you? Your red soil, wild flowers, open green spaces, Indian ocean, wild life, humming crickets, melting tar, humid sweaty sleeps, spar-letta sweetness, hadeda cries, women singing in Zulu, animal skins, rusty cars, sub-tropical banana trees, sugar cane fields, shoeless children, thorny paths, telegraph poles to the sky, your beating taxi's, beaded crafts, rich coffee, accents, ijuba, cacti, fruit abundance, acacia and jasmine scents, suburbia, downtown markets, chaotic driving, bunny chows and bean roti's, fraud and corruption, paintings of the hurt, tribal rituals, familiar ground, Sunday Tribune, Koo jam, Mandela fabric, irritable warm wind, poverty, heart of darkness, your history, your restless discontent, your beat of change.

Hand printed t-shirt

Tala game reserve

Durban sun set

Amahewu (maize based porridge)

African Art Centre - Florida Road, Durban

Kikoi wrap

My all time favourite frangi pangi

Open spaces

African Angels

Mummy and baby


General Store - Howick

Inside the General Store



Hand made, restored, revived and recycled shop: Mooi

Childhood nostalgia tomato sauce: All Gold

Lazy lizard

The blue and the green

The breeze

Granny and Grampa's girl

Beautiful friendships

Local is lekker

Pink leaves

Delicious prickly succulents


Rusty enamel mugs

Bug on Bougainvillea

Scooby wire

Zulu dance


Red dirt

Another day in paradise

Nkosi Sikelel' iAfrika


  1. What a beatiful post and lovely photo's. Your heart really is in Africa . dee x

  2. Oh Penelope, thanks. I just returned from South Africa on Saturday morning - with my Irishman and little man. The little boy returned with dirty, hard feet and broken dirty toenails....LOVED that he refused to wear shoes for three whole weeks... Our visit had some sadness too, I had a miscarriage there on Easter Saturday. Thank you for your beatiful photo's. KwaZulu Natal and the Drakensberge is a place we're planning on showing my two men next visit. Hope Alice and your husband also enjoyed every minute.

  3. What a gorgeous post, I'm so excited that you've been back to SA again Penelope! I bet you'll spend hours poring over your photos and reenjoying it all.....the scents and sounds all impressed in your memories.

    My in-laws hav been back for two months now, but quite clearly would rather be in SA. They spend a couple of weeks in Durban with friends normally and then go onto their home in Fish Hoek....they are definitely at their happiest there, but then as that is where their kids (my hubby and his sister) were born, I think that's where their hearts and happy memories truly are.

    So glad to have you back and hope you can keep enjoying those special moments again and again.

  4. Oh what a delicious description you've given - without even seeing your photographs I could feel myself right there! It looks so wonderful, I hope you had a fantastic trip :-)

  5. What gorgeous, gorgeous photos hon! It sounds like an absolutely amazing trip.

  6. You have brought back so many memories - I grew up in Amanzimtoti not far south from Durbs (by die see!) and for a short while worked in West Street Durban in an office. Wow - every picture made me go 'yes' or 'Ja'! thank you x

  7. So that's where you've been. Seems you've been in the right place catching up on your memories and making a few more. Thanks for sharing some of your trip as it looks wonderful.


  8. Your photo's say it all, what a beautiful space you have been in, thank you so much for sharing it with us. Just what I need to get me off to work today.
    xx Sandi

  9. I have long since learned not to let myself be homesick for South Africa and not to think too much about it. But all your photos are so accurate, have so beautifully captured the essence of African living, and encapsulated my own life there, and you have made me YEARN to set foot on that soil again. A real, deep hankering. It will have to be quieted.

    Lovely stuff. Just wonderful. Glad you had such a marvellous holiday.

    And just in case you don't get back to my blog, there is a vintage and handmade fair in St Leonards at the Azur restaurant, downstairs, on 13 May, and then another one at St Barnabas Church in Bexhill on 26 May.

  10. Aaah, another South African cries with homesickness. So beautiful, and all the things you showed bring memories and joy. Thank you for the pictures and the words. One to add 'Mrs Balls Chutney!'

  11. Ah, beautiful pictures! The strelitzia one makes me think of my brother - he had one as a house-plant but it never did very well. Then he went to Malawi on a work trip and saw them growing everywhere outside. He decided he was going to give up on his as it would never look anything like the ones he saw there!

  12. beautiful photos Penelope, wow, what ana amazing place you are from, it must have been so hard to leave and come home to your new home.
    Thank you for sharing your pictures with us, I could almost feel like I was there.
    Lovely to hear from you, I have missed you over the last few weeks XXXXX

  13. Lovely! South Africa is very much in my heart as well as my husband is South African and I have family on my side living there as well. I have spent many a happy week at my families home in Southbroom near Durban. Beautiful place! My husband talks about All Gold tomato sauce and I have just had a sandwich with Mrs Ball's chutney inside! My favourite! Thank you for your blog. I have been reading it for quite a few months now. Rachel x

  14. *sigh* ... BREATHTAKING !!!! Awesome, and now deffo on my 'wish-to-visit'-list...

  15. Wow, what amazing photographs... it looks and sounds like you had a fantastic time.
    I think I'll have to put S. Africa on my list of places to visit *one of these days*

  16. What beautiful photos - you have really given us a sense of the place with your words and pictures. Lovely. x

  17. Wow! I had to go back and look at the pics a second time. Thank you for sharing this.

  18. Another world!! So beautiful! And these are amazing images Penelope, thank you so much for sharing them :D

  19. Hi, I just nominated you for the Versatile Blogger Award! See the nomination here: http://cuteasabutton82.wordpress.com/2012/04/20/another-award/
    Thanks for sharing all your lovely ideas with us :)

  20. Hi Penelope, In 2010 I had a wonderful "once in a lifetime holiday" to your beautiful country, you must miss it - especially the colours, the people and the sun. We had only a brief stop in Durban, but enjoyed it very much. It was a touring holiday and we went to Mala Mala game park and so many beautiful places. Thank you for sharing your memories :0)
    Val xx

  21. Going home is always wonderful. Especially since you've been living so far away. I love learning about new cultures but u also love my own. Traveling is one of my favorite things and it enriches your live like nutting else.