Cape Town Stories 2017

I shared this video earlier on Twitter, but I’ve decided that I want to pop it on here too.

I’m not a huge Casey Neistat follower, although he does have a bloody nice drone [Ed: soon!!!], but I think that one has to admire what he has achieved in this weird, new media space that has recently appeared.

For a guy who really shouldn’t be at all down to earth, he’s remarkably… well… down to earth. His wife is South African, and thus they come over to Cape Town for summer each year. Herewith, his Cape Town Stories 2017 video, featuring some great shots of the city and a chilled few days over Christmas.

I really can’t see this sort of exposure doing our tourist industry any harm whatsoever… Nice.

Documenting the fires

(…and lots of other stuff too.)

I first noticed Sullivan Photography when Justin Sullivan (for it is he) took some images of some gratuitous violence on the UCT campus during the recent ‘Fees Must Fall’ protests. But as a documentary photographer, he’s been concentrating on the wildfires that plague the Cape region at this time of year, and he’s come up with some more gems from Somerset West overnight.

These were snaffled from Facebook, so the image quality won’t be all that, but the composition, the drama and the devastation is all too clear to see.

The latest reports from the Somerset West fire this morning suggest that it is still far from under control, and with high temperatures and strong winds forecast for the rest of the day, the firefighters have got their work cut out for them. Again.

UPDATE: Here [facebook link] are some more of Justin’s photos from this morning.

Back to work with Brian Bilston

So… how was your Christmas?

I thought that we’d got a lot done in a couple of weeks, but Brian’s break seems to have been far busier. Gardening and painting, by the sounds of it.
Golly. I’ll bet his wife will love the new look when she gets back from visiting her sister (or wherever he said she’d gone).


With apologies to William Shakespeare:

Is this a keyboard which I see before me, the… er… the keys toward my hand? Come, let me type upon thee. I have thee not (actually, I do have thee), and yet I see thee still. Art thou not, fatal vision, sensible to feeling as to sight? (as I said, you are) or art thou but a keyboard of the mind, a false creation?

No. No, it’s definitely here. Though the radio signal from thee seems rather faint. Maybe that’s the source of the problems here. Perchance new batteries are required.

It’s nice to be typing a blog post entry on a computer for the first time in a few weeks. Sure, you can write blog posts from your phone, but the keyboard is small, the screen is minimal, the interface isn’t great and autocarrot plays havoc with your spelling. None of those issues here.

But no, very definitely back in Cape Town and with several or more tasks to catch up on before heading back to the lab tomorrow (where I am sure there will be even more tasks), at least I am now sitting in front of a real computer and typing on real keys, rather than pixels.

The reason I’m sitting here is because I’ve been uploading a few photos onto Flickr. And I mean a few. I mentioned somewhere on here that I had done very little photography over the summer break, but even I was surprised at just how little. The weather wasn’t conducive to any night time shooting – either because of clouds or the high winds – and when it was, there was a lot of light pollution around because of the tourists flocking into Cape Agulhas. And during the day, I’m happy to report that we spent a good deal of time chilling out, dozing and reading, rather than braving the heat of the day and getting some photos taken.

I see no problem with this approach to holidays.

Anyway, those images that were taken (all few of them) can be found here.

The return

After a superb New Year on Struisbaai Beach, where the Afrikaners drink enough brandy to drown out the terrifying, owl-scaring fireworks, we’re back in Cape Town for our last day off work, which – continuing the firework talk – I’m expecting may be something like a damp squib.

Still, it’s still holiday and I’ve always been a huge fan of squibs (or in fact any cephalopods).

Tonight needs to be a gentle one, an early one, but we’re still going to fit in a bit of Amazon Prime viewing (part of my Xmas present from the long-suffering Mrs 6000). Their $2.99 (R42) introductory deal seems excellent value and has drawn us in hook, line and sinker.

Some photo uploadage tomorrow and we’ll be right back on track for 6000 miles… (The 2017 version).

See you there.