Southern Suburbs water problems today

Thursday, 10th May 2018

As you will read below, if you live in that long, thin sliver twixt the M3 and railway line: we’re talking Wynberg, Meadowridge, Diep River, Bergvliet, Tokai, Kirstenhof, Lakeside and all the way down to Clovelly etc, you might notice some issues with your water supply for the rest of the day. This is why:

Oops.

Feel free to spread the wealth.

Patina

Boys Dinner with the MBCC last night and we headed out for steak.

Steak, as discussed with the Tall Accountant en route, is one of those things that’s  easy to do well (no pun intended), but for precisely that reason, is difficult to excel at. There are lots of very good steak places, but there are very few excellent steak places, because cook it right and it’s about as good as it can get.

Or so we thought.

Patina had been recommended to us by several friends. And all of them said that it was an excellent steak place. The expectations bar had been set high, and we went in ready to be wowed or  disappointed.

It was a wow.

I’ve eaten a lot of steak in my life. Add the other 175+ years (eina) of experience around the table and you have a veritable panel of steak expertise. And yet it was widely agreed that this was the best that any of us have ever tasted.

That’s not to say that previous excellent steak places haven’t also been excellent. Barristers remains a favourite – I’ve never had a bad steak there in my (or more) visits. But this was something else. I enjoyed a 300g fillet with chunky chips (others raved about the risotto) and a blue cheese sauce, A couple of sides of onion rings completed the main course picture and I banged in a stonking Affogato for good measure.

The food was amazing, the wine was great, they have Stella Artois on tap and the service (Wilfred from Malawi – “He’s a Lilongwe from home”) was perfect.

It’s not cheap, mind. And if you’re going to charge those sort of prices, you need to back it up with a very special experience. Patina did that and more. Quite incredible, and now my new go-to steak house.

This was not a paid review. I had a good night and I think you deserve one too. You should go here.

Patina
35 Dean St, Newlands, Cape Town
021 823 9739

Skeleton Gorge Fire News

If you live in or around the Southern Suburbs of Cape Town, you’ll likely have seen or heard the fire helicopters doing their work on a fire in Skeleton Gorge yesterday afternoon and again this morning.

I don’t have any statistics to hand, but many of the wildfires in the Cape Town area are caused by humans: either maliciously (arson) or accidentally (carelessly discarded cigarette butts, glass bottles etc). As this fire was in an area which is frequented by hikers, I was guess that this one was going to be one of these accidental ignitions.

But no.

Enviro fire investigators were tasked by the Table Mountain National Park to investigate the origin and cause of the fire that started around 15h00 in the Skeleton Gorge area. We can confirm on behalf of SANParks that the cause of this fire was as a result of a massive rock fall that caused huge amounts of heat and sparks to be generated when the falling boulders struck other rocks, setting the grass and leaves alight which then quickly spread up the steep slope. 

Wow. Nature is out to kill us, even when we’re not out trying to kill Nature.

I find it incredible that heat and sparks from a rockfall could trigger a wildfire, but if it could happen (which it clearly can) then bone-dry Cape Town is the perfect candidate for it right now.

As proven yesterday.

Funny, not funny

Nuclear disasters aren’t very amusing. Fortunately, they only happen very, very occasionally: so much so that you can probably only name the same Big Three that I can.

This story references a nuclear disaster that hasn’t happened yet. Indeed, there’s no evidence or suggestion that it ever will. And that’s why I feel that I’m allowed to find it a bit amusing.

First off, in the event of a nuclear accident at Koeberg (Koeberg being our local nuclear power station (the only one in Africa, nogal)), my first instinct would not be to head to the city centre anyway. Given that Koeberg is pretty much in the bottom corner of Africa, I would hesitate to head further into the bottom corner of Africa should there be any sort of radioactive leak.

That’s not where you want to be. Especially if it’s going to take you three hours to get there.

Additionally, should Koeberg go bang bang, residents in (Uns)Table View will surely not be the only ones anxious to vacate the general area. I reside in the much more gentile, verdant, pleasant surroundings of the Southern Suburbs, but in the unlikely event of Koeberg going off, I’m not going to hang around to see what happens next: I’m heading out of Cape Town along with everyone else. I’ll review the situation from the interminable queues in godforsaken Somerset West or something. I shouldn’t really have to say this, but Table View’s local traffic congestion is really just one small part of a much, much bigger problem if one or both of our local nuclear reactors happen to meltdown.

But then, why would you drive anyway?

Another resident, Cindy Welch, said it recently took her an hour to reach Table View High School, which is four kilometres away from her home, due to traffic congestion.

You’re not stuck in the traffic, Cindy; you are the traffic.

Four kilometres is entirely walkable. Or jogable. Or cyclable. Especially if the motorised alternative is going to take an hour. And even more so if there’s a big explodey mushroom cloud lighting up the sky behind you. I reckon you’d be shocked as to how quickly you can get yourself 4km from your current location with just the gentle persuasion of an impending nuclear catastrophe for assistance, Cindy.

Of course, all this is assuming the worst case scenario, which is a full reactor core meltdown at 8am on a wet Monday morning in August.

And that’s a rather pessimistic approach, isn’t it?

There are many other days, other times and other prevailing meteorological conditions on and under which Koeberg might conceivably explode. For example, it might happen 3am on a Sunday and the roads of Table View might be completely empty.

In which case, a quick getaway is almost completely guaranteed.

So why are we spending millions and millions of Rands on bigger roads, just in case the apocalypse happens during morning rush hour? Madness.

I’m here to suggest a controversial – but actually rather reasonable – alternative. Instead of building more roads connecting Table View to everywhere else, why not just build a Big Wall and isolate Table View from everywhere else?

Hear. Me. Out.

Firstly, this will clearly benefit anyone living outside Table View. Remember that:

approximately 40 500 people use the R27 from Table View to the city each day

well, they’ll immediately be taken out of the equation and will be unable to cause congestion on the other major escape routes out of the city, meaning that other, normal people will have more chance of survival.
Additionally, if the wall is big enough, it might actually contain some of the nuclear fallout from any Koeberg disaster.

Double bonus.

And as for the unfortunate residents of Table View, well, are they really any worse off?

No. Not at all.

As this news article clearly states, they were never going to successfully make it out alive anyway. You’re never going to outrun a deadly cloud of enriched uranium particles going at four kilometres an hour. It’ll take you an hour to even get to the High School, which – like you – will be completely and overwhelmingly contaminated by the time you get there. You might as well just stay where you are and see if you develop any (more) interesting mutations ahead of your inevitable death.

The City of Cape Town don’t have a great record in listening to my amazing ideas, but I suppose that they might have seen the whole iceberg thing as being a bridge too far. Simply diverting funds which have already been allocated for road building on the West Coast across to wall building on the West Coast really doesn’t seem too difficult, especially given the evidence I have presented here.

I’ll sent Patricia an email – I’m sure she’s not got much on her plate at the moment.

Gone yachting

I like writing about yachting. There are hundreds of opportunities to slip yachting puns into your post, but it’s ok: yaw knot going to ketch me reaching for any of them. (Although I might pop one in schooner or later, so don’t go aweigh.)

But I digress. Often.

The Boy Wonder had a great weekend, which included a sunset cruise for a birthday party. The boat he was on was fairly impressive (friends, all you can eat sushi, on-board DJ), but the boat he saw while he was out there was on a whole other (sea) level.

Meet CLOUDBREAK, freshly into Cape Town from Tristan de Cunha.

72 point 5 metres of luxury yacht, with 22 staff for the 12 guests, who are housed in 1 master suite, 3 double and 2 twin cabins. Swimming pool, helicopter landing pad (because… well, obviously you need to park it somewhere), jacuzzi, and a tender garage for all your James Bond moment requirements. Jet skis, kayaks, flyboard, windsurfers. In case you get bored of the on-board cinema. Wow.

What’s more, by utilising YachtEye technology, charterers are able to trace the course of their passage in real-time on a collection of iPads found throughout the yacht. As impressive in its subtleties as its more obvious design features, CLOUDBREAK is finished with heated flooring in the ensuite facilities and totally automated doors.

And it can all be yours from just €750,000 (R10.7m) a week.

“Plus expenses.”

I’ve checked my bank account, and it being in that deliciously misleading bit twixt pay day and debit orders, I reckon I can afford almost 3 minutes and I’m off down to the Waterfront to cash it in right now.

If you’re reading this in Cape Town today (as in the day that I wrote it: 26th Feb 2018), CLOUDBREAK is still moored outside Mugg and Bean at the Waterfront if you want to go and have a look.

No touchies though, ok? Much like the rest of us, you simply can’t afford the cleaning bills.