Thursday, 22 March 2012

Tussen Stasies

I'm feeling rather nostalgic for the early mornings when I would bust huge missions getting out of bed to make tea, braving the cold of the kitchen floor, forcing myself to get dressed for school. I miss the smell of the Jacarandas blooming in spring time and the feel of crunchy leaves as the smell of sunscreen fades and we start to close the windows rather than open them. I miss the sound of swimming children next door, and the early morning guitar playing that would wake me up on mornings I slept in. I miss the 3am phone calls from my brother asking me to let him in because he'd given up trying to put the key in the lock of the front door. I even miss the sad look in his eyes as the realisation of what he had become in his intoxicated state finally sets in and he stumbles to an upright position, me supporting his steps. I miss the smell of scrambled eggs as hangover cures and the muffled groan of Ben asleep on the couch. I miss the roar of motorcycle engines and the click of the kettle through heated discussions about girls and finding love. I miss the incessant renditions of "SERIOUSLY?!" and the arguments as to who would sing in the band. I miss the endless laughter from Candice and the spilled vodka that awaited us in the morning, cold from dew that had settled that night. I miss the braais, the people and the rowdy-ness that was the Henning Household.

I miss only needing to know that its the purple house on the corner and one street down from the Wimpy. I miss our drunken escapades through the streets of Melville for Joburg Burning and staying out just those few more minutes to catch the last acts in the form of 340ml and Fire Through the Window. I miss screaming for my favorite bands, in crowded bars. I miss meeting new people and having an instant connection through the vibrations of the speakers. I miss the missions we'd bust to see Desmond and the tutus. I miss the epic parties we'd have when we were there and I miss the quiet drive home after a night out in New Town. I miss the tangled rats nest that my hair would become and the lingering smell of ciggarets and beer that wafted through my bedroom the next morning. I miss stumbling to the shower before anyone noticed, I miss trying not to step on bundles of blankets that resemble my friends. I miss the memories that slowly become less blurred as one remembers the events of the night before and the stories of the epic bruise you find in the shower. I miss cleaning the congealed muck off my shoes and findong stamps on my wrist and fliers ion my bag. I miss the R5 coins. I miss the crumpled 20s. I miss the familiarity of the ringing in your ears and the
joy in your heart. I miss the warm nights and the cold beers. I miss African rain. I miss dancing in it.

People here: They don't understand the beauty of being able to go to The Boheimian  or Tipsy Gypsi every night, for a drink or some sweet tunes to the bitter taste of Zamelek. They could never even begin to understand the concept of being able to drive a little ways out of the city down to Splashy Fen, or having RAMfest not more than 4 minutes from your house. They will never understand the Jagermeister girls, or the thought of POGO pits. they will never understand the kind of mutual understanding of gig goers, to let you go to the front because you're short. They will never appreciate going stage diving at Cool Runnings Fourways and our constant protests and petitions to let the municipality not close down our pubs and bars..

So here's a video, that pretty much sums up the beauty of our Country, our City, the People that we all to easily forget come from the same place as us. We forget that we're united under the seven colours that make up our flag, those seven colours that greet me when I wake up in the morning. Weather we speak Zulu or English or Afrikaans the gesture for a lighter remains the same in every language. We forget that we're all part of the same generation. We forget that we're fighting for the same cause ansd no matter how hard we try, racisim is still a big part of life for us. People here don't understand the kind of society we come from, where you have shacks and mansions on the same streets. Where the languages of Africa are all around you and you have no choice but to listen past sounds and clicks but to peoples eyes, their hands, their emotions that they're pouring into their words, trying to express themselves.

Tonight was South Africa theme night, and I managed to make the nostalgic feelings for all things South African, friends and family, as well as food, dissipate for a good few hours whilst hanging out in the Etgar flat. I made Cape Malay Curry, but without the lamb and we ate it Bunny Chow style with bread rolls and a ban on cutlery. My favourite was watching everyone struggle to escape their Western ways and live a little cultural-y for once. They complained bitterly that it was too hot, but soaked up every last morsel on their plates with the (slightly) slate bread rolls. For desert we had Vetkoek.