Sunday, October 7, 2012

Cape Town's Tourist Dump

Dear Cape Town City Counsellors,
           How about coming round to my dump next week for a cocktail party? You would all be very welcome especially you guys from the Democratic Alliance now that you are running the show after the African National Congress made such a mess of things when it was their turn.
          Let’s make it on Monday at 6.00 pm for 10.00 pm. Sorry for this short notice but I wanted you to come when the entrance to the suburb where I live is looking its best. It wouldn’t be truthful to say it’s blooming although it is very colourful.
          I’m convinced you’ll agree with me when you come that even the scent of the flowers at Kirstenbosch Botanic Gardens doesn’t compare with the aroma at my place.
          There’ll be plenty to drink and snacks for Africa. The money’s coming out of our  Housing Fund because us residents agreed unanimously, after several protest marches, that it was more important to get you councilors here at least once every 10 years than having more houses. You can then see the enormous progress that is being made right under your noses.
          To make the event as much fun as possible all I ask is that you bring a plastic, rubbish bag. You can bring more than one if you are totally committed to that greening the earth thing. As soon as you arrive I will organise you into teams. But don’t not come for fear that I will mix DAs with ANCs because nothing like that’s going to happen.
          The wining team will be rewarded with double the amount of wine of that consumed by the rest of you in keeping with the true Cape tradition.
          Oh sorry I forgot the most important thing. At my age, born at the time of the great rinderpest plague, my brain goes off-line a bit more often than when I was two. You’ll be please to hear that it’s nothing onerous. All you have to do is fill up as many bags as you can with rubbish in the four hours between six and 10.
          You won’t have to go far to find it. There’s stacks at Masiphumelele (Masi to its friends) where I and my family have lived in the same conditions since 1895. If you’ve never been here, not to worry. All you do is drive along Kommetjie Road from the Fish Hoek direction and when you see huge piles of household refuse on the righthand side of the road that's where you'll find me. It's a well known landmark. 
          No end of tourists in those great big coaches and in their hired cars have remarked that this view has been one of the highlights of their visit to Cape Town because they’ve never seen anything like it. As you might know they have to pass it on their way to Cape Point.
          It’s just as well that Sir Francis Drake is no longer around otherwise he would have had to revise his opinion about this being the fairest Cape in all Christendom. I think that’s what he said although it was a bit before my time. Or was it that Vasco da Gama chap? No he didn't speak English did he?
          Anyway I hope you’ll all do the good deed thing and attend the party and enter into the spirit of the evening. I’m really getting sick and tired of my friends and relatives constantly saying, Are you still living in that dump?
          Drunkenly yours,
          Jon

*According to the False Bay Echo the head of the City Council's cleaning department, Claire McKinnon says the complaints are a lot of rubbish because the mess in Masi is the fault of the residents. She says it's civil disobediance as every resident has access to a weekly refuse collection via bins or free bags. So there!             

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