As a Melville resident and passionate lover of all things Melvillian, I have an inferiority complex about the nearby suburb of Parkhurst.
I’ve ranted about this before so I’ll keep it brief. But basically, many Joburg residents are under the mistaken impression that Melville — once a Utopian gathering place for bohemian intelligentsia and hotbed for Jozi fun — has now deteriorated into a rat-infested drug den. Even some Melville residents fall into this trap, glorifying the old days when Melville had the Bassline and Soi Restaurant, and bemoaning the fact that today’s Melville isn’t more like Parkhurst, the bustling neighborhood to the north.
Don’t get me wrong — I like Parkhurst just fine. It has lovely restaurants and coffee houses, trendy shops, and a charming village vibe. Parkhurst even has a rad tattoo parlour. It’s a bit…shiny for me, and on weekends it’s overrun with preppy students and drunk 20-somethings. But other than that I have nothing bad to say about it.
Except for one thing: Parkhurst isn’t Melville. Continue Reading
I love living in Melville because it’s a walkable neighborhood. However, “walkable” is a relative term. I can walk up to 7th Street to meet a friend for dinner, but walking home alone at night is a risk. And although walking from one place to another within Melville is easy, traveling on foot from Melville to any of the nearby suburbs — Parkview, Emmerentia, Greenside etc. — is a mission.
Melville is walkable, but the walkers need a little help. That’s where e-tuktuk comes in.
An e-tuktuk and its driver, Matthews. Continue Reading
I had a photo exhibition last night, at the IT Corner in Melville. It was really cool.
Poetry, like many other things, is different in Africa than in other parts of the world.
Thumelo, a South African poet, performs today at the Sophiatown Bar & Lounge in Melville.
African poets — at least the majority of the African poets I’ve seen perform around here — don’t “read” or “recite” their poetry. They express it. The words pour/tumble/erupt/spit straight from their souls into the air around them, flooding their audiences with emotion. We do our best to catch and savor every word, but they come at us too fast. So instead of listening, we just feel. Continue Reading
My camera was at the repair shop for much of this week, which gave me a great excuse to shoot more pictures with my iPad.
The perfect rose, shot in a garden in Northcliff. Once you get used to using it, the iPad is great for still-life/macro shots. Just find the perfect angle, hold your hand steady, and wait for it to focus.
A couple of weeks ago I had brunch at Anita and Johnson’s house. There were many quality Instagram photo-ops at this brunch, and it was such a classic Melville Sunday. I decided it was worthy of a blog post.
All photos shot with Instagram, of course.
It’s been a while since I’ve done an Instagram for Art’s Sake post. Here’s a shot that I took right as I woke up yesterday morning. The Melville Cat had just finished a bath and was about to go outside for a morning stroll. I grabbed the iPad (always next to my bed these days) and caught the scene just before Smokey departed.
I think this frame really captures that Sunday morning feeling.
From the Melville Cat:
Heather told me about her Instagram for Art’s Sake project. Since most of the Instagram photos Heather takes are of me (which makes sense — I’m the most interesting member of this household), I decided to submit my own post for the project. A Cat-a-Gram, if you will.
Installment #2 in the Instagram for Art’s Sake series.
A tree fern in the garden of the Lucky 5 Star. New fronds are in the foreground, old fronds are in the background.
I’ve always been a storyteller. For the last two years, this blog has been a place where I combine words and photos to tell stories. I haven’t thought of my photos as creative or artistic, at least not consciously. First and foremost, my photos are storytelling tools.
Until now. A couple of weeks ago, I got an iPad and discovered Instagram. I’m slightly ashamed to be so enamored by this gimmick. But nonetheless, I am. Thanks to Instagram, I’ve started taking pictures just for the hell of it. Instagramming for art’s sake. And since taking photos in public with an iPad looks really dorky (I don’t want to be one of THOSE people), I’ve been doing most of my Instagram artwork at home, in and around the Lucky 5 Star. Continue Reading