I went out for the first time in 2015 this past weekend. Having made certain resolutions that were easier to keep if I kept a low profile I was not trying to tempt fate by being out and about for most of January!
This weekend the City of Kings and Queens was graced by Tehn Diamond and Take Fizzo of Few Kings. The pair were in the city to perform at an after party for a cosmetics launch held in Bulawayo.
The after party was held at Horizon Club in the heart of the city. As I mentioned I have not been out for a while now and could barely recognize most of the faces in the crowd. Its either am getting real old or a new breed of party goers was in full attendance at the club.
Tehn is no stranger to Bulawayo, having shot his music video for “Grown Up Kid” in the city, as well as performing with Junior Brown and Take Fizzo at the NAMAs in 2013 held at City Hall.
I have been dying to see Tehn and Fizzo perform in Bulawayo. I have seen some of their performances in Harare but missed their NAMA performance two years back.
The set was very lively and the young crowd gathered around the performance area seemed to know each song that was being performed and sang along with much enthusiasm!
There is no denying the energy of Take Fizzo, who though on the decks for the entire performance kept the crowd pumped up and entertained! He is so fun to watch and makes you just want to get up and dance!
Among others performing at the party were my Bulawayo favs ” The Djembe Monks”. I love these guys and they never disappoint!
Overall the night was a different experience for me. It was interesting to see a whole other group of Bulawayo people I never see out and see how they party and have a good time.
There also seemed to be a lot of cameras flashing and recording going on, with several interviews going on simultaneously! Excited to see where all this footage will be aired and is this heralding the rise of new tv shows for the Bulawayo community? And if so I am keen to know what the audience’s response will be to what seems to be young and hip entertainment shows!
2014 has certainly been a crazy year! Filled with many ups and downs but I am so grateful for all those who stood by me through each moment and as the year draws to an end am super excited to see what 2014 has in store for me!
In looking back, I see nothing to regret and little to correct. -John C. Calhoun
A friend will soon be launching a groovy and fun line of unisex pants. We had a shoot this weekend for the line! I always enjoy the laid back and relaxed shoots. We shot at an abandoned train and had some interesting themes going!
The website of the clothing line will be launched soon and I must say will be worth looking out for!
Fashion is a language. Some know it, some learn it, some never will – like an instinct.
Today the world over celebrates Earth Day! NASA has come up with an exciting world wide campaign to promote Earth Day! The campaign involves individuals world over posting pictures of their current location with the hashtag #GlobalSelfie. Not to be one to miss out on the global campaign, I took a selfie at the Hillside Dams in Bulawayo today!
“Those who contemplate the beauty of the earth find reserves of strength that will endure as long as life lasts.” ― Rachel Carson,
There is no denying that any native of Bulawayo knows without a doubt that the Zimbabwe International Trade Fair is the highlight of our city! The city comes alive, hotels are fully booked, most business is booming and my all time favorite…”Luna Park” comes to town
For many years as children we looked forward to going to “Luna Park” especially at night with all the lights were on! Luna Park not only had amazing rides, you also got to enjoy cotton candy and toffee apples. With age the very old Luna Park seemed to lose its lustre and I lost all interest in even going to the Luna Park. Having experienced outrageous theme parks abroad our old raggedy Luna Park had lost its appeal. Today while driving past the trade fair grounds my attention was caught by the already lit up Luna Park. I stop and am glad to say it was the wisest decision I made.
The rides might not be fast and fancy causing an adrenaline rush but something about the old rides gave them a certain appeal. Although quite vintage, the entire atmosphere felt very romantic and more than anything I would have loved to spend the evening there with my special someone. There is also the great nostalgic feeling which sparks memories of happy childhoods making the Luna Park a more than perfect place to go for a fun and carefree date this week in Bulawayo.
I must warn you though, it may not be as calm and quiet as it was today but give it a go, live a little and take a well deserved walk down memory lane.
And we should consider every day lost on which we have not danced at least once. And we should call every truth false which was not accompanied by at least one laugh.
One of my past time activities is playing tourist in the beautiful city of Bulawayo. While looking for ideal locations for an upcoming photo shoot we discovered this abandoned train whose inside looked recently charred by fire. It had such character and makes for such a great location for an unconventional shoot. Looking forward to returning here next week for the actual photo shoot!
Blessed are they who see beautiful things in humble places where other people see nothing. Camille Pissarro
I have always considered myself a street smart and socially savvy progressive woman. I have traveled to a number of cosmopolitan cities and have quite easily adapted to their public transport systems. On a recent trip to Johannesburg I figured instead of laboring my brother with the task of driving me around I would try to use the public transport and travel around the city independently.
On arrival to the city I hopped on the Gautrain to Sandton which was quick, fast and painless. I already had my gold card, all i had to do was load it with cash and I was good to go. My real feel of Joburg transport only started when I hopped onto a metered taxi from the Gautrain Station to my brother’s house. When I got into the cab and let him know where I was going we agreed on a certain amount which I was happy with and off we went. Upon arrival at my brother’s house the gentleman decided my accent and my luggage warranted for me to be charged more and he raised the fare! I was so upset and after 5minutes of unproductive arguing we parted ways, he an extra R100 richer.
After settling in I set off to do my errands. Being already peeved by my cab experience I decided I would try out the ever popular Joburg Taxis! I inquired where I could catch one of these and walked to the stop. As far as I have experienced in Zimbabwe, there are two types of public transport operators; kombis and ipsums. Both are very standard and if you stand on the side of the street they will stop and take you to where you are going. The side of the street you stand on determines the final destination. Based on my neighborhood, if you stand on the left side of the street you are headed to town, if you stand on the right side you are either headed to the university or somewhere deeper within the neighborhood.
When I arrived at the stop I made the wrong assumption that any taxi that went by would stop. After standing at the stop for over 15minutes with no such luck, I observed a man raise his index finger and point it to the sky and immediately a taxi stopped! EUREKA I thought! I must point for a taxi to stop. The next taxi that came by honked and I pointed to the sky and BOOM just like that it stopped. I figured seeing as I was not familiar with where I was going I should sit in the front seat with the driver and so I jumped into the front.
A few minutes later other people started getting on the taxi. Each person that came in would say sabona( hello) which for me was strange. I am not used to people being friendly when they ride in public transport. After driving for about ten minutes I realized the taxi was not headed in the direction I wanted to go but was too scared to ask where it was going and just figured I would take the scenic route to my final destination. Turns out by pointing into the sky I had indicated I wanted to go to town and that’s exactly where I was being taken! (TOWN IS NOT WHERE I WANTED TO GO)
As is tradition the passengers started passing along their fares. Unbeknownst to me the person seated in the front collects all the fares and calculates the change as well! So for every fare I received I just shoved the money into the glove compartment assuming the driver would at some point count his money and work out all the change. The real drama began when people had arrived at their various destinations and wanted to disembark but had not received their change. The people started shouting and screaming for their change and I was looking at the driver thinking, “Yeah buddie do your job”. The driver then turned to me and asked me why I had not given the people their change. It was at this point that I realized the insults were directed to me. Now I had the job of trying to figure how much change each person was to get. To worsen the situation turns out the fare for the taxi is not standard as is in Zimbabwe. In Zimbabwe generally it does not matter where you got onto the taxi, the general kombi fare is R5. Now it turns out some people had paid R11 some had paid R15. I just wished the earth could swallow me right at that point! Eventually we had the fare situation figured out and I finally worked up the nerve to ask the driver where the taxi was going! I then found out I was headed to town and if I wanted to get where I was originally headed I needed to ride two other taxis! At that point the pain I had endured was not worth it and I just completed my journey in a metered taxi where I didn’t have to play bus conductor and didn’t have to fear the retribution of angry taxi riders who hadn’t received their change.
However from my crazy taxi experience this is what I learned, before you ride a taxi you must:
1. Know where you are going!
Joburg is too big a place to be lost and not the safest place to be lost either! Save yourself the hustle of riding around in circles by knowing your final destination
2. Learn your hand signals
For every destination in Joburg there is a special hand signal. To avoid ending up on the wrong side of the city learn your hand signals and use them well
3. DO NOT SIT IN THE FRONT SEAT
Unless you enjoy calculating fares and playing bus conductor do not sit in the front seat. However avoid sitting right at the back too if you know your stop is one of the first ones. People generally do not like standing up and getting out of the taxi to let that one person seated right at the back out.
4. Be polite but STERN
Speak when spoken to and respond to all greetings. However do not be too friendly! Your friendliness might be mistaken for weakness and that makes you an easy target for thieves and pick pockets at the taxi ranks.
5. Know the Taxi Lingo
It is essential to know your taxi lingo lest you stick out like a sore thumb. It is not ok to yell: “I wanna get off here”, when you want to disembark. Terms like: After Robot, short left are quite nifty when indicating you would like to get off the taxi!
6. Always have a PLAN B!
Nowadays there is an app for everything! Find an app for taxis 🙂
Consider yourself schooled! You are now ready to ride a taxi in the bustling streets of Johannesburg. Remember if all else fails: stick to the Gautrain and metered taxis! Happy Travelling 🙂
“It is good to have an end to journey toward; but it is the journey that matters, in the end.”
― Ernest Hemingway
One of Bulawayo’s best kept secrets is the recently refurbished bar/lounge- The Groove. Previously known as the “Basement”, The Groove is located in the Basement of the Bulawayo Rainbow Hotel. The lounge is in a key location in the city, minutes away from Bulawayo’s diverse night scene. Just across the street is the famous Safari Bar, next to it is Dickies Traditional Kitchen and a walking distance away is “The Lounge”. However the new look “The Groove” brings a refreshing atmosphere to the area that already has three thriving establishments within a 100metre radius. Its a definite must see.
The upscale establishment attracts a younger and vibrant crowd and its convenient location makes accessing the spot very easy. Although its centrally located it is still very exclusive and is a great place to go hang and have drinks with friends.
The lounge setting creates an intimate atmosphere great for couples and friends who want to share conversation while listening to the live jazz performance offered at the establishment.
The Groove has a recurring Afro-Jazz theme as seen by the images displayed on the walls! The backdrop of the performance stage is a stunning image of South African Jazz Sensation Hugh Masekela. Images of other artists such as Zimbabwean Legend Oliver Mutukudzi as well as the Great Fela Kuti can be seen in the beautifully decorated lounge!
Thursday nights offer the best experience at the lounge! With acoustic style performances as well as a mature crowd. The establishment offers platters and specialty cocktails. For a change of scenery from Bulawayo’s usual night scene, check out The Groove!
I would give this place a definite 8 out of 10! Check it out and let me know what you think!