You walk into the airport to walk out of the airport.
“Everything’s five minutes away,” I’m told.
This is a full-on work trip and time is not lenient, so I don’t get to see the big hole or the diamonds this unassuming dorpie is claim-famed to. I spend the day in a building with inactive airconditioning, compensated only by the friendly willingness of the people I have to interview, the real diamonds in the dust.
It looked like rain in Johannesburg when I left in the a.m, but here it’s 29 celcius, and the sky is a stubborn blue.
Duties discharged and it’s back to the corridor through which I catch the return flight. It’s 4.30pm and the curio shop is closed. The waiting area is too small to people-watch, and I don’t want to come across as a loon. It’s a small town, you know how people talk. I wittle away time on
Mxit and Opera mini (glory, glory).
It begins to drizzle as I step onto the little plane. My window seat is seated right next to the propellor, and I found myself slipping hypnotic as i watch it pick up momentum until the edge of the blades disappear. That’s the super power I want, being able to move so fast, no one sees me. The buzz from the propellors is so loud, I stop hearing it, and I’m looking over the landscape, an abstract carpet. This is farming country; a Mondrian of reds, greens, yellows and browns, circles and geometrics.
Flying through the clouds, I indulge in pareidolia, seeing monsters and gods in the cumulus. I’m looking at the spires of a castle on a mountain with a mermaid in the moat, when I realise it’s sunset, time to break fast. A mid-air iftaar; I’ve packed dates and open SAA’s offering – salmon and cream cheese roulade and some fishy-lookin snoek (obvious pun intended). The salmon’s edible and I smile at the packet of Tumbles. Mmmm…. chocolate. In-flight catering finally gets something right.
Touch down Jhb straight into a traffic freeze. Scattered accidents and breakdowns convert the 20 minute commute to an hour and a half belly-crawl.
If I were in Kimberely, I’d be five minutes away.
was it a very small plane????
i rem flying one of those 4 seaters once and i thought the thing was gonna come crashing down the way it was shaking away! 🙂
dreamlife, QL – hope i get to gather some of those memories when i make a return trip.
mj – 🙂
hanna, Z, M, B – aw shucks thanks. i write to keep the rust away. Bilal, that’s the only drawback about travelling while fasting – cant really sample the local cuisine/franchised cholestorol.
i learn from the best:P
Stopped in Kimberly sometime- awesome chicken licken!!
My minds still reeling.. floating outside the airplan window over kimberly 😛 Awesome Post.
very well written missy! 🙂
points for u!
great post! I love the metaphors! 🙂
gaping hole in ground
lament, lack of disneyland
settle for big ditch
On a road trip with my dad, I travelled through most of the Northern Cape, beautiful, quaint, peaceful.
Mzanzi is gorgeous 😛
We went to Kimberly in junior school, for a school trip. From what I remember, the Big Hole was..um, big…but i wondered why there was water in it. And whether there were still diamonds there (under the water). Couldn’t get any clear shots of it because there’s a cage around it 🙁
It would be quite an experience, though, if there was no cage and you dove straight in – as if it was a pool. (I suppose Bungee Jumping would give the same rush though)
We went into a diamond mine, and through the security controls they have (seems quite intrusive – but hey, people swallow drugs to smuggle them – so diamonds are also swallowable…nice word, don’t u think? 😉
There were some nice buildings too, which we visited. I have no idea (anymore) what they were, but I’ve got the pix somewhere at home.
It was a History excursion; and looking back on it – aside from the History on display, its become a personal History as well…childhood memories 🙂