There was a Xenopoulos legend about Jason’s father that when, as a teenager, he came out to South Africa from post-war Cyprus, he was so excited about the world he travelled towards that he forgot to look back at the small island he was leaving. As I travelled, on a surprisingly cold summer’s day away from the pristine skies of Cape Town to this new life in this new land – I looked back...
Looking back in love and gratitude at the mountain under whose protection we have lived for nearly twenty years.
Looking back in love and gratitude to all the Friday night dinners and Sunday lunches that went on way past midnight. At the meals that Nosipho cooked and the house that Craig built.
Looking back and holding on to the smell of jasmine wafting through the house on a spring night and the pink bougainvillea that grew out of a pot and over the world entire.
Gratitude to all the writing workshops I gave; and to the workshops I attended.
To the Book Lounge that hosted the coolest launches and the teachers who nurtured my children.
Looking back to when the Shorts were still short and we went every single morning to the beach and it was slightly shabby and the sand got into all the immaculately prepared, healthy snacks; but we forced the kids to eat them anyways coz they were healthy.
Looking back in love and gratitude to the early mornings, when mothers congregated with tea and toddlers.
Looking back in love and gratitude to the summers when Cape Town was so hot we thought we might expire. The winters when there was so much rain the house flooded and even to the winters when the weather forgot to rain.
Looking back at the weeks, months enveloped in darkness, under a fog of depression. Love and gratitude to the doctors and friends who gently coerced me back into the world. This sunny, sad, happy, crazy beautiful and diabolical world.
Looking back at family weekends in Babylonstoren and Stanford.
Looking back with laughter to our very first trip together, when we drove to Cape Town and you said we were the joker and the thief. And now, here we are in this, your city, 25 years later, still amazed at how much love we have stolen or been given in this life.
As I step forward I am looking back, as far forward as I might step, please God I will always look both inwards and backwards at the glorious life we have had in the magical town of the Cape...
And in the divine words of Arnold Schwarzenegger… Cape Town, “I’ll be back...”