Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Art, Buildings, Soccer, Zingara and a Moonboot- Two weeks in Jozi!

I have had some awesome fun in the "City of Gold" in the last couple of usual. So please check out whats been happening in my life and in Johannesburg!

School Tour of FNB Stadium with 124 kids
I was contacted a few months ago by a small rural school in Hobhouse in the Freestate. They were interested in a tour of some of Johannesburg's stadium's. We put a few packages together which they could choose from but they could only take the most simple package (tour of FNB Stadium) we offered due to a serious lack of funds. My company Past Experiences then decided to sponsor the kids worksheets, pens and party packs. We were lucky enough to get additional funding by our bookkeeper which meant that we could give them really awesome party packs. A few days before the school visit we went on a tour at the stadium ourselves. Its really fun as you get to go behind the scenes and see the change rooms, VIP areas and so much more. The kids then went on a similar tour a couple of days later but were lucky enough to have it done in Zulu as English isn't their home language. The kids and teachers had an absolutely awesome time at the stadium and were so appreciative of their worksheets and packs. I would love to organise more tours like this particularly for underprivileged schools. If anyone is interested in funding an outing we would be happy to organise the schools and events!

Fashion Kapitol Update
I did an inner city shopping tour a couple of weeks ago and was so excited to see that the new "Fashion Kapitol" development in the city is starting to open and has some exciting tenants. My favourite so far is the "Fashion Shack" which has the most stunning shweshwe clutch purses! I bought one for a friends birthday and now i want one as well.

Beautiful Building in Fox Street
I was in the CBD doing research the other day and stumbled into the most stunning building! I wish i could live in it...the green tiles and roof are just stunning.

Creative Jozi- A Public Art Tour of the Inner City
I will be doing a public art tour of the city this Sunday the 3rd of October. I will write more about it afterwards but just thought I would give it a quick mention as Joburg has such a stunning array of art dotted around the city and I am just so proud of it!

Madame Zingara
I was lucky enough to go to the opening night of Madame Zingara last weekend. It is absolutely amazing! It takes place in an old circus tent (apparently one of the last remaining mirror tents in the world) and basically you are treated to the most amazing circus/ performance. It is so stylish and reminds me of an old carnival or the circus in "Big Fish". The service is fantastic and the food is Delicious-mezze platter, ravioli, Thai green curry (or for the meat eaters chocolate chili steak) and an array of little puddings! I have heard that it can be quite pricey but i cant recommend it enough! Madame Zingara simply rocks. It will be in Joburg until February so go and check it out!

My Moonboot!
And finally (but maybe most importantly as it effects every single thing I do for the next 6 weeks) I am now wearing one of those moonboot/cast things! Last week Tuesday i basically fell over myself at my parents house and I have fractured two bones in my big really badly (basically crushed it) and the other just a normal fracture. It was so painful and now i have to wear this moonboot for 6 weeks but i have blinged it up with some stickers to cheer me up. Also my job is all about walking around the inner city and my bar job is also about moving! So basically I am screwed but thats life and I am just going to have to make a plan.

So from a hobbling Joburg Tour Guide..write soon!

(Please note- some of the pictures (the better ones basically) were taken by Justin Du Piesanie of Shutterproof Photography)

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Jozi's Spring Awesomeness!!

I Love Hot Weather! Everything is so much better when the weather is fantastically warm. Joburg has seen the change in seasons in the last couple of weeks and I'm sure most people are LOVING it! With the World Cup over, Past Experiences has been really quite so after doing some marketing I am now working on new products and doing research. I have been super busy as usual in and around Joburg with some great events and visits so please check it out:

Braamfontein Rejuvination
I dont know if anyone has been to Braamfontein recently but it is looking fantastic. Their are some great regeneration projects going all over the area. I went on a walk about with South Point the other day and saw some of the work in the area. i don't want to forget the smaller independent projects going on but because the walk around was with South Point that's what I am going to focus on. The have done some amazing projects in the area and have loads of things planned. They have new bars, a gym, student accommodation and loads more. What i like about what they are doing is that it isn't aimed at wealthy people who want to live in expensive inner city loft apartments and go to fancy restaurants and art gallery's. Their apartments etc are aimed at University students and the prices are budget but everything is really young and stylish. My favourite South Point project is definitely Hotel lamunu. Its awesome. Every floor is dedicated to a famous Wits Graduate. The rooms are small but lovely and the restaurant is really cute. They have the best bran muffins I have ever tasted! Yum...cant wait to go back. Don't forget we do an awesome tour of the area called "Bustling Braamfontein" which looks at the history and future of Braamfontein.

Sci-Bono Murder Mystery Evening
We went to such an unique evening at the Science museum in Newtown a couple of weeks ago. They had a Murder Mystery evening.I should say that I am the hugest Agatha Christie fan and i love mystery novels so i loved it. Me and Tania (one of my favourite friends) got so into solving the murder. We got to look at the murder scene and then question the "staff" who were around on the night. We didn't win but it was loads of fun.

The Sketchbook Project 2011
I have been teaching myself to draw/ paint/ sketch recently. I did art for matric but we had a really substandard teacher and when you have to do art according to a deadline and for marks...its not so fun! I haven't really done any art for about 8 years and so I am definitely out of practise. Its been loads of fun just painting whatever I like. The reason i am "finding my inner artist" at the moment is because I am taking part in the Sketchbook Project. This is a project where you get sent a sketchbook from America, you choose a theme and then can basically do whatever you like to fill it up. You then send it back to them and it goes on a touring exhibition through America. The sketchbooks will end up in the Brooklyn Art Library. My theme is "'d be home by now" and I am so excited!

Northcliff Hill
I know that I have written about Northcliff hill before but it has such a stunning view. We (me, My boyfriend Justin and best friend Kezhia) drove up to the top of the hill to look at the view on Saturday. Its stunning! Their is also a security guard their on a Saturday so its a safe and cheap way to spend an afternoon.

Breakfast with Alex in her stunning garden
We went for breakfast at my friend Alex's house on Sunday. Alex is a chef and cooks the most awesome food. We had flapjacks and they were too Delicious for words!Alex's mom Sally has the most stunning garden and the flowers and trees in the garden at the moment are so beautiful! We are actually going back this afternoon to take photos. Joburg is springtime is just the best!

Joburg Theatre Complex
I went on a great walk around of the Joburg Theatre Complex (old Civic Theatre)yesterday. We went backstage and onto the stage which was really interesting and fun. The props for the pantomime are already their..the giant sparkly clams and pirate boat are so fun. At the moment a musical version of Jock of the Bushveld is on and the stage (set designed by Stan Knight) looks really great. I loved the tulle trees that looked so real from far away! Past Experiences is definitely going to do a tour here soon.

Liliesleaf Farm
If you know me at all, you know how passionate I am about South Africa, Joburg and its past. One of the many parts of our history I am fascinated by is the Rivonia Treason Trial and Liliesleaf Farm. I watched a 3 part series on the events and now I'm hooked! I think Nelson Mandela's words at the trial are probably some of the most important and inspirational ever said in our history:

"During my lifetime I have dedicated myself to the struggle of the African people. I have fought against white domination, and I have fought against black domination. I have cherished the ideal of a democratic and free society in which all persons live together in harmony and with equal opportunities. It is an ideal which I hope to live for and to achieve. But if needs be, it is an ideal for which I am prepared to die." Nelson Mandela (Rivonia Treason Trial)

Liliesleaf Farm is where many of those sentenced at the Rivonia Treason Trial were caught and is such a fantastic place to visit. I loved all of it but my favourite part was the vehicle that was used by Umkhonto We Sizwe (ANC armed wing)to bring weapons into the country in the 1980's. Its cover was a Safari Vehicle and all the tourists on board had no idea they were sitting on limpet Mines and AK47's. Its pretty crazy but really fascinating. We will also be doing a tour of this site soon!

Ill write again soon...The Joburg Tour Guide