Sunday, September 21, 2008

Bonjour tristesse

No, not a 1960s New Wave movie actress -- Francoise Hardy perhaps? -- but my granddaughter Juliet, at Camden Lock during our recent London jaunt, her first ever trip abroad. Gosh, I never realised how many shoe shops there were in and around the West End. Or clothing stalls in Camden Lock market. I needed a new pair of shoes myself after the apparel adventure. Still, Julie finally came up with a cool leather-style jacket and a pair of ankle boots that apparently gained her supercool status among her pals. And I did get to Forbidden Planet for a book buying spree.

Downsides: seeing off Julie's many admirers, or chancers, who popped up every time my back was turned. Just about everywhere. And given the value of our rand (1 pound = 15 rand), we did a lot of gasping in horror: R50 for a coffee! R30 for a busfare! And so on. In general, transport and food prices seem to have risen exponentially. Clothing, books, music, DVDs and entertainment, reasonable. However our accommodation was a beautifully appointed four-bedroom house in Acton, free, thanks to an internet house swop. They got my two-bed pad on the mountainside in Fish Hoek, near the beach.

Am enthused by the internet thing. Paris next ( had to turn down a nice central apartment) , or Rome (ditto).

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