Going to see the Cape

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We’ve now lived in South Africa for nearly 18 months. Next month is our last and, in this period, not once have we visited Cape Town. We’ve been there three years ago, but that’s no excuse when you’re living this close. So we spent the weekend there.

One of the first things that struck us were the absurd number of Dutchies around. We had a hard time not feeling like bloody tourists.

On Friday, after getting up way too early to head out to the nearby (for us) international airport of Lanseria, not OR Tambo, one of the first things we did was visit the Two Oceans Aquarium. In a few ways, it’s less interesting compared to the aquarium in Swakopmund, but also has a few huge displays which are extremely impressive. And a tank with what looks like thousands of Nemos.
Another impressive aquarium is the one with the giant spider crabs. They are scary. Although they also reminded me of Zoidberg (from Futurama), their primary resemblance is indeed with spiders. And they’re huge.
The ones we saw were about 40cm high, but fully grown individuals can be up to one meter tall(!!). They live off the Japanese coast, typically at a depth of some 500 meters, so chances of bumping into them are minimal.
But imagine walking down some beach and a cluster of these beasts approaching you from the distance.

(Note: The Wikipedia page on spider crabs maintains they can reach a body size of up to 37cm. If body size means height, we saw the tallest in existence, which I strongly doubt.)

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We had dinner at Biesmiellah, a Cape Malay restaurant in the Bo-Kaap area (that is, muslim Cape Town). What makes Cape Malay curries stand out from regular Indian curries, is that they tend to be sweet. My dish, Pienang Curry, was, most likely, the best curry I’ve eve tasted. It was mouth watering from start to finish, if a bit expensive at around 70 Rand.
Approaching the restaurant, for a few seconds, I felt like being back in Kabul. The architectural style, lots of glass, plastic and neon, coupled with the smell of grilled meat and lots of youth hanging around with little street lighting gave me a very un-African impression.