Category Archives: Music Festivals

The one where I did Victoria Falls in an Overlander Truck: PART II

The one where I did Victoria Falls in an Overlander Truck: PART II

“In this life journey we meet incredible people [that] our souls connect with instinctively. Last week I travelled with some amazing beings. We shared laughs, we shared food, we shared drinks, we shared care, we shared the little we had, we shared the abundance we had, we shared of ourselves, we shared sharing. They are my teachers and my friends. God knows the love I have for them.”

– Phindi, Truckmate 🙂

My Zimbabwe Trip

I’m not sure if there is any simpler and more heartfelt and right-on way I could say this. This is literally all I feel about my journey to Zimbabwe and all the wonderful people I met and got to know and formed a weird little bond with. But let me tell you a little about the greatest overlander truck to ever exist. Let me tell you a little about the people of Truck Hercules.

Nas and Bule: If there ever were a more laid back couple than these two, I don’t know of it. Nas was the first person I actually met, and she was excellently chill and so friendly. We kept on teasing Nas about how strict she is with Bule and he just kept laughing at us. That made sense, because the endearment with which the whole thing played out between the two of them was one of the sweetest things about them.They’re both very attractive as well, so everything makes sense. And to be fair, I think Nas is strict with everyone – she made me eat my food during the last supper. ILY, both.

Lusanda: This little lady is so spirited and such a creative individual you can almost see kaleidoscope emissions coming off her, the way those smelly squiggly lines come off of cartoon characters. It is unmissable and so cool. Also, she’s gorgeous and fearless. She helped me flirt with this Swiss boy at a party on the 30th. He was really hot and I turned into a blubbering mess when I saw his biceps. Lucie was kind enough to calmly coach me. She was also one of the few crazy people who went white water rafting on the Zambezi and I will physically fight anybody who thinks that is not thee most badass thing to friggin do.

Louise and Marcel: Whymisical Louise and her awesome love, Marcel. I may have been a little obsessed with these two’s union because it is so lovely and unadulterated and just all the things. I’m okay with that though, because I was not the only one who expressed how affected I was by the two of them and their love. We’d all just look on and sigh whenever they interacted. Above all that, I had the most amazing time hanging out with these guys – they are the truest jol to hang with.

Zintle: This girl took such good care of me. It was a few days before we actually sort of hung out but once we did, I couldn’t stop hugging her because she’s so bloody pretty, like a doll, and just kindest kid in class. There are lot of random things I made this tranquil spirit do but we also sat through Dumi’s sex counselling chat together, which kinda bonds you for life. We were inseperable after that – she’s the Vic Falls Yin to my Yang.

Dumi and Phindi: I want to say our charismatic leader but that feels hitlerish. Dumi was more like a big brother/resident sex counsellor/party starter. He is a presence – like a big one. And his particular person – yes, this is what he calls her – Phindi is very outspoken and she stares right into your eyes when she speaks. At first I felt like she was staring into my soul, which made me feel hella anxious, but I remembered she’s with Dumi, which means she’s probably insane. And insane people are the best people, so I got over myself.

TK and Derek. The two lovely big boys. Anybody who knows me, knows that big boys are my fave thing (Ugh, there’s no clean way to put that statement across, sorry). One was beautifully above average tall and the other had a laugh and ass that brought tears to my eyes. They were also quite adventurous. Like we all did a few activities, but these dudes had plans like everyday to some death defying shit. Kudos. I don’t have the balls – literally. They are such cool peoples. But by far the coolest thing about them is that they were with my tent mate, Simi!

Simi: Sim-ee, Sim sim, Now you Simi – my roomie! Simi and I were the only solo ladies and that’s how we ended up in a tent together. It was the beginning of the coolest roomship. Simi, like my dad, was born on the first day of the year. Amd we all gathered around in our campsite during the last supper and watched her welcome the new year and blow out the candles on her birthday. There was champers and there were tears. It was transcendental.

The Danish kids: Lars, Camilla and Simone. Lars and I sat next to each other on the bus, so we clocked in quiet a few hours in each other’s company. What were we doing most of the time? Sleeping. It’s almost like we were competing or something. At some point it felt like it was contagious and eventually our sleep times just started synching. Lars is so polite that he would feel so bad if he fell onto my shoulder by mistake – what a sweetie. Camilla and Simone were travelling with him and they remind me of doves, the way they’re so pretty and soft spoken. Made me think the whole time, are Danish people really quiet or are South Africans just really loud?

Mas and Nthabi: The two ladies with the dreads that went down to the arches of their backs #longdreadsdontcare – I’m being biased about this because I have dreadlocks, duh. Mas takes brilliant instagram-worthy photographs and she was always the first to wake up, and Nthabi is sweet but she was the first to be visibly gatvol when we got to the 1000 metre long queue at the South African border. I dig both of them – for all those reasons –  hugely.

Tim and Tiega: First of all, they sound like a sitcom, what’s not love? Also, they’re close friends and make me think of Portland, USA twenty-somethings… How I Met Your Mother, anyone? (I know its set in NY, don’t be a smartass). I just wanna make a show out of them because they’re so damn cool and wonderful and fun to chill with, godammit!

Harley from Australia: Harley, Harley, Harley… our charming Australian friend. There is so much to say about the upbeat, lone-wolf Mr Straya, especially from an American perspective, I think? 😛 But, what happens on Truck Hercules stays on Truck Hercules. We didn’t let him forget though  – in fact we had a right lekker time with it. It was nice – he was nice.

Ofentse and Thuli: Ofentse runs and Thuli is the queen of taking pictures. Ofentse is one half of the magic duo (the other half being Dumi) who prepared the last supper for us, the biggest gesture of our bond as Team Herc. And I don’t think there’s anybody on the truck who didn’t get a chance to be involved in an impromptu Thuli photoshoot with all her professional Kardashian poses. I think I took like 20 pictures of her at one spot at the Victoria Falls National Park – and it was my pleasure because she is a delight to be around.

Pete and her sister: Pete’s sister was quiet and honestly even when everybody was complaining about the heat or the queues, she also complained but with a smile. How? What a lovely lady. Pete was our resident photographer – she had like a real camera, not just a phone. And she was also more obsessed with mosquito spray than the rest of us. Great gals.

The older dudes: The suppliers of sage advice and unlimited red bulls. These guys were obviously more travelled than us, especially in Africa and they always had something really helpful or really funny to say about the places we were visiting. And I’m not mad about the cold water and energy drinks that they offered us during those smoulderingly hot days either. Hearts.

And last but not least, our drivers and uncles for all intensive purposes, Amious and Munya, four words. THEY. ARE. THE. BEST. I have been truly lucky to have met all of these funions and I appreciate that they exist and that they are all awesome. I love you, guys and thanks for the memories… *sniff sniff*

Overlander Truck Hercules Zimbabwe

Photo cred: Pete 🙂

The one where I did Victoria Falls in an Overlander Truck: PART I

The one where I did Victoria Falls in an Overlander Truck: PART I

I spent the last four days of 2015 and the first three days of 2016* seeing, Botswana, Zimbabwe and a little bit of Zambia. Of course I’d love this to be a super normal and straightforward post about the sites and sounds of this bizarre trip but it isn’t the sites and sounds that made this trip what it was for me. It was the people, and if you called me cheesy just then, I wish adult chicken pox on you, because this is very serious and I’m in my feels right now, k?

But let me indulge you.

This may take long and may even be strange for some people to read but I think, by now, you folks bother with this blog because you enjoy my strange stories. The overlander truck carried 25 other people who were complete strangers to me and most, to each other. But you spend 7 days eating, drinking, partying and sleeping with 25 other people in the bush (don’t be dirty) and all the rules and lines of everyday living and social codes are blurred (again don’t be dirty).

On Monday, we set off on a 650km drive from Benoni to Palapye, Botswana. Funny story; I was running late because Nkee and Sibo made me drink, the Sunday. Luckily, there was somebody who was way later than I was. If I’d missed this trip, I would have hung myself on a loose clothesline with some wet toilet paper.

I found Botswana okay enough. I think this is because I find ocean-less countries kind of underwhelming. Like, where’s your beach, bruh? Sun’s out, guns out? No? Mmkay. Also, we were so exhausted from the journey that even if there was pretty shit around, I wouldn’t have cared. We all just got off the truck, pitched our tents (not really, I got ahold of the demonstration tent like a boss) and headed to the bar, where we got treated to some nicely highly priced beverages. The Rand is not having a good time.

bad time

We woke up bright and early the following morning after a quick brekkie and started the 850km drive to Victoria Falls Town, Zimbabwe. Needless to say, it was hot and draining but everybody was a good sport about it, especially because we got to see a few elephants every now and again.

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We already had big plans for when we arrived in Vic Falls – we were going on a party train. Yeah, I know – we actually hopped on a train with a bar area and a dance floor in it and guess what happened next? It took us to another party where things got nice and messy. You wish you were there, bru, no doubt. I have no clear recollection of the party train ride home, I remember a winding railroad, lights and laughter and giddiness.

Breakfast was at around 10. The weird thing about festivals is that you can sleep really late and wake up at a normal time and not feel as crappy as you would at home. In the day that followed we visited, of course, the great Victoria Falls themselves and it was majestic. I usually only use the word majestic to describe a horse’s mane or godly arms on a dude, but man… this is where that word belongs. As we walked through the rainforest, snapping pictures and marveling at our surroundings, I thought to myself, this is so touristy but this is the most amazing thing I’ve ever seen. It was low season in December but there was still so much water and spray, I vowed to come back during high season one day. I literally felt like the water, falling heavily as I walked those paths, was cleansing me – no joke, and I felt the most elated I’d been in a long time.

vic

After taking all of that natural beauty in, we walked over the border to Zambia to lunch there. It pains me to say, I underestimated the sun and the walk and how much tourists get hustled for money. And mostly, during the whole trip, I underestimated just how much the Dollar was currently tearing the Rand a new one – all that RAND>DOLLAR>KWACHA exchanging had gotten me famished. It took us a bit of a walk around to find a nice air conditioned restaurant in Livingstone but we were very happy when we did. The walk back wasn’t as bad and we got home just in time to get ready and go party hopping all around Vic Falls Town. There were many parties, there was a Swiss boy and he was beautiful. It was mint.

It was so mint that we spent the following day vegging next to the pool, with our overpriced slushies and ciders. For the whole day. And played a game where I ended having to jump into the pool with all my clothes on. Eventually everybody jumped in too but I was bummed because I hate the game we were playing. Card games… ugh. At night we got onto one of the many shuttles transporting all the campers to the venue where the big finale concert was taking place. There was no alcohol allowed inside so we had to down our drinks at the gate. Or did we? Well, let’s just say, there was a part of the wall that the security personnel were neglecting and I was rolling with a bunch of badasses, and I’ll end it there. There is never really much to say about New Year’s parties because we’re all too busy getting into the fun of it all – and boy did I get into the fun of it all.

I think all of that fun and all that happiness surging though my skin helped me not to kill myself on the drive back to Botswana and further back home to South Africa. The border was dreadful and our truck had turned into a sauna, everybody was gatvol and nobody was chattering anymore – we had all become zombies. It wasn’t until we saw the network bars on our phones come alive and the last border behind us that our humanness was restored. And we arrived in Benoni, so happy to be back in SA but equally so happy we had gone to Zim and travelled with the world’s most amazing group of people and seen one of the world’s most amazing sites. And also Bots 😉

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*(this has been backdated for continuity and such, kthanksbye)

Throwback Thursday: Rise and Shine Festival

Throwback Thursday: Rise and Shine Festival

Described by the Urban Dictionary as:

Throwback Thursday
When you put a picture from a “while” ago on your social media sites.
Omg Throwback Thursday, I needa find a photo of myself from like hella long ago and post it on facebook.

#throwbackthursday
Throwbackthursday, usually written as `tbt`is an acronym that is commonly used with photos posted on the internet to show an activity that took place some time ago/before.
E.g #Throwbackthursday – Back then in college with my friend Janny… (picture attached).

Gosh, I love how simple these guys are with their definitions :’D The image below is a throwback of course – or else this whole intro would’ve been super confusing. During the month of March on the 28th, me and a few friends got to hang out with one of the coolest bands in South Africa right now, The Plastics, and it was awesome sauce. We did shooters with rockstars, dude!

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That one time we got to hang out with The Plastics a bit. Like irl. Like, thee best time at Rise and Shine Festival

Homecoming Picnic ’13

Homecoming Picnic ’13

HCP Girls
I don’t usually go to an event where I’m sure I know A LOT of people, especially people from uni. There are too many ghosts. ‘Ghosts’ are people who knew you before you got an actual fashion sense, got a job and  started making good dating decisions, actually ghosts are mainly the bad dating decisions you made in your naive varsity past. Homecoming Picnic is the best/worst place for these kinds of run-ins to happen because it is generally a jump (definition: really awesome soshe) and if there’s one thing all those bad dating decisions have in common, it’s knowing how to party. So regardless of the cons, the one big pro – plus my best friend Phiwee emotionally blackmailing me – sealed my HCP fate and I found myself at the Centurion Rugby club with a cooler bag and even cooler clothes on my back.

The event was well attended, and I might be understating that, with a nice little popular line-up featuring Pretoria’s beloved Kuli Chana, who I think I’ve only seen twice before. The host person, I think it’s called MC and I honestly don’t care, was Nomuzi from Mtv or whatevs and she was awesome because she did quite a bit of mc-ing coupled with quite a bit of ‘soft-twerking’ – a term coined by my other friend Juliet. I’ve been hearing about Homecoming Picnic for a while now but it was my first time going, because why not? I’m almost too old to go and nothing could have said that better than all the post-teen bad b*tches in twerking pants/printed leggings I was drowning in. True to form, I was also kinda drowning in ghost related things. I shall not dwell. Reason was really good, as usual. I mean, the dude really just makes me wanna watch and not walk around looking for alcohol or an ex, which is the best!

I came across the Cognac Conjure for the first time, very ‘ballin out of control’ and very not my thing, but it tastes fine enough. Night time came and it became a bit out of control. Male hormones and steroids took control, possible grinding babies, I got lost, everyone got lost… It was like a mosh pit of epic proportions, and I have those Malatji boys and their peoples to thank for all of that unorthodox fun. I might be bullied into going again next year… 😉

Photo courtesy of Nami I Was There

Oppikoppi ’13

Oppikoppi ’13

Bewilderbeast
Obviously, every year I put my body through the same awesome turmoil that is the dusty camping, rocking, falling, drinking, unified, merry mess that is Koppi. This year was no different and a bit different. This year I’m older and wiser… NOT. The Bewilderbeast had me very excited to enter it’s belly and vaguely see a great number of awesome bands, while bumping into friends I haven’t seen in weeks and months and others a year since the last Oppikoppi. Even though my favourite South African bands, like 340ml or the young men of December Streets were not in performing attendance, the fact that Oppikoppi is more of a culture than a simple music fest still had me as excited as a chubby teen rapidly dropping her baby fat unexpectedly. I missioned to Northamrockcity with one of my fav colleagues – I mean, he goes to Oppi, so he’s obvi cool, duh – and found myself happily inhaling that first dust by Wednesday night.

You can probably tell that I have very little to tell, because between the walking from stage to stage and being completely nake, I have no real review-like stuff for you. I saw a Mango Groove though… I saw Mango Groove, you guys. If Special Star doesn’t make you wanna get up and dance and be South African… You’re a douche, put a Madiba in the douchebag jar and go hang in King’s Landing with Joffrey, you heartless lunatic. I saw Toya Delazy – let me explain, I had lost my friends and her stage had the biggest vibe at the time. I was forced to look at her. Gods be good. And there were a number of other famous and non-famous people I saw in between that too. I particularly enjoyed Beatenberg, whom I also stumbled upon while searching for lost friends. I was too tired so I sat on the grass, continued partaking from my sippy cup and listened. Their lead seems like such an awesomely cool pothead and I would do bad things to the guitarist. Also, their music is pretty good, thoroughly enjoyed their set. There was another B-word band I saw, sounds something like Backuk or whatevs, I was too high on life by then but they were awesome! There was a cool poetry session at the Rayban Stage – who knew Afrikaans could sound so romantic. I made a few bad decisions but a couple of good  and fun ones too, because that’s what people do at Koppi. People make fun-bad decisions and get lost and found and find themselves and love everyone. That’s Oppikoppi Bewilderbeast!

Fête de la Musique

Fête de la Musique

20130727_173554When I woke up on the 27th of July, I had no real plans. Just the usual sort, you know get up, go buy junk and wine and get back inside my bed and await a sports game that’d be playing later on that day so I can go to my local pub. That is my usual Saturday regime and I’m supes content with it. But on this day, my friends gatecrashed my morning moping to drag me to some auto spares place so we could buy headlights and wipers *yawn*. Little did my lazy self know that it was the lacklustre beginning to an awesome day! After we got the car parts, we headed straight to Cool Runnings in Melville, which is a place I feel very comfortable being in – I possess dreadlocks and dub saved my life, so it’s like entering a realm where everyone thinks I’m gorg and awesome. A few drinks and some Ska later and we decided to head on over to the French Music Festival up the street. Do not ask why we didn’t think of doing this earlier.

Walking through the gates – there were no gates really but those barricade thingies which I always dub the Gates of Awesome when  I go out and about – the first thing that greeted me was… Food stalls. Are you kidding?! Juhdlwolouichlueujv. Sweet potato chips, Some weird bread with veggies in it, other bread with stuff on it, spring rolls and I got try Chinese Beer! It’s in a green can and it’s called Tzingtao and it’s as cool as any – probably more cool to carry around than to drink. And honestly, I’m not sure if I even got the chance to try anything French out. I caught a bit of the TUMI performance and a bit of the Muffinz. Yeah, I know I’m supposed to see some music when I’m at a music festival, but for me, ‘festival’ time is ‘walk around and inhale the beauty around  me’ time. And oh was there beauty… I spoke to some wonderful Spanish girls while waiting in the Pita line, let’s just say my Spanish is not what it used to be and it wasn’t that great to start with, so. I saw a few boys who could definitely be future Mr Funimal (so many beards and veldskoene). The streets were swarming with culture and vibrant colours and people. Music was coming from all directions, lights hanging over our heads all the way down the closed off street, honestly felt like I was in another country for a bit.

Mostly I got to bond a lot with my best friend over Chinese beer and something that looked like Chinese wine/vodka, I dunno. It was awesome and I’m so amped to do it again next year!

Get Dirty ’13

Get Dirty ’13

get dirty gig picDon’t worry – this is nothing inappropriate. It’s just a clever play on words Converse used to refer to their massive jam at Mary Fitzgerald Square in the greater Jhb. I’m not sure if I’d planned on going all the way to Jozi to jam or I just had the cabins and made it a point I was out of the house. I have a strong feeling it was the fear of missing out – people call it FOMO but I don’t really like using that term because I feel like I’m saying Omo and I’m not sure if I like washing powder brands enough to use them in my everyday vocab (Surf is an exception – it’s unavoidable).

The event boasted a pretty kick-ass line-up but as always, you never get to see everything at gigs like that, especially since there were three stages and a merry-go-round swing gold reef city type thing. And all of that is actually what made it kick-ass. They had Shadowclub, Blk Jks, Jeremy Loops and I’m pretty sure I saw Zebra and Giraffe during that haze of awesomeness but it was a very cold night and there was tequila involved so I could be wrong about that last one.

The good thing about inner city Johannesburg is that the chances of ghosts (exes) appearing out of nowhere are pleasantly low, so you’re just out there, bobbing your head to great music, partaking in some ale and having a great time with pretentious hipster strangers. It’s all good. Apart from good looking indie boys and a a fantastic jol, I was looking forward to seeing my beloved BLK JKS. I love them! So you can imagine my err… shock when I see that the lead is missing and there are two other randos ‘joining them’ on stage. What? I must say my loyalty is pretty serious, so I was obvi a bit numb throughout the the performance, even though their new set and sound are pretty good. So because my friends and I are pretty forward under the influence we decided to walk up to the dude who plays guitar for the Blk Jks, Mpumi. “Hey, we didn’t see Linda up there. Is he sick? Is he on hiatus?” we asked. “The Blk Jks is nobody’s mother,” responded the handsome boy with the never-ending, never-moving afro. And so we got our answer. I must say, I’m heartbroken seeing as I had a Stacy Jaxx and the character played by Malin Akerman type stalkationship with the lead of the Blk Jks.

Anyhoo, the do was awesome. The music was mint and I had a blast. Can’t wait for the next one.

Shoes are boring. Wear sneakers!

Oppikoppi ’12

Oppikoppi ’12

311526_2340378115741_6559681_nAugust you dirty old thing, you have brought much drama and confusion into my life (all pronounced excitement). Every year this month I go to the super festival that is on a hill in a faraway dusty land with thorn bushes and a city of tents, our source of life, the freedom of the wild, rock music and barrels of alcohol. This year was a bit too full but it was almost completely worth seeing and meeting all the faces I hadn’t seen. And one face in particular. The face of one Mr – we’ll call him gentle giant – I would have opted for super gorgeous Viking god but gentle giant seems less stalker-like.

Now, I have a lot of crushes. Everyone does. They come and go, they are on different types of people for different reasons. But my crush on the gentle giant lasted about four years. He’s my unattainable, my ceiling, and part of me likes it that way. I don’t understand people that always get what they want, they never get that burning longing and I enjoy that stuff, makes me feel alive – no, I’m not a masochist. So as you can guess my music festival experience was made when I encountered the gentle giant walking down that dusty hill in all his super gorgeous Viking godness. My friend obviously pushed me to talk to him. I never spoke to him before really. Because I can’t, my mouth won’t allow me to. Anyway, so I tried to say ‘hi’ but it was downhill from there… it was a sad sad attempt at sparking conversation. And I hope the next time I bump into him I’m a renowned author without a stammer. That’s all I wish for.

I came back from Oppikoppi with the usual dust, looking like I had been trekking in Somalia, complexion confused, liver bowed out and soul shattered. I needed a pick me up so I did the unspeakable. I read a bestselling novel. COTCH.  I read Fifty Shades of Grey. To be honest, I didn’t know what to expect, didn’t have much to go on except what I saw on Saturday Night Live, that women secretly read it from their Kindles and masturbate to it on Mother’s Day. What I discovered was worse than that whole disturbing sentence about moms. Maybe the other mistake was buying a grocery bag full of snacks and a bottle of wine to read it, I don’t know.