Grannies gone wild in Durban
Wrong turns and tattoos make for a memorable family holiday, writes Sunday Times reader Magosi Magakwe
There we were, en route to Durban's South Coast from Germiston for a four-day holiday. My wife, our two kids and my mother-in-law were flying SAA; my mother was flying Mango because she liked their colours. It was my daughter's birthday weekend but the aim was to kill two birds with one stone and let the two grannies also dip their feet into the sea.
On landing at King Shaka International, I recalled my wife's morbid fear of driving in rented cars, especially with me as a passenger. I had to drive as I couldn't dare ask my mother-in-law. We punched our destination into the GPS and off we went.
We could smell the sea even though it was raining. Then the GPS told us we'd arrived, though we were still slap-bang in the middle of the N2 - we'd forgotten to update the software, and our phones were equally useless. It was going to be a long day.
RAIN STOPS PLAY
The next best thing was doing what most people would do: stop at a petrol station and ask for directions.
A kind gentleman told us to turn here, there, take the off-ramp and look for the big sign denoting our hotel.
I then proceeded to miss the off-ramp. Well, the rain was pelting down and the off-ramp was hidden (cough, cough).
Next thing, a signboard, AMANZIMTOTI 56km. Either we were lost, or, well, taking some grand detour.
We had to drive back and by then the rain had stopped and I had my confidence back.After a while, a big sign - our hotel - right on the beachfront. We'd arrived. Sigh. It started drizzling again and our plans for dipping our toes into the seas disappeared.
The rain didn't relent for the rest of the day and the kids just stood at the window looking out, bored. At least we had three more days.
Kids being kids, they just wanted to go gambolling outside. Well, tough luck.
OFF TO THE MARKET
The following day, a Friday, the rain showed no mercy. We had to rearrange our plans, rain or no rain, as I didn't want to drive in inner-city Durban.
We bought bus tickets and went to the Victoria Spice Market, which my mother had heard about from some friends.
Now the challenge was to figure out where we'd disembark. The onus fell on me to go and ask the driver, as the map inside the bus was a little confusing.
That done, had to keep the children occupied while the grannies shopped around. Ha! It was like the heavens had heard my silent prayer, as there was a Ms Pacman on the second floor.
That done, we waited and waited. We then decided to go looking for the grannies, as the weather was now favourable.
We couldn't ask around as there was a granny at every corner, on the same shopping mission.
After 30 minutes, we found them inside a henna tattoo shop. They claimed to have seen the henna being done on Top Billing and wanted to experience it. I didn't dare argue.
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