Love Song for the Kompasberg and An Invasion

NB

I sit, bundled in my blush-pink scarf that has seen better days, but has also seen many things, its wool slightly stretched, slightly baubled. A bit like me. Through the open door the garden stretches toward the Kompasberg, which is starting to blush, too, as the sun lowers in the sky. The enormous Karoo sky.

Autumn is here, the air is crisp, the smell of the dust roads mingles with that of fires in hearths. Each time I return, to this place that holds my heart, I am amazed by its beauty, left breathless by the swathes of stars in the night sky, the wide blue day skies, dotted with clouds.

It takes a few days to shed the layers of the city. Like an onion, peeling away the skins of noisy, sticky city air.

My house in the city got burgled yesterday. The house-sitter phoned me, horrified, the cupboards all stripped, clothes scattered, somebody else’s breath left in our rooms, our spaces. A window broken, burglar bars pushed in, invasion.

It’s far away from here. But it’s still here, my dreams were filled with it last night, swirling darkly. The sun rose on this little valley and its lovely people, who I’ve grown to love, tugging me from those dreams.

Sitting on the stoep of The Karoo Lamb this morning, drinking coffee, we wave, greet, are greeted by all the now-familiar characters of this tiny magical place, camera-bedecked tourists between them.

An exciting plastic truck race is happening on the corner, the blonde-haired pair – brother and fairy-like sister – bums in the air, pushing the trucks across the dusty road as three horses pass by, their riders riding bare-backed, a gangly foal galloping behind, the beating of their hooves fading into the dust.

Moerkoffie. Solving the world’s problems, letting them dissolve into the golden Karoo sunshine.

For now, I am here.

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