TARTS AND TOWNSHIPS

There were carriages everywhere we looked in Vienna as if part of the city had got stuck in the 17th century, although the prices they quoted for a short ride were very much 21st century.

All the museum and art galleries were sensibly grouped together, so it was easy to walk from one to the other. In between, hot dog stalls were very popular, with every variety of sausage and every condiment you could think of. We were frequent visitors.

This is not the museum area because for some reason I didn’t take a photo, but they form 3 sides of a square and so conveniently in one area.

One place we had to eat though was Café Central. A revolutionary (Trotsky), a psychoanalyst (Freud), several writers and poets (including Polgar, Zweig and Altenberg) and an architect (Loos) walked into a café.

What sounds like the start of a joke was an everyday occurrence at Café Central (est. 1876). Over coffee, cake and the odd cigar, some of the greatest poets, philosophers and – it has to be said – storytellers the world has ever seen, got together in Vienna’s most attractive coffeehouse.

And then there was me as well! It was very difficult to choose which cakes to have while I tried to infuse the greatness of the past.

IMG_0846

HISTORY

John II of Castile married twice and his second choice was to Princess Isabella of Portugal and that was a big mistake!

OLD Q ISABELLA CASTILE

Now do please note that she is kneeling down and this is very important to the story, so please remember it.

In the cold, bleak town of Avila, in this dark and threatening castle, the Queen gave birth to a daughter, Isabella. She was second in line to the throne after her half-brother Henry. Then her mother had another boy and so now little baby Isabella was third in line.  She’s not expecting to be queen now.

ADD BREAK

GAUT BP02 townhouse

This is a street in Alexandra township which is a little to the north of Johannesburg town centre. Neat red brick houses were first built there as an upmarket area, but it was designated as a ‘native township’ and because this was before the 1913 Land Act, it was one of the few urban areas in the country where black people could own land under freehold title. We filmed in there several times, but always with a respected member of the community and a few extra helpers. With our expensive camera gear, we were great targets for the skabengas (gangsters/thieves).GUT BP02 Children crossing

Crossing the road can be quite dangerous – a kindergarten in Alexandra township.

So many people moved into the area and erected shacks in the gardens and alongside the road, that the services could no longer cope. It deteriorated into a large, sprawling slum, and several attempts have been made to upgrade living conditions, often thwarted by upsurges in violence.

I’ve written many stories about our visits in the townships in Truth, Lies and Propaganda.  https://www.books2read.com/u/47kzYN

We had many uplifting experiences and an amazing insight into other lives, both good, bad and funny.

You can check out all my books here:  http://lucindaeclarkeauthor.com

Something for everyone, memoirs and traveling, humour and action/adventure.

Till next week, take care.

Lucinda

PS: If you’d like a Thursday guest slot on my blog, either pm me on Facebook or drop me an email:     lucinda@lucindaeclarke.com

2 thoughts on “TARTS AND TOWNSHIPS

  1. Ha ha that was the idea an intriguing title! I write about my travels, and I’m now doing a bit about Africa each week. Many of the stories I’m using come from one of my “Truth, Lies and Propaganda” memoir books, which I wrote mostly for myself as a reminder of what I’ve done as the memory starts to fade 🙂

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