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  • Writer's pictureTim and Lindsey

Spotted Willy? No, it’s Spotted Dick - Day 382

We went to a show today and the star complained about Britain's Spotted Willy! No, it's Spotted Dick!!

We meet such lovely people staying at Airbnb. It is so much more personal than Hotels. We got back yesterday and there waiting for us was a tin with 6 fresh muffins from Janet. Delicious and healthy with bran, oats, banana, apple and orange peel. This morning Charles made us coffee, and we sat chatting with our hosts about all manner of things, including property prices in London. Two of their three children live in south London, so we compared notes.

The highlight of today was to see #Evita se Perron, South African’s version of Dame Edna Everage. In fact, this is the reason that we came to Darling in the first place. The show started at 2pm, so we popped into the Darling Museum on the way. This sweet, well-displayed museum was started by the local Women’s Agriculture Association in 1978 to preserve the butter making history of the area and has since grown to depict the history of the village from when it was founded in 1853. The exhibits portrayed a glimpse of times gone by of the doctor’s surgery, post office, general store and bar with interesting facts of the people who ran them. There was also a school paid for by the villagers rather than the government which educated children of mixed race.

We arrived for the show. The theatre building might have been an old train station and now converted with the corrugated walls painted pale pink. We walked into a darkened room covered in landscape paintings on the walls, fairy lights on the ceiling, a small stage with a large cactus in a colourful pot and shown to our table. Near to us was an elderly man who was a fan, and had purchased Evita’s cookbook, wanting to get it autographed after the show. He gave us a brief summary of his life, originally from Czechoslovakia, his Mum escaped with him, aged 4 and his siblings when the Germans occupied the country. Again, in 1968, when Russian tanks arrived in Prague, he left his home, eventually arriving in South Africa. He came to Darling 25 years ago and now loves living here. We do meet fascinating people.

On with the show! Pieter-Dirk Uys as his alter-ego Evita Bezuidenhout arrived on stage in a floaty chiffon zebra dress. He, or should I say, she chatted with the audience, first to some young boys, mainly in Afrikaans, and then asked if there were anyone from overseas. A table of young people raised their hands, as we did. They were at University in the Netherlands together and here on work experience. She joked with the audience about the state of Europe, especially with Britain and Brexit and then questioned where we were from. Of course, there was a huge laugh when we said England. She asked whereabouts, and we said that we had sold our house and travelling around the world. There were lots of ribbing about us being homeless and that there was a house down the road we could buy for £42. Interestingly, she did ask if we were writing a book.

The show went on, and she gave a potted history of the Afrikaans and politics in South Africa, but stating that everyone has been duped by the politicians, and gave her own account, of course, all highly amusing. The history lesson started with Jan van Riebeeck arriving with his mother and the cactus plant, not with his wife as the history books say. Onto the Huguenots and then the British. Yes, I am sure you can imagine that she laid into the Brits and was very rude about our Bread and Butter pudding as well as our Spotted Willy. I corrected her – Spotted Dick. There was a massive painting of the Battle of the Blood River behind her, showing the Afrikaans shooting at the Zulus. She made out that it was a party and the Afrikaans were shooting the Springbok for a braai with the Zulus were dancing; the British were jealous that they weren’t invited to the party.

She was very “complimentary” of the Americans; how the Afrikaans studied their treatment of the native Indians and used this for Apartheid. Trevor Noah also mentioned this in his book “Born of Crime” which I’ve finished reading now. The show was funny in a satirical way; however I do think to get the full effect of the show, you need to understand Afrikaans. We stopped off at the Marmalade Cat café for a late lunch, with the cat sitting on my lap for most of the meal, and on our way home, a man yelled out of his car window if we had found a home yet. We then realised that he was at the show and had a laugh. He did compliment us for being such good sports. We aim to please.

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