Monday, January 12, 2009

Adopted at 30

For the past weekend I was in fact the third child of a possibly slightly loopy (otherwise why would they adopt me), but thoroughly lovely South African couple. Since my husband was away (and still isn't back yet), and everyone seems to be in on the 'she seriously cannot or will not cook, or drive for that matter' trait in my sparkling personality, I was taken in by this pair of Jozi-based (potentially out of their minds) Capetonians. 

My being adopted luckily did not involve anything boring or horrific such as chores or Sunday service. Instead, on Friday, I enjoyed a lovely dinner with the family, while watching the boys build me and the hubby a magnificent mansion on Sims, only for it to be destroyed an hour later in a fire, as my character just sat around upstairs reading a book. Even the game knows me too well... Several bottles of the always nice Durbanville Hills Sauvignon Blanc were also consumed, but not until we had suffered through a bottle of Dalla Cia Sauvignon Blanc 2007, that had supposedly gotten four stars in Platter's. I think the wine must have turned, because delightful it was not.  

On Saturday I was asked to make a green salad for the braai I and my adoptive family had, in our Friday night vinoed-out state, invited ourselves to (a South African custom I have been told, since apparently you only get one invitation and the rest is up to you, for all eternity. Good to know). Making the salad was a rather daunting task, but I eventually managed, and no one has been sick yet. So I think I'm home free. I also brought with me a bottle of Durbanville Hills Cabernet Sauvignon, which goes with anything and is a great 'getting sloshed slowly but steadily' beverage. And my coup de grĂ¢ce I delivered with two bottles of the Chilean Casillero del Diablo Cabernet Sauvignon, one of my favorites from Mexico, which I had managed to find in Makro (a real task, since foreign wines are throughly snubbed here). Everyone seemed to enjoy it. I know I did. Felt a little home sick for Mexico and envious of my better half, who is currently cavorting away in the city of 25 million people, hanging out with my BFF. Triple sigh.

As the discussion undulated from movies and books to racial issues and politics I truly enjoyed myself, and was unable to keep my controversial (in the South African sense that is) views entirely to myself. No one came to blows, or even spat at me (even though my adoptive brothers have recently been grounded for doing just that at each other), so I consider the night a raving success. I'm hoping after our two years in SA I'll have turned a few potential liberals to my brand of ultra-super-duper-and-then-some liberalism. Who knows what will happen. All I know is that I'm done keeping quiet.

On Sunday more kitchen miracles were required of me for yet another braai. This time with family. I managed to come up with a beet casserole, that tasted much better than the greyish mess it looked. Again I was very positively surprised by how included I felt and how cool and fun the day turned out to be. Not that I was expecting not to have fun, but it always amazes me how hospitable South Africans are towards someone they barely know. Judging by the razor wire fencing so abundant here, one would never guess. 

As I had already quaffed my fair share of different wines throughout the weekend I decided to keep it simple and only sampled a bottle of Lanzerac Merlot. As I paced it with plenty of mineral water I greatly enjoyed it, and eventually it made a wonderful companion to the Portuguese espetadas - special rump prepared on a sword-resembling skewers over a braai. Yum! 

As the day neared its end, regardless of my new sisterly status I was not, as opposed to my not as fortunate bros, forced to get a hair cut to ready myself for school starting on Wednesday. Regardless of the financial side of things - the haircuts at this kitchen 'establishment' are free of charge - I'm still opting for my fancy salon, and the relaxing scalp massage. Furthermore, luckily I'm on permanent vacation, and can sport a shaggy look whenever I feel like it (more often than not). On a side note, I sincerely hope the beginning of the new school year signifies the disappearance of the dirty mess on my wall. The neighborhood nuisances (from next door) keep scaling our garden wall and leaving their business cards in the form of several different sized black and brown foot prints. Go to school already.

No comments: