Tokyo Sexwale provided a nice postscript to our English holiday. I found him one row behind me on the flight from Johannesburg to Cape Town on Monday. “I’m surprised to see you sitting among us plebs,” I said, shaking his hand. “Why aren’t up front in business class?”
“You know, I grew up poor in Soweto…” he said, with that famous twinkle in his eye.
LONDON: The Union Jack flying from the top of the flagpost on the Victoria Tower, above the House of Lords, is huge. I remarked on its size as we walked in the gardens below it late on Monday morning.
Then we strolled along the Embankment and up to Trafalgar Square, to attend a free lunchtime concert in St Martin-in-the-Fields, with the American counter-tenor Randall Scotting singing arias Handel had composed for the alto castrato Senisino. Counter-tenor singing is not exactly my cup of tea. “I’d like to hear him sing normally,” I whispered to Delia, after one item where he had risen as high as a mezzo-soprano. She reassured me it was an acquired taste.
LONDON: Easter Sunday was reported to be the coldest in Britain on record but here in Wimbledon at least the sun shone and our hosts kindly said we must have brought it with us from South Africa.
It also shone on Good Friday, the day we arrived, but on Saturday when we went off to see the new Lichtenstein exhibition at the Tate Modern, a flurry of snow greeted us as we emerged from the station on to the Thames’ South Bank.
As someone who began his journalistic career writing regional news bulletins for the SABC when the Broederbond ruled the roost in that beleaguered organisation, I still think it is more of a gemors now than it has ever been.
A “circus” some politician called it the other day.