Cape Town on Dec. 23

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bo kaap
Construction near Bo Kaap, a Malay neighbourhood in Cape Town subject to post-Apartheid gentrification (and tourist visits)

I’ll be stretching things quite far to attach “construction marketing ideas” meaning to our visit to Cape Town in South Africa a few days before Christmas. Of course, in this part of the world, summer has just started — and there is a local drought. (The city’s reservations will run dry in March if there isn’t a major replenishment soon.)

Unlike my original visit to Africa which combined journalism and self-discovery, this is more like a family vacation. My wife is here in the fancy tourist-rental condo with me, and our 20-year-old son will join us on Christmas Day for the last part of the vacation, which includes a few days in Johannesburg and then some time in Zimbabwe tourist spots.

Bo Kaap is experiencing a gentrification (and tourist0 challenge — the place was full of people like us snapping photos when we visited the community earlier today

Cape Town is “new” to me even though I had travelled extensively in Africa as a young adult. Visa restrictions on journalists meant that if I wanted to write anything about South Africa while here I would need to go to an out of the way part of the country — the so called “Bantustan” — purportedly independent black tribal areas designed to prop up the apartheid ideology. With a one-week tourist visa, I burned it by visiting one of these places so I could file I story back to Canada, quite legally under South African rules at the time (since officially the place wasn’t part of South Africa.)

But that meant I could not visit Cape Town, undoubtedly one of the most cosmopolitan cities in South Africa (and I think, the world). It’s a spectacular city.

Obviously none of this commentary has anything to do with construction marketing ideas. I could try to fake it and create relevance, but heck, this is a vacation. I’m impressed, however, how the decision to peacefully resolve the majority rule issue in South Africa saved the country from decline such as experienced in Zimbabwe. Peace, indeed, can lead to prosperity.

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