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Concrete Curves of the Afrikaans Language Monument in Paarl (2017-04-22) Photo Gallery | Travel Attractions 10 FEB 2018

It is impossible not to take notice of the strange, alien-like fingers jutting out from the side of a mountain as you drive towards Paarl, those concrete curves belonging of course to non other than the famous Afrikaans Taalmonument, or to us English-speaking folks, the Afrikaans Language Monument.

While I have mentioned the monument in these pages before, I hadn’t actually ever stopped to visit it as an adult, something that I finally got around to rectifying on a sunny Saturday morning back in April last year.

Seeing as it is a rather long drive from Gordon’s Bay to Paarl, the girls and I decided to first stop halfway in order to pick up on some snacks for the road – opting to drop in for a bit at the always super popular Stellenbosch Slow Market (held at the Oude Libertas amphitheatre).

As expected, it was bustling, but snacks on hand were aplenty.

Truthfully though, we didn’t hang around the busy market for all that long – I’m not overly fond of having to navigate two little girls through such a throng of people at the best of times!

Anyway, navigating our way to the Afrikaans Language Monument on the outskirts of Paarl didn’t prove to be a particularly tricky or perilous task, and after paying the small entrance fee, we drove into the grounds, found a shady parking space, and headed up the stairs towards the mouth of this very unusual structure.

Opened on 10 October 1975, Jan van Wijk’s monument commemorates the semi-centenary of Afrikaans being declared an official language of South Africa separate from Dutch, in the process also acknowledging the influence of a variety of languages such as Dutch, Malay, Malay-Portuguese, Arabic, French, German, English, and the indigenous Khoi and African languages, on the development of Afrikaans.

Symbolism is built into everything that stands before you, and knowing a little bit about the structure before you actually view it does come in quite handy in this particular case.

The monument itself is visually interesting, but of course doesn’t take particularly long to stroll through (perplexing the girls to no end), which is where the grounds and build location then neatly comes into play.

Apart from the interesting Visitor’s Centre (there is of course the actual Language Museum further down in town), and its restaurant with a view, the Volksmond, to enjoy, The Afrikaans Language Monument also features lovely patches of lawn to enjoy a picnic on, fantastic 360 degree views across the town of Paarl and its stunning surrounds, and a one or two perfect for ambling walkways that snake through its interesting garden.

The girls of course enjoyed clambering over everything and anything that blocked their path, but by far their favourite bit of our visit was of course the ice cream that they made me get them in order to beat the Paarl heat at the end of our walkabout.

Truthfully, I wasn’t really complaining. Ice cream was exactly what was needed for the day!

Also, plenty of photos were of course the order of the morning, much to the annoyance of my girls as per usual:

The Afrikaans Language Monument is an unexpectedly beautiful stop, well worth visiting even if you don’t speak the language at all.

(As for the rest of our afternoon out and about, that was spent visiting a goat tower, petting some alpacas, and eating scones and cream!)

Related Link: Afrikaans Language Monument | Paarl

Chantelle’s Last Weekend of Leave My Life 21 APR 2012

So last weekend marked the end to Chantelle’s week long period of leave, and so we decided to make the most of it by organising a date night, meaning in other words a trip through to Bellville on Friday evening (Chantelle spent the day there with Jess, I simply joined them after work), where we enjoyed a scrumptious dinner with the Montgomery Clan, before leaving Jessie in their capable hands and heading out to Tygervalley to catch the ultimately entertaining and enjoyable date night movie, “This Means War”.

Saturday morning was taken over by the big clash between the Stormers and the Crusaders, and wouldn’t you know it, the first Super 15 game of the season which I can actually sit down and watch, the unbeaten Stormers finally get their first taste of defeat! (Am now seriously considering the fact that I may have been the cause of their loss, and will probably not watch another game for the rest of the season, out of the hope that my abstinence will once again put them on the path of total victory!)

With the game done and dusted, Chantelle and I packed up, bundled Jessica into the car and headed out to Stellenbosch, to pay a visit to Willowbridge Slow Food Market’s sister market, held on the spectacular Oude Libertas wine estate grounds.

The Stellenbosch version of the market is definitely a much bigger affair and certainly one we’d love to be able to get in on, though our experience was slightly soured when Jessica inexplicably decided to vomit all over the grass, just as we had sat down to enjoy a light snack purchased from the stalls. (And once again, it was Chantelle who happened to be holding her when she decided to spew her guts. Like I say, Chantelle seems to have the knack for bringing the worse out of our little one! :P)

Anyway, back home in Gordon’s Bay, we opted for a lazy night off, heading out to Pick ‘n Pay to resupply, before putting Jessica to bed, whipping up some fantastic home made pizzas, and settling down to enjoy the quite intriguing and enjoyable “Limitless” via a rented DVD.

Sunday we took the active decision of, for the first time in weeks, going absolutely nowhere on the day, and instead set about doing a proper spring-cleaning operation of the house, a bad move as it turned out, seeing as I was suddenly forced to race out and replace the DSTV decoder which decided to pack up, Jessica who took a spectacular backwards somersault fall off our bed, and Chantelle who fell deathly sick in the early evening, suffering from severe stomach pain, diarrhoea, and body pain and vomiting. (As it turned out, this bug was contagious, because it knocked me out at 2 o’clock in the morning, resulting in my absence of work on Monday, and then Jessica the next day, who subsequently missed crèche on Tuesday!)

So yeah, it was a good weekend for the most part, but by the look of things, we could have perhaps done without Sunday.

Definitely done without Sunday.

Photo Gallery: Stellenbosch Slow Food Market Visit (2012-04-14) My Life | Photo Gallery 14 APR 2012

We headed out to the Willowbridge sister Slow Food Market held at the Oude Libertas Amphitheatre in Stellenbosch, on a fact finding mission to decide whether or not Chantelle’s Cookies & Cakes should try to set up shop there if the opportunity arises.

Despite the overcast weather, the market was packed with people enjoying a very well set up market, with a great selection of crafts, produce and confectionery. It is large, well set up, and situated in a drop dead gorgeous venue – basically, what’s not to love? :)