It seems as though the year is picking up steam. The second week of August is here and we sit around wondering what the heck happened to the year in which we set huge goals. Is there still time? Gossip around the water cooler is that my office is going through a shuffle, and with that comes a nervous tightening of our wallets. So can we still enjoy ourselves on a budget?I say there is time and there are ways to enjoy yourself on a budget, especially as South Africans and the rest of the world are going through the same hectic employment snakes and ladders. The party planners are not excluded from this either and they have created venues and events deemed as “wallet friendly zones”, so to speak. Durban, Johannesburg and Cape Town proudly provide for the mid-month weekend of August, knowing that payday is still a journey away.
Durban’s jazz culture gets a boost this weekend as Friday see’s Market (40 Marriott Road, Greyville) showing off Beat-Route, a four-piece jazz band that sets alight the Morningside location – a seriously chilled venue at that. In fact, if the Friday jazz scene has got your juices flowing also check out the legendary Rainbow Restaurant on a Sunday – it is hidden in a back alley of Pinetown and has colourful old school décor with some of South Africa’s best and most talented jazz musicians doing what they love. Quarts, bunny chows and full chicken combos – a real South African experience – for only ten bucks! Also happening this weekend is the re-launch of the Willowvale Hotel; its back with vengeance after a total re-jig. The new island-style themed hangout is kicking things off with a bang and bands such as Durban’s own Spitmunkey, Nightvision, Nutscratchers, Seake and DJ’s such as Coco Loco, Green JNR and Kingpin, among many others, are joining in the celebrations. What a party! All this for just six ten Rand notes!
Jo’burg thrusts itself into the limelight once again launching a brand new and exciting festival at the University of Johannesburg, the FOOB Festival. Even if you are not too interested in theatre, it’s worth a look. Post-modernism is always worth a crack, and some will shock you, others will have you sitting on the edge of your seat. Six of the plays have travelled from the Short Play Festival in New York. Culture, culture, culture! And it’s only R60. Follow the Vaal River by whichever method you wish as the annual Vaal River Wine Meander is back, cruising past different farms and wine estates – a great way to spend the day with good wines. This perfect day out will only set you back a measly R20 per taste, so be charming and work your way towards a bigger pour. On Sunday the free entry Market on Main is worth a look see… especially if the sun is out and you are looking to enjoy incredible foods and a welcoming vibe. Warm up the bodies and defrost the wine hangovers at this great safe spot in Jo’burg city.
Speaking of free stuff to do and markets, Cape Town’s Bay Harbour Market has arrived. 100’s of stalls have assumed positions in Hout Bays’ authentic old fish factory, each displaying the colourful and vibrant vibe of the Mother City. Saturday and Sunday are the days to check it out, with bars surrounding the area a mid-day toot is on the cards. Then R30 gets you into the Purple Turtle where bands such as Saintfearless, Obsessie Met Als and Woodstock Mafia are to be found. This corner of Long and Shortmarket spot seems to have gathered a rep for ridiculous parties. You have been warned.
If I had a personal jet I would at least try to make it to every one of these events and locations, so if you live nearby or even far away get yourselves to at least one of these. This coming week is going to be rough, but now we know what’s on the cards in a couple of days’ time it’s getting us through the week with ease, so love life!