Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Old Market Building, Bloemfontein

I did not think it would be this hard.

I have scoured the Internet for a picture, just one picture, of the old market in Bloemfontein. Either archival or Now. I have been told by a couple of people that Now is not time when you want to be walking near the old market with a camera.

So, if there are any Bloemfonteiners reading this and they have a picture, or really feel like being helpful, pleeeeeeeeeeease send me a picture of the old market? It will be posted on this blog with a short story about the market, circa back-in-the-day, written by my mom.

I have emailed tourism in Bloemies, no reply (no tourists?); emailed bloggers and photographers (dankie, Joe en Gerrit for the leads), searched Flickr. Nothing.


  1. I hope you don't mind my asking, and perhaps you've addressed this early on in your blog before I began reading, but how does it feel being South African in NYC (would one say Afrikaner, or is that tinged by past politics)? There are loads of South Africans in London and Canada, and while there are probably lots in the US, I can't help but wonder what it feels like since the US is so decidedly apart from other anglophone countries. Do you feel any connection to the lingering echoes of this city's Dutch past (Breuckelen, Gansevoort St, stoeps on brownstones, chocolate chip koekjes?) Or do you connect to the Americanness of the city projected globally through movies and tv? I wonder all of this because I also wonder if you ever feel like a displaced person in today's ZA which must be very different from when you grew up there. For some reason, it struck me as terribly poignant that you are not able to find a digital image online of a familiar spot in Bloemfontein -- perhaps as familiar as the Union Sq greenmarket or Fairway to New Yorkers. Anyway, I hope you are able to find the picture you seek.

  2. Anonymous - please leave a name in future - see note about Anonymous comments:

    Anyway - an interesting question. I feel no inherent connection with the Dutch names, here, other than an interest. In SA I feel no connection to Dutch names, either, really, other than that they are part of the landscape in the Cape, and I understand their context. The Afrikaner identity is truly a South African one, no longer associated with Holland, and I know of no Afrikaners who think of Holland as home. I have never been to Holland. Chocolate chip cookies are Dutch? I had no idea.

    I feel South African when I am in South Africa - all my family is there. In New York I am a New Yorker. I love New York and am plugged in.

    As for connecting with the Americanness projected globally? That would depend on the movies and the TV.

    I find that when I am away from the States I defend it, and when I am here, I am critical.

    I am half Afrikaans because my father is Afrikaans. But an English-speaking South African would be an English-speaking South African :-)Like my mom. My father is an Afrikaner.

    Anyway, an intelligent friend sent me a google maps image of the market. I hadn't thought of that!

  3. This is the first time I've really seen you write about being a South African in the US, too. We have a good friend from Durbin (sp?)and I am often struck by how many SA friends he has here in Virginia and how connected he stays to many more friends all over the east coast. But to me he seems so totally American that I forget he is not. From reading your blogs, I think that is how you seem too - totally connected to the here and now, and yet a part of your home, too.

  4. Hi Webb - I still have a South African accent, though I tend to roll my r's in an American way when I'm ere. But I still say to-mah-to :-)I actually know very few South Africans here.


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