Friday, July 4, 2008

Another Country*

The lovely Marijke took these pictures on the pumpkin farm Vioolsdrif on the Orange River in South Africa. Stay tuned for pumpkin recipes. June is deep winter, of course, on that side of the divide...

You can also find Marijke in Cape Town, here.

*Another Country, 1991 novel by Karel Schoeman, set in the Bloemfontein of the 1870's.

"We live in such silence, Mr Versluis; have you ever noticed that? The silence of this country is so immense, the distances, the isolation so great..."

"This is no longer Africa, but nor is it Europe anymore. There are too many worlds existing side by side, and finally there is no single world in which one feels at home or in which one knows how to conduct oneself; that is what I wish to apologize for now. I either know too much or too little, never enough and never the right things; there is no hope for me."


  1. Hmm, white pumpkins... Are they bleached by the sun or just very scared?

  2. A typical country sight is to see them on corrugated iron rooves over porches, either holding the roof down or ripening. I never figured out which.

    Are you casting racist nasturtiums at the pumpkins: just because they're white they're scared? :-)

  3. We saw some bright orange pumpkins on a sinkdak in Langebaan the pouring rain. And the dam on the Greenbelt filled briefly today - Clicking stream frogs now doing their impression of sustained crackling, and the wind howling.

  4. Sounds wonderful, Jay. Sniff. We'll be there soon(ish).

  5. Lol, no! Look here, I'm scared too, but I'm red (well, that's my own fault...)

  6. When I lived a country life a neighbouring farmer grew pumpkins. One hot full moon night, as the dogs and cats walked me down the silent dirt road before bedtime, we went past the big pumpkin field. Not only were they white, they were glowing, the moonlight bouncing off their shiny skins. A sight never forgotten. J.M. Coetzee's 'The Life And Times of Michael K' came to mind and still does. Happy 4th of July julle.

  7. There, Jane - all cleaned up [only she and I will ever know]. Blame blogger, not yourself).

    What a picture, the moonlight and the pumpkins. Maybe a bit of Herman Charles Bosman, too?

    I was going to add a Leipoldt recipe, but you know what, they're boring as hell! So I will have to think of something else. Except I can't get pampoen like that here...

  8. Whew, thanks Marie ;-) Sorry to sound disrespectful to pampoen fans - but isn't butternut just nicer/better/more delicious all round? Maybe?

  9. I've never seen pumpkins that colour....tell me, do they make Jack O Lanterns out of them?

  10. Jane - I'm a big butternut fan. In fact I cannot remember the last time I ate a "proper" pumpkin.

    Lavinia, those farmers would look at you very skeef (cross-eyed) if you asked them about Jack O'Lanterns, :-)

    Ain't never heard of them down there...


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