Formerly 'Rambling with a cantankerous old mule"
Over the last year and a bit I have blogged about the Irene Village Mall, the closest mall to my current home, several times. It has a lot more character than most malls in our city – with water fountains in a central square the main attraction for children.
Even in winter (ours being relatively mild) one would often find children daring to play in the water, albeit more gingerly than in the above photo.
But on Saturday I was met by an anomalous sight where the fountains were meant to be – a skating rink on a warm Highveld winters’ day, where temperatures were hovering in the 20s (above 70°F). Wondering how they could have constructed an outdoor ice rink, I strolled over to take a closer look. Turns out it was made from thick plastic sheets – no ice involved.
I doubt whether the plastic guaranteed a softer landing for any of the children who fell, but it was at least warmer than ice. There were a few brave souls who ventured out to the middle of the tiny rink, but most just shuffled along the sides, with their doting parents enthusiastically capturing the moment on their cellphones. Ice skating isn’t exactly big in Africa. Just strapping on a pair of skates was already a proud moment for many of the youngsters …