Friday, May 6, 2011

Road Trippin', Secunda Style

The bustling metropolis
  After weeks of planning, the day finally arrived. Bright and early on Saturday, after some pretty wicked partying with my big sisters the night before, I made my way to the East Rand to meet La, Angie and Heidi before we hit the road to the bustling metropolis of Secunda. The excitement was tangible, the anticipation was… Oh, cut the crap. I was bouncing in the car, squeeing and yelping in excitement and driving Maja and Mister Boo nuts. They were exhausted and severely hung over, respectively. Let’s just say there was a lot of grimacing and eye-rolling from them as I pumped up the AC/DC and such on the way there.


I was poinging around the parking lot while I waited for Angie, and just after she came to find me, La and Heidi arrived. MUCH poinging and squeeing and loudness ensued. I’m sure Angie’s neighbours were cursing us in a way that would make Mojo Jojo proud. We bid Maja and Mister Boo adieu and motored over to Angie’s house, where we all squeed some more. Alex’s smile when we said goodbye said “I’m glad I’m not putting up with a pack of girls running on glitter-anticipation all day.”  

Yup. This is how it started...
Our first port of call was the garage, where we stocked up on cookies, fudge, donut holes and Nifty Nibs. We bounced around the store as we waited for our coffee. The check-out ladies eyed us suspiciously, and I don’t blame them. I mean, who has that kind of energy on a Saturday morning??? Us. And it’s intimidating. We each got our coffee barcode stickers, and I ran out of hands, so I just stuck mine on Angie, hoping the ladies would scan it from her cheek. They didn’t. First pout of the day. It would have been awesome to hold the scanner up to her face and hear a “piep”! Alas, the check-out lady eyed me especially wearily and when I saw her reaching for the panic button, I relented and gave her the stupid sticker. *rolls eyes* Too bad they sold out of fun so early in the day.

Once we left the land of no imagination, we hit the road for real. La made a couple of mix CDs of 90’s nostalgia, so we bopped along to everything from punk to pop to Pearl Jam as we made our way away from Joburg and all its wonders. We drove past a sewerage farm, and all took pictures.

Where they grow shit...

We drove past a squatter camp, and all took pictures.

Where they squat...

I’m not sure why, because it’s definitely not the first squatter camp any of us had seen. Nonetheless… The drive was actually a really pretty one, despite the fact that things are starting to get all dry and brown with autumn. The cosmos has started to pop up on the side of the road, and gave a really pretty frame to the view for most of the trip.

It was a long-ish drive there, but we didn’t waste a moment; there was lots of randomness and craziness in that little car.
The angel who looked after us

Look Shell, a TACTA!!!!

We took pictures of everything, including tractors.* Before we even saw a ‘Secunda’ sign, we knew we were getting close. Our chests started getting tight and each of us had a little coughing fit, which was fun.

We consoled ourselves with more cookies and fudge and car-aoke, which we have honed to a fine art. When we finally saw a ‘Secunda’ sign, we squealed with anticipation, and at a pitch which may have caused some of the surrounding farms’ dogs to howl. The time was drawing near!

Funky Town, this way

Possibly the most awesome moment of the whole day? As we drove into town, a new song started playing on La's mix CD... FUNKY TOWN. How apt! We rolled into Secunda, pumping the Funky Town, cruising like we owned the place. See?

Won't you take me to...

Funky Town!
  Ang squealed with joy when she saw a sign advertising Kurt Darren (a local Afrikaans singer who is as cheesy as the moon), and in her excitement, told us we simply had to go and see Durt Karren's show. Yup. Durt Karren. Things will never be the same again! (Sadly {NOT} for us, the show was only scheduled for this weekend, so we were a week early. *Angie pouted. A LOT.*)

The first thing we did was take a number for an ointment which, should it work, should be the solution to everyone’s problems. World wide. Imagine it! There would be no politics, no war, no violence, none of that would exist, because all of those things revolve around one issue. This cream could be the answer to World Peace! I think we should nominate its creator for a Nobel Peace Prize! Dial now!
What you got there, Heids?

Oh, World Peace! Or at least a Same day Service' penis cream! Win!
Then we hit the Wimpy for breakfast. My, my. I’d forgotten just how ‘small town’ these small towns are. We stood out like a sore thumb, and while we usually try to, Saturday was the exception. We were all about the casual-‘n-comfy for the long drive, so it was jeans and t-shirts for all of us. And yet…. It was SO VERY clear that we were from Joburg. And that was before we even opened our mouths. There were literally people staring at us from every single table in Wimpy. Maybe it’s because our hair moved on its own, and not with the assistance of a hacksaw or a pair of pliers. If the hairspray factory exploded in Secunda, well…. There would be a lot of ladies hiding out in their homes. Shoo-wee! There was one family next to us, on the other side of the glass, and they couldn’t take their eyes off us. I was desperately tempted to lick the window just to freak the shit out of them,  but then I saw a snotty-type kid smacking the glass, and thought it might not be a good idea. Instead, Angie gave one of her famous death-glares, and they left swiftly afterwards. Probably to go and pray that the evil Joburg girls didn’t get them. Ha! Once we were out of the spotlight, we got to our Game Plan. I busted out the butcher paper and endless pens, and we laid it all out in black (and green and purple) and white. Oh my, we got carried away!

Wimpy Coffee: Mega vs Regular
Once we’d had brekkie and looooots of coffee (and a green ambulance – a cream soda - or two), we moseyed off to the legendary make up store. I was planning to document the whole experience on camera, but got so swept away inside that I forgot completely. We went a little crazy. Collectively. I think the sales assistants were a little taken aback by our sheer determination to do some serious damage to our bank accounts! After all that though, I only bought four things. I think it was a case of optical overload, and I just literally couldn’t decide where to start, so I stuck to basics. *face-palm* All the same, I got some pretty cool stuff! I kept my Aus trip in the forefront of my mind, and came away with some practical things. Also: bright purple false lashes. What? A girl’s got Rocky Horror parties to plan for!

Total Haul

Purple Metallic False Eyelashes! WIN!

Versatile and oh-so-sparkly!
Angie went a little crazy in the store… it was quite inspiring to see that kind of shopping again. None of this laid-back just-cruising through stuff. Oh no! The lady was on a mission! And I think it was a resounding success!

After getting all googly-eyed over all the sparkles and neons and metallics and nails and STUFF, we strolled around the ‘mall’ for a while, trying to regain our composure. And then we skipped into the Lingerie and Cosmetics store, which was pretty entertaining! I never – NEVER – thought I’d see a metallic red and gold elephant-shaped banana-hammock in Secunda! We were on the hunt for cheap costumey stuff for Rocky Horror, but didn’t find anything that quite worked in our budget. Well, Ang did. The girl was on a roll! Oh, and I guess I did too, although the colour wasn’t right. I’ll make it work, though!

From there, we decided to explore Graceland. For those of you who are thinking that Elvis had a secret African paradise… if he did, it WOULD NOT be in Secunda! No, no, this Graceland is very different.

NOT Memphis, Tennessee, but it's still Graceland...
We went there in the hopes that they would still have the legendary singing mushrooms. No, we didn’t drink electric Kool-Aid on the way there!** Apparently, there used to be rather large mechanical mushrooms on the property, and they were motion-activated. Every time someone walked past them, they would start singing. OH HOLY CRAP, we couldn’t miss an opportunity to witness the magic of the singing mushrooms! We built ourselves up for the experience, and strolled around the entire casino. That took all of ten minutes. With a pee break! We couldn’t take it anymore, so we went in search of the funky fungi. Alas...
No singing mushrooms!
We nearly cried. In fact, I think there was a moment of mourning and some sniffling, but we soon got over it by photo-bombing a wedding with Princess, La’s spiffy little car! We also enticed her with ten points if she managed to run into the flower girl who was wearing her petal-basket as a hat, but she missed. Her punishment, we decided, was to wear the Camo Dress of Shame! We headed off to Trichardt, the neighbouring town, in search of it.

When we got there, Angie and Heidi were in awe. A&E should be called Akbar’s Cave of Everything! La and I made a beeline for the Camo Dress of Shame.

Not even remotely kidding
A deal’s a deal, and there were no singing mushrooms! Angie was enamoured with the Wookie-Gone-Wild look, and may have molested the mannequin. Maybe.*** After wandering around there for what felt like ages, but was only fifteen minutes (it couldn’t have been longer, because the detached voice on the intercom was reminding people that they had fifteen – ten – five minutes to shop before the store closed), and when we left, we were thoroughly exhausted. What a day! The drive home was a little more subdued than the drive there (isn’t it always?), but we still managed to giggle like dope-heads at a reggae festival. Not least of all when Heidi almost leapt out of the back window when La put her windscreen washer on without warning. You know the silent shriek of terror? Yea, that was Heidi. Hehehehe It doesn’t take much to amuse us, and when it’s something that is cruel in retrospect? Ah man, we die!

We saw a rainbow as we got back into Joburg, which was a pretty cool way to be welcomed back to the city!
Red and Yellow and Pink and Green... (big breath) Purple and Orange and Blue!

When we got home, all my family was just pulling in for a visit, so it was chaos, and a good time to end the day with a glass of wine and a round-up. Most of the family looked on, totally bemused, while Maja Boo heard the whole day’s stories in random, giggly succession, and looked thoroughly envious. Ah, road trips! For the Win!  

I hope you enjoyed my little recap as much as I renjoyed recapping our trip! Until next time!