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Bloem has kaboom

‘Good luck!’

That’s what my friend said to me today when I told her I wanted to write a daily blog during my two months in Bloemfontein. She thinks I’ll be hard pressed to find content to fill these electronic pages. Oooh, how I love a challenge. It’s exactly that kind of attitude from my friend (as she is not the only one who thinks Bloem lacks some kaboom) that has sparked this little project called The Bloemfontein Blog.

Outsiders seem to think that Bloemfontein is backward, that it only warrants driving past on the N1 (because there would be no decent restaurants at which to stop for lunch), and that all it’s good for is booze, braais, rugby (this is Cheetahs territory after all) and the annual rose festival in the mall. But, having been born and raised in Bloemfontein (and having spent many more weekends and holidays here since leaving 10 years ago at the age of 21), I know that all of this is rubbish. No, actually, it’s all quite true – Bloemfonteiners love their brandewyn, sosaties (both best enjoyed while supporting the Cheetahs!) and roses, but there’s so much more that can be added to this list. And that’s what I intend to share with you while I spend two months back in my hometown.

Please feel free to share your own ideas of Bloemfontein with me, comment on my posts, and send me your upcoming events. Let’s enjoy Bloem together!


10 responses »

  1. There’s the museum and this lovely hill where we saw the giraffes, the lovely gardens where we had breakfasts the yuki alcohol bucket that Richard made me drink… 🙂 I loved it!

    • Nat, you should never drink alcohol from a bucket. Only true Bloemfonteiners can handle that! Watch this space for my first post on Oliewenhuis Art Museum. The rest will go onto the list, merci!

  2. Yay!!!! Welcome back to Blogworld!!!
    Bloem is where the heart is!
    Will follow closely…

  3. Hannes Loubser

    OK, I think this is a great idea. I’ve only been to Bloem like three times in my life, so I’m one of those who probably subscribe to the rugby and roses theory. One thing I love about Bloem though is its people. Some of the most kind hearted and talented individuals I know either grew up there, are still there, or – and this is quite a phenomenon – have relocated there recently (knowing my friends, presumably not for the rugby but very possibly for the brandy)… So, the plot thickens. I would like you investigate what we in Cape Town have come to call the “Bloem Drain”. Why are our friends deserting us in favour of sub-zero winter temperatures, frost bitten gardens, and an apparently politically volatile campus? Is it the fabulous food at 7 on Kelner? Their pork belly is some of the best I’ve ever had. Or is Bloem’s waterfront now cooler than Cape Town’s? I understand the shi-shi Coco C is quite the place to be seen these days. Tra, we have to get to the bottom of this. I suspect the proximity to Clarens and Rosendal plays a role. And Mystic Boer – although on my last visit I was one of only 3 patrons there on a Thursday night, which really worried me. Then there is of course die Haasplaas. Place of cheap tequila, cheaper dance moves, and virtually free dates. Are they a part of the conspiracy to rid Cape Town of its last homosexuals? I’m looking forward to this expose. But it will require some serious investigative journalism. If it turns out the Mall is the culprit after all, I’ll be happy to surrender myself and move there in a gesture of solidarity with your brave attempt to tame this beast that is Bloem. Good luck indeed, and keep us posted.

    • Hannes, should Deborah Patta be looking for a new job? It seems you know more about Bloem than any other Cape Townian I have ever met. Are you sure it’s only been three times? I have a feeling you’ll take over this blog from me when I leave in two months’ time. Another Capie lost to Bloem. Let’s do it!

  4. Check out “Die Aasvoël Klub”. ( As jy nog nie daar was nie). It’s an amazing live music venue a few k’s out of town. Here’s a link to give you an idea :

    • Thanks Frans. This is exactly what I’m talking about – sharing our love of the city. I was meant to go there the last time I was visiting home, but plans changed (as they can in Bloem; it’s just that easy to move from A to Z!). So now it’s on the list. Dankie!


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