An Evening in Durban, SA
Despite my assertion that I didn't have to be treated like a tourist, Carl decided that I must experience an evening in Durban - I think he just wanted an excuse to show off this super gorgeous city and get out for an evening. For this, I am very grateful.
We headed out after 7 pm, already nearing my bedtime, and drove the 30 or so minutes into downtown Durban (which appeared a strange fusion of Guatemala City and New York City). He parked at John Ross House, a tower, and we shot up the elevator to the 32nd floor where the Roma Revolving Restaurant sits. Roma is very tacky. Very. I'm sure the food and service are very nice, but the decor... eek. But we strolled through and scooted up a narrow stairwell and emerged onto the roof, the location of Gino's Sky Bar.
The 360° view of a lit up port city is quite stunning. I would have brought my better suited Nikon and probably would have stood trying to capture the dazzle if I had, so I grabbed a bit of media with my iPhone and sat down for a drink with Carl. I had a Castle Milk Stout, a local South African beer - served far too cold, but it went down well enough.
It was quite windy at the top of this building next to the Indian Ocean. Carl was beginning to get cold, so we didn't hang out any longer once our drinks were done. Plus we had some food to go buy.
We drove a few blocks down the road to the Britannia Hotel where according to National Geographic, the best cultural culinary experience can be had. We ordered at the take out window - I had the Mutton Bunny Chow (see photo below) and Carl had the Chicken Kebab Bunny Chow. I went into the bar to pay for the food and was very impressed with the waitress's acute ability to recognize talent: "Are you a model?" she asked.
Presenting the receipt, we grabbed our sweet smelling bag of food and headed to the shore. The beachfront in Durban is lined with shops, a waterpark, aquarium, hotels, eateries, etc. just like any ocean city worth its salt. We walked until we came to a pier with an open air food court and after assuring the guard that we would clean up our mess afterwards, we unwrapped our bunnies.
Bunny Chow is a traditional dish originating in Durban. It is a 1/2 or 1/4 hollowed out loaf of bread which forms a container. It is then filled with delicious curry - I'd wager that the curry is better is South Africa than it is in India thanks to the fusion of cultures and ingredients. You then tear off bits of bread and eat your curry with it.
Great chat during the chow, then we checked out the pier and saw the tankers and freighters waiting to be called into port and the massive waves crashing into the base of the continent.
So thanks Carl, I think I may have an overwhelmingly positive view of Durban now, but I have an idea of it at least.
"Are you a model?"
"Yes, yes I am."