I seldom get a chance to just sit and enjoy my house in solitude during the daylight hours. I’m either at work or doing one of a million weekend activities or playing with the dogs or whatever. This weekend was an exception when I found myself lounging in my sunroom with nothing better to do than just unwind.
It was then that I could enjoy one of the best things about living in Joburg: I could chill in my centrally located house and look out at my large green garden and pool while listening to the hustle of traffic (city life) just a block away. A lot of people in the world have to experience city life from apartments where your space is limited and your green views only the top of trees (if you are that lucky). Yes, there are great conveniences of living “in” the city (as apposed to suburbia) but it comes at a price of space and peace and freedom.
However, in Joburg a lot of us lucky folk have a completely different experience. While I live 3 minutes drive from a highway and 5 minutes from a large mall and I can easily walk to my corner cafe or a smaller mall or my local restaurant strip (such as city life offers) I can also just take a moment and enjoy all the trees and birds and calmness around me from my actual house which overlooks a park.
And I have all these benefits without having to life in an expensive of “upper class” neighbourhood. Nope, I’m just an average Joburg Joanne. It’s a little bit surreal if you think about it: traffic and the richest mile in Africa a stones throw away and then complete serenity right at my feet as my Retriever lazes away in the midday sun – too content to even chase the weavers and finches snacking on my lawn.
While the sounds of traffic might seem annoying it’s something I love for the simple reason that it tells me where I am and that I am surrounded by people, industry and ambition – it’s inspiring. While Ariel from the Little Mermaid yearns to “be where the people are” I already am there while also being completely on my own in. See, surreal.
There is a lot to do in Joburg if you live here but for those moments where you just want to be on your own it’s good to know home is right in the middle of it.