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Category Archives: Cape Town

At the dentist in South Africa: Here amalgam has long been passé.

At the dentist in South Africa: Here amalgam has long been passé.


I have good teeth. So I don’t have to go to the dentist that often.

However, it’s a good idea to go for a check-up on a regular basis.


Now I live in South Africa.


So I first had to learn about the public health system in this country, my new home to be.


There are public dental clinics in South Africa, which are free of charge.


Should special treatment be needed, a charge related to your income is raised. That is fair.

Of course there are negative aspects, too: Long queues. Just like in England with the NHS. Never look a gift horse…


The basic treatment at the public dentist is enough for my needs. Plus professional tooth cleaning and even fillings – all paid for by the government.


I have no cavities. But my molars were sealed back in Germany for prophylaxis, which started to be not so great, as it seems bacteria still made their way through to my teeth.


So we had to break open that sealant to check what was going on beneath it. Indeed: It was quite brittle and broke easily.


Now it was about sealing my teeth again.


Suddenly I had a horror scenario running through my head of getting my teeth filled with amalgam or something similarly terrible.


So I asked in a bit of a panic: “Sealing? With what?”


After which the dentist replied in a calming voice: “Ceramic of course. What else? Amalgam? Where in the world would you get that?”


Well, I thought to myself: In Germany.



Beim Zahnarzt in Südafrika: Hier ist Amalgam schon lange passé.

Beim Zahnarzt in Südafrika: Hier ist Amalgam schon lange passé.


Ich habe sehr gute Zähne. Muss also nicht oft zum Zahnarzt.

Aber es ist ja immer eine gute Idee, mal zum Check-up hinzugehen.


Jetzt lebe ich ja in Südafrika.


Und da musste ich mich erst einmal orientieren, wie nun in meiner neu erwählten Heimat das Gesundheitssystem funktioniert: Health System in South Africa.


Es gibt in Südafrika öffentliche Zahnarztkliniken, welche kostenfrei sind.

Sollte die Behandlung über das Grundprovisorium hinausgehen, muss man gemäß des Einkommens dazu zahlen. Das ist fair.

Natürlich gibt es auch negative Aspekte, wie zum Beispiel lange Warteschlangen: Das kriegen sie in England mit der NHS auch nicht hin. Und überhaupt: Einem geschenkten Gaul…


Die Grundbehandlung beim Zahnarzt beinhaltet genug für meinen Check-Up. Selbst professionelle Zahnreinigungen und sogar Zahnfüllungen werden vom Staat bezahlt.


Nun habe ich keine Löcher, aber meine Backenzähne sind damals in Deutschland zur Prophylaxe versiegelt worden, und das hat wohl doch nicht so gut geklappt, denn nun schien es, kamen doch Bakterien an den Zahn heran.

Also musste diese Versiegelung mal aufgebrochen werden, um nachzugucken, was darunter denn so passierte. In der Tat war sie Recht spröde, denn sie zerbrach direkt.


Nun ging es darum, den Zahn wieder zu versiegeln.


Da hatte ich plötzlich die Horrorvorstellung, dass ich das nun mit Amalgam oder so ‘nem Zeug gemacht bekomme und fragte direkt: „Versiegeln? Mit was?“


Worauf der Zahnarzt mir beruhigend erklärte: „Natürlich mit Keramik. Was denn sonst? Doch nicht etwa Amalgam, wo gibt’s denn so ‘was!“


Tja, dachte ich mir da: In Deutschland!



A Domino piece I excavated from our garden.

A Domino piece I excavated from our garden.


The things I find in the ruins of The Broken Palace vary so much, from building material and tiles to bottles to coins

And then there are more personal items like kids toys that give an insight into the life the people at The Broken Palace lived.


Such as this Domino:

I like to think elderly men sat on the stoep playing a fierce game of Domino:

Slamming the Domino piece on the table with a loud slap as if it was in the face of the opponent.

Their laughter echoing far over the streets of Woodstock.


If you know more about the Broken Palace, please get in touch: 🙂


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What a buzz!

Some new visitors decided to make a stop in our garden: Bees!

Bees are settling in our garden.

Bees are settling in our garden.

Every now and then a bee colony runs out of space. Part of the bees pack up and decide to find a new place: They swarm.

On their way they stopped in our garden. Unfortunately they didn’t stay. Maybe not yet enough plants around for them to make it an attractive spot.

But a nice inspiration for what could be: Some homemade honey sounds very appetising.

Maybe next time they’ll settle for good. 🙂



Happy Eggster!

Happy Eggster!


Wishing you the best of luck in your egg hunt!


May all your egg cups be filled aplenty. 🙂


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Fire at 27 Greatmore Street! AGAIN!

Fire at 27 Greatmore Street! AGAIN!


Saturday night just before midnight I woke up to my nightmare:


Since the fire at 27 Greatmore Street I’m anxious every time I smell something burning.


The image that had imprinted itself in my memory danced in front of me again: Flames leaping up alongside our house, knocking on our second storey windows.


I just screamed: “It’s happening again!” and with that leaped out of bed to get ready to combat the fire, this time knowing exactly what to do:

1) Call fire brigade

2) Set up ladder to get up to the roof

3) Carry up water canisters


Luckily the police arrived quickly and shortly after the fire brigade. Fortunately the fire was already subsiding, thanks to a bit of rain and our neighbour hosing down the fire with his garden pipe – history repeating.


I cannot believe this happened a second time.


The irony is that we had warned the people living rough at 27 Greatmore Street and they had put out the fire just a couple of hours earlier.


The authorities know about this. The City of Cape Town’s Waste Management Department was meant to clean up the site.


The police even came through one night and chased away the vagabonds. But they just come back and build a new hokkie.


In the meantime the whole neighbourhood is at risk of burning down if one of those shacks goes up in flames.




This water saving tap is not only very efficient in reducing water usage, it also makes pretty patterns.

This water saving tap is not only very efficient in reducing water usage, it also makes pretty patterns.


In an effort to conserve water new ideas are being implemented, new products are being created.


Here a great example of a water saving tap at the Woodstock Exchange:


A simple, yet so efficient idea, and in addition to fulfilling its purpose, it’s also beautiful!


No surprise this concept by Simin Qiu won the 2014 IF Concept Design Award.


Thanks to clever designs like these it is stylish to upgrade to water saving. #EveryDropCounts


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