Living in Cape Town is wonderful. Living in Cape Town during the summer is indescribable.

To give you a peek of my life, here are the top five things that will forever define a summer in Cape Town in my memories:


5. Fruit: Cape Town fruits are too good, it almost seems unfair to the rest of the planet. In December I was eating fresh peaches, bananas, mangoes, plums, and apricots nearly every day. I now have eaten grapes, watermelon, a few other fruits that I can’t even name, but give names to (one of which I call “Dirigible” after the Harry Potter series).  I have even eaten Gooseberries, which are not a mythical fruit, but actually a delicious golden berry that reminds me of a tomato, a pomegranate, and a blackberry all at once. Yum!


 My fruit basket one day in December


My friends Elmo and Bomba preparing to taste this mystery fruit with me this past weekend. 


Proof that Gooseberries exist! I was going to save some to take a photo, but they were too yummy, so I ate them all before I took the picture. Oops!

4. Ants: I am convinced that there are more ants in Cape Town than the rest of the planet combined. I have found ants crawling on every imaginable surface of my room, and I have ant bites quite honestly covering my body (and there are some places that are just not appropriate to scratch in public).

3. Bompies: Bompies are little plastic baggies full of fruit juice that you put in the freezer. Once the desired consistency, you bite off a corner of the plastic bag and eat. The most common brand of Bompie in my neighborhood is “The Juice Box” which comes in five flavors: Mango, Litchi, Berry, Apple, and Guava. The first four are good and all, but I LOVE Guava Bompies. Nothing beats the heat like a Guava slushie in a plastic baggie, especially when it only costs R1 (or the equivalent of about $0.10).


A guava bompie that was my Sunday afternoon treat a few weeks ago. Yum!

2. This conversation: I have had the following conversation, or a variant of it, at least once a day for the last few months.

Cape Townian: Eish! Ay Heer! It is hot today! Isn’t it hot today?

Abby: It is hot, but I love it!

Cape Townian: Oh, that’s right, you’re from the desert! Right?

Abby: Yup. Summer days where I’m from it is usually about 40°C.

Cape Townian: YO! No! We’d just melt!

Both: Chuckle

1. Warmth: I mean this in two ways. For one thing, it is warm out. I may be from the Sonoran desert, but I’m accustomed to Air Conditioning and ceiling fans. Now that I have neither, I spend my days a little sweaty (or a lot sweaty…). But I also mean warm in terms of my new community. I’ve been in Bellville for two months, and I am so so happy. I have coworkers, students, friends, fellow churchgoers, and other community members who I greet on the street. I never go a day without a hug, a smile, a laugh, or a pleasant conversation. My new community has shown me what it means to receive a warm welcome.

I am so blessed.