Monday, June 7, 2010

Four Days to Go!

Here it is, South Africa's secret weapon for the 2010 Soccer World Cup, the mighty vuvuzela!  The giant horn, 35m long and 5.5m in diameter has been mounted on the end of Cape Town's infamous, unfinished freeway (a story in itself).  The electronic countdown notes the number of days to the start of the World Cup, four today,  and apparently the horn will sound an ear-splitting blast every time a goal is scored in a match.  Thank goodness goals in soccer matches are lower than in rugby matches, is all I can say.

The vuvuzela blown at soccer matches (and unfortunately, increasingly everywhere else) is a plastic trumpet about a metre in length and produces a deafening bray. When blown enthusiastically by thousands the sound resembles a swarm of really  loud, angry bees, becoming overwhelming when the home team scores.  Decibel levels are apparently enough to affect the hearing after ten minutes and earplugs are advised. 

Sunday afternoon was mellow and warm and as unlike a winter's day as possible and a ride down into town was rewarded by all kinds of interesting sights.  One of the new bridges built for the World Cup lead us over the eight lane Buitengracht highway, then via a short walk to Prestwich Square.

Several works had already been installed (more about these tomorrow) but two artists were busy putting the finishing touches to one of their pieces.  The dazzling lime green table and chairs, made from multitudinous plastic-coated wires are also their creation.

Beaded spheres on delicate silver branches tangle gracefully from a basket-weave trunk.

Intricate detail of chair and table "roots"

Dreaming for now ...

I knew that the inactivity wouldn't last for long.

The temptation to lend a helping hand was irresistible.

Shortly after this, my husband was helping to lift the tree into the air and fix the base into position.

To understand this piece of art you have to know that Cape Town's prevailing summer wind is the south-easter and many of the smaller trees subjected to the full blast of the gale develop a characteristic sloping shape, as depicted by this piece.

Up she goes, and it's Tree in a South-Easterly Wind.  Apologies to the artists for not including their names.  I didn't have a pen with me and my memory is not the best, but I hope they get lots of visitors.  They deserve it after all the work that went into these creations.


m. heart said... [Reply to comment]

What fun! I'm always blown away by how beautiful it looks there.

Pam said... [Reply to comment]

Thank you for your recent visit and kind comment Val. I enjoyed reading this and previous posts.How good of your husband to help set up that sculpture! Many hands make light work for sure. We have a similar sculptures in our local area but instead of bright circular shapes as yours features, ours are shower heads, handed in to the council in a scheme to encourage households to be more water-wise and use water efficient shower heads instead.The cast-offs twist and turn, glinting in the sun on elongated stems, looking quite alien.It must be exciting in your country with the upcoming games. I was very interested in that strange trumpet thing!

rachel said... [Reply to comment]

It all looks like great fun, and it's good to see how much positive reporting of SOuth Africa is going on just now. Not interested in football at all, myself, but I hope it's going to be a great roaring (braying, cheering) success......


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