A fine day at the Beach

Yes, there's a beach in Joburg!! And it's a pretty cool place!

Yes, there’s a beach in Joburg!! And it’s a pretty cool place!

A few weeks ago, Luis told me he’d love to go to the Beach. To which I replied, in a rather assertive tone: “The beach?? But chico, there’s no beach in Johannesburg!!! We’re not in Barcelona anymore”

And here I was again, all tangled up in my prejudices. Of course there’s no proper beach in Johannesburg, the closest sea being hundreds of kilometres away. But that is without counting on the restless efforts of the Joburgers to make their home city a better place, and their unquenchable creativity. So there’s  no beach in Joburg, but there’s the Beach, a rooftop bar located on Juta Street, covered up with sand, umbrellas, and relax chairs. Only the sea is missing!! All you have to do to get there is to walk down Juta street after a lovely brunch at Neighbourhoods’ market, pay a 50 rands entrance fee (which, I believe, includes a free drink, but the guys downstairs were not very clear about that…), climb up a few stairs, and you’ll find yourself on the sandiest beach you’ll ever find in town. Let’s be clear about one thing before I go on. I’m French, and as such, truly master our national sport which basically boils down to criticising everything there is to be criticised. So of course, I could complain about the service that was rather horrendous that day, the quasi alcohol-free cocktails that even my 4-year old nephew could have drunk by the dozen, the fact that the view from the bar is not as great as some other rooftops in Joburg. I could do all of that. But I could also look on the bright side of life, and the consider the basic truth, which is that the Beach is a rather cool place, the kind of place where you just want to lay down on a chair, kick off your shoes to let the sand run on your feet, enjoy your beer and the nice company of your friends while contemplating the sun setting down on the city. And to be true, the Beach does that perfectly. So next time Luis asks me if I want to go to the Beach, I’ll grab my flip-flops, sunglasses and sunscreen. And the keys to my car, that I know I’ll be able to drive back home safely! 🙂

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