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Bits and bobs about my life in my lovely home, Thatchwick Cottage, Pretoria, South Africa.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Saturday 19 April 2008: Visit Uncle Tim's

Every second Saturday morning two friends and I take the R 23 heading for Johannesburg International Airport, take the turn off to Benoni and arrive at about nine thirty at a favourite haunt - a cluster of Victorian stores housed on an old farm and its outbuildings. Uncle Tim's Cabin is a must for avid porcelain collectors.
As you drive along High Road, through the plots and small holdings, just look out for the blue-jacketed horse which announces Uncle Tims. Amongst the antiques stores, secondhand book shop, the store that sells vintage movies and stamps, there is a saddle shop with all else a mount might need. The Riding School is adjacent and the Shetland ponies might be taking a stroll through the parking lot.
The front porch of Uncle Tim's is usually a riot of colour. On Saturday the flower boxes were planted with new winter seedlings.
The garden shop is a treat and a great place for fairies and gnomes to add to your flower beds.
The official entrance to another marvellous antique shop - Auld Lang Syne, which specialises in Royal Daulton figurines.
Our actual destination is La Broiderie, the best little bit of real estate for miles. It is our source of quiliting and embroidery supplies and where we take a Saturday morning class.

Good Thyme is a little nursery selling indigenous plants at very reasonable prices. And the Victorian summerhouse is full of herbal remedies, packets of seeds and toiletries made from herbs.
The old bus signals the entrance to a self-help tea garden which is served by the deli next door. After class we stop by for quiche and salad.
Uncle Tim's is habited by an enormous Boxer dog who lives at the second hand bookstore, several cats who snooze in the sun amongst our embriodery paraphernalia and bantam hens and chicks which think nothing of popping in if they aren't shooed out. But Wilbur and Aggie, two rescued donkeys, who live at the riding school, call the shots. As soon as we are busy stitching, they aim for the window at the back of the shop, where we feed them carrots and apples before they return to grazing in the paddock.

Wilbur has the biggest mouth, rather yellow teeth but takes a titbit as gently as any wellbred gentleman.
Would you like to join me Saturday in two week's time? Just take a flight from any major city in North America, Australia or Europe to Johannesburg International and I'll be waiting for you. We'll load your luggage into my car, hop on the highway and be at the tea garden in ten minutes. After tea and cake - homemade chocolate mousse, baked cheesecake, apple tart - to name a few of the offerings, we'll begin to browse and you will find just the treasure you need to put in that empty nook. After shopping, it's just a 30 minutes drive back to Thatchwick Cottage where the guest room is waiting! Any takers?


Cottage Contessa said...

Oh Eleanor! What a beautiful place! Thank you so much for sharing that. I am really enjoying getting to see parts of your world! Have a wonderful start to the week sweetie!
Amanda (aka Cottage Contessa)

willow said...

Okay, I'll be there at the airport with bells on~! ;)

The old bus is great!

What a fun tradition, thanks for sharing your little outing. And thanks, too for stopping by my blog.

Mary said...

Oh what fun! Thanks so much for the virtual tour -- I wish I could come for real! :)

Silver Bell Cottage said...

I so enjoy glimpses into your world. The pictures are just lovely. Hope your week starts off wonderfully.
Sending lots of {{{Hugs}}} ~

Mary said...

OMG - there's a sale on right now to Cape Town from NY - $1200 - I just got an e-mail from a travel site. Perhaps to Jo'burg would be about the same! Also, I have a lot of mileage so could perhaps use that! Honestly Eleanor it would be such fun - maybe some day...........if you're serious!!!

Would enjoy shopping with you and your friends in these charming little shops. I even love rescued donkeys - visited a famous donkey sanctuary in England last year.

Do they have a veggie quiche by chance? As for tea and ALL those delicious it's truly sounding awesome. Let's see, which bag shall I pack. Well a gal can dream can't she?

Thanks for showing us your special places - it all looks and sounds so lovely.

fairmaiden said...

O my goodness Eleanor, I am tempted to take you up on the offer...but I am so scared to fly...haven't been on a plane in 20 yrs., I am clostrophobic(sp?). Your world looks so divinely enchanting. The bus tea gardens allure me! I always wanted to live in Africa. Did I tell you that I applied for the Peace Corp my Senior year of College and was accepted, along with my carpenter hubby. We we're stationed in Ghana and supposed to leave in 4 months, when I got pregnant and could no longer go. I have a B.A. in Nutrition and was going to work in a health clinic with mama's and babies. Maybe someday God will heal/deliver me of these flying fears and I can come visit you! For now I will just delight in blog visits!!!

Kelli said...

Oh, I would love to come along with you...the garden shop looks wonderful! I'll bet you have so much fun looking at everything.

Kari & Kijsa said...

What a wonderful outing!! Loved the tour!!

kari & kijsa