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MOTOR RACING – A BIRD’S EYE VIEW

November 4, 2013

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MOTOR RACING – A BIRD’S EYE VIEW

Lesson 1

Hazel Lock

Colenso Rd

Newlands

1965

Having a boy friend who is completely mad about racing cars, all shapes and sizes and about me (only one size), I was persuaded to go with him to our local car racing event, which is held at Killarney race track, some ten miles out of Cape Town.

As he was going to assist with the spanner-holding in one of the driver’s pits, he asked me to keep a record of the lap times and to make a comprehensive chart of the results of the various races. Unfortunately, I was so captivated by the racing setting and scene that times and charts didn’t enter into the race at all and this is now the afternoon (my first visit) at the races was seen by a feminine eye.

The beautiful surrounds of the track, which is situated in the middle of the veld and the feeling of relaxed casualness among the spectators, which contrasts strangely with the buzz of activity in the pits.

The picnic-style family groups dotted here and there and the gentle breeze stirring the brightly-coloured scarves of women. The gaudy bold shirts of the males providing a foil for the pale blue sky etched with clumps of white clouds.

Far across Table Bay one can see clearly the white table cloth, which covers Table Mountain on a windy day and gives such a majestic back-drop to the racing scene.

The luxurious feeling of spaciousness so rarely felt in our cramped suburban way of life and the soothing motion of long swaying reeds, which dot the surrounding veld and seem incongrous with the tense revving zoom of the cars at the starting line.

The sudden explosive blast as the machines hurtle down the straight, and above them, the birds suddenly startled from their perch on the fence, soar silently up and away.

As the cars go on their laps, a dog walks by with his master and mistress, quite unperturbed by the tenseness, noise and roar of the machines, but he only seems intent on sniffing and deciding which bush to favour.

Odd couples saunter alongside the enclosure in search of a better viewing spot and a more exciting corner. The south-easter now increasing, whipping the yellow flags at the starting line and the now strong smell of petrol fumes.

Momentarily lulled is the air of tenseness and activity as spectators make their way to the refreshment stalls to ease the boredom of interval. The sudden return of the birds flying low over the the track, only to be disturbed this time by a beer can as it hits the fence.

As the afternoon ears on, the lagging pace and the feeling of expectancy diminishes, as one becomes accustomed to the sight of the big grey ambulance parked at the dangerous “S” bends.

The last event over and the sudden spurt of enthusiasm as the championship winner winds his way slowly around the course to do his lap of honour, the spectators once again alert (with their) cheering and clapping.

As the final roar dies down and the crowds hasten to leave the track, the birds once again fly down to their homes and peace.

I’m afraid I didn’t quite the name of the championship winner, who was presented with the gorgeous silver trophy, but as I said, I have a boy-friend who is crazy about me…

Hazel Lock (written in the mid-sixties)

eagle3

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9 Comments
  1. Reblogged this on The Old Man and the Sea.

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    “As we live and move and have our being, so from this vision, we create heaven in our own lives… and perhaps even heaven on earth.”

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    PPS

    “I wish you well on a rainy day
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