I have lived in Piet Retief now for just over a year (15 months to be exact) and have thus gone through one cycle of the seasons – although here you can experience four seasons in one day, just like that Crowded House song…so while we are well into October, we have had some really unpredictable weather the last couple of weeks, going from snow to sunny days to rainy weeks to very cold just yesterday. And while the sun is shining today, there’s a crispness in the air that reminds me of a warm winter’s day.
So I thought it appropriate to blog about something that looks really springy…
Most city folk (including myself) think that small towns don’t have much to offer in terms of good food and entertainment, but how pleasantly surprised I was to learn that Piet Retief is in fact, the (unoffcial) creative homeground of Mpumalanga (Dullstroom is SO last season)…Here we have a number of great coffee shops and wonderful restaurants that can serve up more than just steak & chips (although that’s great too). And the people who run these places all have such passion and stamina for what they do that it’s hard not to be successful.
This town is filled with people who could very easily have made it big in the city, but instead chose a simpler life, which means that us “plattelanders” aren’t deprived of any of the good stuff either…yeah! So I was really thrilled when a local coffee shop asked me to photograph some of their new dishes. Being my first official food photography gig, I was a bit nervous, but with a little preparation I was all set to tackle the task. Just wasn’t sure if I would be able to contain myself – if I didn’t have a camera in my hand, I probably would’ve picked from the gorgeous dishes presented to me. NOTE TO SELF: next time, eat a proper breakfast!!!
I thoroughly enjoyed photographing the dishes & drinks, and the results were met with great enthusiasm, both from my side as well as the owners – probably the best part of my job, when I can sigh a sigh of relief. So without wanting to spoil it too much (the coffee shop is currently undergoing extensive renovations and their new menu will be out soon) I have posted some photos below, including some gorgeous ones of the garden, in full spring garment. Bring on summer!!