On Thursday the 28th August, almost half (27) of the survivors of the class of '53 met at the Dean's function in the impressive Student Learning Centre at Medical School. The Faculty of Health Science had provided a wonderful cocktail Party during which we were entertained by members of the UCT Opera school and welcomed by the Dean, Prof Padayachee. Most of us had weathered the fifty years well, hair was absent or white and some had either lost or gained bits and pieces. The hub bub of voices showed that none had lost any of their ability to talk. In fact it was almost impossible to get some of the class to go on a tour of the Learning Centre with Dr. Laurie Kellaway. Prof Stuart Saunders who also made a short speech of welcome, very sincerely thanked the Dean.
The next morning the tour of the most impressive additions to the Red Cross Children's Hospital, was followed by an Academic session arranged by Cecil Bloch. This was both entertaining and interesting and it was reassuring to know that we still enjoy some intellectual capacity. When the class qualified the Children's Hospital did not even exist and on the tour we saw a newly upgraded ward and out patients department.
The evening Dinner at the Breakwater Lodge, accompanied by spouses, was a hilarious evening with Bill Lambrechts, Fana Malherbe and Piet Steyn in fine form. There was much chatter in the anteroom before the dinner as old classmates met their spouses, exchanged reminiscences and caught up on news.
Some members were "missing" the next morning when we embarked on a bus tour up the West Coast. It was a lovely summer's day as we chugged along, passing the recently stranded container ship on our way towards Darling. The first stop, arranged by Sid Cywes, was a guided tour by Nicky Duckitt of their fantastic orchid houses. There must have been close on a million orchids in bloom and each lady was presented with a lovely spike of these magnificent flowers.
Lunch followed an informative wine tasting at Groote Post, a beautiful old Cape Dutch homestead dating from 1706. The wines were excellent and many returned to the bus with large boxes of wine. We returned with some very sleepy passengers via Mamre for melktert and tea at the old Moravian Mission after a memorable day.
Special thanks to Joan Tuff, for her detailed organisation and to Chris Rainier-Pope, who was delegated to be our convenor.