Is there any virtue left in attention to detail, neatness, accurate information and pride in workmanship? Is tradition a worn out anachronism that has no place in the modern (callous) lifestyle?
Cape Town Waterfront - The three-storeyed red Clock Tower with its pointed Gothic windows and handsome clock imported from Edinburgh became a landmark as soon as it was completed in 1882 as the first Port Captain’s office. On the ground floor is the top end of a well-like tidal gauge which indicated the exact height of the tide at any given time for the benefit of the ships entering or leaving the docks. There was also a reading room for ships’ captains.
During 1997-98 the clock tower was restored. The Edinburgh clock was refurbished and layers of grey paint were painstakingly peeled off to determine the tower’s original colour – today’s eye-catching red.
The website: http://www.citysightseeing.co.za/the-clocktower-overview, has paragraphs that invite one to look at the view from inside The Clock Tower, to enter the original Port Captain’s office, view the various floors each built with their own purpose, and to see the original clock’s mechanism from the inside.
The Clock Tower is declared a Provincial heritage site. Both provincial and national heritage sites are protected under the terms of Section 27 of the National Heritage Resources Act (NHRA), or legislation of the relevant province, and a permit is required to work on them.
Most provincial heritage sites are still marked with old national monuments badge, but provincial heritage resources authorities in KwaZuluNatal, the Northern Cape and Western Cape have developed their own badges. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Provincial_heritage_site_(South_Africa)
Came 28 February 2013.
The CEO of Cape Town Design NPC, Alayne Reesberg, launched the four themes that will shape and focus a year-long programme of design-focused events and activities at the historic Clock Tower at the V&A Waterfront. In a bold move to signal the advent of the implementation phase of World Design Capital Cape Town 2014, this historic landmark i.e. the Clock Tower, with its eye-catching red colour was painted WDC 2014 yellow for the occasion.
She asked Bulelwa Makalima-Ngewana from the Cape Town Partnership and two representatives from the Helsinki WDC 2012 team to help her finish the painting of the building. https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.135552736619396.1073741825.124323754408961&type=1
A visit to the Clock Tower today will indeed show it to be painted Yellow, with the quoins and window sills a contrasting Black. Accolades to those who gave permission to waive Section 27 of the Act (NHRA), or legislation of the relevant province, thereby issuing the relevant permit. Stark reminder of the achievements (or lack of) of the shaping and focussing of a year-long programme of design-focused events and activities (sic).
The white Perspex Provincial Heritage Site plaque that is fixed to the tower with white silicon, is as neat and as enthusiastically done as can be expected from a Grade 2, kid well into his/her first ever attempt to master the art and glory of manipulating Crayola crayons.
The Tourist information sign is next to the closed and locked entrance door; both making a mockery of the information as per our citysightseeing web page’s invitations. Peering through the window, (dirty), reveals a dusty staircase and a shelf supporting an unidentified office automation relic dated pre-Cambrian, judging by the dust upon it.
Looking through the rear windows reveals an empty ground floor, and open trapdoor that one presumes would be the opening of the tide gauging well, (alternatively perchance a Minuteman MIRV rocket silo). A chest high, glass encased mechanism of not very obvious function, complements. This mechanical wonder must certainly have in times past, long past, ensured accurate measurement and display of some metric.
Today it could very well indicate lava temperature; that is of course after the unlikely reconstruction of the thing. Somewhere in the upper story one can see some faint down lights burning. Obviously a tribute shrine to souls long drowned during some Christmas do.
The “finishing touches to the exterior paint” resulted in large and many drips/spots of yellow paint on the window sills, which were subsequently never cleaned. The persons in flagrante, (though not delicto), are distinctly identified on the FB page as noted earlier, (4th and 5th last pictures). One can hardly blame the august CEOs for their sloppy handling of brush and roller, but one may have thought that the well documented paint drip effect could have been anticipated by the organizers, with consequent prophylactic or post causal activities. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Drip_painting
The clincher is the huge sign suspended between two embedded posts next to the tower, indicating that this is position 18 of a route. The wording then goes on to explain how the Red and White Icon came to be as per the blurbs of paragraphs 2 & 3 above, sans any mention of consequent turning into an imitation edifice of a Gutalin design. http://gutalin.deviantart.com/art/The-pumpkin-house-76154318
After 12 minutes, having watched the confusion and bemusement of, and having heard the puzzled mutterings by the 8th tourist after reading this particular informational gem whilst observing a different coloured structure without any explanation about their sudden affliction of colour blindness, made one wonder.
Is this the metaphor of sloppy, lazy, could-not-care, no forward thinking, ignore-whatever-the-consequences, modern way of doing? On par with the PE Aquarium and Pretoria Zoo?
And these same people want the care, precision and attention to detail workmanship when they go for an operation, fly to wherever, drive in a bus or car serviced yesterday only, or drafting legislation that affect their future?.....
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