Darling isn’t the type of town you go out of your way to see. I learnt this when I tried to do such a thing and spent ages crawling along backroads and getting stuck in road blocks set up for the various road works. Of course, this has nothing to do with photography, but it did bend my mind towards a certain disposition when I did eventually emerge from the panoply of blockages into a very nondescript town.
No insults to the general populus but there didn’t seem much to do in the town and between buying a cheap lunch at the rather spritely local Spar and visiting the one local hotel I could find, there was not much to see or do. I believe the famous Darling Brewery had moved its operations (so I didn’t venture around to find it) and the one notable place I’d been to before – the Marmalade Cat – somehow didn’t have an appeal anymore.
One horse towns may be great for having children in, buying cheap property, and living a peaceful quiet life, but they’re obviously not the business hubs one hopes to encounter in order to get some new business. You see, wonderfully, I get to traverse the Western Cape in order to take photos of various real estate (among other things) and every now and then pop into small towns to see “what’s up”. I was on the way to Langebaan and also decided to pop into Yzerfontein, which had a little more going on than Darling (including its own Spar, in which an old woman grabbed by left buttock). I left that Spar with less than I had at the previous one, and I think it will be a while before I ever go to either again. Where is the Woolworths when you need it most, I ask you?
Random tales aside, Darling has vast potential as a popular property investment in years to come. Plots and homes were cheap as chalk, and the distance from Cape Town is not too far at all. Good weather year round, roads that are soon to be world-class, and of course: a wonderful Spar with goodies with which you can fill your precious belly.