Sometimes I sit in my home office with the lofty old ceiling in Cradock, look out the window at the Swaershoek mountains, type a few words of a story and toast the rise of the Creative Class with a glass of single malt whisky – at two in the afternoon.
It doesn’t happen a lot, but it happens. Far more than it happened seven years ago in Jo’burg. Which could account for the rather creative way I play the guitar these days.
The Creative Class, of which I am a paid-up member, is moving into the platteland like a bunch of smart little locusts with their smart little telephones, their smart little laptops and their smart little digital jobs.
And we often Facebook each other and high-five over the ether about having escaped from the Big Smoke and stuff
We, an occasionally-happy band of small town arrivals from settlements all over the country, are potters, writers, photographers, artists and semi-retired thinkers. Hmm. A semi-retired thinker. That’s what I want to be one day.
And it’s all very hunky and a little dory most days. Until, that is, when the first rains come. And the dark stains begin to gather and spread on the off-white ceiling board.
Or when something over there in the kitchen catches your eye as you’re watching TV and, upon second glances, you see it’s the twitching face of a big old rat going for the dog’s Kibbles.
Or when the toilet decides to flood over, real locusts with green armour invade the garden, said rat eats an electric connection and the lights go out, the garage starts to slump in on itself and the stately old Karoo architecture of your dwelling begins to creak, groan and give up the ghost.
It’s basically at this stage that the much-vaunted Creative Class grabs a bottle of sociable red and heads for the hills, a neighbour’s farm or an over-priced squat on the coast. We might be the Creative Class, twitter, twitter, tweet, tweet, but we are also the Not Good With Our Hands Class. Common sense is not our stock in trade, we hearty dreamers we.
Never mind being able to live off a broadband connection and a website address. The real money to be made out here the in country is by the Creative Contractor, the guy who can fix the pipes, so to speak. Now where’s that handyman’s phone number at?