A cliché away from normal

I’m quoting an article I read recently on the web: “Clichés are mental shortcuts to familiar concepts. Your brain processes the phrase quickly—having heard it many times — and ascertains the meaning without needing to visualise the image or think about the writer’s intention.” So true, but cliches are so useful – sometimes.

A change is as good as a holiday: first, if you struggle to visualise a holiday, you need one. And even though we’re in the tourism industry, after several lockdowns, pandemics and epidemics, Omicron and crossing the Rubicon (not many words rhyme with Omicron, but apt here), we decided to not take a holiday, but make a change. We moved our “office” to a new venue – Fideli’s.

Fideli’s takes every restaurant cliché in the book and hit it out of the park (see, clichés are fun). Here you won’t find “intimate dining” (no restaurant setting has a Christmas bed in front of a fireplace), “cooked to perfection” (we would hope the food that’s supposed to be cooked are), “grub” (which is actually the larva of an insect), “melt in your mouth” (which is the biological job of saliva) or “addictive food” (last time we checked addiction is a harmful condition).

At Fideli’s though you will find honesty – they are loyal to the ingredients with no imported products and only locally sourced ingredients. You’ll find a beer garden – who does not enjoy a secluded outside dining section with a beer garden feel to it? Extensive wine list – say no more. They offer breakfast, lunch and dinner and is also an inner-city grocer with their own product range that includes a variety of home-made goods. They also have fruit and vegetables, local cheeses, grass-fed beef, lamb, and green-listed seafood available from sustainable reputable suppliers. Cliché or not, Fideli’s breathes sustainability and the restaurant run by Chef Judi who was awarded a WWF-SASSI Trailblazer.

Then there is the setting of our new starting point. And we can use every cliché ever printed to wax lyrical about our new surroundings. I mean, Cape Town is a legend in its own time (and away we go), long on the list of travel cliches of must-see places. Fideli’s is situated right next to Groote Kerk, the oldest Dutch Reformed church in South Africa. In 1677 a suitable area in the Company’s Garden was set aside as a burial ground. This was the land on which the Groote Kerk now stands. The church’s organ is the biggest in South Africa, with 5917 pipes. Opposite Groote Kerk is Church Square, which originally served as the site of Cape Town’s slave market. Across from the square is the Slave Lodge, one of the oldest buildings in Cape Town. Over the last three centuries, the building served as a slave lodge, government offices, the Old Supreme Court, as well as the SA Cultural History Museum. Today it is a must-see museum.

But we don’t want to give away too much. If you’re ready for a new chapter, or to tick travel clichés off your bucket list (try these): I haven’t been everywhere, but it’s on my list. Or how about “travel is the only thing you buy that makes you richer”. Or, Cape Town is the city you love that you’ve never been to, and we’re here to remind you that so much of who we are, is where we’ve been. Remember, the world is a book and those who do not travel read only one page. Here’s to new beginnings, and hopefully, the last ever use of those annoying clichés.