Saturday, August 6, 2011

Elim, Overberg

Elim is a unique historical village, situated roughly between Gansbaai and the Tip of Africa, Agulhas. Some of the dirt roads can be pretty bad, but I found the tar road between Agulhas and Bredasdorp very good.  As a Moravian mission station in the Cape, Elim was dedicated to establishing a self-supporting church of indigenous people. Even at present, the whole of the municipal property is still, uniquely, owned and managed by the Moravian Church of South Africa.

The Moravians obviously had a sense of humor, because the water trough to the mill goes over this walkway and you have to bend - almost crouch - to go under it.   With an aching knee  it was quite a challenge and the crouch turned into an unelegant crawl!  On the other side of the trough was an Afrikaans sign, 'Salig is die Sagmoediges', not quite the same poignant meaning as the words by the Moravians, 'Blessed are the lowly' - and low do you bend, oh servant.

The beautiful old water mill.

The working water mill, which used to grind the flour for the local bakery, has been restored to its original historical state and was declared a national monument in 1974. I wonder if its working again.

The water mill on the inside of the little building

An old picture of what the town use to look like.

You'll notice that many of the whitewashed houses, and even the church, are beautifully thatched. Thatching is still one of Elim's main trades and providing work for many locals.

Like another little world!  All they need is some lavender and roses to complete a picture of timeless charm.

Even derelict ones, like this one, was beautiful. Dying for a makeover?

Tel:(028) 482 1806

Address:Elim Tourism Bureau
PO Box 33
Elim 7284
Municipality:(028) 482 1806/705

Oh, by the way, while you are there and probably feeling hungry - the Black Oystercatcher certainly is worth going to for a good meal and some great wine. Give them a call and tell them you're on your way.  (Their numbers are on the Black Oystercatcher link).

And seeing you've come this far, no doubt you'll be going to the Tip of Africa, where you'll probably also succumb to the charm of a lighthouse at Agulhas. :D
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