On the banks of the Liesbeek River in the Two Rivers Urban Park that has recently been created in Observatory, you look across to the sprawling buildings of Valkenberg Psychiatric Hospital. It was named after Cornelius Valk who established a farm on the land in 1720. It then became a "lunatic asylum" in 1891 and today it the main teaching hospital for the University of Cape Town's Department of Psychiatry and is also a specialised training centre for psychiatric nursing.
Famous patients include the poet Ingrid Jonker (our very own Sylvia Plath) who was admitted with depression in the 1960s and Tshepo, the lead character in K. Sello Duiker's novel The Quiet Violence of Dreams.
These are not cuckoos, but Hartlaubs Gulls.
1 year ago