My family’s house is plain on the outside (like most houses in Fish Hoek), but inside, it has a lot of character. I like padding through it with bare feet, from the carpets in the passage to the cold stone floor of the little entrance hall. I like standing in the lounge in the semi-dark, listening to the ticking of clocks. I like the old, hardwood furniture. They don’t make stuff like that anymore, and that’s a good thing, but it’s still nice to run your fingers along the tooled edges and the brass handles and think about the past. I like the built-in, ceiling-high, wooden bookshelf, where my books are going to live for a while. In the lamplight, it’s a slice of an old library. All it needs is a rickety wooden ladder and few dusty candles, dribbling over. The contrast between my grandparents’ old-fashioned furniture and my mother’s rustic, earth-tone aesthetic is really nice. It’s warm. It’s wholesome. There are so many comfortable seats that each relaxation session must first involve the choosing of a location. The sunlight places golden rectangles on the carpets. I could lie down right there, like the muffin-faced cat. Tick tock. Tick tock. Time for tea. Mismatched mugs and antique coffee tables. Ornate silverware jumbled up with the cheap stuff. A blue blanket over the ripped fabric of an armchair clawed by feline residents in years gone by. There’s a view of wind-rustled garden, the restless river of traffic, the Fish Hoek lowlands, the Clovelly hillside, a swatch of sea. For now, this is home.