Muizenberg, South Africa


Farrell Hope


October 2021

Great video, thanks for sending Mervyn and Essex.

Eli, you have done a great job here.

I must tell you though, while I know a whole lot of people in the video, well, and am still friends with a few of them. The moment I saw it was mainly in colour, I knew it would not represent my time in Muizenberg to a great extent. When I was a Muizenberg boy, photography was still a black and white thing. These are all guys I knew, but approaching their 20’s and early adulthood, I had moved away from Muizenberg by then. By eighteen, my parents and siblings had gone to Canada, and I had moved to digs in Rondebosch. When I think back to Muizenberg, I see myself as 16 or younger.

The video should really be retitled the "Barry Blumenthal Show”, and Barry should be awarded an Oscar for his stellar performance. appearing throughout the movie, and demonstrating the physical aspects of life and happiness on Muizenberg beach.

For me watching was bittersweet, because virtually all the people in the video I remember as my friends are either gone, or have one foot in the grave.  I can deal with getting old (and it’s not for sissies) but my world has become peopled by ghosts. People i haven’t thought of for 60 years now come out to me at night.  Every night. There were new ones to think of in the video. 

Ganif, or Leibke as he was also known, was briefly seen, and also mentioned in the credits.  He is also gone.  His name was Sydney.  Mervyn kept in touch with him and visited him in his old age home and took him for drives right up until he died. He called Mervyn on every Yomtov. He sent both his kids to medical school. I would speak to him occasionally. When I called him the first time, about 40 years since last seeing him, and gave him my name, he said; “I remember you, the rest of your family went to Canada. How’s your mom and dad, Anne and Dave? And your brother Jackie and sister Valerie?"  His only regret is that they would not accept him at the Jewish old age home, which he desperately wanted.  Pity, he was as Jewish as I am, if not more, and an icon in the Muizenberg Jewish community.

Here is a picture taken some years before he died in his old age home, by Lara Derman, copied hereon, the late Ronnie Derman's daughter. Ronnie is one of my ghosts that comes out often.




Barry Blumenthal

Farrell Hope and girlfriend Irene on Muizenberg Beach c1959

Farrell Hope c1965

Farrell Hope and Barry Stern on Muizenberg Beach c1960