In the spirit of retro Sundays, we thought we’d throw it back to the 90s, a pivotal decade for South Africa. The country was moving towards democracy and the borders were opening up to the world after being shunned for Apartheid.
It was when the world reopened its arms that lead to a massive influx in our access to new toys and technologies bringing in entertainment that has stayed with us ever since.
Also read: LOOK: 20 pics of what Cape Town looked like in the 1900s
Life was slightly simpler then, or at least it felt that way. The possibility of going viral related only to the medical field, and you had to wait for a specific day and time of the week for your favourite shows to come on – binge-watching was a thing we never saw coming. Children would spend hours playing outside in the street and a cup of sugar was a knock on the neighbours’ door away, not a click on Woolies dash or Checkers Sixty.
Here are some of the incredible toys and times we’ve left behind:
Sky dancer dolls:
These Barbie-like dolls were a must-have for any little girl back in the 90s. The doll came with the prettiest perch and would zoom off into the air the moment you pulled the string. It was a magical spectacle for all 90s kids.
“Stop watching so much TV, your eyes will go square!” said every parent to their child in the 90s. Perhaps the saying remains, but back in the day, it was a phrase that felt pretty viral amongst both parents and children alike at the time.
Our televisions have come a long way but the iconic fat cube TV taking up a ridiculous amount of space in our lounges will remain in our hearts as monitors become flatter and curvier as the years go by. It’s humbling to reminisce on snowy screens and doing acrobatic moves with the antenna just to get a clear picture in standard definition in this 3840 x 2160 pixel world that we live in today.
Ingle Angle Silver Bangle:
“Ingle Angle, silver bangle
Inside, outside, inside, on!”
Ingle Angle (also affectionally known as Gummi) was the ultimate outdoor game, all you needed was some elastic from the sewing draw in the house. It wasn’t quite as difficult as skipping and you could play it with any amount of friends. It could keep us entertained for hours, getting more and more competitive as the rope moved higher up your friends’ legs each round.
It’s amazing to think just how high we could jump as kids isn’t it?
#YouAreNotA90sKidIf YOU AINT DRANK THIS AFTER SCHOOL pic.twitter.com/HSDO1nkc0r
— TeamGAUD (@TRILLDINoGAUD) June 22, 2017
We couldn’t have said it better ourselves. What’s a 90s kid without squeezing an ice-cold Bibo after school? There was simply nothing like the sugary drink of our childhood with its iconic bright red Bibo character man and the risk of drenching our faces and clothes with juice when stabbing the straw through the hole in the packet. The best part was that we could have all this sugary goodness for just R1 or less.
Most likely our first encounter with the grief of loss, these virtual pets were subject to murder at the hands of all 90s kids. Pressing buttons to feed our clean up after our little creatures was the biggest responsibility of our time and when we failed to care for them as best we could, we felt awful. That is until we moved on to our new Tamagotchi, of course.
The sound that will live on rent-free in the back of our minds until the day we cease to exist. South Africa first got dial-up in 1991 and we all sat watching while webpages loaded as painfully slowly as paint drying on the walls. Meanwhile, our parents were shouting to get off the internet because they needed to use the phone.
Disney, Universal and3-story Pixar VHS tapes were the coolest inventions around when we were younger. Popping in one of the films from our extensive collection ensured us a day well spent in realistic, futuristic, and fantasy worlds far and wide. And for parents, it meant the kids would at least stay indoors and be quiet for a few hours.
Why this classic film-inspired cafe on Kloof is loved by locals