Local writing enthusiast and creative Gregory Edwards, is communicating the magic and history of one of Cape Town’s most loved landmarks: Table Mountain. The self-published book is written to the children of the Mother City.
The Table Mountain Story, A KhoiKhoi Story is a fictional narrative set in Cape Town, telling the magical tales of the times when the Khoikhoi people lived freely on the land of Table Mountain.
A historical setting featuring Khoikhoi mythology of the Ga-gorib Giant and Modjadji the Rain Queen, exposes young readers to anecdotes of this unique culture. The book also creatively introduces characters including silkworms, bees and elephants.
The book includes an educational glossary explaining words and their meanings. There is also a cheat sheet translating Khoisan words to English. A map of the Table Mountain area is included, showing the landscape of the Khoisan people before colonisation.
Author Gregory Edwards says the book was a personal journey for him, allowing him to understand his ancestral roots.
“I come from a mixed race, where I know my Irish history from my dad’s side (Edwards) and my mom’s German side (Faulmann) – but we know absolutely nothing where and how the coloured blood came. This was basically my ‘rite of passage’,” says Edwards.
The story follows a time before Table Mountain existed and the plight of the Khoikhoi tribe facing the man-eating Ga-gorib giants.
Modjadji the Rain Queen is called upon by the Khoikhoi to help work together with the animals, to fend off giants. Bees help to sting a giant as he threatens the tribe causing him to drown in Table Bay. His shoe is left behind and gets covered in mud, eventually drying to form Table Mountain. The tribe praises Tsui-Goab the first Khoi or God, and he sends a cloud over the mountain to mark their victory. This resembles a cloth.
“The book brings an awareness to our icon, “Table Mountain”. Brings a fable story to children and adults alike at bringing Khoikhoi culture alive in a magical form. Brings lots history alive to a culture and people who were the first people on Southern African soil and teaches us about the Khoi & San culture without being derogatory,” says Edwards.
Locals can look forward to sharing this amazing story with their little ones. The official book launch will take place on Heritage Day this September, 24 at the PopUp shop, 42 Trill Road in Observatory from 11am.