A Gentle Sunday Bulawayo Tour          - 7/ 5/ 2013      <--Prev : Next-->

It is Sunday and the economic profile of Bulawayo has changed rather a lot over the years.

Sundays used to be quiet in the CBD, a few desultory window shoppers, looking at the excellent Meikles, Sanders and Haddon and Sly windows, some folk in the park, some at the movie houses, some at the Royal Sunflower in Grey Street which was possibly the one and only fast food outlet apart from the Fritz Pie carts!!

Nowadays the CBD is buzzing on Sundays !!

The Bend- Down Bazaar is hectic, droves of Sunday shoppers, mountains of assorted clothes , a plethora of coloured gazebos and umbrellas, as well as the accompanying vendors who festoon such an occasion.

The food outlets are humming, the Chicken Inns, Bakers Inns, Pizza Inns, somehow even in a shrinking economy, folk manage to find money for comfort food.

Of course the supermarkets are a hurly burly of activity on a Sunday morning, the Food Lovers Market at Bradfield, the Bonsa Spars in Parklands and Hillside and good old Solomons in Fife Street and Fourth Avenue. Solomons Supermarket now opens on the weekend and until 8 o'clock every weekday, which makes it an ideal shopping spot for after hours shoppers on their way home.

But there is a giant informal sector that thrives on a Sunday - for example the car spare outlets, buy your new spark plugs, windscreen wipers, fuel injection filters, you name it and then some talented entrepreneur will fit it for you then and there in the middle of the street!! The whole road becomes a giant garage !

And the building suppliers are doing a roaring trade, DIY shoppers, home builders, handymen can buy anything they want up there in Fort, Chitepo or Lobengula from river sand to ladders to tools.

I have my favorite hardware shop - Home and Hardware on 12th Avenue next to Twizzels, and I just love the new Spar at Parklands, its just around the corner, saves me having to pack a picnic basket to travel all that way to Hillside Spar!!

Fazaks too is a useful stop on the Esigodini Road, as they are probably one of the least expensive stores in Bulawayo and their little coffee shop is very friendly too.

Yes the old Bulawayo profile has long gone, no more the one stop shops like Meikles and Railway Co-op, no more elegant and dignified menswear shopping at McCullogh and Bothwell, no more exclusive dresses at Morrisons and Zippers.

I will always remember my sixth form leavers dance dress, Granny died and left me a whole hundred pounds. I was a millionaire and able to purchase the dress of my dreams. A little chiffon number, cream with giant chocolate colored roses, a drape at the front, nipped at the waist and fully lined !!! Such elegance never to be surpassed again sigh.....

Of course we have loads and loads of lovely eating out and coffee places in Bulawayo!! My favorite cappuccino is still at Indaba, which also has a divine new bookshop. But there is also the coffee shop upstairs at Bradfield above Headlines Hairstylists, Claire's coffee shop on Townsend Road, River Cafe on 12th Ave close to Lionel's La Piazza.

Coffee is still good at the Art Gallery, the Bulawayo Club and at the Nesbitt Castle, and of course Bev's delicious place at Zonke-Iziwe where all things coffee and chocolate are a must!!

Last but not least I believe there is Nespresso Coffee available at the Bulawayo Theatre together with a selection of wraps and paninis.