When I moved to the northern suburbs of Joburg in 1998, I would take leisurely drives in a general northwesterly direction over weekends, swooping past Kyalami, Lonehill and beyond. It gave me the impression that I had left the city and was in the country. The road was bounded on both sides by open land, and there was animal life.

Today, when I tell my kids the stretch between Woodmead and Kyalami was largely undeveloped land, except for an equestrian estate on the left, they think I am making it up. Last weekend, I took a nostalgic drive along this route. The stretch of land is unrecognisable, with the posh Waterfall and Kyalami estates and the Mall of Africa having radically transformed it. While the sentimental part of me decries the erosion of rustic beauty, one positive aspect to these developments is the appearance of some elegant restaurants. People must eat. With my niece Luyanda in tow, I nosed our car into the vibrant Waterfall Corner, which boasts several upmarket s...

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