BEHIND THE SCENES
Digital editor Desiree Hartney joined the team in March 2021. She’s working from her home office in Malmesbury, just north of Cape Town.
My dad Gavin has been a fan for years. Through him, I also started to read the magazine. It’s so much fun to travel to all the corners of the country through the writers’ and readers’eyes.
What’s the online audience like?
They’re a close-knit community. When I share a letter or reader story on Facebook, there’s always someone who tags the reader to say, “I know that person!” Our readers also seem to have a sweet tooth… Dessert and biscuit recipes are always a hit.
Weekends away with my school friends. Yes, we’re still friends after nearly 15 years! We play board games, braai, talk until the early hours and sleep on a Christmas bed in the living area. If you have the right people with you, it doesn’t really matter where you go.
What do you do on weekends?
I love watching documentaries about people who have decided to make a life in remote, inhospitable places. Like Return to the Wild, hosted by the adventurer Ben Fogle, and Grand Designs New Zealand, about the process of designing and building ambitious and amazing houses in unusual places.
Before Covid, I tried to go to at least one new restaurant or do one new activity each month. I enjoyed the City Sightseeing bus tour of Cape Town. I’m usually the driver when we do outings; on the bus I could take in all the sights I miss when I’m behind the wheel. I love being a tourist in my own city.
Favourite places to eat in Malmesbury?
Granny Jean’s has delicious pizzas – my favourite is This Little Piggy with sage, pork sausage, mozzarella and caramelised onion. Cherry Lane has the best Saturday breakfast menu – try the omelette.
Your next travel destination?
I’m in the mood for a road trip, so maybe the Cederberg. That part of the country has always fascinated me.
What do you always take on a trip?
I use prescription lenses so I don’t go anywhere without my sunglasses. I also always pack sunscreen, my takkies in case I feel like a walk, and a book in case I want to lounge around.