One of the “must do” activities in Capetown is to visit the V&A Waterfront, a place where tourists can meander safely, buy stuff and eat food – basically like Disneyland for adults who are wearing Teva’s because they are on holiday and doing a lot of “walking.”
Around the world, when one sees V&A, one assumes it is some sort of homage to one of the greatest love stories of our time (a real royal love match between cousins that got Britain to believe in love again).
Naturally we assumed the Waterfront with its stunning romantic views was the same, which is why we were a bit miffed when the GPS started directing us to the Victoria and Alfred Waterfront. Had the GPS gotten it wrong? Did someone use the auto correct while entering in the data? (Clearly unclear on how GPS data collection works)
Minutes later we learned that indeed the official name was Victoria & Alfred. Who the F was Alfred? Did Albert know about him? Did the greatest love story our time suffer a slight glitch? Or had a giant game of Telephone gone seriously wrong? Had someone run to a departing ship in 1840 and yelled “Victoria and Albert!” Only to have his words taken by the wind and received by the Captain as “Victoria and Alfred!” Which he relayed once docked in Capetown?
So many questions. We decided to ask our waiter, who said he wasnt sure, but wasn’t Alfred Victoria’s husband? Oh dear, did everyone in Capetown think Victoria was married to Alfred?
Google said that Alfred was her second son, and the Waterfront has named for him and his mother because it joined the Alfred Basin and the Victoria Basin. Of course, you can’t believe everything you read on the internet, so we decided to turn into hard hitting journalists and ask people.
A security guard had no idea, a man that worked in a wine shop thought a plaque might help (it didn’t), we finally stopped asking when woman working in an English Cheese shop said that some tourists had asked her the same thing a week ago and she hadn’t looked it up, she just assumed they were husband and wife.
So, in conclusion, poor Albert would probably not be happy to know that people around Capetown think his wife and cousin, Queen Victoria was actually hooking up with Alfred, her son (presumably at the Victoria & Alfred Hotel).
Ahh, the royals, so hard to keep those bloodlines straight.