First couple in Sun Valley see it all

Driekie and Jan Linde.

A retired couple who were the first residents to move into Sun Valley exchanged their home of 50 years for a retirement village on Saturday August 3.

Jan and Driekie Linde moved into their Caravel Street home in 1969 as newly weds. Their house was one of six in the street, and after moving in, five couples followed.

Mr Linde was a traffic officer and the house, part of divisional council housing.

The cost of the house was R6 900 and they needed a R200 deposit.

Ms Linde said they had just returned from a cruise which cost them R85 a person and they were broke.

“I borrowed R100 from my father and Jan borrowed a R100 from his father for the deposit,” she said laughing.

There were no fences between the homes, and the couple quickly befriended the other residents.

Their house had no garden, and Mr Linde planted the lawn and the hedges which are fully grown today.

They had regular braais and whoever made a fire first would be the couple to host the braai.

Ms Linde said if one household made a fire, the others would bring wood meat, salad and chairs and they would have a braai.

Back in the day, Ms Linde said, there were no postal deliveries and the couples would take turns to collect mail from the Noordhoek post office.

Milk was delivered at the house and bottles and coupons were left by the front door.

There were no shops in the area and the couple shopped at OK Bazaar and Shoprite
Checkers in Fish Hoek and bought meat from a butchery on Louw’s Corner, a farmland where Longbeach Mall is now.

Ms Linde said there were no houses opposite theirs and they had a lovely view of the mountain.

They made a cricket pitch on the land opposite their house for the men to play cricket and a
netball field on the property behind their house for the women.

Mr Linde helped teach some of the neighbours how to drive as the bus service was not always reliable.

Although some of the other couples had children, the Linde’s daughter, Karen, was the first baby to be born in Sun Valley in 1971.

“Jan was instructed to drive past the other houses after her birth and hoot once for a girl and twice for a boy,” Ms Linde said.

There were no schools and the children attended schools in town.

Ms Linde said she could never have imagined in “her wildest dreams” that Sun Valley would flourish they way it had with schools and two large malls.

When they were young, she said, the Glencairn Hotel and the Silversands Drive-in in Noordhoek were their only entertainment, and they would sometimes visit a roadhouse in Fish Hoek Main Road.

The Lindes are the last of the six couples who originally moved to Sun Valley in 1969 to leave the suburb.