Have stroller, will travel. At 90, she’s out daily

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Have stroller, will travel. At 90, she’s out daily

Every morning, she joins fitness enthusiasts on the Sea Point promenade, enjoying the company of old pupils

Journalist
Yamina Oliver, 90, has been taking daily walks on the Sea Point promenade since the lockdown restrictions were relaxed.
IN A CLASS OF HER OWN Yamina Oliver, 90, has been taking daily walks on the Sea Point promenade since the lockdown restrictions were relaxed.
Image: Esa Alexander

Former Cape Town teacher Yamina Oliver, 90, has become an instant celebrity for taking daily walks during the level 4 lockdown exercise period.

Every morning, when she dons her face shield and takes her walker for a stroll along Sea Point promenade, fellow – and faster – fitness enthusiasts greet her with smiles and waves.

“I taught for 50 years, and I actually taught until 80,” Oliver told Times Select on Thursday. “I used to walk in the morning and in the evening. But now I only do it in the morning.

“I love teaching, and what is so nice about teaching is that everybody here, who I don’t know, knows me because I taught them – and others, I taught their children and grandchildren.”

She dusted off her takkies when President Cyril Ramaphosa relaxed the lockdown restrictions and allowed outdoor exercise.  

“I couldn’t breathe with the other thing that I put on my nose, so my physiotherapist recommended this [a face shield], and I love it,” she said.

“It’s beautiful [out here], and when everybody walks past it’s a pleasure because I don’t walk so fast. I get a bit lonely if there is no jogger.

“The other day a cop stopped me, and I thought he was going to take me away ... and he asked where I stay and said he is going to come and fetch me every morning.

“Everybody is so friendly. I don’t see so well and I forget their names. But I love it.”

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