Wednesday, June 25, 2008

South Africa

Hey Sportsfans,

Well we're now here in capetown with a latte in one hand and typing furiously with the other. The waistline is expanding in an inverse relationship to the bank account but hey! it's party time.

To recap the last week:

Since Swakopmund where I last wrote from we shifted the setting south to Sossuvlei(pronounced soft souffle) . This is a desert area with sand dunes approaching 400m high. They were large, orange and sandy. Pretty cool to see, hard to climb up but hilarious fun to tumble/run down. It's an awesome part of the world but amusingly enough it rained on the day we were there. The local chap who was our guide was a San man and he was 37 years old. This was the third bout of rain fall for 2008 and the first time in his life he's seen rain in June. He didn't know why and we didn't have the heart to explain why global weather patterns are changing. Sad.

Next from Sossuvlei was the desert/dessert (omit one) . I could decribe for the entire world the inside of our bus which I studied intently during thes time but i think not. We eventually ended up at fish river canyon which is the second largest in the world (the quite grand canyon) and took many obligatory photos. It was actually really pretty though and a nice spot to hunker down.

From there we basically drove to Capetown. We did stop in cederburg for an im-port-ant night of rest but didn't do much else. Next stop was the end of our tour in Capetown...

Capetown is glorious. It has a harbour 10 times that of the viaduct and long street is a much cooler, larger and more amazing version of Cuba Street. It also has rather a lot of violence and a few large townships/ghetto's but nowhere is perfect. The mountain is also spectular. We've so far visited ~6 cafes in two days to get a statistically significant cross section of the Capetown coffee's. Not bad. Kate bought jeans and I've acquired such interesting stuff as camera batteries. There is an "investment car dealership" which I find amusing - obviously their cars don't depreciate like all other ones.

Yesterday we made the obligatory trip to Robben island. It was quite an experience. Our tour was approximately as follows "HI, I AM YOUR FRIENDLY GUIDE. I AM VERY FRIENDLY. ASK ME QUESTIONS. MORE QUESTIONS. DAMMIT PEOPLE HARRASS ME. BLAH BLAH YELL YELL" etc. The other funny thing to me was that he presumed we were interested in parts of hte island unrelated to the prison where the political prisoners were kept. I couldn't believe it when he pointed out the lighthouse (it's 30 metres high - the tallest point on the island). Needless to say some people took photos of said lighthouse. After exactly 45 minutes (THIS VERY FRIENDLY TOUR IS EXACTLY 45 MINUTES HA HA HE HE OR ELSE I GET FIRED HAW HAW) we were delivered to the prison proper where an ex inmate met us. He had a fantastic voice, an interesting/sad story and 45 minutes also. Anyways, Mandela's cell was rather small, his story rather inspiring and the tour was overall excellent. The oppressiveness of Apartheid is not the best legacy I can safely say.

Anyways. We have 4 more days here before going back to East Africa/Dar es Salaam/the third world. It'll be a shock to our increasingly pampered systems but that's okay. In the meantime we'll go wine tasting, go to simon's town for food and latte ourselves stupid. Hurrah.

Congrats to Dave, Pete Reeves and other people who have things to congratulate. I love news from home. Who on earth is Adam Thompson? Casedog must be beside himself that Tanerau Latimer is getting talked about (and don't forget that he is about to be a dad).

The situation in Zimbabwe and South Africa's treatment of it is in the news here a lot. Grrr. Richie McCaw's knee dominates the sports news headlines here though. Funny.

Party on.

Jeff

3 comments:

Matthew Tuite said...

Hi guys! Sorry, this comment is more generic than specific to this post, but I just wanted to say that its great hearing what you are up to and it sounds like fun! Keep the posts coming and keep enjoying that sun....because we sure don't have a lot back here at the moment!

Anonymous said...

Hi u 2 Barb and Ash will be there and compesmentus BY NOW(big word to spell) all have a great time all well v cold here
LOVE G/MA Just got a letter from Dave

Thomas said...

Im-port-ant.....hahahahahahaha.....how have you not been snapped up by the writers of generic american tv sitcoms?

More to the point you can expect a letter from my solicitor for trying to give me liver poisoning in one sitting in that godforsaken wine farm.