The Noels in SA and Namibia 2018 travel blog

The lighthouse at Cape Aqulhas

Philip, Maggie and Chris at the lighthouse

The octogenarian climbing up the lighthouse

The topographical map of Africa= 1.2 x land mass of Canada, US...

The gang where the two oceans meet

Windward side of the lighthouse

Lunch at Zuidste Kaap Pub & Restaurant

Philip and Josie

Dinner at Harbour Rock, Chris helps Josie with those darn chopsticks

We had a great sleep and may be getting back on track with daily routines. Maggie had rusk for breakfast and we loved them! Rusk originated in the late 1600s and is a traditional Afrikaner breakfast snack or meal. It is pretty much biscotti and is a way of preserving bread especially when travelling long distances without refrigeration. I consulted Google and rusk is a worldwide phenomena called many things depending on where you are. We visited over breakfast, making plans to go to the Cape. I should mention it is very normal to have an indoor BBQ (braai) in South Africa. In fact most South Africans who come to Canada are gobsmacked that we don't have indoor braais. Maggie and Chris's braai was along the wall of their dining area. Chris told us about a new bill passed in Parliament whereby land can be expropriated with no compensation. This is worrisome for business people and farmers. We left for our road trip to Cape Agulhas with Philip, Rick, Mom and I in one vehicle and Maggie, Chris, Jim and Chris were in the other. (popular name this Chris isn't it LOL). Philip was a fantastic guide. During the journey we saw an armoured vehicle with bullet holes in it which seemed like perhaps this is a normal occurrence. WhAAATTT?? We passed an estuary where 100 pound salmon can be caught although the usual is 10 to 18 pounds. This salmon has white flesh. We passed more feinboss (natural indigenous flowers and shrubs) everywhere. The fir trees were imported from Europe and grow very fast. They are ready to harvest in 20-25 years rather than 120 years. We talked about Christmas traditions and 98% of South Africans have never eaten turkey. Their Christmas's are very hot and it is usual to have a cold meal for Christmas dinner. Other imported trees are from Australia such as the Blue Gum and Acacia trees. Philip explained that the strange strips of trimmed down vegetation along the road was a fire break and there is very little infrastructure in place to fight fires. We passed a fishing village where people were selling fish along the roads. Abalone is common here and Philip told us how he prepares Abalone. We will have to try it. We passed lots of game farms, sandy soil, a town called Beard Shavers Bush (when translated directly to English), The whole area reminded us of the Okanagan. We learned our first Afrikans (Dutch) work "Baie Dankie" (thank you very much). We passed white and grey cranes, jersey cows, irrigation systems, reebok, volreba (like deer), lots of bales of hay, sheep. Philip shared some information regarding Ostrich - their heads do not move when they run and they swallow rocks to help digest and grind their food, the males brood on the nest. Philip told us a silly Ostrich joke. It was silly and should not be repeated LOL. We learned how the Malaysian people were brought to Africa as slaves in the 1700s to work in homes. Coloured people are a mix of indigenous and white. We saw Egyptian geese and Kudu. The rainy season is May to August. Spring is in September. We finally arrived at Cape Agulhas, the most southern tip of the African continent. Agulhas is the Portuguese word for needles which accurately describes the coastline to a tee since there were craggy rocks everywhere. At the Cape we climbed up the 4 flights in the lighthouse (not my cup of tea since heights bug me but I did it .. Yeah!), then we headed to the marker where the Atlantic and Indian Oceans meet for our photo op. There was a ground image of the continent of Africa complete with rivers and mountains. I spotted Mount Kilimanjaro and climbed it. (literally haha). We had an amazing lunch at Zuidste Kaap Pub & Restaurant. I had calamari which was out of this world!!! As we headed back we noticed houses were southern facing which made a great deal of sense to keep them cool (in Canada, our houses are southern facing to warm them up). A tortoise crossed the road in front of us, we saw deer, guinea hen. At one point a troop of baboons crossed the road. This was our first sighting of baboons. Philip told us baboons pitch rocks underhanded and they are very good shots. Of course we were so excited to see the baboons but the locals have had their fill of baboons and the problems they bring. I am shocked to learn there are 11 languages in South Africa. Wow! We returned back to the Boshoff's, rested a bit and then headed out for dinner at the Rock on the Harbour (which incidentally was pretty close to a shanty town). Once again dinner and the company was lovely.

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