My milk shake brings all the birds to the yard - Day 367
Oh dear, Oh dearie, dearie me. Let's just say that the song by American recording artist Kelis "My milkshake brings all the birds to the yard" is a hint about this morning.
We were driving south to go to the most southerly point in Africa and where the Indian and Atlantic Oceans meet, but before that we decided to treat ourselves to breakfast at a local café Diesel & Crème. Herman who we met in Bloemfontein had recommended this place to us. We blame him! It wasn’t so much the breakfast he mentioned; it was their….milkshakes! Oh dear! The list was huge, Vintage Villain, Honey Crunch, Pink Cadillac. I went in for the kill and had Morning Glory (with a shot of Expresso Coffee). Tim started well with a large flat white coffee with his cooked breakfast and mocked me about my intake of the deadly sugar. “What do you mean? It’s just coffee and cream!” I lied as I sucked the deliciously thick goo up the straw. The waitress cleared our plates, yes I had breakfast as well. She asked if we wanted anything else. I was stuffed. Tim looked up. “Oh go on, I heard that the Cruella Deville is nice”. His chocolate and strawberry milkshake arrived with 100s and 1000s sprinkled on too. He tried to redeem himself by saying that it was 1 of his five a day, and he might have eaten some of the sugary strands by mistake.
We waddled back to the car and was soon was sweating, not from the heat! I don’t think we will need to eat for at least a day! The journey south was pleasant, through the Tradouw pass and later along the R319 past vast fields of wheat, many which had or were being ploughed changing the colour from pale gold to dry mustard. Tim saw the sea first, with its beautiful turquoise shades. We travelled through the small town of L’Agulhas, which is Portuguese for “needles”, not because there are needle-like rocks similar to the Isle of Wight, but because the sailors saw that their compass-needle pointed due north. The little town was quiet with modern bungalows dotted around, one with stacks of small stone animal statues in the garden. We parked up by the lighthouse and walked along a neat boardwalk parallel to the rocky headland and roaring seas. We stopped and watched a fisherman standing in the waves and throwing his net out as the waves came in. He dragged his net in and occasionally a small fish was found caught in it. A slow, methodical way of fishing. At last, we reached our target. We were at the southernmost tip of the African continent, and, according to the International Hydrographic Organization, at the beginning of the dividing line between the two great Oceans. I say at the beginning as when we reach Cape Point, south of Cape Town; I am sure we will be informed that this also is where the two great Oceans meet. Confusing eh? As well as the stone cairn representing the meeting of the two oceans, there was a big circular structure, only completed earlier this year. In the centre was a large map of the Africa continent depicting famous landmarks such as the Nile, the Sahara Desert, Kilimanjaro, the Namib Dunes, which we visited recently as well as the Drakensberg Mountain Range. To the south Table Mountain, no doubt we will visit this within the next month. It also had steel structures showing the 4 points of the compass around the edge. After snapshots of this iconic place, we visited the much needed Lighthouse, first lit on 1 March 1849. We climbed the 71 steep wooden rungs to reach the outer rim of the building and hit by the gust of wind coming from the sea. A small group from China was also visiting. One was wearing stiletto heels of at least 10cm; how she managed to get up and down those stairs, I’ll never know. Perhaps she took her shoes off. Her friend had the longest hair we have ever seen, reaching way past her bottom. At the bottom of the lighthouse was a small museum. On one side was about lighthouses around the world and the other was an exhibition about clearing up rubbish from the beach. A poster showed what was found last year, items such as four toilets and one rubber chicken!
Our drive back took a bit longer than going. We kept seeing flashes of orange from birds flying at the side of the road and stopped to try and take photos of them. They are quick little things, not wanting to stay put for long. Eventually, we caught some pictures of them, they are Southern Red Bishop, and we also saw Yellow Weavers and Blue Crane – what a primary set of birds (Got it?).
Just before we arrived back at the Tradouw pass, we came across a hitch hiker. This is one of the main ways for many South Africans to get around. We had been warned not to pick up hitch hikers, we have taken no notice, having given a ride to quite a few, always careful who we choose. Today it was David Muzenda, a young man from Cape Town who works in Barrydale. He showed me photos of what he builds; beautiful fences, gates and roofs made from straight uniform sticks that he collects from forests. What a talent. We chatted a bit about business. I did give him a few “words of wisdom”, making sure he gets testimonials and keeping in touch with his clients. It is much easier having a small group of people you regularly work with and who end up being your own “sales team” as they like your service, than keep getting new clients…or that’s what I have learnt along the way. We wish him every success.