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Published: June 26th 2010
I had an early start that morning as I seemed to do every day on this trip. I packed up my gear then went down stairs to wait for my car to be delivered at 8am. Naturally the car company was late with delivery, but it was a cute little car none the less. I departed the hostel thinking, I knew the way out of town, but I must admit I was a bit nervous driving on African roads for the first time and this probably lead to me missing the turn off. I was on a one way road and couldn’t turn around so I took a road on the left that took me into a produce market area.
I couldn’t find an exit so I wound down my window to ask directions of couple Indians on how to get back to the Rustenberg road, foolishly I neglected to wind up the passenger side window all the way. Exiting the market I took the road under the highway and came out in a nasty, filthy transport area swarming with black faces which again proved difficult to exit. In confusion I stopped the vehicle and wound down the drivers window
a few inches, to ask for directions not realising the passenger side window was still down and that my day pack containing all my items of value was within easy reach of passersby , within seconds three thieves had snatched the bag and run off.
I couldn't leave the car to chase them so I screamed out at the top of my lungs that I would pay a 1000 rand to anyone who could get my bag back. Everyone in ear shot ran after the thieves and one bloke managed to retrieve the bag but unfortunately my phone was missing. The guy that retrieved my bag then berated me for opening my windows and then escorted me out of the area. I was feeling anxious after this nasty experience so I pulled in to a petrol station and rang Ruth requesting she cancel the phone. I then obtained more instructions from the service station staff that finally got me back on the correct road, next time I will hire a GPS.
The drive after that was reasonably uneventful although I did get lost once or twice before arriving at the Bullens Bush Camp about 65km from Rustenberg. The
camp is a very rustic and pleasant place to stay and although I was only there one night I had a great time. An hour later I was back on the road to Rustenberg arriving at the park and ride area around 3.30pm.
Free buses then carried the fans to the new stadium which was a great place to watch football, the crowds were pretty good except perhaps for those Fanatics idiots, unfortunately for the Socceroos they got a rough deal from the referees and could only get a 1 – 1 result against Ghana which realistically put an end to the Australian campaign.
The drive back to the bush camp was easy enough even though it was dark, on arrival I had a really great dinner and a few beers before stretching out by the camp fire with the manager and having a chat about everything from beer to politics, we then retired to the recreation room to watch the football.
It was an icy night, one of coldest I have experienced but I was up early for a big hot breakfast, I received some excellent directions from the owners and set off about 8am, I
managed to safely avoid Pretoria and for the next five hours I travelled by a scenic route taking in more of the South African countryside.
I passed though some attractive towns including Belfast, Dullstoom and Sabie, traversed Long Tom pass, stopped at some historical monuments and purchased some souvenirs. I arrived at Loerie Farm stay which is about 7km from Hazy View in the mid afternoon and checked into my nice double room before driving into town for a seafood dinner.
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