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Published: April 10th 2011
Sunday April 10th, 2011
Rounding the Cape of Good Hope
Latitude 34 degrees 32 minutes’ south- Longitude 23 degrees 23 minutes’ east
South Africa is still scarred from apartheid. The people are not very friendly in the big cities and crime is rampant. Many people have come down from other parts of Africa in search of jobs. Unemployment is over 25% and everywhere we saw people sleeping in Parks and along the street. There were police patroling everywhere including mounted police on horseback at the beach. The seas were too rough to make port in Richard’s Bay, but we have made stops in Durban and East London, South Africa. We did see a large auto transport ship leaving with a load of Toyotas for America, but for the most part the economy is hurting. I think the people that went on Safari out in the countryside did not see what we witnessed in the large cities. They had a more tourist-oriented experience with fake Zulu villages performing dances and making decorative beadwork for sale. The animals are managed in game reserves and are evidently quite tame. We heard stories from the passengers that went on game tours that
they petted “wild” cheetahs and ostriches. Only the lions they saw seemed to be less domesticated, with one male charging their jeep and putting on a good show.
Tomorrow we will arrive in Cape Town and we are looking forward to seeing this city. It is supposed to be one of the most scenic cities in the world. So far the Cape has lived up to it’s name. Originally called the Cape of Storms, we have seen plenty of waves and wind on our course around the tip of Africa. This will end the third leg of our cruise. Many of the passengers are leaving here and will not be aboard for the final segment to Rome. Of the six hundred that left Fort Lauderdale only about 200 have been onboard for the whole trip, like Jane and I. We will get a new group tomorrow who are on for just the last segment. Some people have come for one or two segments, but we are glad that we are going for the entire world cruise. We are definitely not ready to leave the ship and love this very relaxed way to see the world. Many of you have asked
about our weight loss. The food is excellent and we have enjoyed every meal. Fortunately, we are more active onboard and have managed to lose 24 pounds between the two of us, with Jane doing a little better than myself. We will need to bump up the program or we will be gone a very long time to lose 80 pounds. On the good wine front we have done much better. So far the real standouts have been the New Zealand wines from the Matakana Valley. I bought some excellent wines yesterday in East London, SA and we look forward to touring some wine estates on our two days in Cape Town.
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