soth africa part 6


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Africa
March 15th 2012
Published: March 15th 2012
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It’s 05.30 hrs and all quiet (on the Eastern front in this case…), the sun is throwing its pink glow over the Drakensbergen;

I decide to take the shower outside the building in my ‘Eve’s costume’ and admire the view;

no risk of being spotted (I hope, ‘cause nowadays YouTube can be a nuisance…) since everybody is still dozing. The water contains no additions resulting in a soft, smooth skin.

I secretly harvest some of these flowers for someone in the Netherlands (yes, I’m addressing you Geeke! After all these years I’m doing still Homework 4 you, hilarious)

Birds are chirping merrily; with their nicely colored feathers they avoid my camera.

09.00hrs we leave with Ian Foster, our 2nd generation Afrikaner of British origin. His grandfather was stenographer for Winston Churchill, who was a reporter early 20th century

in SA.

Ian is a cheerful (and impish!) chap, with his bloodshed eyes her resembles the Brits’ Bulldog, providing us with all sorts of info: Lesotho is for 99%!R(MISSING)oman Catholic; the healthy live they live but for the fact of HIV; the country has approx 1, 8 mio people living on the 20 %!s(MISSING)urface of this Kingdom; main income is the wool of the sheep and funny looking goats

After a bumpy ride, slipsliding on a narrow steep pathway (in 1 bend he had to go in reverse in order to make it, but our group went silent because this meant we were sliding towards the valley!) we cross the border. Immediately we are suurounded by locals, wrapped what looked like rugs, underneath just uncolored underwear, rubber boots (Losotho has lots of marshes and provides water for SA, for this luxury SA pays 22 mio a month!), their heads covered with could be multifunctional as bankrobbers… They smile all the time while asking for drinks, money or whatever you are willing to share with them. The government put their ‘salary’ into a deposit at foodstores and they get a ‘goodfor’-letter, so in this way they cannot use it for beer and cigarettes. Truly, I hope our Dutch government won’t introduce this sytem in NL !

Ian treats us on ‘Vetkoek’, wich is like our oliebol (without the raisins) or donut for the Anglo Sakson readers, they are of great taste.

6 Storks are spotted; do we have them in Holland asks Ian; yes, I retort, but apparently not as much since the average family consists of 1,2 children.

Luncheon on a mountain: 3.484 mtrs high, what a sight: our group of 8 (including Ian and his assistant) share this moment with the locals who play a selfmade instrument of plastic container and ditto strings, which helds the middle of a jukelile and banjo. So I decide to

Offer my 4 apples to the kids, These kids skip school (although they should by law attend

It until 16) and had their initiation rites (which involves circumcision) which means they reach manhood at 14. They have a beautiful childlike smile.

Lots to talk about with Jeff and Alison, the 2 Americans from Seattle which I teamed up this day since the Frenchspeaking 2 belgian girls were holding back.

In a ‘village’ consisting of 4 or 5 round huts, build of mud, amidst a savannne-like surrounding we are invited to taste locally made beer. (containing honey, sugar and something else which helps them to ‘energize’, something like the Coca for the Indians

In the midst America’s I suppose) and bread. Of course there lies some trinkets you are urged to to buy, fortunately one of the group buys something, since I feel somehow embarrassment. I just offer her my last apple, which she gracefully accepts.

On the backway again some thrilling moments on the road, Ian is continually hitting the brakes, so in every bend we look in aw mixed with fear into the valley deep down us.

The total time of this tour was 8 hours in which we covered about 50 K’s for a mere 47,50 euro. A truly intense experience, for me anyway, since a decade … or two.

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