Following on from our last update we promptly arose at the crack of dawn to commence a 52km mountain bike ride. The scenery was stunning and I did particularly well on the steep hills given that I hadn't been on a bike for 12 years, let alone a bike with 21 gears. But I finished it albeit slightly sunburnt and very saddle sore - John Wayne sprang to mind! After all these exersions we decided that we required a little R & R so booked ourselves into a nice quiet beach house in Keurboomstrand for a weekend of tanning and not a lot else. Unfortunately it was the 'not a lot else' that we ended up doing given to the fact that in true and undeniable style, the rain came - a lot! However we did get to enjoy a little home comfort cooking ( and I got to watch some serious amount of sport, although I am using this word in the loosest sense when considering the France v England debacle).
Refreshed from our rest, we hit the road to the Wild Coast of Africa (against the advise of our family - apparently the most dangerous part of SA). The whole area was stunning and the local village people really friendly. We did a day trip into the Traanskie area where we saw how the locals lived. It was a little bit false, but the highlight was going into a township to buy beer from their bottle shop...unsurprisingly, despite the hype, we never felt threatened.
I took the opportunity to take my first proper surf lesson (Cornwall 7 years ago doesn't really count), whilst Pam chilled on the beach - it rained...again! Being the natural that I am, it only took a few waves before being able to stay attached to the board, though this may have something to do with the fact it was attached to my ankle rather than staying afloat. Still, after numerous drownings, and drinking enough sea water to flood half of Africa I progressed to balancing precariously on my knees before having to call it a day due to physical fatigue (+ Pam was so attracted to new surfer boy that she couldn't wait to get me out of my not-so-flattering wet suit!?!).
After overnighting at hippyville in Port St Johns our final destination was the much anticipated stay in Durban with family et al. Following Uncle Ernie's touching funeral on the day of our arrival, the whole family put on their best happy faces and made sure that we had a fantastic time in Durban, for which we are eternally grateful considering the rather torrid time they had for the previous 3 weeks. Highlights were: cappucino time, the beach house, water sports galore at the dam, including a successful attempt at wakeboarding and Pam water ploughing, visiting a farm in Oribi Gorge only to discover that in fact it is a private game reserve, a visit to Hluhluwe-Imfolozi Game Reserve where we saw 4 out of the Big 5 (elephants still to go), Pam's luxury pampering day with breast facial massage included (I really missed out there - J), and last but definitely not least, The Family! Thanks for a brilliant time once again!
Then it was on another plane and off to India via Hong Kong - watch this space............