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Phase 2 – Sudwana Bay

11:02 pm Filed under: Travel

At this point Zett joined us, we hired a car and headed off early in the morning east to Sudwana Bay for some SCUBA diving fun.

The we had two days of diving, the first of which we only did one dive due to the swell making Sambo and I both chuck our guts up. Sam’s in sub aquatic fashion through her regulator, creating a spherical plume around her head as we did our 3 minute safety stop. Mine more wallowing in my own vomit at the surface while we waited to get back on board the boat… not pretty.

The second day was much better, with no regurgitating incidences reported… in our group anyway, there was another guy who got a bit queasy on the way out and foolishly decided to wait in the boat while we dove… he was not a good colour when we got back.

There’s not much development around the Sudwana Bay area, the main beach is in a National Park what development there is is a few ks away. All in all a very nice spot to get away from it all, without having to rough it.

 

Top House SudwanaThis was our accommodation, it was pretty nice, plenty of space for us all. We had some trouble with the pay TV which we preceded to make worse by mucking about with the aerial.

Disregarding our warnings, Sam started her own monkey domestication project one morning, feeding some of the local monkeys some of our bananas… later in the trip she came to realised why.


 

Sudwana Bay DivingThere’s no fancy dive centre on the beach here, just a bit of shade, plastic chairs and some rusty tractors.

 

 

 


Sudwana Bay DivingAfter convincing Sam she’d fit into a smaller sized wetsuit and the hilarious results that ensued as she attempted to squeeze into it, Zett decided the one she had wasn’t too bad a fit.

The water temp was a balmy 22-24 degrees, so it didn’t matter too much.


 

Sudwana Bay Whale SharkSambo’s seemingly indestructible and water proof digital camera came through with the goods with this shot of the whale shark we were fortunate enough to spot and snorkel with on our way out to the last dive.

Otherwise we saw plenty of nice big honeycomb moray eels, rays, white tip reef sharks and schools of other fish.


 

Sudwana Bay DivingThese were the boats they take you out through the surf with, it’s quite a ride heading in and out through the breakers, they ramp the boats flat out up the beach and push them back in with the tractors.

The dude in front is Farnie, he did a great job looking after us for all the dives.

Phase 1 – Out and about in Pretoria

11:04 pm Filed under: Travel

Sam, Lamby and I spent a few days checking out Pretoria while Zett was finishing up work, it was also a good opportunity for the Lamberts to shake off the jet lag before the holiday started in earnest.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAFirst up was a day trip to the Voortekker monument, which is a pretty cool building built up on one of the hills over looking Pretoria to honour the Dutch pioneers (Voortekkers, Zett’s Afrikaans ancestors) who cracked it with the poms back in the day and headed inland for greener pastures.

The inside walls of the monument tell the story of their journey, they had a tough time crossing the Drakensberg mountain range and had many fights with the indigenous people and the poms to stake their claim.

Possibly the coolest part of the building is this hole in the roof that on the 16th of December each year shines sun on a tomb looking thing at the bottom, to commemorate the battle of blood river. The cultural significance of this battle is that the Voortrekkers made a vow to God that if they won the battle they would build a church and commemorate the day from then on, somehow 500 odd managed to defeat 10,000 Zulu.

This probably explains why they tend to be a bit more religious around here, that and all the crazy shit going on around them all the time!


OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThat’s probably enough history for now, on to some nature… believe it or now the large rat type creature you can see in this pic is the closest relative to the elephant, something to do with bone structure and digestive system apparently.

It’s called a Rock Dassie, and there are heaps of them in the park lands around the Voortrekker Monument.


 

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThe next day we took the mountain bikes for a loop around our favourite local ride Groen Kloof.

As you can see we were lucky enough to get up nice and close to the Giraffe, we also saw plenty of Zebra and a few others and hit some sweet single track.

We go there almost every weekend, it’s always nice.


 

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERASam and Lamby soaking up the atmosphere at Shovels, our local Boerkie (South African Afrikaans, usually clad in Khaki and sporting a moustache) pub.

Multiphase Holiday Causes Workplace Depression

10:00 pm Filed under: Travel

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAI can’t vouch for anyone else but I’ve certainly struggled to get back into work mode this week,  3 weeks of fun and frivolity all over South Africa with good friends will do that to you I guess.

On the subject of work, things have finally settled down with the scheduling project all up and running, there’s plenty of little updates to go one with but there’s no overbearing deadlines looming anymore, so expect blog transmission to ramp back up.

First on the list is a series of posts on the trip, check back tomorrow for phase 1… Out and about in Pretoria.

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