Sand + Wind = BAD COMBINATION

Trip Start Jan 10, 2005
1
7
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Trip End Feb 15, 2005


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Flag of South Africa  ,
Tuesday, January 18, 2005

Our travels today took us through areas and on transit not frequented by most tourists.
We started off the day at one of the many delicious restaurants in Cape Town. Kevan had his favorite: muslix with fruit and yogurt and I indulged in a fruit salad, both eating a side order of whole wheat bread with jam and butter. That entire paragraph was in no way to end the fears of those that think we will not eat properly on this vacation. To drink? Kevan had a mango juice and I had orange. In South Africa, fruit juice does not contain 5% real fruit, it is entirely from that fruit...and so we've been consuming many of these drinks as they're so good!!
From there, we found our way through a mall that eventually led us to the train station. It should not seem any different, however being the only caucasians in the mall of hundreds felt a little strange. That trip started the day of travels away from the well-worn tourist path.
To add to our list of transportation, today we took the train from Cape Town to Simons Town (one hour away), in search of Boulders' Beach and it's penguins. A slightly different train experience than in Amsterdam. We passed small homes with tattered clothes drying on ropes, people cooking over fires in their back yards and crumbling buildings still housing businesses. Again, not one of the recommended modes of transport but an incredible experience, and glad for it. We arrived in Simons Town, a smaller community overflowing with navy cadets. We finally made it to Boulders Beach but in keeping with the theme of avoiding the tourist bus-route, we found our own path to see the penguins.
This would have been a good time to follow the coach bus! These penguins are found on a beach, and beaches have sand. When it's very VERY windy, sunny, hot and you are on a beach, this combination is less than appreciated. We did get some pictures close to a few penguins who had left their group and when the sand continued pelting us, we made a run for the paved road. I tried to explain to Kevan, after the stinging subsided and we vowed never to go to a beach with any wind again, that sand on the skin is a great method of exfoliation, clearing one of dry skin cells and dirt. The explanation, well, didn't go that far in making up for our little trip to Boulders Beach.
On our way back to the train station, we had yet another experience depicting our infinite wisdom. While trying to pay for our lunch at a small cafe, the waitress pointed out that she couldn't accept some of the coins we were trying to give her. Being the very educated individuals that we are, we discovered that we've been randomly interchanging Euros and South African Rand - paying taxi drivers, shop keepers and waiters a mixture of their currency and that of Europes'.
Mariam, from Big 5 Billatong Cafe was generous enough to help us out and in between fits of laughter, handed us little bags to organize our money! It is very easy to see how this would happen when travelling with four different currencies and so, do not look down upon us as each of you would do the same :)
Before leaving, we bought some jerky treats - Kumu jerky, or Billotong (deer), fruit and chili jerky. They were EXCELLENT, yet again adding to our opinion of South African food!
Caught the train back to Cape Town and on the way to the hostel we passed through yet again more markets...my poor wallet :)
Tonight, we're heading to Mama Africa's for dinner, complete with a selection of crocodile, ostrich and other national dishes.
From my favorite country in the world :) ...
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