Knysna- memories created and re-visited
Trip Start Aug 11, 2009
43Trip End Ongoing
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Where I stayed
The Protea Guest House is perched perfectly in amongst the leafy trees on a hill over-looking the Knysna Estuary and the Knysna Heads. We were fortunate enough to stay in this guest house and I in particular spent many an hour just standing on the big wooden deck where we ate breakfast every morning, staring out at the stunning view. It was truly breathtaking and had a hugely calming effect on me.
Knysna has always been one of my favourite places on the planet and it always feels good to return and show other people why I love it so much. Everything is so relaxed. Even with the hideous road works going ahead on the N2 everything and everybody still remains calm. If anger does flare, people simply glance out across the water at a sailing ship cruising between the Heads and all is forgiven in an instant
If you want to have a real slice of heaven head out of town about ten minutes down the N2 towards Cape Town and make a left at Buffalo Bay. Follow the road through the nature reserve until you came to Wildside Backpackers.....ok, some clown has re-named it Buffalo Bay Backpackers.....brilliant, I'm sure the committee spent days coming up with that gem. It will always be Wildside to me. I have been privileged enough to stay at the actual backpacker hostel twice in the past, an experience I have yet to equal. It was the stuff of legends and the people I met there will always be with me in my heart or in the darker recesses of my psyche. If you are unable to find accommodation at the hostel it is still worth going down there just to experience the beach and surrounding nature reserve. It is truly pristine and what a beach should really look like. Dolphins and whales are spotted often. We walked for at least 3 hours and never got tired of the scenery once. It was with a sad heart that I drove away from Wildside this time around as I am not sure I’ll ever be back down that way again. The first time I visited this piece of heaven was with a good friend of mine (Gary Nicholson- soon to be a dad), we came for two days and stayed for two weeks. Our bar bills were enormous and our livers depleted, but we were happier then than we had been for a very long time. Good times, good times
Back to the present, having mentioned liver damage I feel I should mention one incredibly drunken evening myself and Billy(Aaron) spent on the town in Knysna. After a day of sight-seeing and beach-combing we started drinking at about 2 pm on Thursday afternoon. We soon decided that the two pregnant girls should stay at home while we went out and did guy stuff. Carla does spend 75% of her day reclining on any comfortable surface available so we didn’t think she’d mind doing the same with the other 25%. The car keys were confiscated immediately but nothing was going to stand between us and our impending pub-crawl so off we staggered, down the town’s considerable hills into what proved to be a very quiet Thursday night. Not even the emptiness of the pubs stopped us, we drank and walked and shouted and laughed....and drank some more. Soon, walking and talking and shouting and laughing became exercises that needed to be done individually, multi-tasking had become a cruel joke created by the Lord of the Co-Ord. Another nagging need that was rearing it’s nasty but essential head was the undeniable desire to consume highly processed food. A decision was made to hold back on the feeding frenzy until we’d drunk our fill. Agreement was reached and we continued making a spectacle of ourselves and in one case accidentally insulting another race......to its face
Petrol station, pie, perfect. But what is this!? Pies that jump right out the eater’s (us) hands and land on the pavement? Strange but true. Not to worry, the pavement seemed clean and friendly, so the feeding continued. Sitting down on pavements took up a lot of our time as we edged our way home ....this time going up the hill. Many trees were punched and the Gods of Jumping Pies were cursed. At the foot of the final hill Billy decided to sit down .....again. This caused great confusion for me as when he sat down he was instantly consumed by the earth and disappeared from my sight entirely. Billy had sat in a 4 foot deep storm water drain. He lay in the trickling water at the bottom moaning, ....me , well I’ll be honest, I could barely lift him out of his watery, concrete Lay-Z-Boy because I was laughing like a wild , spotted hyena. Once out, Billy took off his shirt and went sprinting up the hill towards our apartment. I could barely see through the tears in my eyes.
Another highlight of our Knysna trip was a visit to a Raptor sanctuary where we were allowed to handle various birds of prey like owls and falcons and eagles. We were given a display of their power and hunting abilities. They were absolutely gorgeous birds and need support to complete their rehabilitation. If you’re in the area, drop in to The Eagle Experience and be amazed.
Knysna has been good to us and we leave feeling relaxed and ready for a new adventure. This one will be in the shape of Witsand (White Sand). We are edging ever closer to Cape Town but we still have a lot to see before then. See you on the beach.