I sat down today to read one of my earlier blogs called Afraid of the Sofa. I think things have not improved in the slightest. In fact I would say I am in a panic “I have running out of time syndrome”.  I am running around South Africa like a loonatic. This is really evidenced in this weekends antics.

Friday afternoon – left Natures’s Valley to go on a road trip to Jeffrey’s Bay. According to google this should take 1.26 minutes on the N2. Google are obviously not attempting this journey in a Daihatsu Sirion.  It took me a mighty 2.25 minutes to get to my destination. The Daihatsu struggled uphill, I did manage to get a top speed of 100 kph but my brain started to rattle, as was the back door which I thought was going to fly off at any moment.

I arrived safe and sound (eventually) to a beautiful B&B called Funkytown. God it smelled good, big double bed, duvet and fluffy towels…oh the little things! Got a great restuarant recommendation to Kitchen Windows who picked me up and brought me back for free…..now this is what I call service.  Good food and very friendly staff. My waiter Steve helped me pick some cool things to do in JBAY.

Saturday – up and about early to explore the town. Jeffrey’s Bay is a surfing town and hosts the annual Billabong Pro surfing tournament. I did a small hike around Seekoei Nature Reserve, then across to the beaches where I managed to get to glimpse of surfers in action. That afternoon based on Steve’s recommendation I tried my hand at Sup-boarding.  This is paddling on a surfboard. Once you get your centre of gravity it becomes fairly comfortable paddling along until a big wave comes, I can see why it is a fast growing sport. It was a great afternoon and I am glad I gave it a go.

Here is how the professionals look, I think 1 more lesson should just about do it !

Supboarding Pro Style


Sunday – up and out again by 9 am off to see Francis Bay, a beautiful town close to Jbay, took a stroll along the coastline. This would have been a great spot for lunch had I had time but off to Addo National Elephant park  I went.  Google (72 mins) vs Daihatsu (125 mins) luckily I had learned to adjust my time to compensate the difference.. So past Jbay and Port Elizabeth I went for my safari.

Addo is the 3rd largest national park in South Africa and is home to 600 elephant, lion, buffalo, black rhino, spotted hyena, leopard, a variety of antelope and zebra species, as well as the unique Addo flightless dung beetle. Addo covers about 180 000 hectares (444 700 acres). On jumps CK the tour guide who takes us through a plethora of antelope and zebra facts. We finally stumble upon the Elephants. Everyone around me is Dutch, German, Italian, Spanish a real euro tour.

Zoom and Zoom - what can you see?
Zoom and Zoom – what can you see?

It was sometime around sunset that I suddenly realised in my over zealousness to fit everything in that I was practically 5 hours from home and I would have to make that journey in the dark on a) African Roads b) in a Daihatsu Sirion.

I left Addo at 6:20 pm already the red dusty sunset was faded and the road with massive potholes loomed ahead and no civilisation in sight. “What was I thinking”,  “how can I drive 5 hours”, “I haven’t even got a radio” kept circling in my head.

Luckily Funkytown came to my rescue and gave me a bed in Jbay so after a good nights sleep, I set off at 6:30 am to head home.

Lessons learned

  1. Stick to my trusty Toyota Tazz
  2. Listen to the locals on recommendations of things to do.
  3. Perhaps should analyse distance vs time when planning trips
  4. It is better to drive from dark into the light.
  5. I still need to learn the art of relaxing and to stop running !