Yesterday was quite busy.
The original plan was to go up Table Mountain, but there were fires on the hillside by the Rhodes Memorial, and so the mountain was closed – which apparently is something that you can do to a mountain. Who knew?
Instead I went on a little tour of some of Cape Town with a couple of the guys from the office.
We drove down to the waterfront, then along to Camps Bay which is an Atlantic Ocean beach. It’s very beautiful – lots of white sand and blue sea. We walked on the sand, climbed on the rocks and a couple of random guys tried to sell me furniture at 5 x the retail price.
Below is a picture of the beautiful beach, and the houses of Camps Bay – where the rich folk live apparently.
And below again is a picture of me on the beach, well, my foot at least. Proof that I was there.
After this we drove back to the waterfront and Bulelani and I went on a boat out to Robben Island.
For the uninformed among you, Robben Island is an island (shocking, I know) about 7km away from Cape Town which used to be a maximum security prison. From 1961 to 1991 it was used to imprison thousands of political prisoners, including Nelson Mandela.
We were taken on a bus drive around the island for about half an hour and then we were given a guided tour around the prison itself. One of the most interesting things about the experience is the fact that the tour guides around the prison are all ex-political prisoners. The man who showed us around was sent to Robben Island in 1977 for his involvement in the 1976 student riots, and walked us through various areas of the prison talking about his experiences and memories of his time there. Very moving.
Also in the last couple of days I have been able to experience public transport in South Africa, specifically the rather bizarre ‘minibus taxi’ and local trains, the latter of which is made most interesting by the random men who stand in the carriages and preach/shout while everybody else in the carriage looks at the ground and pretends not to notice. It’s a lot of fun.
I’m off to Jo’burg tomorrow for a training conference for the CU leaders in Gauteng province, so will finally be starting work! Hooray!
Here’s some more photos to leave you with:
On your right – a view of the city (and the mountains behind) taken from Robben Island.
And below, a photo of the SCO office sign – to prove that I’ve been here, seen it and loved it.
I just realised that I didn’t talk about the second item in the title – I also got sunburned yesterday. 45 minutes on a boat in the afternoon will do that to you sadly.
And that’s my news!
In summary: pink and getting ready to head north.