Farty's Fortunes

Monday, 21 January 2008

Diamond Drive Part 4

Diamond? Check.
Ring? Check.
Morgan Bay? Several hundred miles away.

So we all hop in the car and off we go along the Garden Route.

Now you might be forgiven for thinking that Africa is mostly sand, desert, sand and more sand, but this is the south coast, where the Atlantic Ocean meets the Indian. Which means it rains a bit and helps to water the plants. And there's a road. Hence Garden Route.

Hmmm. I wonder why they also call it the Wild Coast?

Perhaps it's the weather, which admittedly can get a bit blowy at times?
Wild Coast

Or could it be because of the flocks of killer giraffes sweeping across the plains of the Serengeti? (I love PaintShop)
Flock of Killer Giraffes

Ok. Three giraffes. And anyway, the Serengeti is wayyyy up north.
Three Giraffes

Probly the hungry lions have something to do with it...

And the wild elephants.

Time for a true elephant story. When we arrived at Tsitsikamma National Park, we asked where was the best place to find elephants that day. Eldest Daughter had once spent an entire day driving around looking for them - who would have thunk elephants could be hard to find? Well, do you know where the expression "African bush" gets its name? Bushes are all you see most of the time, unless you know where to look.

So we asked at the gate. They gave us a map and showed us the likeliest places. And then they asked us if we were now carrying or indeed ever had carried any oranges? Elephants love oranges, can smell them from two miles upwind and will happily destroy your car in order to find them. No? Good. Proceed.


So after driving around for a while and admiring the nice elephants, we couldn't help noticing this particular bull elephant smack bang in the middle of the road ahead of us. With no way to get around it and showing no sign of budging. "Um. Are we in trouble, do you think?"

"No, no, we're fine," answered ED. "He'll wander off eventually. You only need to worry if he gets angry. But you can easily tell when he's angry. That's when he starts flapping his ears."

"What, like he's doing now?"

"Yes. Just like that."
It is truly astonishing how fast it is possible to reverse a Mazda along a twisty turny dirt track in the middle of the African bush when there's an angry thirty-ton bull elephant bearing down on you.

Also in Tsitsikamma, amongst a lot of other goodies, is this bouncy bridge.

There's a sign at each end, which exhorts visitors in five languages to please not jump up and down on the bridge. So sure enough, when we get half-way across, the fecking Germans start jumping up and down and scaring the crap out of Mrs Farty. Boo!

Knysna with a silent K

Oyster Catcher boat

Oysters. Mmmm. If you like oysters, you should visit Knysna.A plate of oysters. Some time ago. Sigh.

If you like boats, you should definitely visit Knysna.
I love messing about in boats, me. I know all the nautical terms and that. We boarded this, erm, double-decker boat (not the one above, that picture was taken from our boat) and went sailing out to the "Knysna Heads". Well, I say sailing, it was really motor-driven. It's all a bit hazy now, they were serving alcohol on the top deck from the moment we left until we disembarked four hours later. On the lower deck was another party of German tourists. With an accordion. Christ, pass the Amarula!

If you like truly amazing sunsets, you absolutely must visit Knysna.
Click to enlargeKnysna Sunset
Click to enlargeKnysna Sunset and birdie

This message was brought to you courtesy of the Knysna Tourist Board.

What more could there possibly be? Oh, yes. Port Elizabeth, East London and Morgan Bay.


john.g. said...


Excellent stuff, Mr. F!

Liz said...

Wow, you really have been to some amazing places. If your life ever flashes before your eyes, you'll have plenty to watch!

Mr Farty said...

Fanx John.

Liz - I can think of some people whose life flashed before their eyes when they were in those very places!

Honey said...

loved the giraffes.

Mr Farty said...

Honey - Yes, we did thx