The halfway point of the trip

Table Bay with Table Mountain in the background.

Table Bay with Table Mountain in the background.

Hello and greetings from the halfway point of my South African adventure.

I don’t have one specific topic I’m writing about today but figured I am due for an update from the Mother City (as Capetonians like to refer to their city).

My legs/knees/feet seem to be fully recovered from the Tsitsikamma hike, although I’m still beating them up a bit as I prepare for my next big challenge, the Cape Argus Cycle Tour. The Argus is the largest timed cycle race in the world with around 35,000 riders (!) on the 109 km route.

The race is on March 9 so I’ve kicked my training into high gear. This morning I logged about 50 kilometers, which has been my longest training ride yet. Next week I’ll get in some 50-75 km rides and do one 100 km ride the weekend before the race.

(Yes, I’ve pretty much stopped thinking about distance in terms of miles. Temperature, however, has proved more challenging and I keep my apps in Fahrenheit.)

I can’t imagine there being a more scenic cycling course anywhere in the world. The race starts in town then winds its way around the Cape Peninsula. The first half is relatively flat, and then you hit the end of the peninsula and some serious hills. The course is largely along the coastline and has some stunning vistas.

Cape Town iPhone photos - 5

At the top of Chapman’s Peak with Hout Bay in the background.

I’m told that thousands of people line the course on race day to offer encouragement, snacks and even a few places to stop off for a beer. The signs have already started going up warning of road closures on race day.

I live smack between the two largest hills on the course so my training rides all take me up at least one of them. It’s painful but I figure it’s much better to train on the hills than the flats.

Unfortunately, those two hills come towards the end of the race. The second tallest, Chapman’s Peak, is about 80 km into the race and the long, steep Suikerbossie hill is at the 90 km mark. I ride Suikerbossie on fresh legs and get wiped out, so we’ll see how it goes on dead legs.

As you might have figured out by now reading this blog, Cape Town is a very active city. The motto of Sean and Oliver’s bar is “Work Hard, Play Hard” and that could very easily be the motto for the whole city. My weekends have been fun of riding, diving, wine tasting, long lunches and braais (the South African term for barbecuing, which they take VERY seriously).

During the past week I’ve been keeping myself busy by trying to get a few articles off the ground and helping the internship business launch a new website (with payment in the form of a Forex bar tab, thank you very much). I’ve made a few contacts connected with the Cape Town World Design Capital, plus I’m pursuing writing about a project in the townships that creates gardens on shacks to grow food, keep them cool in the sun and prevent fires. Hopefully some of those pan out.

Wine tasting in Stellenbosch.

Wine tasting in Stellenbosch.

I’m also having a good time working on the website. It turns out I miss writing and helping design a site.

Seeing as I can’t stray too far from my Portland roots, I’ve also been exploring Cape Town’s thriving coffee scene. Cape Town is a hip, young city and beyond wine, people are seriously into craft beer and artisan coffee.

Case in point: I’m sitting at a long communal wood table now drinking an Ethiopian pour-over that was served in a wine glass because, as the waiter explained, that helps bring out the flavor of the beans. Sound familiar?

This roaster, called Origins, also does cold brew. Iced coffee in South Africa typically means a frozen concoction so I’m very glad to have a solid cold coffee option in the summer heat.

Cape Town iPhone photos - 2

Truth Coffee in Cape Town, which has a steampunk theme and roasts its own beans in the back.

The weather has generally been very nice so far, although this weekend was a scorcher. February is typically the hottest month of the year here, but even Capetonians were complaining about the 100+ heat on Saturday and Sunday.

We spent part of Sunday wine tasting in Stellenbosch, which is a bit inland and therefore at bit hotter. At one point my weather app said we hit 108. Not even the car AC could keep up with that and it felt like a hairdryer blowing when we opened the windows.

Today is actually overcast and drizzly, which is a welcome change. I’m not going to complain much, however, because a typical summer day ranges between 75-85 degrees and usually has a nice breeze.

That breeze, however, can easily become 15-30 mph gusts, which is a real pain when it’s blowing in your face during a ride.

The Cape Town waterfront.

The Cape Town waterfront.

I mentioned this to a few of you already, but I’m ending my trip a week earlier than I originally planned. I’m doing a week at the end in Turkey and it turns out that Oliver and Sean are also planning to be in Istanbul for a day en route to Nepal for a trek to Mount Everest base camp.

I changed my ticket so our Istanbul trips will overlap, which means I’ll be back in the states on April 7 instead of April 15.

I have just 3.5 weeks left until Ali and Marcus arrive. I’ve been missing all my Portland friends and family a lot so I’m very excited to welcome them and show off Cape Town. I think Marcus will be impressed with my driving skills, although I would stay away from me once I return until I stop driving like a South African and return to driving like an Oregonian.

The Moonlight Mass bike ride. The ride happens each month during the full moon and winds its way through downtown Cape Town.

The Moonlight Mass bike ride. The ride happens each month during the full moon and winds its way through downtown Cape Town.



Hiking the Tsitsikamma Trail

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Hiking through the South African backcountry has a way of speeding up a friendship. By the beginning of the second day group of seven hikers was laughing and joking like we had known each other for years.

We were about 10 miles into our 40-mile, 5-night backpacking trip through the Tsitsikamma Forest in a part of the country appropriately named the Garden Route.

From the beginning of the first long day of hiking it was clear that our larger group of 14 was splitting into two factions – the speed demons who raced up and down the numerous saddles and valleys and us tortoises who preferred to take leisurely tea breaks and swimming stops en route to each night’s hut.

I’ve never been mistaken for a speed demon so naturally I fell in with the tortoises. (We actually had a different name for ourselves but in the spirit of keeping this blog appropriate for all ages I’ll stick with tortoises.)

It’s not that our group was slow hikers or out of shape for such a strenuous hike; rather, we all shared the same thought that backpacking through such beautiful terrain was equally about the journey and the destination. We wanted to take time to enjoy both. | More photos on my Facebook page

Being the proper hiking group that we were, our days included plenty of tea breaks along the trail. We would pull out the tiny camp burner, heat up some Tsitsikamma water (the name Tsitsikamma comes from the Khoekhoe language and means “clear water”) and enjoy a cup of rooibos tea or coffee.

The instant coffee wasn’t the best but you couldn’t beat the setting. The Tsitsikamma Trail winds through the mountains that parallel the southern coast of Africa. The hike brought us along mountain ridgelines, through a dazzling variety of forests and across about eight rivers.

We often stopped in the shade of the trees that sprung up in the valleys or along some of the wider rivers for a swim.

The highlight of the week (and perhaps a highlight of my entire South African visit) was our two-hour lunch break along the Elandbos River.

The river cut through a large section of flat rock and formed a number of small pools. Mercifully the swimming spot came after a climb and rocky downhill section that just about destroyed my feet and left knee. It’s hard to describe how good it felt to soak them in the cold river water.

We were all experiencing the same aches, pains and blisters and all had to conquer the same hills. To help cope we adapted a communal attitude.

When several of us started to develop blisters after that downhill section, Helen pulled out some medical tape to provide relief. Running low on water? No problem – somebody else in the group would share until we reached the next river. Have a bag of trail mix or biltong? You know it was getting passed around to the whole group.

Even the whiskey Oliver was packing in his newly purchased Spanish wineskin wasn’t safe from the group when we decided to invent a trail drinking game.

Having multiple sets of eyes in the group also helped spotting wildlife and flora along the trail. Leopards live in the forest, although hikers rarely spot them. Oliver, however, was sharp enough to notice a few leopard tracks in a muddy section along the trail.

(I would have loved to spot a leopard and move my “big five” tally up to four. So far the closest I’ve come is seeing these tracks and spotting in Botswana the remnants of a baboon that was a leopard’s dinner the previous night. I’ll have another chance to see a leopard when I visit Kruger National Park next month.)

We also spotted a few baboons climbing trees and spying on the visitors to their home. Thankfully none of them got into our huts at night and rummaged through our packs.

The trail was physically demanding but it was good practice for Cape Argus bike race, which is coming up in just over three weeks. And of course I have to mention that it was a far cry from the snow and ice back home (sorry, Portlanders).

A week in the woods


Hi everyone! In a few hours I’m embarking in a five-night backpacking trip through a place called the Tsitsikamma Forest. The pictures I’ve seen look amazing and I’ll be sure to post my own in a week.

Of course this means I’ll be cell phone free for a week so the blog will be quiet.

A quick update on a previous post: I passed all my open water training dives and written test so I am now a PADI certified Open Water Diver. It’s not something I ever anticipated doing but I’m in the business of saying “yes” to things this trip. It has been a great experience so far. I can’t wait to dive more both here in SA and on future trips.

See you in a week.

(Photo: the hostel we stayed at in Wilderness before the hike)

The beautiful side of Mozambique

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In my last two posts I described some of the more, um, interesting sides of Mozambique. Part of what makes the country exciting (and indeed charming) is its unpredictability and distinctly tropical way of operating.

Those posts taken alone, however, sell the country short. For all its quirks and faults, Mozambique is a stunningly beautiful country, has amazing food and is full of lovely people.

To understand the physical beauty of Mozambique let me first give you a short geography lesson. The country is situated in the southeastern corner of Africa and runs from South Africa in the south, north past the Tropic of Capricorn all the way up to Tanzania. If you’re not familiar with Africa just understand that’s a very long coastline.

If you’re visiting Mozambique odds are you’re going to the coast. (There are national parks inland that the country is trying to restore although most of the big game was sadly killed during the country’s civil war either for food or by landmines.)

The Indian Ocean currents that flow down from the equator keep the water between 70 and 80 degrees, which is perfect for diving, snorkeling and swimming, not to mention marine life.

On our last day in Mozambique Sean, Marc and I managed to sneak in a dive after a previous attempt had been rained out. After a choppy ride out (with a brief dolphin sighting) I was happy to just get off the surface.

It was a truly spectacular view underwater. We dove at a reef called Witch’s Hat where the abundance of marine life rivaled any aquarium I’ve ever seen. Within the first minutes we were swimming through schools of hundreds of tropical fish.

Continuing on we spotted the first of several large stingrays, including one that was being cleaned by a swarm of small fish. Unfortunately we didn’t see any of the manta rays the region is famous for.

We also spotted one absolutely gigantic lobster (the local variation is called a crayfish or lagosta in Portuguese). It was hanging out under a rock and was easily longer than my forearm.

All told we must have seen 1,500+ fish in 30 minutes, a far cry from the few dozen you’d spot in similar dives off Cape Town, where the water is much colder.

The same marine life that makes diving great also is a big part of what makes Mozambican food so great. Seafood including lagosta, barracuda, giant prawns and other fish are local favorites and all are delicious with the local piri piri chili sauce.

On Sunday night we feasted on three giant lagosta with chili sauce and garlic butter. We were each served a full lobster that had been halved then grilled over charcoal. You’ll have to take my word for how beautiful it was because the iPhone photo I took does this meal no justice at all (it was Martha Stewart food pic bad).

The best part? The entire meal with a beer was under $14. For a full fresh lobster. $14. Insane.

The amazing spreads of fresh fish, chicken, tomatoes, onions, chilis and green peppers can partially be explained by the local economy and politics. Diesel and gasoline is very expensive in Mozambique, which in turns means that transporting either fresh or processed foods is also very expensive.

In an economy where most people make a few dollars a day it’s simply not feasible. Instead, almost all produce and meat is grown locally by small-scale farmers and sold at informal markets. It’s like the dream of the Portland foodie, but for a completely different reason than we see a farmer’s market in Oregon.

Regardless of the economics, the point is that visitors are treated to fresh, organic produce. I’m still dreaming of the tomatoes.

Traveling in Mozambique can be an incredibly rewarding experience, even if it isn’t always the easiest or most luxurious. You get to witness a culture that is wholly different from the west or even South Africa and you get to enjoy some of the finest beaches in the world.

Tourism is also an important industry for a country still trying to recover from years of civil war and political turmoil. It brings in foreign investment and exposes the wider world to the country. They still have a long way to go but I’m impressed by the country’s progress so far and wish them nothing but the best.

Sexual harassment and laughs in a Mozambican municipal office

Marc and his Mozambican queen.

Marc and his Mozambican queen.

After our unfortunate run-in with a Mozambican police officer at the beginning of the trip, we had a much more hilarious encounter with another government employee towards the end of the week.

I had been tagging along with Marc and Sean as they dealt with some logistical issues regarding a small eco-lodge they are building along the Mozambican coast.

On Monday they were expecting to receive their building license, the last in a series of permits needed to start construction on a workshop at the property, the main building and the first handful of bungalows. We were told to report to the municipal building office at 11 a.m. to pick up the license. It wouldn’t be quite that easy.

The license was taking longer than expected and needed the signature of some local leader who wasn’t around. That left Marc and I waiting at the counter for quite a while as things got sorted out. We didn’t speak much Portuguese and the women at the desk didn’t speak much English. Despite that, we were trying to eek out some small talk.

As is common at many government buildings in sub-Saharan Africa, there was a box of free condoms on the counter meant to stymie the spread of HIV in the region. One particularly animated woman noticed us eyeing them. She quickly ran over to grab the box and start passing then out.

She politely handed two to me – an awkward cultural experience – but really came alive when she handed the box to Marc.

I didn’t quite believe what I was seeing as she picked one up and started pointing to herself, then to Marc, then to the condom. Blushing, Marc laughed and shook his head to say “no.” She wasn’t deterred.

She came running around the counter and again tried to give Marc the condom as the other clerks howled with laughter. The affection continued for a few more minutes as she grabbed his sunglasses and started rubbing his belly.

I gleefully snapped photos of the happy couple and showed them off around the office.

(Note to clerks at the Multnomah County offices: maybe you should employ this approach to liven things up a bit?

I was laughing hysterically but was also slightly scared that she just might be serious. By this time we had attracted quite a crowd of Mozambican bureaucrats, including one woman who spoke English and started translating for us.

Marc, being the resourceful guy that he is, decided he might be able to gain some leverage from this uncomfortable situation. As the woman pulled him towards the bathroom (again, not sure where she was on the serious/joke spectrum), Marc calmly asked “does this mean we’ll get the license sooner?”

Not even Marc’s allure could help us on that front. Eventually he returned the condoms to the box and work returned to the normal as we continued to wait.

Eventually, after much wrangling and an argument with Sean’s local fixer, we did manage to get the building license.

Say what you will about Africa, at least it’s rarely dull.

Culture shock two ways – in South Africa and again in Mozambique

A lodge in Morrungulo, Mozambique just down the beach from the property Sean, Marc and Oliver own.

A lodge in Morrungulo, Mozambique just down the beach from the property Sean, Marc and Oliver own.

My first two weeks in Cape Town – especially my first week – I felt almost paralyzed at times by culture shock.

Sure I had been to Cape Town before, but it was always as a tourist. On those trips I had friends to guide or advise me at just about every turn. This time around I am living here and have to navigate mundane chores by myself – things like grocery shopping or filling up the tank in my car.

Cape Town is a very well-developed city, but it’s still Africa. And for better or worse, Africa is most certainly not the United States or Western Europe.

Let me give you a few simple examples: In addition to navigating around some crazy drivers, I also have to make sure I don’t run over any hawkers at traffic lights. Stark economic gaps are regularly on display, such as the view from my house that includes both the mansion-lined bay and a low-income township on the hill above. As a result of that income inequality, petty crime is common and I have to be vigilant to avoid becoming a victim.

But after a few weeks I felt myself getting adjusted and not being quite so startled by these differences. Then I went ahead and gave myself another dose of culture shock in the form of a week in Mozambique.

Don’t get me wrong – I love Mozambique. I have now been there twice and am planning a third trip back in March. But traveling and staying in Moz requires a certain level of patience.

Anyone who drives through Mozambique will most like spend a lot of time on the N1, which is the only north-south thoroughfare through most of the country. That’s an impressive fact when you consider the country is roughly 1,500 miles from north to south.

We drove primarily along the N1 from the border to several towns about 7-9 hours north. The highway was vastly improved since I first visited in 2008, although it’s still a two-lane road for almost the entire trip and you have to slow down to about 35 mph when you pass through each town, which are frequent.

Mozambique is not a place where you want to ignore the speed limit. Cops were set up in every third or fourth town looking for speeders or maybe just a bribe. We stuck to speed limits religiously, but still got pulled over on the way up for allegedly going 72 kph in a 60 zone (we weren’t).

The officer wasn’t wearing his badge, which was a telltale sign that he was freelancing in search of bribes. We were advised to not interact with officers without badges, but that’s easier said than done when he’s standing at your window asking for a driver’s license.

He took Marc’s identification and asked us where we were going. After a brief exchange it was clear he wasn’t going to let us on our way with a friendly warning. We had a choice: ask for the ticket or see if we could pay a fine on the spot.

The fine was supposedly 2,000 metacais (about $65). Naturally we didn’t want to pay the fine since we weren’t speeding. After balking, the officer came back with an offer to pay 500 on the spot and be on our way. We paid, received no receipt, got the ID back and were on our way.

Ahh, the dirty but exhilarating feeling of paying a bribe.

I don’t like the idea of paying bribes. It encourages further corruption and hurts confidence in the country. At the same time, it’s not so easy to be high-minded when you’re face-to-face with a police officer and he has your driver’s license. You could argue and insist on a written fine, but you still can’t be sure you’ll ever get that ID back.

The government has a phone number you can call to report suspected corruption, but you still face the same problem of not wanting to escalate the situation. We knew it was wrong, but sometimes it’s just easier to pay the 500 metacais and be on your way. I don’t like it, but it’s still the reality of travel in the country.

I don’t mean to make Mozambique sound like a scary place, because overall people are quite warm and the scenery is beautiful and the food is delicious. I’ll get more into that and put up some photos in more posts coming soon. Still, I think it’s important to realize that petty corruption and logistical challenges are a big issue that the country must address before it can really take off.

A week in Mozambique


I’m writing this sitting on a plane to Johannesburg, which will serve as a jumping off point for my first of two trips to Mozambique during my stay in Southern Africa. On this first trip I’ll be accompanying two friends, Sean and Marc, as they sort out some business dealings about a lodge they are building along the Mozambican coast.

The lodge, which they started construction on late last year, is along the stunningly beautiful coastline. Mozambique offers bathtub-warm ocean water, white sand beaches, friendly people and delicious seafood (I’m very much looking forward to the crayfish – the local lobster). Unfortunately, as Sean and Marc and their other investors experience frequently, the country also poses serious logistical challenges.

As Sean explained to me recently, if it weren’t so beautiful a place it wouldn’t be worth building there.

Tourism businesses face a difficult government bureaucracy with complex rules regarding building and land use. In Sean and Marc’s case they also have to deal with the language barrier and hire people who can speak Portuguese.

Developing infrastructure and a recent spate of civil unrest in the country’s north (not where I’m going) also compound problems.

I’ll also be completing my open water diving course while in Mozambique. I did my first two ocean dives this past weekend in Cape Town. We dove through a kelp forest in the Atlantic Ocean, which was an otherworldly experience.

Feeling the slight current and knowing I wasn’t in the safe confines of a pool was intimidating but also exhilarating. The PADI diving course (and diving in general) is heavily focused on safety so I felt comfortable that everything would be fine.

Mozambique supposedly has world class diving with great sea wildlife, warm water and excellent visibility. It’s one of the big draws for tourists and a reason people deal with the difficult conditions to run resorts and dive centers.

I’ll also have a chance this trip to spend a bit of time in Johannesburg, the largest city in South Africa.

See you next in Moçambique!

(Photo: Sean and Marc reviewing plans for the layout of the lodge.)

The strange feeling of breathing underwater

In the spirit of doing things I can’t or wouldn’t do back home, I started my courses this week to get my PADI scuba diving certification. It’s not something I ever expected to do, but the diving in Southern Africa is spectacular in many places and I have friends who run a dive company. It seemed like something I shouldn’t pass up.

Friday I completed my pool courses (strangely at a pool on a military base that didn’t even have a guard – can you imagine that in America?). I still have four open water dives to complete. The first two will be tomorrow in Cape Town and the final two will be next week in the bathtub-warm Indian Ocean off Mozambique.

When I first submerged my head and started breathing through the regulator I had a short feeling of panic. Your body is training to not breath while swimming underwater, but the number one rule in diving is never hold your breath (it’s to avoid seriously injuring your lungs as pressure changes at different depths).

My body was clearly confused by the idea of air entering my lungs while underwater. It’s also strange because you can’t breath through your nose as you would while resting on the surface.

My first thought was “I don’t know if I can do this.” But within 30 seconds the panic had subsided and I started to appreciate the fact I was just hanging out underwater. Even in a pool it’s a pretty magical feeling to be sitting below the surface knowing you don’t have to return for air within a few seconds.

Sean’s brother Rowan is an instructor for their dive company and was kind enough to give me a one-on-one lesson. We spent a few hours in the pool going over the basic skills such as maintaining neutral buoyancy, replacing your mask if it falls off, clearing the regulator of water, etc.

We dove until I had pretty much emptied my air tank, which was quicker than I imagined. Rowan explained that new divers tend to suck down air much faster than experienced divers because the stress of an unusual environment increases your air consumption.

I wasn’t sure if I’d like the experience, but I found myself having a blast during the pool session. We’ll see if I have the same feeling once I leave the confines of a closed pool and actually get in the ocean. I’ll post an update after my first dive.

Driving on the other side of the road

photo (1)Of all the things I planned on doing this trip the idea of driving was the one that intimidated me the most. There were so many factors to consider: South Africans drive on the opposite side of the road, I wasn’t used to a manual transmission, I would often be by myself, other drivers in Cape Town can be quite erratic and so on.

On Saturday morning I got a lift about 30 minutes from my house to collect my rental car, which is a Volkswagen Citi Golf. That meant right off the bat I had to drive it back home on the highway without the luxury of getting used to the car on quiet neighborhood streets.

Thankfully before I left I had practiced driving a stick on David’s truck that turned out to have a more difficult clutch. Regardless, the initial trip in the Citi Golf provided for a few challenges.

The Citi Golf is a South African-made version of the familiar VW compact. It was produced from 1984 until 2009 and never had much of a design overhaul during its entire life. That means you can have a basically new car that looks like it was made 30 years ago.

I’m not sure what year my version is, but it does have a carburetor, so I had to learn to use the choke when starting the cold engine. There also isn’t power steering, air conditioning or even a radio. And of course the speedometer doesn’t work, so I’ll hope for the best when passing traffic cameras.

Besides those minor issues, the car seems to be in great shape and drives pretty well. The clutch is forgiving, which is helpful for this novice. After a spin around the parking lot we were off and on the highway back to Hout Bay.

Driving on the other side of the road required some intense concentration at first. The hardest part is coming to a stop sign and remembering that left turns are tight and right turns are wide. Otherwise driving straight is pretty easy when you remember to keep the driver’s side of the car closest to the center line.

I’ve been cruising around Cape Town for four days now and each day I feel significantly more comfortable on the road. The next challenge is learning my way around without having to rely totally on the iPhone to guide me.

Finding my way around the Republic of Hout Bay

Hout Bay

Hout Bay

When you first enter the Cape Town enclave of Hout Bay there is a sign that reads “Welcome to the Republic of Hout Bay.”

The story goes that several decades ago some clever Hout Bay resident decided to shun Cape Town and the rest of South Africa, and print his own Republic of Hout Bay passport. He then apparently managed to travel around the world on this faux passport collecting stamps at different border crossings.

Who knows if this story is true, but it does to capture the independent beach spirit of this Cape Town neighborhood, which is where I’m staying during this trip.

Hout Bay is about a 25 minute drive to the south of the Cape Town city center, just before the start of the stunning toll road that winds around the Cape of Good Hope (the scenic road was made famous in the opening aerial shots of Searching for Sugar Man).Tall mountains isolate the town on three sides, which makes for magnificent views.

While it is beautiful, land prices tend to not be as expensive as you might think. That’s largely due to the fact half the town is built on a giant sand dune that constantly fights to push its human colonizers out. Sand often blows across the main roads and if you stand on the peaks overlooking Hout Bay you can see the vein of sand that cuts right through the center of the town.

On Saturday, Sean and I went down to the harbor to explore the market that runs each weekend. Similar to the more famous Biscuit Mill market in the city, the Hout Bay market features a dozen or so food vendors, plus stalls with vendors selling crafts, clothing and other curios.

The food would look familiar to any foodie in Portland. There were South African takes on classics, like the gemsbok burger and ostrich carpaccio. Other stands sold smoked salmon sandwiches, sushi, some excellent looking dim sum, roasted lamb and more.

Hout Bay also has several bars lots of character. We had a Windhoek beer at The Workshop, which is billed as “the smallest pub in Africa.” In indeed is quite tiny, although the outdoor seating area seems like cheating.

We then headed up the road to the old-school Chapman’s Peak Hotel for dinner. In a move that felt straight out of a Hunter S. Thompson novel we sat at the bar and promptly ordered three steaks and three beers.

Today is my first weekday in Cape Town, so it will be interesting to experience how the town differs once everyone is back to work. First stop will be the shopping center down the road to get some groceries and a SIM card.

In my next post I’ll introduce you to my rented Volkswagen Citi Golf, which will by my ride around Cape Town during my stay.