There is just something special about putting suitcases in the trunk of our car and heading out of the big city into the countryside. Indeed, as we leave, Moira and I inevitably start our trip singing Willie Nelson’s memorable song, “on the road again.” Remember some of the words?
“On the road again
Goin’ places that I’ve never been
Seein’ things that I may never see again.” *
So, I thought I would dedicate my first letter of the New Year to glimpses of trips taken in the Western and Eastern Cape and some of what we come across as we travel.
Most times I plan the trip and arrange accommodation ahead. Searching the internet for exotic places to visit and stay in itself is a pleasurable pastime. Once upon a time we took our chances as we hit the road, but now I am more comfortable trusting my luck in Europe than in South Africa. If a place is full, it can be a long and uncertain trip to the next possible accommodation.
The random glimpse from road trips give, especially to those of you outside South Africa, an idea of what to expect. Roads and comfort stations vary, as do places to eat, and stay. Fortunately, as we drive a desolate road there always seems to be a farm stall or quaint roadside café to stop at.
I am often asked if we are concerned about our safety. I can truthfully say that we have never felt threatened, even in the most desolate of places.
Roads on main routes are generally in excellent condition, but off the beaten track a little less so.
Food is almost never a problem The range of options on where to get food are surprisingly variable, from roadside farmers stalls, to inns, cafes, and even quite deluxe establishments. We are always tempted by the range of local fruits and delicacies at the farm stalls, and usually end up taking home more than we can handle. The following are a few examples.