My body has become accustomed to early mornings. I still need more than one alarm just in case, but my days at 134 Kommetije usually begin around 6:15am. Myself, Will and Montsi are always the first awake and our mornings are spent sat around the pool table chatting and drinking coffee whilst the sun comes up.
The backdrop to our garden is the most spectacular rocky mountainside, and on those not-so-clear mornings, there’s a thick blanket of cloud creeping over the top. Most days, however, the skies are blue and the sun is already pretty strong from around 7am. Some mornings I like to sit outside for a bit and enjoy the welcome cool breeze after what’s usually a very warm night’s sleep.
During the week the house comes to life just before 8am when everybody is ready to leave for their projects. An Uber takes some of us to Simon’s Town and the rest of us head to Masiphumelele in the taxi. Friday seems to be the busiest morning on the roads here in Cape Town, as opposed to UK Mondays.
At the weekend I’m usually up just as early as on week days because there’s usually something on the cards that we need to be awake for. We spent last weekend in Stellenbosch, a beautifully green region very well known for its wine. The town itself is very quaint, with plenty of little cafés, bistros and bars. We stayed at a backpackers hostel for the weekend, which was super cheap but without going into detail, you pretty much get what you pay for.
On the Saturday our group split as we all wanted to do different things. Three of the girls and I went over to Somerset West to a place called Blue Rock – an adventure park that offers zip-lining, cliff diving, kayaking and wake-boarding at this beautiful lake. In the UK a park like this would be teaming with health and safety precautions, but in good old South Africa, after signing a waiver you’re pretty much left to your own devices! Wake-boarding was so much fun, but I wasn’t a natural and so didn’t make it very far out into the lake unfortunately. Vicky seemed to have the knack though, and she managed to record some awesome GoPro footage of her skills.
We booked a game drive for the Sunday in a place called Fairy Glen. It’s a private game reserve where the animals are pretty much roaming free but their enclosures are very visible, so it’s not exactly like being out in the wild. It was great to see a pair of elephants though as these creatures always make me happy, and it was pretty cool to get up real close to some lions as well. To be honest, I think the highlight of the safari was the food! They provided us with breakfast before we set off and then lunch when the safari was over.
This weekend we decided to stay local. Friday afternoon we went over to Seaforth Beach in Simon’s Town to chill after school & do a bit of sea kayaking. We didn’t expect the sea to become as rough as it did and I ended up capsizing my kayak and got pretty badly battered against some rocks below the surface. In fact, the conditions got so bad that even once I managed to get back into my kayak, it was impossible to paddle against the tide and make it back to the beach! Finally we were rescued by two kind gentlemen who saw us flailing in the ocean from their military office window and kindly helped us walk the kayaks back to the beach. Top tip – check the wind conditions before going sea kayaking and never underestimate the power of the ocean.
I’m glad to say that Saturday was a lot more chilled. With my cut up feet and my bruised legs, I took the morning to relax and do some work. In the afternoon a few of us headed to Fish Hoek beach where we threw a rugby ball around and enjoyed the sun for a few hours. As the evening drew nearer, a few more friends joined us to watch the Wales v England game and have some food and drinks and even though it wasn’t the result I would have liked, the company was fantastic. We ended our night with a stroll down to the sea to gaze up at the beautiful full moon casting its eerie light over the bay. Pictures just wouldn’t do it justice.