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(74) Away to the mountains and down to the sea

November 10, 2013

Monday 16th September

Staying at the B & B felt more like sleeping at a gran’s house with all the ornaments and old but well-polished furniture. It was comfortable and certainly made us feel at home. We went in for breakfast and were soon joined by the two ladies. We chatted about England and the royal family and felt like we could stay another day but we needed to get going as we were about 4 days behind our rough schedule to Cape Town.

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Our hosts for the night

We waved goodbye and got on the Kokstad road. With the views of the Drakensberg mountain range to our right over farmland it was stunning. We still had the hills although not as steep but with tired legs from climbing a little under 10,000 metres in 8 days whilst in Lesotho – you could say we were a little slow.

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We approached the steepest hill on the road with a gradient of around 15 % but with a good surface we soon wound our way up the 2 miles to the top and stopped for lunch. We cooked up some soup and noodles and a nice cupper when a guy we had met in the north of Losotho stopped. He was a tour guide and commented on how fast we had got through. We thought we were slow so it was nice to hear. We chatted for a while and headed on to the small town of Swartberg. We had decided to take a shortcut as the guys we had met in the pub on the Sani pass had texted to say we couldn’t stay. We were a little disappointed but it meant we didn’t need to head south then north.

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Passing farmers busy in the fields

We stopped in the village and with a shop owned by a Pakistan family it had everything. We picked up a USB plug that we had lost for £2.50 and another SD card as we didn’t want to copy anymore pictures until our computer was fixed. While Tim was shopping a farmer called Miles asked Sharon what we were doing. He then proceeded to invite us to stay at his farm.

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Meeting Miles

It was only 3 miles away so we gratefully accepted and made our way back up the road and arrived at a lovely farm. Miles had mainly sheep and cows with many stunning prize winning bulls. His wife and children lived away from home during the week to be near their chosen school to give their children a better education. We found this a lot in South Africa – many children were in boarding school or the families would have 2 homes. When we arrived Sharon commented to Miles ‘I’ve been admiring your bulls’ to which Tim promptly sniggered and Sharon blushed…

With our own room, somewhere to put our bikes and roast chicken for tea we were in heaven.

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Our own room complete with a friendly cat!

Tuesday 17th September

After a great feed and a good night’s sleep we got up early to have breakfast with Miles. We felt so relaxed there and if we didn’t have a plane to catch out of Cape Town, we could have happily stayed and worked on the farm.

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Tim and Miles on the farm

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The view from the main house

We said our thanks to Miles and rode back into Swartberg and onto the gravel road. It was good going to start with but Sharon was struggling. Her left knee was sore and her legs were tired. We needed to take the gravel road as it was a short cut allowing us to catch up on the days we were behind. Once we reached the tar road we had another 75 miles to Maclear and we needed to be there by the following night so we could have a rest day. The wind was in our faces – not as strong as on the pass but strong enough to make it tiring. We stopped from time to time to eat snacks and for Sharon to catch up.

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Morning rush hour!

We still had a few steep climbs on gravel which made it harder but compared to Lesotho it was almost flat. We were stopped by a lady who had a puncture as she wanted to find out where she was to tell the breakdown company. Tim offered to fix it only to find the spanner was the wrong size. She rang the breakdown people again with the GPS position so they could get to her quicker.

We rode on to find a tree to have lunch under. We were both tired but we still had another 13 miles to the town. We rested as much as we could before riding through undulating farmland.

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A stunning yet tough road

We finally reached the town of Matatalie. We found a large Spar to pick up a few supplies. We had a quick coke and rode on to the BP garage which Miles had told us about. Peter the owner who was a friend of Miles, told us about another garage 15 miles further on where we could perhaps camp but also invited us to stay at his house. We would have loved to but having too far on hilly terrain to go we decided to chance our luck and continue. We filled our fuel bottle and spoke to a few guys at the garage before heading on.

With a climb after the town and the wind getting stronger it was hard going. Along the road, we approached some police who pulled us over. They wanted to show us a video of us. We were doing 20kmph. It was so funny, they asked what we were doing and didn’t believe us so we rode on promising to try harder to break the speed limit. With the sun getting low, we passed long outstretched land and we started to wonder where we would sleep as we had found out that the petrol station was closed.  We continued on down a long hill out of the built up area. We spotted a church on the hill side and went up to have a look. It had a small round house next to it that we thought the Pastor may live. On closer inspection we found it just had a few benches in it and a concrete floor. It was perfect. We wheeled our bikes up and put them inside and soon had dinner on. We just hoped we weren’t disturbed in the night.

Wednesday 18th September

Although it got cold in the night we weren’t disturbed and slept well. We heard voices early and decided to get up as we had a long way to go on hilly terrain. Even after breakfast no one had seen us so we made our way down to the road and got going.

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Tim having breakfast in our round home

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The round hut attached to the church

The road was good with only a few ups and downs nothing compared to what we had been through. It was warming up and so after a climb we stopped at a shop for a cold drink. We spotted a lady in a steel container with a sewing machine so made the most of our break by having our silk liners sewn up. She was lovely and made a great job of getting them back to being usable again without our feet sticking out the end.

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Shaz has never been so close to a sewing machine before…

We had been warned that this area was not safe particularly around the town of Mount Fletcher but we found the people so warm and friendly.  We rode on and reached the town of Mount Fletcher early due to our prompt start.

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Coming into Mount Fletcher

We picked up water and climbed up through the town which was full of the hustle and bustle of the Africa we love. It was on a steep hill and packed full of stalls and shops selling all sorts of things and we would have loved to have stopped and looked around but with another 45 miles to go we needed to keep going. The road climbed for a while and after about 10 miles we spotted a sign pointing out to a good picnic spot so we decided to have an early dinner. Tim didn’t realise how tired he was and lay down while Sharon made cheese and beetroot sandwiches with a hot cupper.

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Lunch break

We had soon finished and descended a great hill but after every great hill there is normally a great climb. We had been told the climbs would get worse the closer we got to Maclear and we were already feeling tired – along with the fact that two cheese and beetroot sandwiches probably don’t hold enough calories to pull 65kg of bike and kit up numerous hills. We noticed a river before Maclear knowing we had a climb to come only to find there were two more rivers before. We stopped on the hills a few times to build up enough energy to do another few hundred metres. It was hard but we knew if we kept going we would arrive. After one more climb we descended towards the town.

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Accidental fires in the mountains spread by the strong winds

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Finally nearing the town of Maclear

With a short climb we reached the main road and rode into the centre. We found a Spar to pick up a few bits and made enquires about a guy called Lyle who was a contact of Miles and were shown to where he was. Soon enough Lyle had come out of a meeting and was on the phone trying to sort out somewhere to stay for us. We were soon riding up the road to a house and introduced to AJ and her husband and were shown to a lovely flat. It was all on Lyle and so kind. AJ said she knew someone who could help with our computer problem and would help us the next day to get it sorted. We just hoped we could recover all our lost pictures. While Tim shaved off his now pretty big beard Sharon got tea on the go and we sat down to watch a bit of TV before bed – what a treat! We were both shattered and wished for a good day tomorrow.

Thursday 19th September

We had breakfast early as Anel was going to take us to the computer shop to sort out the suspected virus. We picked up a couple of things in the Spar and spent a while starting the next blog on one of the shops computers – we had been too afraid to start anything on ours until it was fixed. It was a windy day so it was nice to be off the bikes. It had only been 7-8 days since we had a rest day but the terrain over that time had taken it out of us. The next section would give us a short day but with the computer taking a while it would make sense to start the next day. Anel kindly said we could stay another night which made us relax and after another hour the computer was fixed. They had managed to recover 50 per cent of the photos which was great news as we were sure we’d lost the lot. We picked up another hard drive and some lunch before heading back to the flat. With chicken and mushroom pie and beans for Tim and sausage roll and beans for Sharon we were in heaven. The rest of the afternoon was spent backing up all our pictures before anything else happened to them and then we sat enjoying TV until bedtime. It was amazing what we had got done but could have had another week to get through what we had left to do on the computer.

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Shaz, Anel, her husband and their friendly dog!

Friday 20th September

Sharon woke early and put the kettle on. She tried a couple times to wake Tim but left him for a while as he obviously needed the sleep. He finally woke after some stronger nudges and got up to have breakfast. It looked like a good day if a little windy and we soon had the bikes packed and were out on the road. We got caught by a passing shower and were pleased we hadn’t left the day before with all the rain and high wind. We made our way down into town to see if they could get the rest of the pictures off the card. While we waited we did a little research and emailing when after an hour the card was returned with all the same images and about still 250 unable to open. He said he would try later as he had the file and see if he could work his magic. We thanked him relieved to get at least some of the photos back and left town for Elliot.

It was only 45 miles away and with a couple small climbs it was good going. However Sharon was really struggling and with not leaving until 10.30 we wanted to cover at least half the distance before lunch. By 11.30 the wind had got stronger only easing as we passed through road cuttings and increasing to gale force through the trees as it would funnel the wind.

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Passing forests made it pretty going

We stopped for lunch at 2pm and with cheese and mayonnaise sandwiches on the menu we sat and enjoyed the view in between the gusts of wind.

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Stopping for lunch at the top of a climb

We got going and although the going was good each hill felt like it was getting longer and with it Sharon more tired. We stopped to take five when we spotted zebra in the field. We had thought we wouldn’t see wild animals this far south.

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The road ahead

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A short respite from the hills

We continued to climb and finally reached Elliot. We stopped at a supermarket and while Sharon was shopping, Tim got chatting to a nice older man. He offered us a place to sleep but smelling of alcohol we turned him down. It was strange as if it was anywhere else in Africa we might have said yes and we felt bad for not being able to trust him. We rode out of town and looked for a good camp spot. It was hard as there were high fences all along the road so we rode towards a B&B. Sharon took the plunge and asked if we could camp for free after explaining our trip and they kindly agreed. Our tent was soon up and tea was on the go. We had a long day tomorrow and just hoped the wind would drop.

Saturday 21st September

With the temperature dropping to minus 3 in the night we woke with frost in the tent. It was however a nice day with little wind fooling us into thinking we were in for an easy day. The owner’s daughter came out and said we could use one of the showers so with the kettle on we took it in turns to shower and pack.  By the time we had finished breakfast, the wind had picked up in the direction we were riding. We were in for a strong headwind all day. We thanked the daughter and got on the road ‘swiftly’ accelerating up to 6 mph with gusts slowing us slightly to 3mph.

We stuck with it and from time to time there would be a lull in the strength. The road was good with a wide hard shoulder not that there was much traffic. The fields were yellow from no rain and there were fortress like mountains to our right rising vertically from the fields giving amazing scenery.

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Stunning scenery

The hills had good gradients but with the wind it was hard. By 1pm we had only covered around 25 miles leaving 30 to go. We found a sheltered spot on the side of the road to eat and have a cupper.

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Stopping for lunch

Tim cleaned his chain and noticed a spoke nipple had worn through which was the second he had seen on the wheel. We got going and after another 6 miles we reached the town of Indwe. We stopped to pick up a few things while a few locals came over who were drunk asking questions. They were well behaved and were happy to listen. We left the town and after only 2 miles we crossed our 15,000 miles mark.

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Happy to be celebrating our 15,000 mile mark!

We were so happy to reach this mile stone although it had felt a tough one to reach. We rode on and as we did the wind started to ease and the climbs started.

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They weren’t much but enough to tire us out. Nearing the top of a long hill we spotted a farm on our right. All the ground was burnt and thought they had been clearing scrub. We decided to call in as by the time we reached the town everything would be shut, it would be almost dark and almost impossible to find somewhere to stay. We made our way down the track and up to the farm house. At first we thought there was no one home until we were greeted by a lovely young lady called AJ.  She invited us in and said we could stay in a room and use the shower. We found out that the burning was a fire that had started a couple days earlier by lightning and got out of control and her Dad was up to the early hours trying to stop the farm from burning.  We sat in the kitchen with her and her daughter as she made us French toast and we enjoyed a great evening. We headed to bed as the temperature dropped grateful for a bed with an electric blanket. Oh how we miss the simple things.

Sunday 22nd September

The house was cold which made it hard to get out of our warm bed. AJ had already made tea and was starting to cook sausage and eggs. Her daughter was starting to bring all her toys to show us back into the kitchen which was really sweet. There was still frost on the lawn when we loaded the bikes which made us apprehensive about going outside but with the sun shining we ventured out. As we said goodbye AJ’s daughter came out with her bike to show us. It was so lovely and we wondered if it would be the first step to her cycle touring carrier.

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A budding cycle tourist

We commented on there being no wind but as soon as we rode up the slope to the top of the hill we were hit by its full force.

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Springbok on the burnt land

We had around 4 miles to cover before our direction changed giving us a tail wind. It was a tough 4 miles but as soon as we turned the corner towards Dorreccht we were being pushed along. As we arrived in the town we realised it was Sunday. We would quite often not know what day it was and often what month as it never really mattered especially when nothing really closed. However we found ourselves in a town that did and with only a couple shops open we picked up a few bits and rode out of town.

With the wind behind us we were making good progress only slowed by the odd steep hill. We passed many large farms some with sheep, some cattle the odd one with game. It was beautiful rolling farmland still yellow from a long year with no rains.

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Impressive bulls…

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Pretty rolling countryside

We reached a descent to see a climb in front of us and it wasn’t long before our pedalss were turning slowly round as we crept up the hill.

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Climbing the hill

We reached the top with 20 miles to Queenstown and it being 1pm we dropped the other side away from the houses to find a quiet spot for lunch. We cooked up sausage and onion sandwiches, crisps and biscuits all of which you won’t find in any training manual for good nutrition but with Heinz ketchup it tasted great. The only problem was our frying pan was going to be a nightmare to clean. After a bit of scrubbing we were soon descending the rest of the hill and on to the next climb. The road remained good with a wide hard shoulder and polite drivers including the taxis and we reached Queenstown. It looked lovely and with very little electric fencing around each property and low walls it became apparent it was a safe town to live in. It was just a shame it was Sunday and everything was shut. We looked around for a supermarket to pick up supplies and chocolate. Research purposes only of-course.

We headed out of town and were still a bit too far from our next destination the town of ‘Hogsback’ to get there in one day so we needed to cover another 10 miles before we stopped. The road was flat but with no hard shoulder anymore we had to keep our wits about us.

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The traffic was good but for the odd one we had to watch for. The sun was now low in the sky and as we started to descend to a large village we thought we had better look for a camp.

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As we grew closer we spotted a guy in a pickup coming towards the road from a field. We stopped and asked if he knew where we could stay. He invited us to his farm where we could camp and gave us directions. He introduced himself as Wesley Hayes and said he would meet us at the farm. It didn’t take long before we arrived at a nice farm where we met his father and learned about the Arab horses he kept. Tim pitched the tent while Sharon took a shower and we were soon chatting in their kitchen. We said how interesting it was to meet so many people on the road all from different countries, ways of living, rich, poor, married, single.  As we got chatting we found out that Wesley was a lawyer and represented the Mandela family. We couldn’t believe it and so as you can imagine we spent the evening talking about all the experiences that comes with such a role. It was truly a fascinating evening with such a kind down to earth man. The Mandela family must have done their homework because they chose the right guy. We often find ourselves pinching each other as to the places we end up.

Monday 23rd September

We both slept well in our tent which was starting to feel more like a novelty with the amount of places we were staying. It didn’t get that cold though and we again woke to a sunny day. As we packed up Wesley’s father came out to invite us in for breakfast. We quickly finished packing and headed in. They were a super family which made it worse that we didn’t meet Wesley’s mum. We enjoyed our breakfast chat before heading out and let Wesley have a go on Tim’s bike. We went and had a look at a few of his Arab horses before saying our thanks and heading on.

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Wes having a go at cycle touring

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Our garden camp

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Shaz,Wes and his prize Arab

The wind was in our favour and with amazingly flat roads with only the slightest climb we were flying. We very quickly reached the town of Sada where Tim sampled yet more chocolate and rode on to the turn off.

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A happy cycle tourist!

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Pretty scenery

The last 20 or so miles to Hogsback were gravel which would slow us down but by the time it was lunch we only had 15 miles left. We stopped out of the wind cooking up beans on toast with a slice of cheese with crisps and biscuits. Not sure if that’s in a nutritional training manual either but it tasted great.

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Lunch stop

The road proved slow going with loads of corrugations and small sharp stones so we always had to be on the look-out so we took it easy.

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A rough track

The scenery was slowly getting greener still with a few high peaks and wide farm land but with more spruce and pine trees.

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The scenery made up for the rough track

We finally reached Hogsback and descended the long road through the scattered village spotting a small chapel on the right.

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Arriving in Hogsback

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The chapel

We went to have a look and on inspection of the lovely building and gardens we could hear a cat crying. We looked around to find a cat way up in a tree with no way down. While Sharon looked after the bikes Tim went in search of a ladder and although he found one there was no one at the property. We left a note and used the ladder and after a few minutes the cat was purring on the ground nice and happy.

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Tim rescuing the cat

With the ladder returned we rode on and found a bar to have a pint. It was so nice to relax but by now it was getting late so we rode on towards the backpackers. Spotting a bottle store where we could pick up a couple of beers we pulled over when a couple stopped to ask what we were doing. The next thing we were sat in a bar enjoying a beer with a lovely couple called Wally and Trisha. It was nice to relax and enjoy their company.

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Shaz, Wally and Trish

As we were talking we found out the guy behind the bar who was called Michael was from St Ives in Cornwall and him and his wife were working there for a few months. We met his wife Lucy and son Eli and were soon invited to stay with them at their house. We enjoyed the rest of our beer while Lucy went back to make the spare room up for us and we were shown to where they lived. After a hot shower and hot food we were feeling shattered and ready for bed. We had a lot to do but hoped we could get it done on our day off.

Tuesday 24th September

We spent the day hanging out with the guys. They were a lovely family and we enjoyed their company – it was great to hang out with British people – they understood our sense of humour! We worked on the blog and drank tea and caught up with the washing – a productive day!

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Michael, Lucy and Eli

Wednesday 25th September

After a great night’s sleep we got up and joined Michael, Lucy and Eli for breakfast. It would be hard to say goodbye to fellow West Country folk and we really admired them for picking up their lives and living abroad for a while with a 6 month old child.  We totally admired them for it. We arranged to meet at the cafe while we finished the last bits off on our blog and set off with our bikes loaded. We arrived at the cafe to find it was closed so had to ride back down the hill to their house. We said good bye and wished them well before descending out of this beautiful village.

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Leaving the house

It really was a hillside oasis and with the pine and oak forests making it feel very mystical. As we dropped in height part of us really wished we had looked around properly and had time to stay for a few days.

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Descending off the mountain

As we got lower the trees slowly thinned and the yellow grass lands became more prevalent. We stopped to check out Sharon’s gears as she had been having problems with them. As she moved up through the gears they seemed to change in a strange order and not in the order they were meant to and seeing as it was all internal we weren’t sure what the problem would be. The oil was now pouring out again from the last oil change which was frustrating as this was the reason why we had it serviced in Pretoria.  We continued on not able to change it and meandered through the country side.

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We reached the junction turning right to the towns of Alice and Fort Beaufort. With a couple short climbs we descended into Alice picking up some lunch and riding on to Fort Beaufort. We stopped on the way for lunch on the side of the road and then rode on to the town.

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Fort Beaufort’s township

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A dead snake on the road

 It was a nice town but with most things closed it was hard to get a real feel for the place. Not wanting to leave too far to ride the next day we just stopped for a coke before riding on towards Grahamstown. The clouds in the sky were giving off an amazing show which normally indicated a storm.

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We continued on in rolling scrub wondering where we were going to sleep under an ever setting sun when we spotted a farm sign.

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The sun was starting to set

As we stopped a pickup stopped and asked if we were ok. We replied we were looking for somewhere safe to put our tent and in reply he said he was sure we could stay at the farm. We followed him down the track to meet Sheila Sparks the owner – she was lovely. She looked after her husband John who had had a brain tumour many years before and was in a wheelchair. They were an amazing couple and she refused any help as she busied herself around and made us feel very at home. We spent a great evening chatting and hearing all her stories before heading off to a gorgeous room. It turned out she was also a local journalist so she interviewed us over dinner for the paper.

Thursday 26th September

Before our alarm went off there was a knock on the door and a tray of tea was brought in. She was amazing and clearly a very giving person. We joined Sheila and John for breakfast before loading the last of our things and made our way up the track.

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Shaz, Sheila and John

We had both slept well but Tim was tired so we listened to our iPods which seemed to be a rare occasion. Sharon had picked up a puncture from a worn patch which took a while to change but we were soon descending to the start of our last pass before the ocean. With a climb of 400 metres it felt nothing compared to Lesotho and we were soon at the top and looking for a place to have lunch and a cup of tea.

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The pass

We did think we would be able to see the sea from the top of the hill but still with 40 miles she was going to leave it to the last minute. We found a shaded bush and put the kettle on and texted Wesley as he said we could stay with his sister Shelly who lived in Grahamstown.  He texted back to with her number and that the Mandela family thought we were mad. We just sat laughing and wondering how the Mandela family got to talking about us. In disbelief we cleared up and rode on to Grahamstown. We soon arrived in the centre with old colonial buildings lining the streets making us feel like we were in the wrong place. We slowly rolled into town taking in the sites. We picked up a few bits from the supermarket before ringing Shelly. We arranged to meet at the university where they lived and worked and so continued up through town. We didn’t have to wait long before we met a lovely smiling lady. We followed her directions and were soon in their lovely home. Shelly had to return to work but told us to make ourselves at home and that we were welcome to use the Internet. This gave us enough time to try and get a few jobs done. While Sharon worked on the blog Tim tried to take some measurements off Sharon’s bike as we needed to contact Rohloff about the gears. We cooked tea and spent the rest of the evening on the Internet trying to catch up on all our lost weeks. We met Shelly again – she was really nice to chat and invited us to stay another day. This would be great as it would give us time to really catch up and see the town. We said we would sleep on it but with so much work to do and her being so nice it really wasn’t a hard choice.

Friday 27th September

After a great night’s sleep and deciding to have a day to catch up with ourselves, we woke with the wind hitting the window. We were not only pleased to be able to catch up on our jobs but that we weren’t riding in the wind.  We got up and started work even before breakfast and by the time we had something to eat we had finished the blog, prepared the next one and chosen the pictures. We decided to go out for lunch which was something we never normally could afford or had time for but having ridden through a lovely town it was too good to miss. We headed out around 2pm and headed for the high street picking up a pie and chips on the way. With some large and impressive churches in town we had a look which didn’t disappoint.

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We picked up some tea on our way back and finished off a few things on our list even managing to Skype home. Shelley, her husband Gert and daughter Emily returned home and so we managed to spend some time with them and enjoyed a great evening chatting with a glass of wine. We really felt like we had known them for years which would make it harder to leave in the morning. This was always a down side to our trip and was always the hardest thing to accept.

Saturday 28th September

It was going to be a short ride to Port Alfred but nether the less we were pleased the wind had dropped a little. We had breakfast and loaded our things. It had been great spending time with Gert and Shelly but also having the time to get a few jobs done. We hadn’t heard from Rohloff or the bike shop in Pretoria and we just hoped we could get Sharon’s bike working properly before leaving Africa. As we were saying goodbye Gert appeared with a red plastic rhino nose that we had been looking for which you can buy for the front of your car to raise money and awareness for the Save the Rhino charity – Shaz wanted one for her bike.  Save the Rhino is an international charity – you can read more about them on www.savetherhino.org and this is their mission statement.

‘Save the Rhino International works to conserve viable populations of critically endangered rhinos in Africa and Asia. We recognise that the future of wildlife is inextricably linked to the communities that share its habitat. By funding field projects and through education, our goal is to deliver material, long-lasting and widespread benefits to rhinos and other endangered species, ecosystems and to the people living in these areas’.

Once it was clipped on we waved goodbye hoping we would see them again at the coast and were very quickly blown down the road.

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Gert, Shelly and Shaz

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Leaving Grahamstown

We soon left the town climbing the short steep hill out towards the coast. Every time we reached the top of a hill we looked for any sign of the sea. We slowly descended broken only by the odd climb and descended into the village of Bathurst. We had been told about the Pig and Whistle being the oldest licensed pub in Africa. So not wanting to miss it out we called in for a Guinness and beef pie, chips and a couple of beers. It was a real treat and so nice to be reminded of home as the pub had a real English feel. We met the owners who were lovely and kindly showed us around the pub.

It was around 10 miles to Port Alfred so with the odd short climb we meandered ever closer to the sea. We passed over one brow to finally see the Indian Ocean.

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‘I can see the sea!’

It was amazing and although we still had over 600 miles to Cape Town it was great to be at the ocean. We reached the town following the GPS until we reached the river and rang Julie who we had met briefly the day before and was a good friend and colleague of Shelly’s and had invited us to stay. We weren’t far from her house so very soon we were arriving at the gate. We were greeted by 2 lovely ladies – Julie and her mum Veronica and were shown in to their home. It was stunning and we were surprised we didn’t need to be pressure washed before being allowed in. We were shown to a beautiful room and were handed a beer.

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Our stunning room

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The view from the house

We were soon joined by Julie’s friend Trish and spent the evening enjoying our favourite food – a full roast dinner and an amazing sweet that Trish made. He explained it was for research purposes only… We all had a brilliant evening and couldn’t believe the amazing people we had met.

Sunday 29th September

We got up early and had a cupper before heading out to a stunning beach for a walk. It was amazing but yet strange. Where were we? We had been on the road for so long heading south but having not been home for a year and almost 4 months we found it hard to come to terms with our position and achievement. One thing we hadn’t realised was all the marks on our map indicating the best places to visit also have the most amazing kind and friendly people.

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Tim and Veronica enjoying a morning walk

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Shelly’s dogs on the beach

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Enjoying a delicious spread

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Veronica, Julie, Shelly and Gert

We spent the morning relaxing when Gert and Shelly arrived for lunch. It was so good to see them again and we had a lot of laughter and it felt like a party with old friends. As the day disappeared in a wave of stories and laughter, we ate some soup before heading to bed full and tired. It had felt like Christmas with fun people, heaps of great food and a few beers/ wines – it was going to be hard to say goodbye.

We were heading to Port Elizabeth next and the famous Garden Route.

Thanks for reading!

 

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3 Comments leave one →
  1. Mum and Dad Pitts permalink
    November 10, 2013 6:53 pm

    Congratulations on reaching the 15,000 mark. You are truly amazing. Great to know you got at least some of your photos back. LOTS of love from mum and dad XXXXX

  2. Lemi Hailu permalink
    November 11, 2013 2:45 pm

    Dear, Thank you so much for you post me your trips photo! if you remember me i am the one whom Gave you my  Bicycle guide busyness card around immegration in Addis Ababa Ethiopia. my Name is Lemi Hailu. so how i can get bicycle tourist like you north2north. please advise me. sorry for i troubled you? your respectfully Lemi Hailu Addis Ababa Ethiopia

  3. November 25, 2013 9:30 am

    It was great to have me you both Enjoy the rest of your adventure. Lucille and Gavin Came Owners of https://www.facebook.com/Thepigbathurst

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