People of Mpumalanga don’t suffer from undue modesty – or how else do you explain a place called ‘God’s Window’. But I have to admit, the views are phenomenal. Along the winding mountain roads are little villages with crafts, great restaurant, whisky and – naturally – curios to all tastes.
One of the places we visited was Pilgrim’s Rest – a little village with number of houses restored to their ‘previous glory’. My favourite spot is the old BP Garage and it’s famous car that has been left to ‘Rust in Peace’.
Sunday was cold. Because we were travelling with Merlin, restaurants did not let us inside, so brunch was a chilly – if tasty – affair. However, a walk to a Bridal Veil waterfall warmed us right up – and made both Merlin and myself comfortably snoozy for the drive back home. Luckily, Stuart is made of stronger stuff.
I’ve been to Mpumalanga three times before, and twice I was unable to see much further than my own hand due to heavy mist, and thus unable to enjoy the famous views from the Panorama Route. The third time I was white water rafting in Blyde River and never got high enough to enjoy the views. Fourth time lucky.
This Friday was a public holiday in South Africa (Youth Day). Both Stuart and I have been so busy we only realised this on Tuesday – and decided it was too late to book a trip somewhere. In the Friday morning we promptly regretted the decision, and book a cottage in Mpumalanga anyway. Only 3h drive away from Joburg, it is a beautiful mountainous area. There is a lot of coal mining in the area, which explains the rail tracks in the middle of nowhere.
When I was a kid, I used to dabble with paints and drawing. One day my mum brought me these amazingly beautiful water colours from China. One set was black, and the other with all the different colours. My fingers have been itching for more than a decade now to use them, but I just can’t. They are way too beautiful to use.
Stellenbosch. Wine, mountains, sun and great company. Not a bad place to travel for work.
I travelled to Stellenbosch today for few meetings. Lunchtime I spent frantically finalising some materials in the street side restaurant – but it sure beats being cooped up in the office.
Group photo credits to Alexandre Halbardier
One weekend with 250 friends is not enough – but then again 1 year with 500 was not enough either. New memories were made.
- Friday house party – which proved NOTHING has changed in 5 years – we still live on champagne, pizza and laughter
- Doing another case in class – which proved something has changed, as the entire class actually read the case before the discussion
- Celebrating in style in Fontainebleau chateau – which was definitely a change from all the nights spent in fliplops and shorts in Singapore
- Hanging out in the lawn and cafeteria – which proved that even through many of us have moved, changed jobs, married and multiplied, nothing really has changed.
Let’s do many more mini-reunions before the next full-blown party 5 years from now.
PS. You can see the bigger pictures by clicking. If anyone wants the pictures in full size, send me a message.
The Sacred Heart of Paris – more commonly known as Sacré-Cœur Basilica – is in my opinion a more stunning than either Eiffel tower or Notre Dame. It has a strong meaning to me – as well as to my entire South African side of the family. I never spend time in Paris without lighting a candle.
To finish off a great week in France, my mum came to meet me in Paris. A lot of gossip, walks and wine followed – as appropriate. In between, we made it to some sights in the effort of re-capturing iconic sights of Paris. And what could be more iconic than Notre Dame and the pigeons.