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Cairo to Cape Town – South Africa – Cape Town Part 2

Wednesday 18th November

Had a nice lie-in this morning then pottered to the shops to get breakfast and lunch things before waiting for Lynn to arrive. Lynn appeared at the bar at lunchtime and after a quick catch up she crashed out for a few hours so that gave me time to get my blogging done and read some more of my book, still only book 5 of Game of Thrones, mainly because I keep reading other books in between each GoT book! Still got 2 months left to finish GoT.

Once Lynn was wide awake we headed off into town and hit Long Street for dinner, we did a lap of town looking at all the eateries before ending up in Sargent Peppers having a gourmet burger and a good catch up.

We headed back about 9ish, Lynn went to bed and I did some wifi-ing before crashing out also.

Thursday 19th November

Lazy morning consisting of another lie-in and a saunter down into Observatory (the area where I am staying, known locally as Obz) we had a quick wander round and then did a spot more food shopping as Lynn wanted to get herself some food and drink. We sauntered back, had a leisurely lunch then Lynn napped for a bit before we headed out in the evening for dinner which was a posh affair at Haiku. When we rolled up me in a grubby t-shirt and my ‘stolen off a tramp’ flip flops the guy at the door looked us up and down before agreeing to let us have a table, we got shoved right in the back corner so we were out-of-the-way I reckon! Still we had a friendly waiter and the food was amazing, had the most amazing red Thai fish curry with rice and leafy greens followed by half a banana crepe that the waiter persuaded Lynn and I to try!

Friday 20th November

We jumped in a cab and headed to the Victoria and Alfred Waterfront for a spot of retail therapy. We wandered around for a few hours taking in the shopping centres, the waterfront and some African drumming. After the shopping we headed to a traditional south african restaurant for an early dinner before walking back into town. We ended up in a Shisha and Whiskey bar called Baghdad where we promptly ordered a whiskey cocktail and an apple mint shisha. We sampled a few of the different cocktails before settling on ones we liked and re-ordered. Mine a mint julep…basically a whiskey mojito and Lynn something either Whiskey or Vodka with ginger ale. 13 drinks (me 4 and Lynn 9), 2 shishas and a portion of nachos later we rolled out of the bar and headed to a shop for an emergency twix for me and some cigarettes for Lynn. Lynn (a drugs and alcohol councillor) then decides she must have more alcohol so we spend 10 minutes driving around dodgy areas in a taxi looking for alcohol joints. Firstly the taxi driver took us to a restaurant type place who said they couldn’t sell any but there was a house just down the road that if you pull up and do a special knock someone will come and answer the door and sell you some South African Moonshine! Thankfully the driver ignored Lynn’s request to try that route and he took us to a nightclub called Drifters on the Main Road in Obz which had some banging tunes coming out of it….Lynn leaps out and bounds into the club to discover is a black only club as the barman told her they don’t serve ‘white sugar’ and she isn’t welcome! Finally we headed back to the backpackers and Lynn buys 3 cans of brandy and coke out of the vending machine, which made Nyasha very nervous as it was supposed to be switched off as out of hours and if the Obz police swung by and saw Lynn swigging brandy and coke from the vending machine they could get fined or lose their alcohol license! Totally oblivious to this Lynn then chatted up some random dude who had appeared so I left her to it and headed to bed as it was already 1.30am and I was shattered! Too old for all-nighters nowadays!

Saturday 21st November

The day started like normal with a lazy morning, then we headed to long street in the cab, I headed off for a tranquil hour in the chocolate cafe and Lynn headed off for some exotic Thai massage somewhere through a doorway and up some stairs! I was happily sitting outside having my drink and chocolate macaroon when the heavens opened and it pissed it down, nowhere to sit inside so my plan of a peaceful hour with my macaroon disappeared along with the sun! So I stuffed the macaroon in and headed off in search of Lynn and the exotic massage parlour.

Once reunited we walked over to the V&A waterfront to catch a film, which was turned out to be fully booked so we ended up grabbing dinner in an italian restaurant with the most miserable waiters and the crappiest service! Fancied some pasta and what with there being a gluten-free option thought I would go for it. Had a nice pasta dish with apparently gluten free pasta only to start walking back to Long Street with a massively bloated stomach, belching and feeling sick! Clearly not gluten free then!

Made it back to the centre and into a cab back to the backpackers where I took my belching self to bed to sleep off the pasta!

Sunday 22nd November

Lynn left at the crack of dawn today for a safari game drive day which left me free to have a lie-in (ha no early morning for me!) and then I sat down for once and tackled my ever-growing emails personal and work! Managed to reply to loads of people that I hadn’t got round to and sort some bits online.

Then somehow I found myself gardening! The backpackers has a visit from the tourist board tomorrow to assess them so its all hands on deck to clean, tidy, re-paint and decorate everything!

The cleaner has been painting the bathroom, the bar man has been cleaning the popcorn machine, signs and posters about smoking and recycling have appeared everywhere! A DIY man has appeared to fix things, screw things to the wall and the oven has been pulled out and cleaned behind.

Now its the garden!

I ended up helping to pot up some long planters and sort some astroturf for around the pool.

Got a free drink for my efforts then disappeared off to get some lunch and admire my work from the bar!

Lynn got back at 5ish from her safari and had a quick nap so I finished another book (no, not Game of Thrones!) whilst she slept.

Then we decided we couldn’t be bothered to trawl into the centre for dinner so we just wandered down into Obz and headed to the Obz Cafe for some chicken dish.

Monday 23rd November

We got up and out early this morning as everyone was frantically running around for the tourist board inspection at 11am, so we headed out on the sightseeing bus for the day, first stop Table Mountain.

We had pre-booked our cable car tickets through the sightseeing bus which is apparently the done thing as there is a huge queue otherwise! Well we got in the pre-booked queue which still took us an age to get to the cable car. It’s a pretty cool cable car, like one I have been on in Switzerland before which rotates as you go up. So we whizzed up in the cable car to the top of Table Mountain where we got off and looked around.

There are miles of paved and unpaved walkways all across the top of the mountain where you come across the abseilers, the selfie stick fraternity, the adrenalin junkies posing on a rocky outcrop hanging over the edge of the abyss, just to get a cool facebook profile picture! All very entertaining, heard some old dear telling her husband that more people died taking selfies last year than being killed by sharks! Useful snippet of information there!

Lynn headed off on some unpaved mountain climb and I pottered around the paved bits marvelling at the scenery of cape town and the beaches below. At one point I even spotted a hyrax lounging on a rock.

I finally bumped into Lynn in the queue for the cable car back down so we headed off together for the bus before getting off at the next stop in Camps Bay for lunch, headed to the hipster hang out Cafe Caprice where apparently all the celebs go for lunch, clearly not on a Monday!

After lunch, fish and chips, we headed off for a stroll along the beach before getting back on the bus and doing the rest of the loop back to town.

We then found a taxi and headed back to the backpackers.

Tuesday 24th November

Another lazy morning before heading out at lunchtime into town. Lynn jumped on the sightseeing bus and headed off on the blue route and on a township tour, I walked to the V & A from town and then finally managed to get a ticket for the film we had tried to see the other day! Success, so grabbed myself a chicken wrap before settling down to watch ‘A walk in the woods’, to start with I thought I had the whole cinema to myself but a handful of other woman wandered in so there ended up being 7 of us watching the film. It was pretty funny actually and well worth a watch if you like Bill Bryson and his travel writing.

The film finished bang on 5pm so I headed over to the food market to grab something for dinner, bumped into Lynn. We got ourselves a picnic before getting the 6pm bus up to signal hill to watch the sunset.

We sat on the hill with spectacular views of Table Mountain and the clouds rolling over it along with the sea.

Once the sun set we jumped back on the bus and headed down into town and jumped off in the centre for a taxi back to the backpackers. Rolled back in about 9pm after a nice chilled day.

Wednesday 25th November

Lynn headed off to Camps Bay for a couple of days so as I was feeling crap (cold, sinusitis, tonsils an a headache) I stayed in bed until lunchtime, then popped to Spar to buy emergency rations before having lunch and heading back to bed for a bit.

Got up late afternoon and did some wifi-ing and reading.

Didn’t do much else actually, just had a general chill out and a rest to try and shift the cold.

Thursday 26th November

Got up relatively early today, 8.30am and got ready and headed to Canal Walk which is a large shopping centre, much like Bluewater. I had a mooch around the shops in the morning, bought some jeans which I will need for the winter weather in Athens and when arriving back to Heathrow in January.

Then I popped into Bargain Books and grabbed a couple of cheap books, so now got more books to read other than GoT! Started reading a hilarious piece of travel writing by Shile Khumalo about his journey from Cape Town to Cairo! Its called ‘Dark Continent My Black Arse’. Should make for an entertaining read tonight and tomorrow.

Anyway back to shopping…yes I grabbed a salad from an italian restaurant before hitting the cinema again this time to watch a lovely Ben Kingsley film called ‘Learning to drive’, thoroughly enjoyed it and can recommend as a feel good movie.

After the film I grabbed a cab and headed back to the backpackers for the usual evening affair…wifi, some kind of football on the screen, Nick coming out with random snippets of useless info and ‘G’ playing some Bob Marley! Normal night in the backpackers!

Friday 27th November

totally lazy day as I felt crap, headache, sore tonsils and a streaming cold. Spent the day sleeping and reading really. Lynn returned from the beach at 7pm and we sat chatting in the bar until we went to bed at 11ish.

Saturday 28th November

Up late and had a saunter into Obz to find the local Obz Festival was on, so we wandered around for a bit grabbing some street food and a drink whilst watching a chinese-style dragon dance up the road.

We then had a saunter around Obz before heading back to the main festival area and embarking on a silent disco!

After a while we headed back and chilled out for a bit with a nap before we met up with a few of the guys at the backpackers and went to a free evening at the Observatory. We listened to an Italian astronomer give a talk on Eta Carina and the universe in general.

After the talk (most of which went over our heads!) we headed to the telescope to see stars in the night sky which was pretty cool! We then wandered around the museum showing Victorian astronomical tools before using some more telescopes on the lawn to spot some more stars.

Then we strolled back spotting some endangered Leopard Toads on the way back, then we chilled out in the bar before heading to bed.

Sunday 29th November

Today saw us head back into the Cape Malay area of Bo Kaap for a cooking class with Gamidah who taught us how to make chilli bites, rotis, vegetable samosas and chicken malay curry. Thankfully we got to eat the fruit of our labours after which was great. I am officially a brilliant roti and samosa maker!

After the cooking course we headed to the public pool in Sea Point and dozed and read in the shade before heading to Long Street and the Buena Vista Club for dinner before heading back.

Monday 30th November

Lynn did a day trip to Cape Point and I spent the day chilling, nothing much else to report!

Tuesday 1st December

Lynn and my last day together so we had a lazy start to the day, headed to the V&A Waterfront for lunch before going to Robben Island to see the prison where Nelson Mandela amongst others was kept. Pretty small prison, tiny cells, basic facilities and years of hardship all whilst being able to see Table Mountain in the distance!

After Robben Island we walked into town and hit an Ethiopian restaurant for dinner, more grey injera bread! Thought I had seen the last of that after 3 weeks in Ethiopia!

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