Thursday, 21 June 2012


...Literally. Well, almost literally.
1,086 metres above sea level is certainly what I consider to be ON TOP ON THE WORLD. Table Mountain is at the northern end of a sandstone mountain range that forms the spine of the Cape Peninsula. To the south of the main plateau is a lower part of the range called the Back Table. On the Atlantic coast of the peninsula, the range is known as the Twelve Apostles. A pretty groovy name in my opinion. It's flat top - where the God's munch their lunch - is 3km from side to side with many paths to cruise along & get lost on the mountain top.

The second time I popped up the mountain it was the most gloriously sunny & so I wore bright yellow trousers to highlight my sunny disposition. I chose a path & set off on a merry jaunt, coming across many exciting creatures on my way. I made friends with a number of jolly lizards who were lazily soaking up the rays & chilling on the rocks. When I was younger I bloody loved lizards & would capture the little things & keep them in a bucket. Perhaps not the most friendly way of treating my new 'friends' but I loved chatting to them & watching them scurry all over the show. In South Africa I met a tiny lizard hanging out in a restaurant so I decided to readopt my old lizard capturing behaviour & set the chap into the wild. He was quite a fiesty thing & I had quite some trouble with this until I finally got hold of his tail...AND THEN it fell off! Apparently it's their defense mechanism but I must say it gave me quite a shock. The most unappealing thing then occurred...the decapitated tail continued wiggling back & forth. It really did have a mind of it's own. The tailless lizard eventually found the door himself & he ventured off in search of tail-growth hormones. 

Most bizarre. 

Bloody love a bit of Chinese tourist bum. Much better than the view.

...And check out what he was photographing in the background of us being strange on a rock...His family & their peace signs! Ideal.

Some mystical butterflies seem to have appeared in the photograph which is pretty cool.

I was chilling at the cafe when I suddenly spotted funny little fluffy creatures scurrying around - Dassies. A dassie is an African rodent found amoung rocky outcroppings.

Dassies have hairy tails, but not bushy whereas the soles of their feet are distinctly bare and have pads. Their heads are noticeably flattened with a yellowish nose & tends to stand out. They have no underfur & are famous for being able to squeeze into extremely narrow crevices. This is accomplished due to their flattened skulls and flexible ribs. 

The most amazing fact about this funny little chappies is that their closest relatives are ELEPHANTS! I must admit that I can't see the relation but with a wild imagination it's possible to imagine a Dassie with big ears.

Cigarettes butts only? Poor chap must think he's a cigarette butt.

Tuesday, 5 June 2012


The view. I really have started taking the view for granted. I'm sitting here with a view on one side of the glorious sea & the view on the other of glorious mountains reaching well above the clouds but rather than contemplating their wonder I'm on my blaady laptop. What is this 21st century doing to me eh?

When I travel I'm a complete & utter culture vulture. Anything I can see & do, I'm on it like a rash. In Cape Town first things first - before the bizarre things to see & do, I had to seek out the main attraction - TABLE MOUNTAIN. Very aptly named, it quite frankly looks like a rather large table with a completely flat top for the Gods to munch their lunch off. Ideal. The mountain is visible from all over the city, rising 1,067m above sea level, it is just breathtaking.
1,067m high - I should climb it, right? Back in the day I was a bit of a climber. I went to an after school club called 'Challengers' where I learnt all kinds of outdoorsy business, from map reading to cooking pot noodles & ambrosia custard on a Trangia. Once a term I'd pop off with my fellow challengers to spend the weekend camping & putting our new custard heating skills into action. Oh & a bit of challenging things while we were at it - hiking, mountain biking, kayaking, climbing, abseiling & the like. We wore massive bright yellow & black waterproofs on these adventures to give the impression that a whole load of bumble bees were buzzing around on the Brekon Beacons.

Despite my previous life as Bear Grylls I decided not to climb Table Mountain when I heard about the rickety old cable car which could take me up the 1,067m in 10 minutes. Let's zoom up. I'm not going to chat too much about my incredible time at the top yet because I actually went back up yesterday so will write about it with my next lot of snappies.

Off now to contemplate the wonder of the view. So long modern technology.

The cable car was bloody amazing - glass all around & after the first few seconds the floor began to spin around! Panoramic views over Cape Town. Ooh la la.
Climbers! Oh ma gad, seeing them really gave me the willies.

After the height of the mountain, I cruised down to the low of the sea. The sun was setting & I chilled on a rock for some calm, technology free contemplation. 
The natural world is spectacular.

AND THEN SEALS! They were just having a little splish splash by the dock! A whole family - mum, dad, baby & perhaps an aunt (or uncle? Determining seal sex is not my forte, I must admit)
These seals appeared extemely jolly, twirling & floating in the water. A small fisherman chap threw them little fishes & they jumped out of the water to get their grub.
Happy little chappy. Ideal like a seal.