Racing the Sun to the Tip of Africa

It was an early rise for my mum and I. We needed to check out and have a quick breakfast before running some errands in Plettenberg Bay. With the car fueled up, some more Rand in our pockets and our postcards at the beginning of their journeys across the globe, we set out for Cape Agulhas.

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In our reading and research, Cape Agulhas came up a few times. It is the most southerly point of Africa and the point where the Indian Ocean meets the Atlantic. We agreed that it was a must. With only one day to get there, the race was on.

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The drive was spectacular. Like with all of our previous journeys making our way across South Africa, every bit of scenery was breathtaking. You feel like you’re driving through a painting or continuously browsing through the best postcard shop there ever was.

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The dipping sun and its gloriously golden hue, told me that we were fast running out of time. I looked at how much further we had to go and calculated that we could make it by sunset, if I drove a bit faster and we made zero stops.

As the sun continued to lower critically close to the horizon, we neared our destination. By then, I knew we would make it. We rolled into the car park with perfect timing. The view was yet another that stole my breath away. We and the other handful of people that were there stood entranced by the sky and watched as the sun left us for another land far away.

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We checked out some information on a board nearby, before making our way down to the water. I had to dip my feet in and stand where the Indian Ocean officially meets the Atlantic. They were equally freezing!

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My mum and I marveled at where we were and truly soaked in the experience. We lingered a while longer, looking at the changing colours of the stunning sky.

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When the show was over, we reluctantly made our way back to the car. It was an incredible day, with the best ending one could ask for, two Trinis sitting at the tip of Africa.

~~~The Wandering Pier

Taking the Goodroad to London

When my friend told me she had gotten a job in France, I just knew
I had to stick around in England a bit longer so I could show her London. We met in South Korea a couple years ago and hadn’t seen each other since we both left. The decision to stay a little longer for Katie to visit me and for me to visit her in France was an easy one. It was on!

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I combined my mental itinerary with the few things she mentioned- visit to a pub, fish and chips and couple of sights. Easy! The Saturday night she arrived at Old Street, the pub crawl ensued. We continued into Islington, sampling different lagers, ales and ciders along the way.

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By the time we emerged from the last pub, only one thing was on our minds, food. I spied a kebab shop I had been to a couple times previously and explained that in true British tradition, a kebab would be a fitting meal to end the night. She was game. As we stood in there eating our food, wholesome drunken conversation developed with other inebriated souls. Good stuff.

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The next morning started with a tried and tested hangover cure, the Full English Breakfast. Served with a steaming hot cup of tea, of course! We were full and ready for the day.

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What we found in Camden was very unexpected for me. I hadn’t been for years and place is now rammed with tourists. I’m glad I used to frequent it before it turned into what it is today. However, the number of food stalls has gone from great to impressive.

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We then walked to Kings Cross station. Platform 9 3/4 was a must for my Harry Potter fanatic. Even that is no longer on an actual platform in the station. It’s now just a sign on a wall. After queuing up for about 30min we got our pictures and made our way back to Islington. This time to a comedy night at The Camden Head. The talent was excellent. We laughed until it hurt.

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Next, walking across London Bridge we stopped to admire the wonderful Tower Bridge across the way. We walked down to the More London area and got some shots.

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From there, we walked for what seemed like an eternity, along the Thames. Yeah, I didn’t realise just how far away the London Eye was. Oops. The pictures were worth it. I’m glad she got the opportunity to see it and Big Ben at night.

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On her final full day in London, we started with Buckingham Palace and covered Green Park, Piccadilly Circus and Soho. After a stop at an Asian grocery store in Chinatown (yay kimchi!), in Leicester Square we bought some theatre tickets on a whim. The show wasn’t until later that night.

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Trafalgar Square was buzzing as always, with entertainers and tourists. Failed attempts at climbing the lion were made. Boo! We squeezed in the London Eye, Westminster Abbey, Big Ben and the Houses of Parliament so she could see them by day and then the rains came.

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It was time to head over to Covent Garden for dinner and our show. There, some street entertainers held our attention for a while, until our bellies reminded us that it was time to go. I could not let Miss Goodroad pass through London without having Nando’s. She loved it and I loved that she loved it.

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Stomp was great! I wasn’t sure what to expect, but it was beyond what I thought and extremely funny. We left the theatre with excited spirits and headed home. There was packing to be done.

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I think I did a rather spiffing job of tour guide and host. It was also a great opportunity for me to look at London with new eyes again. Lots of things about Londontown drive me mad, but I still love it and I think it’s one of the best and most diverse cities in the world. It was nice to have a reminder of that. Cheerio 😉

~~~The Wandering Pier