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So much has happened in the past week, I should have been writing periodic updates, but I’ve been way too lazy/busy. This is going to be a mini update on all the adventures my friends and I went on in Cape Town.
After carnivore night we slept for a solid 4 hours before heading back to the JNB airport. We landed in cape town before 8. The sun rise is ridiculously early, before 5:00, so we were somewhat disoriented. Our first day we walked around Green Point and went to the V&A Waterfront both are BEAUTIFUL. Eating apricots along a well paved road where overwhelming smells do not even exist was magical. That night we went out for sushi and painted the town on Long Street. I was a dancing fool and pulled a muscle in my calf, LAME. Regardless that next day we woke up, shuffled around our beautiful hostile (Atlantic Point Backpackers) and headed to Table Mountain. We left at noon and the guy at the hostile was like, uhm people usually hike it in the morning because of the heat. Anyway, it was sweltering and we struggled. My calf hurt, I was dripping sweat, we all were severely hung over, Stella and Jin were wearing flip-flops… we made it though! The view was incredible, you can see everything from the top, the waterfront, green point, Robben island, etc. We took the cable car down, which was fun. We went to Cliffton Beach in the afternoon and it was BEAUTIFUL! The water was refreshing and cold.
Day 3: Cage Diving (!)
Woke up early and our driver carted us to Gansbaai. After some boat prep we headed to the deep blue, and anchored about 45 minutes out at sea. The whole experience was surreal, we saw a shark in just a few minutes. The whole thing was less exciting than I was anticipating, I imagined people screaming and running around on the boat, and the sharks charging the cage, smashing into it. The cage was attached to the boat and after putting on wet suits and goggles, 5 people get into the cage and wait. The guys on the boat gave us our instructions, ” don’t ever put your arms or legs out of the cage, when they say get down, hold your breath and get down”. There are two orange bars in the cage, one is on the bottom of the cage and you use it to hook your feet underneath, when the sharks swim by. The other bar is used as a marker and you’re supposed to rest your chin on it so you get as close to the sharks as possible. When I was in the cage I think we waited for 15 minutes before the first shark came. The guy said “down, down, down,” it’s super intimidating and you’re trying to concentrate on not flinging an appendage out of the cage and becoming an amputee, and searching for the shark. It was awesome. A few people got REALLY sea-sick, which is a bummer, but everyone enjoyed themselves. It was definitely a once in a life time experience. I would absolutely do it over again! When the driver took us back to Cape Town he stopped at McDonalds. They make vegetarian burgers! That night we went out, and were just young and stupid. Some of us stayed out until 4:00 a.m. We found the coolest bar on Long Street with live music – so much fun!
Day 4: Wine tour
After sleeping for two hours I woke up, rummaged around, and we all headed out for the wine tour. Four of us stayed out really late, and we were severely hung over. Our tour guide, Bruce, was the man, he was pretty much our baby sitter for the day. We visited four different wineries all of them were fantastic. I LOVED the first one, goats head. We started by tasting a variety of whites and reds, and moved to the cheese bar. I ate so much cheese, it was awesome. I will never forget that cheese, it is the best cheese I’ve ever had in my life. SO GOOD! It was like 104 degrees, which doesn’t go well with a hang over, and red wine, but we struggled through. At the wine tables if you don’t enjoy a wine there are little disposal containers, where you pour the wine you don’t like so your glass can be filled with a different type of wine. I wasted almost no wine that day. I couldn’t finish my wine at lunch, such a shame. Stellenbosch was a stop; we didn’t spend that much time there, but I really enjoyed it. We ended the tour with Champagne and sparkling wine, delicious and sweet. The tour was incredible and was probably my favorite part of the whole trip. I really like red wine, and I feel somewhat more knowledgeable about wine in general after that tour. Bruce drove us back to cape town and after an early dinner some of us went out to check out the gay bar scene, which was fun. The night wasn’t as ridiculous as the night before.
Day 5: Tattoos
We didn’t do much this day, some people went to Robben Island. Liz, Nik, and I headed downtown to figure out our tattoo appointments. Liz went first, and we went back at 4 for the rest of them. We went shopping downtown and ate some quasi-mexican food. Liz and I had Coronas, they have corona in South Africa, awesome! Getting tattoos took pretty much most of the day, but we are really happy with them! I got “Iwot Kwene? Atye awot kana me dwogo cen pe” which translates to where are you going? i’m going to infinity and beyond (not literally). Liz’s says “iwot kwene” – where are you going, and Nik’s says “iromo wot naka kwene” – how far will you go. Nik and I also got the equal sign for HRC. Equality is something I feel very strongly about, so the timing just seemed right. Getting tattoos took up most of the day, when we finished we met up with everyone else. Some of us went out again to our favorite bar and stayed out dancing until 4 again. When the bar closed we bought delicious falafel pitas on the street, so good!
Day 6: Cape Point
On the last day we all taxied to the airport to pick up the huge car that I rented. We piled in, and I drove us to the hostile, which was really scary. They drive on the opposite side of the road, the shifter is on the left side of the wheel, and the lanes are pretty narrow. Despite all those things people drive really well, so it wasn’t that overwhelming. I passed off to Galen, and he drove us to Kalk Bay, and Boulders Beach. Seeing the penguins was fabulous, they are ADORABLE! Galen passed off to George and he took us all the way down to Cape Point. After some ridiculous dilemma involving our laundry, we worked things out and hiked up to the light house. The views were breath-taking. We spent hours exploring, taking pictures and just enjoying ourselves. Eventually we assembled ourselves walked down and drove to the cape of good hope. we frolicked in the ocean, and took a ton of photos. We saw wild ostriches and zebra, so awesome. Liz saved a turtle that was crossing the road, hahaha. The ONLY thing that could have made the trip better is if we saw a meerkat. That night Andrew was the only trooper that went out, everyone else stayed in and packed.
Leaving Cape Town was SUPER depressing, I am seriously in love. We left on Christmas Eve, and after racing through the airport in Addis to make our connection we pulled into Dar at 4 a.m. on Christmas Day. The airline lost Jin and Jen’s bags AGAIN, so we were stuck at the airport longer than we could stand. It was SWELTERING HOT, in Dar. I was genuinely concerned I wouldn’t be able to fall asleep because it was so hot, but I was so exhausted from the trip, I passed out. Galen and I woke up at 10 a.m. and we left to explore the city. Pretty much everything was closed, but we stumbled upon a fish market, and bomb street food. We ate at a Pakistani BBQ that night and it was delicious. It was so good we are planning for that to be our last meal in Tanzania. On the 26th we made our way to Zanzibar on the ferry. There are 18 of us and our resort is right on the beach. It is beautiful here. The water is really warm, which I was not expecting at all. There is a drastic difference between high and low tide. High tide is great because it gets pretty hot here during the day, so it is nice to go and take a dip. You have to walk a serious distance if you want to find the water at low tide. All we’ve been doing is relaxing, tanning, and being kids. It is definitely a different pace from Cape Town, but it has been amazing.
This update was pretty patchy, but I tried. We are here until January 2nd – I can’t wait to bring in the new year on this island! The next leg of the trip is Ethiopia!
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