Thursday, 12 January 2017

65 + 1 day

Yesterday was my 65th birthday and was amazing.

We started the day at 7 am and set out for Adrenalin Addo. When we got there it was on with the gear and climbing up the hillside to the top so we could zip wire down. The views were incredible (as was the flora). I had made the decision on rising that I wouldn't take my camera. I just wanted to experience the day firsthand without having to resort to taking pics too. Tracy, however, had other thoughts and she took hers, determined that I'd have some photos to remember the day with.

Getting ready for action
About to let go!

The experience was exhilerating, but also a bit weird as I ended up going down backwards for pretty much all of it. Not seeing where I was going added another dimension to the whole experience!

After that we headed for the swing. You get put in a harness and pulled up into the sky and then they just let go. It was terrifying and that's all I'm going to say about it!

Smiling here!

I wasn't smiling here!

After a sit down and recovery from the action we were given our paddles and canoe and off we went down the Sundays River. It was so beautiful. It's been years since I canoed and I really enjoyed this part of the day. So much so, we did the course (2km) and decided to do it again.

Paddling down the Sundays River. Fab!

We sat about in the cool after our exertions and made the decision to go to Addo Elephant National Park... one of my favourite places... for the rest of the day.

And so there we were, driving round the reserve on the lookout for wild animals. It was a very hot day and was about midday when we got there, so not the best for animal spotting... you'd think. However, not long after we got there we saw a buffalo sitting in one of the mud pools, followed by some kudu, springbok, zebra and a lone ele. And then we saw a whole lot of vehicles lining up at the side of the road. We went to investigate. When it came to our turn there was a giant lion's paw just peeking out from the bush. I could see his mane moving with his breath. I've never seen a lion at Addo before and ok, I didn't actually see a whole one this time, but it was thrilling nevertheless.

We headed off after that and saw a jackal in the scrub, who was just standing watching us. I've only seen one of these at night, so it was another thrill.

Finally we came upon a wonderful scene. Many ele families all at a waterhole. Tracy turned the engine off and we sat for about an hour just watching the interactions of the large bulls, seemingly telling their herds what to do, the docile females guarding their gorgeous babies and the naughty boys off playing in the water and acting in, what can only be described, as hooligan behaviour. So wonderful to see.

One naughty boy getting out of the pool

Looking for trouble!

Daddy standing guard

C'mon in ... I dare you!

On our way to the exit we came across a lone ostrich.

All alone

and a lovely warthog and her teeny tiny baby

So cute!

And at the final waterhole before the exit we'd chosen to leave by we saw another small herd of eles, together with warthog and zebra with a this year's foal. A fitting end to our Addo experience.

At the waterhole

What a lovely foal!

From there it was back to Port Elizabeth and after a brief swim in the pool, time to get ready for dinner. We went to a sea food restaurant and I had delicious grilled king prawns and a glass of wine and then realised how exhausted we were.

We got home and I collapsed into my bed with all the wonderful memories of my 65th swimming round my head.

A truly memorable birthday!

No comments:

Post a Comment