During our month long stay in South Africa we took many day trips around the Western Cape. You’ve already heard about all the wine and chocolate tasting that our little hearts could desire, and our full circle moment in Cape Agulhas, but we wanted to get real with you guys. Because lets face it everything is not rainbows and butterflies, even on a trip like this.
With almost 3 weeks of the flu under my belt and Chris raring to go as always, we were dying to explore by foot. Table Mountain had been calling our names and its ascent just so happened to be my first real endurance test post-sickness. We set out one sunny morning with Elaine — a friend of our Dutch housemate Annemiek and now a friend of ours — and other new friends Chris and Mandy.
Well, let me rewind a little bit… On our overnight trip to Cape Aguhlas we meet an awesome couple from the States, Mandy and Chris. They are on their yearlong honeymoon around the world (awesome right?), and we just happened to be staying in the same B&B. Chris, my little social butterfly of a husband, decided to strike up a conversations with them and before we knew it we had a braai (BBQ)/pool party double date planned. The braai turned into a plan to hike Table Mountain before they traveled on to Singapore… Ok, now you’re up to speed.
The five of us started up the mountain at about 10:30am. The African sun was blazing. We made it about a fourth of the way up when I started feeling a little funny; not horrible but also not like I wanted to joyously skip my way up the mountain. Chris and I decided (after much grumbling) that it would be best if we turned around. I didn’t want to hold everyone up and also didn’t want to get too far up the mountain and not be able to get back down.
So there it was, our new friends — who we were dying to spend more time with — steadily ascending, and us begrudgingly going in the opposite direction. There were hardly any words spoken on the way down the mountain, and for a good 2 hours after. We were both in a mood! I, for one, have pretty much always been able to finish something physical. Being a P.E. teacher in my past career, I never back down from a challenge and HATE to lose. This felt like a big loss!
We decided — once some much needed ego repair work was done — that we would make the best of it. After all we are in bleeping South Africa, for crying out loud!
We had a few more hours to kill before we reunited with the “successful hikers” at the bottom of the mountain. We ended up finding a place called Signal Hill, adjacent to Table Mountain, with some nice views of Cape Town and beyond — albeit not the amazing views of our arch-nemesis.
It ended up being one of those let’s-learn-from-this days. Guess my Mom has always been right; things in life don’t always go your way. But we are finding out that if you can bend and move with the flow, life is a whole lot more enjoyable.
By the way; HAPPY MARDI GRAS to all of our Louisiana peeps!! Laissez les bons temps rouler!