Table Mountain, Cape Town, South Africa

After four days in South Africa, finally, a dry and “sunny-ish” day!  So, we decided to head into to Cape Town, to see if we could see the top of Table Mountain (it has remained elusive), and see if the winds were calm enough for the gondola to run to the top.  Well it was indeed running, but were told upon buying the tickets that there was no visibility.  We went up anyway.

The gondola was wild.  Filled with about 30-40 people (standing room only), it ascended the steep cliffs of the Table, rotating as it went up, so all passengers could enjoy a 360 degree view at some point on the short journey…which was great… until we passed by the open window (oh – did I mention there was nothing to hold on to!).  Then, the vertigo hit.

Once again, we lucked out, the clouds lifting for us to see the magnificent views of the city, coastline, and mountaintop extending south to the Cape of Good Hope.

After wandering around and scampering over rocks for about an hour, avoiding the “edges”, we grabbed some lunch at the mountaintop grill.  And for today’s unique dining experience:  Ostrich sausages served up on a sub with tzatsiki and fries for a whopping 45 Rand (ie about $5.50!). Those tourist prices will get you every time!

Once at the bottom of the mountain again, an unfortuanate little mishap.  While walking along the side of the road on the way back to the car, I was “bumped” by a slowly moving Mercedes, and my foot run over. Needless to say, scared me, and then pissed me off as the driver slowly pulled away, the passenger adjusting the side mirror as though nothing happened (my body had knocked it out of whack).  Well, due to the traffic, I caught up to the car, yelling at the occupants that they’d just hit me, and hobbled to find Jeff waiting at the car wondering what had happened.  I sat on the trunk, assessing the damage.  My foot hurt like hell, but fortunately, it wasn’t broken (I think it must have been the sloped side of the tire that put pressure on my foot).  The culprits did stop…turns out he was a doctor (he informed us as he examined my foot), and his niece was just learning to drive, and he’d told her to stop…but it was too late.  He was actually very considerate, calling later to check up on me.

So, after a quick detour at the local corner store to buy some ice – which turned out to be a little, square, red popsicle (fit my foot perfectly) – we did a quick tour through the city centre, and then out to the boys’ favorite haunt…the casino!  Well, this “casino” is more like a games hall for all ages…with everything from video games to movie theatres to bowling to go-carts to an actual full-sized casino (where I came out ahead!).

The sun was starting to get low in the sky, so Jeff decided we should head to one of the beaches to the north of the city centre, watch the sun set, and then grab some dinner.  Appropriately ended up at Table View Beach just in time to watch the glowing orb sink behind Robbens Island.

The dining options were non-existent, so we headed back to Stellenbosch and Hassar’s Restaurant for epicurean delights (ie meat fest!).  We shared some Springbok Carpaccio (since it was so good the first time) and Bitterballen (double cream béchamel studded with beef , crumbed, and deep-fried) to start, then I savoured my tender Kudu steak, all washed down with a lovely glass of local red.

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(More Cape Town photos….soon!)

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~ by betweenthelatitudes on May 2, 2012.

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