September 26, 2019.

So I’m really pleased the baboon didn’t thief off with the freshly baked scones when he snuck into the kitchen on Monday afternoon, and hooked into the fruit bowl. But he didn’t take the bananas – how weird…

It’s been nine years between innings, but the feeling of serenity and intimacy of the Drakensberg mountains was just the same as it was nine years ago, as my great mate Vic and I pulled into Mkomazana, at the foot of the Sani Pass, last weekend.

It was 2010 when we last visited this treat from Mother Nature together, and I’m pretty sure we had more ideas and rules about ‘being a grown up’ back then, than we do now…

Eight people in one house for four days amongst the mountains equals; feasts, wine, naps, laughs, and some epic stories.

A fun early morning hike, then enjoying the All Blacks won the opening RWC game, and it was totally fine being the only ABs supporter in the room, as long as I kept zipped.

A solo 30km return hike up Sani Pass had Sunday cut out well and truly; had a chat to a local Lesotho guy with a bundle of sticks strapped to his back, swapped him a photo of him for a juicy orange. Learned from a bakkie full of university students that Pretoria University has been studying ant life (yes, actual ants) in the Sani Pass for 16 years. No, I’m not sure why either.. And I met a group of ‘birders’ almost beside themselves as they clutched their binos and long lenses, when they sited their final bird on their list, just as they were on their way home; the Drakensberg Rock Jumper. Which, for matter of fact, lives only at 2700m altitude and above, I think. ‘This is GREAT, it’s like beating the All Blacks, in EXTRA TIME!!! Thank you for sharing this with us!!’ exclaimed my birder friend as she fought back tears. It was actually pretty cool – you’re one tiny dot in one massive mountain range, and each and everyone finds and appreciates different treasures.

Speaking of treasures, horse riding on the Monday was hilarious. My stomach was sore from laughing, and that’s before we got on the four-legged beasts. Loose horses, broken gear, biting, kicking, saddles falling off. My chestnut fluff ball was called Womble, (pronounced ‘Womblee’ like with a bit of French flair). Well Womble was the laziest horse there, except for when he must have been boring himself and decided to take a hunk out of Mr T’s arse (Mr T is a horse, not a person.) Well, Mr T was less than impressed, and Womble was counting his lucky stars the retaliative kick did not land him a big one. And the guy who was on foot walking with us keeping an eye on things, with ‘Dope Hands’ plastered across his chest, was about as helpful as tits on a bull. We did see a beautiful waterfall.