#17 - Kommetije, South Africa
South Africa was an amazing stop on the tour. Coming off of the safari everyone was tired and we needed a place to relax a bit and a place to get back in shape. Standing in a truck all day without any chance to even walk, combined with great food and unlimited drinks left us all feeling a bit flabby and weak. Fortunately Kommetije is a really chill surfing town about 45 minutes south of Cape Town and it would prove to be the perfect place to recover.
South Africa is stunningly beautiful, but it is also a challenging place emotionally. The years of apartheid are long gone, but the results of white rule are still very evident. When we walked off the plane and into the airport I remember saying "welcome back to the 1st world kids", but within 20 minutes of leaving the airport I regretted saying those words. While South Africa has all of the infrastructure of a 1st world country, a significant number of people still live in 3rd world conditions. The townships are just heartbreaking and make you wonder how people with so much can drive by people who have so little on a daily basis. This is not a simple issue and I don't mean to make it that way, but the stark contrast of haves and have nots was the subject of discussion nearly every day while we were there. For the most part we felt safe and did the things we wanted to, but in the back of our minds there was always a small amount of fear about the violence that once racked this country.
While we were in South Africa, we hiked / ran nearly every day, ate great food, drank wonderful South African wine, surfed, paddle boarded, visited some gardens, went to the end of the world (The Cape of Good Hope), went to Stellenbosch, Kalk Bay and Cape Town, saw the Lumineers in a botanical garden, played capture the flag on the beach, took a ton of photos and played on a beach with penguins. Overall South Africa was one of our favorite stops, but was hard to fully enjoy because of the poverty which was always around the next corner.
The Daily Dump
South Africa was also the place where we came up with the idea for the Daily Dump - a daily blog of our activities and pictures. So from this checkpoint forward we will have a section in the checkpoint pages with all of the daily dump posts for that location. In this case we only came up with the idea a couple days before we left, so there are only a couple posts.