From India to LA to Cape Town
The Kaushal group of travelers was all born in India. They are a sixties generation group of friends who have shared experiences in Alaska, Antarctica, China and Australia.
|My Indian American friends.|
Rita was first to arrive, and asked me if I was available as a taxi the same evening. The www.proteahotels.com/protea-hotel-fire-ice!-cape-town.html
presents its clients with many efficient services and amenities. Their taxi service providers are reliable and economical.
After the inbound transfers our first stop was www.castleofgoodhope.co.za/
The Castle was originally a fort constructed by the first employees of the Dutch East India Company to the Cape. In reality research indicates the first fort was a wooden structure to the west of the current castle.
|Cape Point and Cape of Good Hope|
From the Castle we ascend to tablemountain.net/ passing by the Parliament, Company Gardens, Tamboerskloof and Oranjezicht.
The upper station is just over 1000 meters above sea level, and on this occasion clouds were flying dramatically over the sandstone ridges. Table Mountain and the Peninsula Range consist of two groups of sedimentary rocks, namely the Graafwater Formation and the Peninsula Formation. Underneath the surface and exposed on the lower slopes and coastline we see the huge boulders of ancient Granite mother rock.
Our Peninsula Tour meanders along the Atlantic Seaboard and we spot some South African Fur seals at Oudekraal. The name suggests the original bias value of these species and a name change is overdue. These are protected mammals in South Africa.
|I like to call these flowers snow.|
White sand beaches decorate the 65km drive to Cape Point, and we stop to photograph Long Beach and Witsands.
From Cape Point we view Dias Beach and Cape of Good Hope. This is a dramatic and iconic location loaded with history and legend. Before the navigators Dias and Da Gama we can only guess what this landmark meant to our African ancestors. Cape Point remains one of the most visited landmarks to South Africa’s four million annual visitors.
Our next destination is Boulders Beach with its colony of African Penguins. Short boardwalks take us right to the heart of the colony. We spot blues who are young penguins in the molt from furry feathers to adult feathers. http://www.sanparks.org/parks/table_mountain/tourism/attractions.php#boulders remains an exciting, educational and interesting part of the Peninsula meander.
After visiting the penguins we enjoy lunch at www.seaforthrestaurant.co.za/.
Kirstenbosch Gardens: www.sanbi.org/index.php?option=com_content&view... is a highlight a the end of a Peninsula exploration. Walking through the gardens and searching for the national flower of South Africa [en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Protea_cynaroides] keep the guests involved right to the end of the long day and myriad of activities and sights. The Gardens were secured by Cecil John Rhodes [ http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cecil_Rhodes ] and gifted in his legacy to the people of South Africa.
After the days activities the sunlight over the back of Table Mountain is soothing and calming.
As we approach www.waterfront.co.za/.../NelsonMandelaGatewaytoRobbenIsland.asp... we hear the singing and chanting of the strikers. The news Papers explain that the striking www.robben-island.org.za/ workers demand a better wage and holidays over Christmas. It strikes me how the operations of the museum function normally even thought there are about forty workers striking on the steps of the Gateway building.
The atmosphere at www.bukhara.com/ is chaotic and crowded, reminiscent of Deli and Bombay. Though the dining is spectacular. Complex curries and abundant dishes compliment the Kaushal Group’s brief visit to the Mother City.
|In memory of Cecil Rhodes|
During the outbound transfer the guests assure me how they appreciate Cape Town and plan to return. The typical check in is complex and chaotic, with www.flysaa.com/ struggling to check the group in and connect they’re Johannesburg flight to Hoedspruit. At last we wave good by and I wonder when I will visit India. The land of color, curry and inspiration.