29 December 2010

Ghostly walkies

With our Wellington (New Zealand) guests and Stephen and Robynne, we tried to go for a walk in Silvermine but the Southeaster was so black that we decided to give the New Zealanders a break from bad weather and decamped to Constantia Nek which is not so high up. Richard helped Dawnie Dog through the cars and wild SANParks vehicles that hurtle down the mountain roads. Alexander is on the left. We left the road and climbed up and up ... and at the top we encountered this ghostly creature ... who seemed to sense where I was and tried to grab me ... but I got away! Some of the endemic Table Mountain Watsonias (Watsonia tabularis) looming out of the mist. The area where we were walking was once a pine plantation but the pines have recently been felled and the area is returning to beautiful mountain fynbos again. You can see some of the felled pines on the right. Despite the no entry sign Richard and Robynne walked off into the mist, the city of Cape Town somewhere far far far below them, and we just blindly followed, although Dawnie doesn't look too sure about it all.
Luckily we didn't all fall over the edge as the sign suggested, and lived to see this strange parasitic plant - an Ink Flower (Harveya pauciflora) that turns black and inky when it dies. Apparently early colonists used them as a source of writing ink. (We have mentioned this flower before in this blog.)
We got to the waterfall which was falling very picturesquely, and had tea. This is Jan with a rock for his mother-in-law whose rock was stolen - and Lydia, Alexander and Robynne.
Robynne and Stephen with the monster that turned into Richard, who then tried to mesmerise us with his scarf, but only Dawnie was impressed.
The rest of us just set about texting or finishing our tea on the rocks.
Jan with his rock.
There were lots of these little yellow lobelias (Monopsis lutea).
Dawnie and I were grateful for this short dip in a mountain stream, even though we were not at all hot what with the air conditioning being turned on to maximum strength.
On the way back we came across this Light from Africa ceramic studio, but as it didn't say "tea and scones", I pushed on resolutely, tail in the air ...
through the remaining pine plantations back to the cars at Constantia Nek ... where Lydia and Jan bought some delectable looking fruit before we headed on home.


  1. Hi Coco, your yoomen used this link to comment on my blog and am I glad she did! Now I have your wonderful "walkies" blog to follow. I simply LOVE all your friends, even the "potential" one, ha! We had a Scottie called Magnus for fourteen years until he went across the Rainbow bridge. We miss him so, but admire you're beautiful expression and straight tail which is so like Magnus'. Have a wonderful wagging day. Jo and her menagerie in the Free State.

  2. Hi Coco, in case you were wondering if Jan not only had a rock in his hand that day but also had some in his head...."that" rock is now enjoying its new function as the door-stop in Oma Lya's cottage in Woodside. An unusual reminder of recent visitors from NZ! Thank you for having us along on your walkies during our stay - we really enjoyed them all! Love from Lydia and her gang