24 May 2014

Dear Coco

It was very difficult to say goodbye to you and Laddie last week, but I hope you know that we will be back to resume our walkies in no time at all. I hear its been rather cold and wet and windy in Cape Town.
I took these photos of you and Laddie to keep me going during these two weeks apart. Such a smart new hair cut.
After we said goodbye we hit the road and kept going till we arrived at our bed and breakfast at Kuilfontein Stables in the Karoo that afternoon.
We were given a crazy welcome by this Jack Russell who jumped into the car and proceeded to smell all around at top speed.
Then in front of the beautiful old Karoo farmhouse, we spied a Boston Terrier. Not quite as friendly as the Jack Russell though.
Max took us to our bedroom and showed us around,
while Sophie kept her distance. 
This was our room. We had a truly delicious supper, and a luxuriously warm and comfy night.
These are the stables that offer overnight accommodation for travelling horses.
The dining room where we had breakfast the next morning. Can you see the cat having breakfast? I dont think she was meant to be though.
There were hens roaming around,
as well as cats and dogs. The rooms are all converted old stables, very beautifully restored and decorated by the owner, Penny Southey.
Our classy bathroom,
and bedroom. Complete with friendly cat.
Saying good bye to Penny,
and the German Pointer whose name I think was Jack.
We had a fairly short day of driving the next day to a town called Rhodes that was very high up in the mountains at the end of a rather bumpy and windy road. This looked like a good place to stay ...
but we were booked into a farm called Kinmel, just outside the village of Rhodes. This was our accommodation. Almost as big as our house in Cape Town!
There were lots of dogs here too, but they are watch dogs and weren't allowed to come and say hello. There was a rather odd scarecrow,
and some friendly calves to keep us company.
The next day we left Rhodes and our "Wilgeboom" farm cottage, and headed even further up into the mountains.
Up and up and up we went. We even saw a really exciting bird called a Lammergeier,
and some interesting plants like this Euphorbia clavaroides growing on the cliffs.
We stopped for tea at a rather surprising posh lodge in the middle of nowhere where we were welcomed by a Jack Russell called Tena (who, I discovered, has her own facebook page here.) She was intrigued by all the dogs she could smell on my jeans.
We had a cup of tea and a look around the lodge,
said cheerio to Tena who was back in her basket near the entrance,
and in no time at all we reached the top of the pass - at Naude's Nek. After Sani Pass, this is the highest gravel road pass in South Africa at 2500 metres. And funnily enough, there was another Land Rover already there.
We then went down the other side, and then up and down another pass called the Pitseng Pass which was also quite rough and windy, but the Alph drove like a pro without a single hitch.
We then drove through the colourful town of Mount Fletcher
pumped the tyres and struck out for the Drakensberg where we were going to meet Gilly who was driving up from Lions River to join us for a day.
After a long day of difficult roads, and one last bumpy gravel road, we arrived at our destination. 
Well Coco, I hope that you are being a good dog and that you and Laddie are not barking and irritating the neighbours too much. I will write again soon. Give Laeticia and Laddie my love, 
love from the Food Lady - and the Alph x x 

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